By Jonathan Kopp
Today, I will not present Linde Werdelin for good reason; even if the brand is more or less recent (starting in 2002 and launched in 2006), the founders Jorn & Morten somehow managed to have a comfortable place in the watch industry. Today, everyone knows LW.
There are several reasons for this. One is that the team is extremely friendly and of course, their pieces are superb, high performance sports watches that arrive combining a stylish design with very sharp lines (a very futuristic design I must admit), with high quality movements.
Last year I spent New Year’s Eve in London and I said to myself that I had to call the charming Sky Sit to test these watches.
Today I decided to talk to you about one of my favorite pieces from the brand. That’s right, this year they presented the new collection, but it doesn’t matter, this watch is a style and design statement.
This timepiece launched in Baselworld 2013 is a 75 limited edition named SpidoLite Tech Gold (also available in Tech Green).
At first glance, the watch looks huge for small wrists like mine because it measures quite a robust size at 44mm x 46mm x 15mm. However, everything changes when you wear it on the wrist. Why, you might ask. That is because Linde Werdelin is using “ALW” (Alloy Linde Werdelin) material, an aerospace metal developed to achieve ultimate weight reduction and strength in a forged carbon case with a 18 carat rose gold bezel and crown.
Two years before the launch of this piece, Linde Werdelin had tested and developed new materials and composites that best suit the purpose of each LW watch. The result of this experimental approach is the SpidoLite Tech series.
SpidoLite Tech Gold boasts of the most high-tech and precious materials as a variation of the advanced development of Linde Werdelin’s strongest and lightest timepiece to date. The fully skeletonized case combines ALW, carbon and 18k rose gold. ALW as described above is an alloy that Linde Werdelin reported to be 50% lighter than titanium and as strong as steel. Incredible isn’t it? I must say that the contrast between the case and the gold bezel gives a stylish and stunning effect.
The case construction is a true testament to supreme craftsmanship of the most technically complex watch case design that only weighs at 33 grams. In order to achieve a light and strong case, Linde Werdelin focused on the combination of two new materials for the inner and outer case. For weight reduction, the new “ALW”, a strong composite of metals, has been conceived for the inner case, while the outer case is crafted in forged carbon. The inner and outer case and the bezel have undergone numerous tolerance tests to find the optimal relation between the three materials. A further challenge has been to establish the correct balance between the strength and lightness of the skeletonized carbon case.
Know that for the outer case of the SpidoLite Tech, LW has developed a new technique to skeletonize the carbon, to guarantee the challenging balance between its strength and weight reduction. Moreover, to understand forged carbon, you have to know that it is made of chopped pieces of carbon fibres forced by pressure and molded into the skeletonized case. Since the fibres are not oriented in any particular direction, the finished part is superbly strong while remaining light.
I could talk about this watch for hours because it has so many details. In my own opinion, this timepiece is one of the most exciting and unique models Linde Werdelin has ever produced.
I will now talk more about the details. The face of the SpidoLite Tech Gold is formed from two skeletonized dials that gives the watch a three-dimensional appearance. Other eye-catching features include the gold date wheel with contrasting red numerals and the delicate open worked hour and minute hands. Note that the two hands have small luminous triangles that allow you to read in the dark. Finally, at 9 o’clock is the sub-dial for the seconds hand.
The crown of this piece is engraved with a spider, which is the new signature of the LW Spido. For the first time, they also engraved the serial number of each piece in the hollows of the skeletonized cases. You will find at 2 o’clock the engraved ALW, at 4 o’clock SL (For SpidoLite), at 8 o’clock 75 (the number of Limited Edition) and finally, at 10 o’clock the serial number of each piece.