A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Our preference for certain types of watches over others mostly boils down to a matter of taste. Taste is subjective. It cannot be measured, and it cannot be quantified. While watches from A. Lange & Söhne might not be to everyone’s taste, it is very hard to dismiss what they do as anything but admirable and special. Indeed, we have seen examples of their fine work in watches like the Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon and the simply mega Richard Lange Perpetual Calendar “Terraluna” watch. Today, I want to bring your attention to an A. Lange & Söhne masterpiece that looks deceptively simple, but is actually quite complex. I am, of course, referring to the Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch that debuted earlier this year at SIHH 2016.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

When you first lay eyes on the Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch, what’s special about it may not be immediately apparent. But look at it a little longer and you’ll soon notice that the seconds hand jumps, just like a quartz watch. Don’t be alarmed, the Richard Lange Jumping Seconds hand is entirely mechanical, and the way the seconds hand achieves its jumping action is a little special, but more on that later.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Die-hard A. Lange & Söhne fans will also notice that dial arrangement on the Richard Lange Jumping Seconds is a little different. It still has the typical Lange regulator-style display, which consists of three intersecting sub-dials, but the seconds sub-dial has been moved to the center - typically, it’s on the bottom left. The reason is simple: the jumping seconds mechanism needs to take center stage. Hours are read off on the dial on the bottom left, while the minutes are displayed at the sub-dial on the bottom right.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The silver dial is immaculately finished. The large blued seconds hand has a consistent color and the two smaller spear-shaped hour and minute hands are finely polished and easily catch light. So unless you are in the dark (there’s no luminescent material on the watch) legibility is certainly not an issue.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

There’s also a small window where the hour and minute sub-dials intersect, and that’s the power reserve indicator. As the mainspring winds down, the window turns from white to red. When it turns red, it means that the movement is running on its last 10 hours of power reserve and owners should wind their watch. Yes, the A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds is a hand wound watch. Power reserve is an adequate 42 hours.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch has a 39.9mm platinum case with a thickness of 10.6mm. It is modestly sized, but because it is made out of platinum, it feels quite hefty on the wrist. Nevertheless, we can have no complaints about wearing comfort. It also looks really good on the wrist, and it’s not quite as dressy as you may think. Maybe it is because of the slightly large crown. In all, I would describe the A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch as being quite contemporary and versatile.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Like almost all Lange watches, the Richard Lange Jumping Seconds has a sapphire case back that lets lucky owners admire the movement within. And boy, what a movement it is. The movement is the caliber L094.1, made up of 390 parts and 50 jewels. And what’s unique about it is that the jumping seconds mechanism is actually a consequence of a constant force mechanism in the movement called the remontoire d’egalité.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

In most watches, the mainspring delivers less torque to the gear train as it winds down. To counteract this, the remontoire d’egalité uses a spiral spring to store energy and then deliver it to the escapement. In doing so, the energy delivered to the escapement is more consistent. In the A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch, the remontoire d’egalité releases its energy once every second, which results in the jumping seconds complication that you see on the dial. You can also see the remontoire d’egalité at work through a window in the three-quarter plate.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

And since the jumping seconds mechanism lets owners keep a close eye on the time. The A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch has another trick up its sleeves, and that’s a zero-reset mechanism. Whenever the crown is pulled out to its time-setting position, the seconds hand instantly stops and jumps back to zero, allowing owners to set their watches accurately against a reference time.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

It goes without saying that the caliber L094.1 in the A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch is also masterfully finished to the same exacting standards that A. Lange & Söhne demands of all of their watches, with nicely beveled edges and polished parts. Obviously, the caliber L094.1 isn’t quite as dramatic to look at as compared to the legendary caliber L.951.6 found in the Datograph Up/Down, but it is still a gorgeous movement to behold.

A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Like so many of A. Lange & Söhne’s other watches, the Richard Lange Jumping Seconds is a sublime marriage of aesthetics and engineering. It is simple to look at and operate, but underneath it hides a complex movement that has clearly been designed by thoughtful watchmakers. The A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Jumping Seconds watch is priced at $85,000 and limited to 100 pieces. alange-soehne.com

What do you think?
  • I love it! (3)
  • Thumbs up (0)
  • Interesting (0)
  • Classy (0)
  • I want it! (0)
  • Interesting that they use a 1 second remontroire. In contrast the Gronefeld 1941 remontroire http://www.ablogtowatch.com/gronefeld-1941-remontoire-watch/ “recharges” every 8 seconds which makes its minute hand semi-deadbeat (moving every 8 seconds) and in further contrast to this Lange, its seconds hand sweeps. Both are very cool but even more so as they use the same idea (remontoire) but have very different executions/results. Thanks for the review Kenny.

