JAEGER LE COULTRE 1946 FIRST AUTOMATIC WATCH
Item description: A beautiful example of Jaeger Le Coultre first automatic movement dating from 1946. The watch with a polished stainless steel case. Complementing the case, a salmon coloured dial with gold applied numbers on the quarters, along with battons. The brand name, Jaeger Le Coultre, just below the 12.0 clock position in black. Press fit case-back with serial number. Inside of case-back with full Jaeger Le Coultre logo. The fine Jaeger Le Coultre calibre 476 automatic ‘bumper’ movement in gilted brass, and with Geneva Stripes. Signed Jaeger Le Coultre to the main bridge. The watch with tan pig skin strap and non-branded stainless steel buckle.
Size: 42mm x 34mm
Condition report: Case in excellent condition with a nice polished finish remaining (free from major scratches or other damage). Dial original and clean. Movement clean and in working condition (no warranty implied). The strap and buckle remaining in excellent condition. The timepiece may have been opened, so it should not be used near moisture or water without being checked by a qualified watchmaker.
Background to Jaeger Le Coultre: Jaeger-LeCoultre was founded by Antoine LeCoultre in 1833, setting up a workshop in the village of Le Sentier. LeCoultre invented a machine to cut watch pinions from steel in 1833, and ten years later invented the world’s most precise measuring instrument of the time, the Millionometer.
In 1847, LeCoultre had created a keyless system to rewind and set watches, and four years later was awarded a gold medal for his work on Timepiece Precision and Mechanization at the first Universal Exhibition in London. By 1870, LeCoultre employed 500 people and was known as the “Grande Maison of the Vallée de Joux”, and by 1900, it had created over 350 different calibres, of which 128 were equipped with chronograph functions and 99 with repeater mechanisms.
From 1902 and for the next 30 years, LeCoultre & Cie. produced most of the movement blanks for Patek Philippe of Geneva.
The company are particularly remembered for their Reverso watch, where the case is hinged allowing the dial to be hinged to the inside of the outer case, thus protecting it. The Reverso was liked by many sports personalities, and had a following in the world of Polo. Le Coultre are also remembered for their famous Atmos Clock, with its virtually perpetual movement.
Background to Jaeger Le Coultre’s Calibre 476 automatic movement: Although not the first automatic movement to market, the calibre 476 represented the first automatic movement launched by Jaeger Le Coultre in 1946. The high quality movement was of a so-called ‘bumper’ type automatic, rather than the more typical 360 degree automatic. As such the movement has two springs mounted close to the 6.0 clock position, and the weight shifts from spring to spring winding the movement. The movement has fine regulation and balance wheel with screw in weights. Today, the so-called ‘bumper’ movement, is much liked by collectors.
Special notes: n/a
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