The unstinting commitment of engineers and master watchmakers in Le Sentier to the highest possible level of excellence in the field of Minute Repeater movements has been amply demonstrated in recent years.
Faithful to their customary approach, they have striven to uncover the techniques employed by the master watchmakers of days gone by. They have also been keen to go even further, never hesitating to take on new challenges by applying contemporary methods and technology. Having paid tribute and acknowledged the achievements of the past, today's watchmakers have not been slow to take up the gauntlet.
The technical difficulty of a repeater watch lies in the complexity of the mechanism that serves to read the time shown by the hands so as to transcribe it through a succession of strikes that, in the case of minute repeaters, count out the hours, quarter-hours and minutes. In the case of minute repeater watches, the barrel spring stores up all the energy needed to launch into the mechanical ballet that is to follow, thanks to the angular shifting action of the bolt. At the same time, what are known as the hour, quarter and minute racks (parts which have a series of aligned teeth) are wound up and set in position. An ingenious form of disconnecting-gear makes it possible to take out of action the strike-train and the centrifugal governor during the winding process. While the racks are being wound up, the hammers of the two gongs move aside from their positions to let the racks pass. This is why a minute repeater mechanism must never be re- wound when it is ringing.
Once the winding process has been completed, the energy of the barrel spring is liberated through the speed regulator, which uses the principle of centrifugal force to maintain a constant striking speed for the hammers.
The quality of the sound is largely dependent on the rapidity of the striking. If the hammer stays in contact with the gong, the latter's vibrations will be seriously disturbed, and the sound emitted will be of mediocre quality. The setting of the striking action is an essential and extremely delicate aspect of minute repeaters.
The production of sound by a watch depends on this mechanism, which requires the presence of two circular gongs rolled up inside the case, and of small hammers to strike them at regular intervals.
The sound quality of a watch that gives an acoustic indication of the time largely depends on the gongs, the essential parts for producing sound, in much the same way as in a piano the strings are struck by the hammers. The case then amplifies and enriches the sound emitted by the gongs by adding a variety of tones and harmonies to it.
|Movement||:||Mechanical hand-wound movement, |
Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 947,
Crafted, assembled and decorated by hand
|Frequency||:||21,600 vibrations per hour|
|Functions||:||Hours, minutes, |
Barrel torque indication
|Markers||:||rhodium-plated applique markers|
|Crown||:||1 crown for winding the watch, and for setting the hours and minutes|
|Push-piece||:||1 catch to activate the minute repeater|
|Case||:||ø 44 mm|
|Material||:||18-carat pink gold|
|Straps||:||Chocolate-brown alligator-skin strap with pin buckle in 18-carat gold|
|Reference||:||Q50125 50 18-carat pink gold|