Annals of Vacheron & Constantin: 1914 to 1938 - Episode 3

Nov 18, 2022,22:17 PM

For our third episode, we will cover the period to 1929.  Charles Constantin shares an amusing experience visiting his farmer-workers but also reveals his frustration with this inefficient method of producing rough parts, and he dreams of the day when they have developed machines to replace this too-human element.

The term "douzième" refers to the thickness of a movement; each unit being 1/12 of a ligne.  Therefore, a 7-douzième calibre is only 1.3 mm thick!  Also notice the reference to "Mr. Pellaton".  This is Albert Pellaton who went on to great fame with IWC.  His earlier work with V&C remains somewhat muted but you may enjoy his achievements as recounted in an earlier article; Fast Times:

Verger Frères is acknowledged for their mastery of Art Deco design with the iconic montres à volets shutter watches and their fabulous mantle clocks with Jaccard's constant force escapements.  VC was to recreate an example of the latter for their 260th anniversary.

The term "squelette" describes a movement for which the plates and bridges have been pierced through in decorative patterns.  "Limeurs" are the workers who create these patterns with very delicate files.

Finally, give some thought to the figures noted; 3,264 ebauches in 1929!  This gives a sobering idea of their scale of production in those days...

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It helps to remind ourselves

 By: Tick Talk : November 20th, 2022-17:00
that being a connoisseur involves not just, or not even, possession of an object of desire but also an understanding of its context in the world, past and present. The picture is often surprising, sometimes disturbing, and always interesting.