    • The FPJ Chronometre Optimum is the best of all worlds IMO: One second remontoire with sweep seconds on the front and counterclockwise deadbeat seconds on the back!

      • Yeah, the back of that watch is total eye candy. Too bad the front looks like a typical FP Journe item (a style I really don’t care for). http://www.ablogtowatch.com/fp-journe-chronometre-optimum-watch-timekeeping-at-its-most-optimal/

        • After initially feeling somewhat the same as you, over recent years I have grown to posses an almost unhealthy love for that style!
          I recommend you read Kiran Shekar’s book and defy you not to change your opinion…

          • Well… if I have to read to a $200 book in order to like the looks of something, then there is something wrong from the get-go. But if you are right, then there is a great untapped market in writing books so that ugly girls will become beautiful in the eyes of the well read, ha ha.
            And I do like the looks of some FPJ pieces, but not the ones with this style.
            Happy new year Ryan.

  • arnemart

    One of the most beautiful and interesting watches of the past year. Amazing.

  • Guadzilla

    If they made it in steel and at $30k or under, this would be on top of my wishlist.

  • MEddie90

    Exemplifies why I love Lange and horology in general, a complicated watch where its all hidden under the dial, nothing in your face or showy. The rementoir is a well executed addition, great history, interesting concept and (as Mark stated) can be implemented in several different plus the zero reset which has to be one of the most useful complications to come out in recent years.

    Aside from that the watch is immaculate as you expect from Lange, reasonable dimensions, great finishing and great design. Only thing i’m not 100% on is the regulator style (Venn diagram) display as it seems harder to read than and is a little more cluttered than typical centre mounted handsets.

    • I’m with you. The regulator style is harder to tell the time at a glance and the reset to zero is great.

  • The Reclusive Boogur T. Wang

    Beautiful piece of craftsmanship.
    Damned confusing dial to read.
    Nil legibility without an instruction booklet(pocket size – of course).

  • Word Merchant

    Is there anyone here who doesn’t like this watch?

  • SuperStrapper

    Lovely, but doesn’t have the high gravity want that I normally associate with Lange. I don’t mind the dial layout, not do I find it confusing. I do, however find it to be a little underwhelming in terms of presence. It might immaculately hand done in silver, but from a step away it also looks like it is printed on cardstock. The pinion caps for the hands are a great touch that I wish more brands would employ.

    The movement is a sight, but also has a hill to climb compared to its many amazing brothers and sisters within this manufacture. The 3/4 plate (which I’d say is actually more like 2/3) is saved by the window for the remontoire but still begs for more intricacy to be relevant among those other legendary members of the family.

    It does look great in platinum, which even in the opening picture was subtley but immediately recognizable over white gold and other white metals. All in, the watch is totally want, but I wouldn’t pick it over many other Lange offerings.

  • BrJean

    I’m not a fan of jumping seconds complication but I really like the idea of binary power reserve indicator. A “standard” retrograde indicator (even so subtle as they made it on Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon) would make the dial too busy. But that small window is simple and effective.

  • DanW94

    Love all the typical Lange trimmings movement side, and the dead seconds and zero reset show their usual technical acumen, but the dial isn’t one of my favorites from them. The overlapping subdials are a bit messy and the lack of dimension leaves the dial looking flat.

  • I love the quasi-Gallifreyian design, but the printed dial and flat subdial hands are kind of underwhelming from such a prestigious manufacturer.

  • That is one of the most beautiful watches I’ve ever seen. There’s a balance and harmony which overcomes a seemingly confusing jumble of registers and fonts. Simple, elegant…time broken down into it’s component parts. The power reserve is functional subtlety at it’s best, and the reset to zero should be mandated by Swiss law.

  • This is very close to grail. I love jumping seconds, that simple power down indicator, and this overlapping regulator look is very cool. However, I do think the overlap is at the expense of legibility. I can imagine it is a little confusing come 2:50.

  • SuperStrapper

    If I just take a quick look at the dial in passing or in my periphery I get a whiff of Jaquet Droz.

  • BNABOD

    gives me a headache just staring at it and I sure as hell don’t need to spend 85 Gs for a headache. I like the movement as usual in Lange style it is georgous but the rest is toooooo much.