For its 175th anniversary last year, Ulysse Nordin Marine Tarpaulin has introduced an impressive fleet of limited editions. In this latest visit to our esteemed archives, WatchTime embarks on a journey with Marine Tourpilleur Chronograph, It also has the added complication of an annual calendar onboard.
French word Torpedo boat A small boat designed to carry torpedoes in battle against larger, more heavily armed warships. The name was reintroduced in 2017 on Ulysse Nordin, a fitting choice for a combat-priced watch with an in-house movement. In 2021, Ulysse Nordin’s 175th anniversary, the Swiss watchmaker is feeling the fight again and has launched an entire fleet of Torpelleur watches as a horological tribute to many of the world’s navies and to its storied past as a supplier of chronometers in the early 20s. Centuries. François-Xavier Hautier, president of Ulysse Nordin America, explained, “Chronometry has been our mantra for 175 years. These new marine limited editions are designed for our friends and collectors around the world. We pay tribute to our past as a supplier to most of the world’s admiralties. This is a wonderful way to present this chapter of of preparation past, and is a worthy addition to the many cutting-edge pieces we’ve introduced over the past couple of years. In short, we can now travel back in time with this collection, focus on the present with recent releases, or even see the future of the brand with the UFO Deck Clock.
Speaking of Time Travel Founded in 1846 by 23-year-old Ulysse Nordin (January 22, 1823 – February 20, 1876), the Le Locle-based company quickly recognized the growing demand for pocket and marine chronometers. Time with the highest level of accuracy. Consequently, Ulysse Nordin received more than 4,300 distinctions in the following decades, including 18 gold medals for the precision of its timekeepers. Among its clients is the US Navy. In 1905, the Washington Naval Observatory began holding a competition to find a manufacturer that could supply superior chronometers to its torpedo boat officers. Ulysse Nordin won the competition for several consecutive years and maintained an ongoing relationship as official supplier to the US Navy into the 1950s.
The seven new models of the Marine Torpilleur anniversary collection (which we debut here) highlight different aspects of the brand’s current capabilities: in-house movements, silicon components, tourbillon and moon-phase, enamel dials and, in their case, the chronograph, an additional measure of elapsed time. and annual calendar. Ulysse Nardin has decided to equip only watches powered by the automatic UN-118 (Enamel Blue and Panda) and UN-119 (Moonface) with the COSC certificate. Hotier commented, “With the invention and use of new materials such as silicon in our timepieces, we feel it is important to test the performance of the movement in its ready state, i.e. the case with the dial and hands on it once it is placed, under the same conditions the owner wears the watch. That’s why we mostly focus on our own Ulysse Nordin certification; Not only that [do] We test the performance of the movement, as well as additional functions such as the calendar, chronograph and power-reserve indicator. We can get some of our watches COSC-certified, but believe me, our own UN certification is more reassuring for collectors.
The Marine Tarpilleur Chronograph with Annual Calendar is available with a varnished white or matte blue dial and is powered by the UN-153. preparation The movement replaced the previous UN-150 movement. The dial is decorated with silver counters at 9 and 3 o’clock, the annual calendar is placed at 9 o’clock. The 6 o’clock date changes automatically (synchronized to the month), and the annual calendar system (first used on the 1996 Perpetual Calendar model) is adjusted forward and backward using the large crown (meaning the month and day can be conveniently adjusted in both directions, should its owner accidentally go too far). Ulysse Nordin’s Caliber UN-153 is visible through a sapphire exhibition caseback, and the partially openworked rotor is adorned with an icy, textured finish surrounded by the brand’s nautically inspired anchor motif.
The version shown here (reference 1533-320LE-0A-175/1A) features a crisp white dial displaying Roman numeral hour markers, blued “pear” steel hands, and a well-balanced Bicompax chronograph layout. The watch has four large white stripes on a brown leather strap; A blue strap is also available for this version (ref. 1533-320LE-0A-175/1B).
With a diameter of 44 mm for its 50-meter water-resistant stainless-steel case, the chronograph is the largest member of the Torpelleur collection, but doesn’t wear much on the wrist, with a comparatively compact length (lug-to-lug) of 49 mm. On top of that, its white dial and blue hands make it versatile, easily traversing between an elegant and almost sporty appearance. Dial legibility is generally good (and much better than the blue dial version), but, surprisingly, the lack of luminous material on the hands and dial reduces its ability for after-dark outings.
In comparison, the Torpilleur chronograph is 0.66 mm longer than the IWC Portugieser chronograph, which measures 13.00 mm, and has a diameter of 44 mm compared to the 41-mm steel case from IWC. But its main advantage, perhaps, is the added annual calendar function, which, next to the power-reserve indicator, is an equally user-friendly and convenient feature. Add to that an in-house movement, a distinctive nautical design and a small number of watches produced, and you’ll find plenty of reasons to embark on a horological cruise with Ulysse Nordin this year.
For nostalgic reasons, given the company’s impressive performance at the Neuchatel observatory, we certainly wouldn’t be opposed to a boat naming ceremony with “Chronometer” on the chronograph dial, but, overall, the chronograph and the new Tarpilleur collection seem to have hit their mark.
Manufacturer: Ulysse Nardin SA, Rue du Jardin 3, 2400 Le Locle, Switzerland
Reference Number: 1533-320LE-0A-175/1A
Duties: hours, minutes, small seconds, date and annual calendar; Chronograph: minutes and seconds
Movement: Self-winding mechanical caliber UN-153, 406 parts,
Escapement wheel, balance spring and anchor in silicon, 28,800 vph (4Hz), 52-hour power reserve
Case: Polished steel case (curving lugs and bezel satin-finished) with transparent caseback, dial with sapphire crystal on both sides, screw-down crown, silvered subdials and blued hands, water resistance up to 50m
Strap and clasp: Brown alligator leather strap with folding clasp
Measurements: Diameter = 44.0 mm, Height = 13.66 mm, Lug to Lug = 49 mm
Variations: with blue leather strap (ref. 1533-320LE-0A-175/1B); With blue PVD-coated dial (reference 1533-320LE-3A-175/1A on brown strap, 1533-320LE-3A-175/1B on blue strap)