This watch is the top piece in the Raymond Weil range, with a price (39,000 Swiss francs) that makes it possibly the most accessible Swiss tourbillon watch, just under the price of Montblanc’s Heritage Chronométrie ExoTourbillon Minute Chronograph. It expresses the musical inspiration that underscores many watches by Raymond Weil: CEO Elie Bernheim plays the cello as well as running the company, and the principal visual motif on the dial consists of four black “strings” reminiscent of the instrument. The bridges for the tourbillon (at 6 o’clock) and the mainspring barrel at the top of the dial are shaped like the f-holes on a cello. The watch is supplied in a specially-designed box that has some of the visual elements of the watch.
Case and dial
The case is in titanium and stainless steel, with black PVD coating, and a caseband in carbon fibre that adds an interesting texture to the side of the watch. It is a large watch at 46 mm diameter and 12.95 mm thickness, and its skeleton construction is highlighted both from the dial side and the reverse, with a sapphire window in the screw-down caseback. The crown is also screwed down, and this helps give the watch its water resistance of 20 atmospheres, 200 metres depth. The top and bottom sections of the dial are deconstructed, displaying the mainspring and the tourbillon; the rest of the movement is concentrated in the centre section, below the stylized cello strings. The strap is black alligator, with a black PVD-coated titanium clasp.
The hand-wound movement, calibre RW 1842, is made by Tec Ebauche, a company based in Vallorbe, Switzerland. It is interesting for the irregular, organic forms of the mainplate visible through the caseback, and for the power reserve of 105 hours. It’s logical that a watch with a screw-down crown should have as long a power reserve as possible so that you don’t have to unscrew the crown, rewind and screw it back again so often, and over four days power reserve is truly impressive. The user has an idea of the power reserve from the state of the mainspring spirals.
The movement’s characteristics suggest that it is a development of the MR02 calibre used in the Androgyne by Manufacture Royale, a company with close connections with Tec Ebauche. If this is the case, the movement would have 178 components and would run at 21,600 vph (3 Hertz).
Reference and price
The Nabucco Cello Tourbillon by Raymond Weil, reference 1842-BSF-20001, costs 39,000 Swiss francs, about €36,000.