This week, we are all about rare versions of cult watches. Today you’ll see a Jaeger-LeCoultre Geophysic E168 in yellow gold, and a limited edition Royal Oak in tantalum and steel. We’ll also be taking a look at an early Universal Genève Polerouter Sub, and a 24-hour Breitling Top Time, with an interesting double-signed dial. This is your Bring A Loupe for August 11, 2017.
An Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Championship Reference 56175TT, In Tantalum And Steel
It’s true that the reference 56175 is not only the midsize version of the Royal Oak, and it is also powered by a quartz caliber (AP designates it as a caliber 2612). Yet, the use of tantalum and stainless steel givea it an unusual two-tone aspect, very nicely complemented by the grey “tapisserie” dial. It’s also interesting to note the absence of a second hand, much like the original Royal Oak reference 5402, designed by Gerald Genta.
This watch was launched in honor of the golfer Sir Nick Faldo, after he won his second Masters Tournament in 1990, as engraved on the caseback. It was limited to 2,000 pieces, and was the first of the 4 limited editions dedicated to the golfer. The case and links are made of very resilient tantalum, while the crown, bezel and inner links are made of the more classical stainless steel.
If tantalum is your thing, but you would prefer a touch of gold and an automatic caliber, the reference 14790 below might be your preferred option; it is offered for $8,800.
An Original Jaeger-LeCoultre Geophysic Reference E168, In Yellow Gold
There is something whimsically charming about a tool watch made in precious metal, especially when that tool watch is one of the most important references ever made by Jaeger-LeCoultre. The Geophysic was released in 1958 to celebrate the International Géophysical Year, and the 125th Anniversary of the Manufacture. This was obviously the very best of what Jaeger-LeCoultre had to offer, with antimagnetic properties, and a chronometer-certified movement, the caliber P478/BWSbr. This movement is derived from the famous caliber 488/Sbr, used in the Mark XI.