written by:
the eclecticum

published:
2020-05-01

categories:
Chopard, collectors, L.U.C, watches

Chopard – Hands-on with the L.U.C. Flying T Twin

The manufacture’s first automatic flying tourbillon is destined to adorn the wrists of discerning gentlemen.

 

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon


23 years after the L.U.C 1.96 was launched as the first micro rotor automatic movement by Chopard Manufacture, they used the same base to develop a 3.30mm thin, flying tourbillon calibre L.U.C 96.24-L, overcoming the problems of power and torque requirements of a tourbillon to still give 65 hours autonomy.

Chopard flying tourbillon calibre L.U.C 96.24-L(The Chopard calibre L.U.C 96.24-L)

Facts and essentials:

It is the new L.U.C Flying T Twin which debuted the new Calibre 96.24-L, a new reference and one which pays homage to the first L.U.C watches from almost 25 years ago. It´s easy to understand that Chopard patron Mr. Scheufele is proud of the new calibre, and therefore let us take a closer look, and start with the movement first!

In fact, the manufacture achieved double firsts with it:

  1. First automatic tourbillon
  2. First flying tourbillon

Sketch Chopard Flying TourbillonFlying Tourbillon – a flying tourbillon is characterised by the absence of an upper bridge and is naturally slimmer due to being supported from underneath. Calibre 96.24-L (as we already mentioned above) is just 3.30 mm thick and it happened for a reason – elegance of the final product.

Chopard L.U.C calibre 96.24-L

Also, it is a chronometer-certified (by COSC) movement and on top features a stop-seconds device which is quite rare on a tourbillon and enables perfectly accurate time-setting. Also, the movement is certified with the Poinçon de Genève, attesting to its technical and manufacturing excellence.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin movement view Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin tourbillon 

Details: dial, hands and case

The case is almost similar to the original L.U.C 1.96 case being only 40mm x 7.20mm.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon


If you are familiar with Chopard L.U.C. haute horlogerie pieces you will be more than happy when handling this watch. All their charismatic design DNA is shown at its best.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon


We’d like to draw your attention nonetheless to the shape of the case might appear fine, elegant and classic, but there is a lot of refinement to it. Specifically, the case design has a couple of decisive elements:

  1. short lug shape
  2. brushed case flanks
  3. notch at case attachment of lugs separate them from the case
  4. polished lug top and bottom sides create an optical guide for the eyes to follow the case lines

Sketch Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon case


What few people know is that not only does Chopard produce its own cases (and bracelets, for that matter), the firm even has its own in-house foundry. This not only gives them considerable independence and flexibility, it also allows Chopard to invest in eco-friendly materials and processes. One result of this is that the manufacture tries to increase the percentage of ‘fair-mined’ gold, with also the L.U.C Flying T being encased with a Fairmined gold case.

Chopard in-house foundry Fairmined Gold(Fairmined-certified gold ingot at the Chopard foundry)

Chopard uses the following Ethical Commitment as guidance:

“Gold is a L.U.C signature here, since the L.U.C Flying T Twin is crafted from a block of ethically certified “Fairmined” gold. It is responsibly sourced from artisanal mining cooperatives, where both the environment and miners are treated correctly, and to which Chopard pays a premium to be reinvested in community projects.

Chopard is currently the main global purchaser of “Fairmined” gold, which the Manufacture reserves for the production of its Grand Complication watch creations – such as the L.U.C Flying T Twin timepiece – as well as some of its Haute Joaillerie models. Since July 2018, the Maison has been using 100% Ethical gold for the production of all its watches and jewellery.”

We think that such a development is much welcome and timely.

Dial and hands are equally part of the watch’s exterior and as such are likewise integrated into on overall concept.

Sketch Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon hands dial
The hand-guilloche gold dial with grey ruthenium surface and honeycomb motif in the center offers a pleasingly recognisable aesthetic without being ‘loud’.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon details hands dial


The hands, and other design details of Chopard L.U.C watches are something to really pay attention to. I learned a lot when talking to the (then) designer Guy Bove (now: TAG Heuer), who laid the foundation of the current design concept.

Chopard went from a classical dauphine hands (A) that are a mainstay for classical watches, with their angled top side and the sharp tip they offer great visibility and precise indication of time. There is, however, one major drawback to them: Due to their relatively wide body, they cover a considerable part of the watch face. Something, which particularly with open-worked dials (here: the tourbillon window), is not desired. In addition, dauphine hands offer little room for an individual design.

Sketch Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon hands design concept


Thus, Chopard came up with an ingenious solution: They took inspiration from a precision drawing instrument, a pair of compasses, which feature strong arches with thin, precise tips (see ‘B’ above). Chopard transferred this concept to their hands and combined the base part of a dauphine hand with a top-rounded, thin and tapered baton tip (C). The result is an immediately recognisable hand shape, which on top is also immensely flexible to be adapted and modified to fit a variety of watch styles (D).

All we can say is that we love, love, love these hands, their proportions, their legibility, and how entertainingly they reflect light, how authoritatively they indicate time.

Personal Impressions:

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon


We strongly believe watches, no matter on which level of crafts they are, need to be worn to fully appreciate them. Therefore let´s talk about the most important question: How does it look & feel on the wrist?

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon wristshot


The size (diameter and “slimness”) is just perfect for an elegant yet complicated watch like this as it is not too big for most wrists and still is perfectly wearable under the sleeves of your business or even better black-tie outfit.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon wristshot

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon wristshot


Coming back home after a successful day or night there is still something to do if you are one of the fifty happy owners. Take it off and enjoy the backside in all privacy.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin movement view Geneva seal poincon de geneve


Conclusion

Tourbillons are so abundant these days that one barely turns the head to appreciate them. In this case it would be a pity as the Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin stands out of the crowd, certainly: Surely, this 50-piece Limited Edition in Fairmined rose gold (more on this at the very bottom of this review) with evocative honeycomb hexagonal guilloche motif on grey ruthenium dial was one of the highlights of BaselWorld 2019, at least for the connoisseur that also happens to be interested in good style.

Tourbillons are so abundant these days that one barely turns the head to appreciate them. In this case it would be a pity as the Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin stands out of the crowd, certainly: Surely, this 50-piece Limited Edition in Fairmined rose gold (more on this at the very bottom of this review) with evocative honeycomb hexagonal guilloche motif on grey ruthenium dial was one of the highlights of BaselWorld 2019, at least for the connoisseur that also happens to be interested in good style.

Chopard L.U.C. Flying T Twin Flying Tourbillon


It may not be for boys, but for the seasoned (and no we didn´t say aged, not at all) gentlemen.

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