Hands-On: The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Squelette, A Look Inside One Of The World's Flattest Watches

The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Squelette is significantly lavish just as hazardously thin.

Openworking a development can mean a variety of things these days, and only one out of every odd company that makes openworked developments is attempting to etherealize a watch. A great deal of the time the objective is basically to make a bizarre or fascinating enhanced visualization, and not to go for the conventional objectives of openworking as such (I think about Cartier’s openworked Santos models, for example, or Roger Dubuis’ skeleton tourbillons, which are more about making a sort of structural feel). The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Squelette is truly arranged towards the customary methodology, nonetheless, the objective of which is straightforwardness. Perhaps the main fundamental rules by which you assess a generally organized openworked, or skeletonized, development (the terms are interchangeable in every way that really matters) is truth be told by the level of straightforwardness accomplished.

One of the things you don’t complain about with a watch like this is the general absence of clarity; openworking isn’t explicitly expected to make a watch less simple to peruse, yet suppose it’s unquestionably not an essential thought either.

The development is an openworked, and engraved, variant of JLC’s well known super slender type 849.

The conventional approach to openwork a development is to utilize a puncturing document to make small openings in the plates and scaffolds, and afterward tohand-saw your way around within forms of the parts you’re opening up. These days this moderately dangerous and difficult cycle has commonly been superseded by the utilization of EDM (electrical release machining, otherwise called flash disintegration or wire disintegration) and, on account of haute horlogerie watches, a lot of hand-completing – exactly what amount relies upon the desire of the maker.

Jaeger-LeCoultre is really aggressive with this one. The type 849 has experienced an uncommon weight decrease program to get it to the state you see it in here, and it wasn’t actually a strong development in any case. (The development’s set of experiences goes right back to its advancement during the 1950s, because of a coordinated effort between Jaeger-LeCoultre, Vacheron Constantin, and Audemars Piguet. AP was the first to offer it in a watch available to be purchased, as type 2003, in 1953, and VC offered it as type 1003, in 1955.) Just about all that could be opened up has been, including the origin barrel; essentially the solitary immaculate metal surfaces are those around the stem and grasp for the keyless works (the winding and hand setting system related with the crown). On top of that pretty much every accessible surface has been engraved by hand, which must be managed without twisting the levelness or position of any of the turn gems. At the point when you remember how unforgiving basic clearances are in a super meager development, the way that it’s been so extravagantly improved becomes significantly more impressive.

Caliber 849A SQ is an ideal contender for customary openworking and the outcome has superb (and implausible) transparency.

At 1.85mm, it’s not the most slender rendition of this development (at the present time that record is held by Vacheron’s type 1003, at 1.64mm) however strangely enough, the non–jewel set adaptation of the JLC Master Ultra Thin Squelette is the most slender watch on the planet generally at this moment, but by a genuinely scholastic edge. Piaget’s 900P is formally 3.65mm thick, while that Master Ultra Thin Squelette is 3.60mm thick. While, as we brought up in a prior story, this is simply   10 human red platelets laid next to each other , a negligible distinction is as yet a distinction. The skeptic in me contemplates whether this cautious allocating evenness records between Vacheron, Piaget, and Jaeger-LeCoultre wasn’t the aftereffect of some Mafia-at-the-Apalachin style late-night powow of Richemont managers, where who will do what with watch slenderness was shared out as cautiously as were Cosa Nostra effective reaches for racketeering.

At 4.73mm it’s practically the most slender watch JLC makes and one of the flattest in the world.

As referenced, this isn’t the most slender form of this watch; with pearls on the bezel the thickness goes up to 4.73mm, which is obviously still powerful level. Jaeger’s Master Ultra Thin Jubilee from 2014 is just 4.05mm thick, and the Vacheron Constantin Les Historiques 1955 (which we reviewed in August 2015 ) is 4.13mm thick. The intriguing thing about expounding on, and finding out about, super slender watchmaking is that there is a propensity to get hung-up on numbers, in any case I believe that will in general be a smidgen of a sterile method to move toward it. Being wowed by how slim a watch is, as it is introduced to your faculties, is fine – yet once you’re excessively diverted by who holds what record it gets somewhat theoretical and deadpan.

One of the incongruities of super slight watches at the haute horlogerie level is the manner by which thick your wallet must be to get something so slender. Without pearls the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Squelette in pink gold is $58,500; with jewels, it will run you $72,500. Curiously, this is pretty much in accordance with the historical backdrop of valuing in super flimsy watches; regularly, the more slender watches were, the more costly they were. Scaling down was all the more in fact troublesome thus super slender watches were correspondingly more costly. An outstanding exemption for this used to be the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin in steel, at 34mm x 4.1mm, which, until it was discreetly dropped from JLC’s list, used to be one of the extraordinary deals in fine watchmaking. One grieves its nonappearance. Luckily the Atmos is still ridiculously reasonable for what you get.

It’s an extremely exquisite watch that asks to be worn on formal occasions.

There is a genuinely tight cut of events on which you can really wear this specific rendition of this specific watch, yet I can consider one: This would be a fabulous watch to wear on the off chance that you turned out to be at a dark tie occasion and wearing a supper coat with a shirt shut with jewel studs. The truly right form would be the one in white gold, albeit the pink gold model we’ve taken a gander at here would be really darned effective also – possibly a superior match on the off chance that you had rose gold sleeve fasteners, however a few group accept that lone white metal ought to be worn with a tux (and obviously there is consistently the perpetual discussion about whether you should wear a watch with formal clothing by any stretch of the imagination; we got into the advantages and disadvantages not very far in the past, in case you’re keen on the two sides of the inquiry ).

The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Squelette with precious stones is both eye-getting and incredibly refined.

The Master Ultra Thin Squelette (with precious stones) is an unmistakable sort of watch that works best in quite certain circumstances – generally formal ones – yet for those applications it works better compared to pretty much whatever else I can consider. What’s more, it is a razor-slender cut of exceptionally fascinating horological history as well.

The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin, jewel set, in pink gold: 38mm x 4.7mm, 3 bar water safe; 72 precious stones. Polish improvement around the development. Development, hand-wound type 849A SQ, 1.85mm, 21,600 vph, openworked and engraved. More from Jaeger-LeCoultre.com.

Want to discover more about super slim watches? Look at our arrangement regarding the matter.

For a genuine top to bottom look inside Manufacture Jaeger-LeCoultre today, look at our four section arrangement from our latest visit to Le Sentier , in the Vallée de Joux.