New York (March 15, 2023) – Angelus heads back in time and takes the pulse of its heritage with the new Angelus x Massena LAB Chronographe Médical. The collaborative timepiece is the first model revealed in the Swiss watchmaker’s new La Fabrique collection, which will feature highly limited re-editions and reinterpretations of iconic Angelus models.
The Chronographe Médical underlines Angelus’ historic achievements in chronograph production and watchmaking functionality. This true tool chronograph, limited to just 99 pieces, is one of the watches designed specifically for a profession and its requirements, and its unique functions include a dual pulsometer and asthmometer scales.
In the 1960s, Angelus launched its “doctor’s watch”: a wrist-worn hand-wound chronograph with a unique dial. It presented a dual scale for reading the vital signs doctors need during patient examinations: a pulsometer – to measure the patient’s pulse – and an asthmometer – to record their respiratory rate. This rare piece, which follows the 1950s and 1960s trend of specializing chronographs to meet specific functional or professional requirements, has been brought up to date by Angelus to appeal to modern tastes—without any side effects.
A Medical Pioneer
In consultation with William Massena, founder of Massena LAB, Angelus chose to re-release a limited edition of 99 pieces of the Chronographe Médical x Massena LAB. “When talking to Bertrand Savary (Angelus CEO), we discussed Angelus’ spectacular heritage,” explains William Massena. “We hit on the idea of creating a capsule collection that would revive one of the most perfect tool chronographs of the 1960s.” The 99 pieces will be available through the network of authorized Angelus retailers. The watch will also be available directly from MassenaLAB.com.
A Textbook Case
The Chronographe Médicalx Massena LAB is therefore a re-edition, distinguished from the original by several small details. The A5000 movement is an Angelus caliber with manual winding and an integrated chronograph. The case is made from 316L steel, the surgical kind, as is naturally befitting a doctor’s watch. Lastly, the case diameter has been increased to 39mm to make the pulsometer scale more legible.
The pulsometer function indicates a patient’s heart rate without the need for calculations. On the Angelus Chronographe Médical, the pulsometer scale between 1 and 3 o’clock is based on 10 beats. As soon as the chronograph is started, simply count 10 beats, then stop the mechanism. When compared against the pulsometer scale, the chronograph hand will then indicate the number of beats per minute. The asthmometer displays the respiratory rate per minute. The Chronographe Médical works on the basis of five breaths. After starting the chronograph, count five breaths before pressing the pusher again. The chronograph hand will indicate the number of breaths per minute on the inner scale graduated from 40 to 10.
These functions, and how they are presented on the dial, remain unrivaled. Not only has the combination of pulsometer and asthmometer remained unique, but its display is also one of a kind. First and foremost, the pulsometer has a very specific color code: green, black, or red, corresponding to the severity of the reading obtained during the examination. By contrast, the respiratory scale is red and is nestled inside the minute circle. These two scales are positioned so as to make them as legible and clear as possible. Before each scale, the requirement for taking vital signs is listed (base 10 pulsations and base 5 respirations). The font used is particularly wide, contrasting, and impossible to miss. Two large arrows accentuate these scales, one of which, curved and crossing the minute circle, is completely unique. Lastly, the silvered opaline dial and Dauphine hands with luminescent lines are identical to the model that inspired this timepiece.
Because of their importance, the pulsometer and asthmometer scales are given pride of place on the dial, pushing the minute track, and the hour markers, in towards its center as well as the appliqué hour markers, which are half indexes and half Arabic numerals. This layout shows that this timepiece was intended to be a tool, with visual precedence given to its utilitarian functions. When combined with the fact that the chronograph function only measures a duration of 60 seconds, this piece becomes a specialist model. It is fitted on a full-grain calfskin Novonappa® strap in a beautiful shade of golden brown that develops a patina over time and is one of the finest skins used in leather goods.
Inside the Chronographe Médicalx Massena LAB, Angelus has incorporated a very specific version of its A5000 caliber. It displays the small seconds at 9 o’clock and only the chronograph seconds hand – the only one needed to use the medical scales. With no 30-minute counter, this caliber is dedicated to diagnosis. This version is presented with a single mushroom-shaped pusher at 2 o’clock. Operating at a rate of 3 Hz, it incorporates a column wheel and a horizontal clutch. Its manual winding is a reference to the early days of the brand, right at the heart of the mechanism.
Founded in 1891 in Switzerland, Angelus has been widely hailed by watchmaking connoisseurs as one of the most influential horological manufactures of the 20th century. Angelus’ pioneering, house-made movements and vintage timepieces continue to be coveted by collectors all over the world. The recently revived Angelus Manufacture is fully equipped to design, produce, finish, assemble, regulate, and test its entire line of house-made movements and timepieces. The Angelus collection blends the very best of classic high watchmaking with ultra-modern design and materials, as evidenced by the Chronodate, a chronograph for a new Angelus era with a cutting-edge dial and modular case, the U20 Ultra-Skeleton Tourbillon with its sapphire mainplate, the U21 Tourbillon, which features a combination of carbon-fiber and 18-karat gold, and the U50 Diver Tourbillon, with its titanium case and superior water-resistance up to 300 meters. angelus-watches.com