Following its well-received U21 and U22 models, Angelus recently presented the next consecutive series of skeletonized, flying tourbillon timepieces, this time more colorful and dynamic than ever before. Like its predecessors, the eight unique pieces of the Angelus U23 series suspends the Angelus A-250 caliber within an ultra-light, ultra-strong titanium and CTP (Carbon Thin Ply) composite case. Like the cocktails that inspired their names, each individual U23 model blends potent strength and iconic character with their colorful skeletonized PVD-treated titanium bridges.
Packing a punch
The U23 pieces make a tremendous visual impact, from the materials employed to the arrangement of their visual forms and structures, each arranged to create a sporty, technical, and finely honed timepiece. Measuring 42 mm in diameter and 10.3 mm thick, the case mixes titanium lugs with a CTP case back and middle. Maximum lightness and rigidity, with ultra-scratch-resistant titanium, provides physical protection for the most exposed areas. The interplay between the solid look of metal and the technical elements of carbon fiber infuse the U23 with visual energy. Meanwhile, the colored bridges, hovering above the CTP main plate, put these pieces in a class of their own.
Geometric, open-worked, and crafted in titanium, these graphically designed bridges colored using the PVD technique in one of eight shades that also grace the minute circle. Each shade identifies a unique piece named after a cocktail. These eight combinations – strong, sour, creamy, light, bitter or sweet – are the ingredients that make the U23 models unique. The eclectic menu with classics and rarities sitting side by side to cater to a range of tastes. U23 Negroni is orange, like the blend of Gin and Vermouth. U23 Cosmopolitan adopts the shade of blueberry Vodka. U23 Ocean View startles in Curaçao blue and U23 Tequila Sunrise recreates the orange, pink and blue layers formed by citrus fruit juice and grenadine with the idyllic sea in the background.
The colored bridges are screwed into the main plate, which is also made from CTP. Carbon Thin Ply draws on the ultralight and ultra-rigid properties of carbon fiber. Sheets of carbon are piled into several hundred successive layers per block of material. Each layer is orientated differently to create a multi-hatched network that is extremely solid given the density of the layers. Angelus has chosen to use the highest quality of this material: 150 g/m² CTP. In addition, the CTP is solidified using a technical resin fired at a high temperature and high pressure. In this way, the material’s extreme hardness further increases the fiber’s structural properties. CTP is made into blocks and cut from a solid piece using numerical control machines, just like a metal. Its nature, presentation, and machining process ensure optimal structural integrity and unique qualities that enhance the watch mechanism and ergonomics. This is because CTP is lightweight, comfortable, soft to the touch, hypo-allergenic, fully dermo-compatible, and non-magnetic.
The Angelus A-250 caliber at the heart of the U23 models plays an essential aesthetic role. Its clean vertical structure creates an axis that forms the highly legible visual backbone of the piece. An open-worked barrel at 12 o’clock offers a 90-hour power reserve; a flying tourbillon at 6 o’clock for enhanced timekeeping; a gear train between the two to ensure transmission – these functional organs are anchored to three titanium bridges, giving the U23 its unique personality. Thanks to these bridges, the movement floats above the CTP main plate, as if suspended on stilts. The fact that the main plate is crafted from carbon is a technical feat in its own right. The rigidity of the material makes this possible; conversely, this same resistance makes it difficult to pierce. All the holes made in the high-tech bodywork are therefore set with solid gold chatons that hold the jewels. This is a classic technique that has been adapted to a contemporary context and to an extreme level of technical performance to protect the CTP main plate.
The U23, therefore, centers around an aerial principle. To continue this spirit, the tourbillon of the Angelus A-250 caliber is a flying version with no upper bridge. It appears to float freely, with a large window cut away from the main plate in the background. This allows light to enter and to illuminate the rotating regulating organ. In this rigorously adjusted movement, the arms of the tourbillon carriage mirror the bridges and all the wheels of the movement. All these components are open-worked lengthways, which means they look lighter, as well as weighing less. Crafted from technical materials and laid bare component by component, the U23 reveals impressive lightness and graphic power, both to the eye and on the wrist.
For more information, please visit www.angelus-watches.com.
About Angelus. Founded in 1891 in Switzerland, Angelus has been widely hailed by watchmaking connoisseurs as one of the most influential horological manufactures of the 20th century. Angelus’ pioneering, house-made movements and vintage timepieces continue to be coveted by collectors all over the world. The recently revived Angelus Manufacture is fully equipped to design, produce, finish, assemble, regulate, and test its entire line of house-made movements and timepieces. The Angelus collection blends the very best of classic high watchmaking with ultra-modern design and materials, as evidenced by the U20 Ultra-Skeleton Tourbillon with its sapphire mainplate, the U21 Tourbillon, which features a combination of carbon-fiber and 18-karat gold, and the U50 Diver Tourbillon, with its titanium case and superior water-resistance up to 300 meters.