As we’ve discussed before, although most horological enthusiasts consider the tourbillon as the pinnacle of watchmaking expertise, others believe it’s the minute repeater instead. If you want to invest in a timepiece that showcases the latter, Chopard’s L.U.C. Full Strike Sapphire is an extravagant choice which is limited to only five examples globally.
This release commemorates the watchmaker’s Haute Horlogerie L.U.C collection’s 25th anniversary. Previous outings saw this minute repeater model clad in 18k rose gold followed by another in 18k white gold. Now, true to what Chopard calls it, the watch arrives in a 42.50 mm x 11.55 mm full sapphire case.
Remarkably, even the crown and the watch’s minute repeater pusher are crafted out of the crystal. This affords owners views naturally opaque material cannot hope to offer. Within the transparent housing, the L.U.C. Full Strike Sapphire holds a sapphire dial with special cutouts to accommodate the in-house L.U.C. 08.01-L caliber with a 60-hour power reserve.
All of the L.U.C. Full Strike Sapphire’s indications start off as engravings, which Chopard then paints in black. Applied hour markers and Dauphine hands feature rhodium plating. At 3 o’clock, you can see the “L.U.CHOPARD” branding in black on an 18k white gold plaque. Meanwhile, occupying the section from 9 to 11 o’clock are the hammers that chime the time.
Traditionally, minute repeaters use steel alloy gongs to generate the sound. However, the L.U.C. Full Strike Sapphire turns the front sapphire crystal into one and even doubles as the resonator. Finally, completing the elegant look of the timepiece is a hand-sewn gray alligator leather strap with an 18k white gold folding clasp closure.Learn more
Images courtesy of Chopard