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Perpetuating Angelus’ legacy of innovative chronographs


While the first Angelus Chronograph wristwatch appeared in 1925, originally with a single pusher case, and then from 1935 the decision was taken to share the two-pusher case format being used at Breitling. The Angelus chronograph very quickly became popular worldwide. The interwar years also marked an increased level of interest for Angelus in the table and travel clock market, eventually producing a long list of models. As such, the 1930s saw the ‘Dateclock’, with full calendar in a separate display, and the unparalleled ‘Foursome’, with as the name suggests, a grand total of four displays, featuring an eight-day alarm clock, full perpetual calendar, barometer, thermometer, and sumptuous gold dials with many parts in stainless steel. Larger premises in Rue Piaget, Le Locle, Switzerland now beckoned, and just one year following the 50th anniversary of the founding of the company in 1941, Angelus launched one of its most famous Chronographs, which was to become known to vintage chronograph watch collectors worldwide.

The Angelus chronograph model from the Le Locle manufacture this time was named the Angelus ‘Chronondato’ chronograph, its cal. SF217 movement inside the case drawing heavily from the early cal. SF215 of the 1930s, was of generous dimensions, complete with 45-minute chronograph counter and full calendar display window, set in a beautiful case. It sold astoundingly well, and was made in a plethora of different finishes, including gold and stainless steel, silver and black dial face types: all models in the range were to share the same design ethos. As well as producing their own Angelus brand chronographs for the Hungarian air force and Egyptian navy, the cal. SF215 inside the case was also utilized in the now extremely highly prized and incredibly rare vintage wristwatch, the ‘Radiomir Mare Nostrum’ military dive chronograph model by the Panerai brand – evidence if any further were needed of the quality of the Angelus movement being made at the manufacturer in Locle Switzerland, and now an extremely rare vintage watch. In 1948 the list of models in the range was further modified by the introduction of another all-new Angelus movement the cal. SF250, forming the basis for the Angelus watch model which sits atop the list of rare vintage models, with a strong following among Angelus chronograph collectors, the Angelus ‘Chrono-Datoluxe’: This was the very first wristwatch model from the brand with digital calendar date display window on the face, and also displaying moon phase on the dial, courtesy of two rotating date discs, set in a wonderful case. A very similar model of Angelus chronograph with weekday window and moon phase followed shortly after. 1954 brought automatic operation and a date window. Three other extremely important

Angelus models were to follow the pattern of continuous innovation, with a launch around 1958. These were to share a similar case range, utilizing gold and stainless steel and displaying much more than just the time of day. The ‘Datographe’ (chronograph and date) an exceptionally thin chronograph wristwatch with automatic date, the similar ‘Datalarm’ as the first alarm wristwatch with date, and finally the ‘Tinkler’, an exceptionally rare watch and a legend among collectors who share a passion for vintage Angelus chronograph wristwatches. This latter model on the vintage production list was the first automatic chronograph wristwatch that was not only waterproof but also featured a quarter-hour repeater, invented especially for Angelus by Alfred Louis Golay.  Model versions were produced at the  Le Locle manufacture with dials in white with either applied gold or silver hour markers in Arabic or Roman numerals, while others featured a silver dial with Maltese Cross at the center. While innovation continued on into the 1960s, Angelus was not to see a similar level of world-leading inventiveness, creativity and sheer watch-making quality until the beginning of the firm’s rebirth in 2011 and the launch in 2015 of the Angelus U10 Tourbillon Lumiere. Inevitably, a similarly astounding chronograph wristwatch model was sure to follow, and follow it did in 2016 in the form of the Angelus U30 Tourbillon Rattrapante, which astoundingly unites three complications in one amazing Angelus Chronograph: a tourbillon, fly-back double column chronograph, and split seconds, in an automatic winding chronograph with 45 hour power reserve.  

The U30 Tourbillon Rattrapante was to receive a stablemate with the arrival of a new model to the expanding list available from Angelus, the U50 Diver Tourbillon. A first for the Swiss Chaux de fonds-based manufacture, this model brings Haute Horlogerie movements to the diver’s watch, surely an innovation of which Gustav and the Stolz brothers would have approved of!

Technical specifications







- Central hours & Minutes

- One-minute Tourbillon

- Fly-back double column wheel chronograph

- Split-seconds (rattrapante)

- power reserve indicator



- Calibre: A-150

- Mechanical self-winding tourbillon split-seconds chronograph

- Jewels: 38

- Diameter: 37.60 mm

- Height: 9.35 mm

- Power reserve: 45 hours

- Frequency: 4 Hz / 28,800 vph

- Balance wheel: Black gold-treated copper-beryllium

- Escapement: Swiss lever

- Regulated: Set to 5 positions



- Gear train: Wheels with exclusive Angelus six-spoke design to maximize rigidity

- Screws: Angelus three-point design torque-optimizing heads

- Main plate and automatic bridge: Grey NAC-treated to maximize contrast and depth

- Upper bridges: Black ADLC-treated

- Column wheels: Black ADLC-treated and mirror-polished.

- Both the split-seconds’ column wheel on the dial side and chronograph column wheel on the back are visible

- Tourbillon cage: Hand-chamfered and hand-polished. Black ADLC-treated second pointer



- Chamfered and polished edges, flat surfaces either satin-finished or sandblasted

- Rotor : Black ADLC-treated with solid 22-karat white gold segment



- Chapter ring: Hours, minutes and chronograph seconds markers

- Counters: 30-minute counter laser engraved onto the upper chronograph bridge and rhodium treated.

- Power reserve indicator : laser engraved onto the power reserve bridge, rhodium treated and filled with green and red lacquer



- Skeletonized,

- Sand-blasted with polished top hour and minute hands,

- Sandblasted chronograph second hand with red tip,

- Satin-finished split-seconds hand,

- Sand-blasted with polished top power reserve hand,

- Polished 30-minute counter hand with red line



- Grade 5 titanium with black coating on the case band

- Diameter: 47 mm

- Thickness: 15 mm

- Crown: Engraved with ANGELUS logo.

2 positions : 1 winding / 2 time-setting,

- Split-seconds pusher integrated in the crown

- Back: Transparent

- Distance between lugs: 22 mm

- Water resistance: 30 m / 100 ft / 3 atm

- Crystals: Box sapphire crystal (front and back) with anti-reflective coating on the inside



- Black rubber

- Length range: 70 mm to 125 mm

- Width: 22 / 20 mm

- Buckle: Titanium, folding buckle engraved with Angelus logo


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