Chopard L.U.C. 1860 Hunter case back - LTD 100 Pieces
From ornate jewellery and gems to fine mechanical watchmaking, Chopard is one brand that exemplifies beauty. Although well known for its jewellery making, Chopard's mechanical timekeeping legacy stretches back to 1860 when Louis-Ulysse Chopard established the firm at just 24. Their watchmaking savoir-faire ultimately progressed under the complete control of Paul-André, Louis-Ulysse's grandson. However, due to none of his sons showing an interest in taking over the firm, Chopard was acquired by Karl Scheufele III, who worked closely with his family to develop each string to the brand's bow, including the ladies' collections and high-end jewellery headed by Caroline Scheufele. At the same time, Karl-Friedrich Scheufele captained the watch department. Today both siblings remain at Chopard and share the presidency of this esteemed manufacturer.
During the 1990s, Karl-Friedrich opened up a manufacturer dedicated to developing and producing in-house calibres. Albeit a risky move, this decision was prosperous. In 1996 the watchmaker announced its first in-house calibre, the Calibre 1.96, and with a reputation for using svelte movements, the micro-rotor powered 1.96 debuted in the LUC 1860 collection in 1997, a new elegant and timeless design dress watch. With traditionally executed details and proportions, the LUC 1860 was fitted with a finely produced solid gold dial created by Metalem - a manufacturer who since worked with Philippe Dufour for his Simplicity. Various 1860 pieces have been produced over the years featuring a range of case materials and dial colours.
The initial reference number for these watches is 16/1860/1, and regardless of their case materials, they feature hunter case backs. They have been produced in a Limited edition of 100 per configuration.
With the 2023 re-edition of the 1860, Chopard has shifted attention towards a reference of significant brand importance. But nothing beats an original, especially when it's a first edition 16/1860/1, complete with hunter-style caseback. Its exterior is elegantly restrained, with its soft 36.5mm white gold case being gently defined by its stepped bezel before flowing into the blended lugs and case body with remarkable slenderness.
The dial silver on this 16/1860/1 is detailed and precise in its design and execution, yet simultaneously undiluted. Crafted from gold by Metalem, the silver tones of the base house a beautiful handcrafted engine-turned stepped dial surrounded by a simplified seconds track before presenting the sharply shaped raised arrow hour markers. Complementing these are a large set of dauphine-style hands sitting just above a subsidiary seconds register, with concentric circles and half of the dial matching date aperture at six. The matching silver aperture window is worth bringing to attention, as this extra nuance is yet another example of Chopard's keen eye. Like the dial they sit on, the hour markers and handset are also solid gold. This traditionally configured dress watch is simply signed 'Chopard' at twelve and includes 'automatic' neatly within its sub-register.
The LUC manufacture calibre 1.96 is the beating heart of this Chopard and, much like the watch it powers, has its own celebrated reputation, with Michel Parmigiani designing the movement in conjunction with Chopard over three years. The movement is awash with black polishing from its swan neck regulator to each screw head. The anglage on each bridge, alongside the engraved and signed gold micro-rotor, glows effortlessly. The bridges feature Côtes de Genève striping and house the Geneva hallmark identifying this as a Geneva Sealed piece. It's not only a gorgeous movement to view through the display caseback, but it's also technologically impressive.
Its micro-rotor generates energy stored in the two mainspring barrels that are stacked on top of each other to optimise space and produce 70 hours of running autonomy. With a Breguet overcoil hairspring, 32 jewels, COSC certification, and a beat rate of 4 Hz, it's no wonder this precise and efficient movement remains highly regarded. So much so, Philippe Dufour is said to have rated this as one of the top finished movements at the time, only behind his own creations and, famously A. Lange & Söhne.
How It Wears
Proportions can truly make or break a watch, and thanks to its balanced sizing, the Chopard Chopard LUC 16/1860/1 is thankfully made by its size. At 36.5mm wide, it's conservatively mid-sized and is only bettered by its thickness.
On either a male or female wrist, this expression excels, as its silver dial doesn't just offer eye-catching appeal thanks to its tone, but the additional depth achieved by its finely decorated guilloché pattern is simply wonderful. Due to its stepped bezel and minimal case, the watch has a contemporary wrist presence.
Sold in 1998, this Chopard LUC 16/1860/1 is sold with its original box, papers, Bulletin Officiel Suisse De Chronometres, white gold pin buckle and original Chopard strap. Fitted to the Mr Watchley Mid-Grey Leather Strap. The watch is offered in superb condition.
If you desire to take a closer look at this precious timepiece, don't hesitate to contact us and make an appointment. We are based in Ghent, Belgium
No stock kept on site
* Every watch is delivered in a Mr WATCHLEY Membrane Protection Box for a safe transportation in addition to its original set *
|Size (Case)||36,5 mm|
|Material (Case)||White gold|
|Bracelet||Mr Watchley Saffiano Chestnut|