Angelus in modern times is known for hyper-futuristic concepts, playing with shapes, light as well as novel movement construction. However, its roots go far deeper, with Angelus being a major manufacturer of tool oriented chronographs, coming out with the first chronograph with date, the first alarm wristwatch with date, as well as the first automatic and water-resistant repeating wristwatch. Furthermore, the brand has also had a storied history in creating travel clocks with long power reserves, some of which have made their way into wristwatches of the 20th century.
To complement this futuristic outlook on watchmaking, Angelus along with Massena LAB have dug into the archives and have revived the Chronographe Medical, a watch inspired by a 1960s original, and a limited edition of 99 pieces that contains some interesting watchmaking.
What really enables the Chronographe Medical to have its vintage charm is the Calibre A5000, which has its roots with a legendary trio of independent watchmakers. A company by the name of THA with Vianney Halter, Denis Flageollet and Francois-Paul Journe at the helm, created the original design of this movement – further refinement would be made by Journe, and the rights of this movement would then be sold to La Joux Perret, the owners and revivers of Angelus.
This particular version of the movement visible through the sapphire crystal caseback features a one-minute monopusher chronograph that has an integrated construction, and a running seconds sundial with no minute counters providing a very clean look.
The Chronographe Medical is constructed from 316L surgical stainless steel – fitting for doctor’s watch, and measures in at 39mm in diameter, and 9.22mm in thickness. This gives the watch great everyday wearability, and a design that is even able to be worn as a dress watch.
The dial is an opaline silver finish, in keeping with its vintage inspiration, and the dial font is even more evocative of vintage watches with its serif styling. The dial also features a pulsometer and asthmometer – scales that measure heart rate and respiration rate respectively. These two scales take pride of place on the watch, to the point where the timekeeping functions of the hour markers and minutes scale are pushed further towards the centre of the dial. The aforementioned movement also increases this focus on the scales by removing the minutes counter that is normally featured on this calibre. Tying it all together in this vintage guise are the dauphine hands that featured on the 1960s original, giving it a sense of refinement. The watch is delivered on a Novonappa calfskin strap, with a pin buckle.
Massena LAB continues to give watch lovers a reason to sit up and look, and William Massena has made us pay attention to a storied manufacturer that has been sleeping on its heritage. With the Chronographe Medical, this heritage is awakened, and although this is clearly disparate to its current collections, it is undoubtedly a good exercise for Angelus to have this historical remake in its catalogue as a point of pride of their past achievements.
As a vintage inspired piece, the Chronographe Medical has made many a watch lover reconsider their position on the brand, and we hope their history will be on full display in the near future.
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds at 9 o’clock, one-minute monopusher chronograph, pulsometer and asthmometer scales