|Reference||Spidolite 3DTP Carbon – 3D movement. Limited to 75 pieces.|
|Case||3DTP with microbillé finish, (inner case) DLC treated titanium with vertical satin finish, (back case) DLC treated titanium, circular satin and microbillé finish. Bezel in black ceramic with satin, polished and microbillé finishes. 44mm.|
|Crown||Titanium with TiN treatment, push in|
|Dial||Skeletonised, Réhaut and dial with circular satin finish|
|Movement||LW07 mechanically wound|
|Crystal||Scratch resistant sapphire|
|Waterproofness||Waterproof to 100m / 328 ft|
|Power Reserve||Approximately 42 hours|
|Functions||Hours, minutes and power reserve|
|Bracelet||Interchangeable natural rubber strap in yellow with DLC coated titanium ardillion buckle|
“Analogue is the best way to read time; digital is how you assimilate technical details…”
Since 2002, Linde Werdelin (Morten Linde and Jorn Werdelin) has been pioneering the combination of the traditional, mechanical wristwatch with professional digital instruments in an effort to ensure those participating in sports like skiing and diving always have the information they need at their fingertips.
This means that for their main collections, the Spido and the Oktopus, they have needed to push the boundaries of material used to create their time pieces. Toughness, but also lightness is vital, as well as legibility in what might be hazardous conditions. Having to make split second decisions would not be possible unless all the information, whether analogue or digital, was presented in the easiest format to digest. In that regard therefore, I have always admired their ambition.
But in terms of Linde Werdelin’s brand appeal to me as a consumer however, I have faced two problems.
Firstly, although I love sport (football and rugby in particular), neither of those lend themselves to wearing watches whilst playing them. Additionally, I ski and dive but do not do so regularly enough to warrant purchasing a watch inspired by such pursuits.
Secondly, I cannot say that Linde Werdelin’s designs had lured me in. Of course, it is not always easy to tell what a piece looks and feels like in your hand, or on your wrist, from pictures. But from a purely aesthetic view point, I didn’t get it. I also didn’t really understand the idea of developing a watch for extreme activities but then using 18ct gold as a case. Visually, this was the first Spidolite I found visually appealing but it seemed to defy the essence of the timepiece; anyone who has owned a watch made of this material knows it scuffs and damages extremely easily and in my view, it diluted the model’s rugged nature and raison d’être.
I am not one to be deterred however and, given how much success Linde Werdelin has had, I thought there must be one that talks to me. And in the Spidolite 3DTP Carbon I think I found it.
This is the lightest Linde Werdelin watch ever created, the outer case weighing just 3.8g. Think about that… that’s incredible… perhaps even more incredible is, given this material is extremely difficult to work with, they have managed to maintain the design of the Spido case without it delaminating. It is worth noting that this material is neither a traditional carbon fibre composite nor forged carbon; instead it involves layering thin sheets of carbon on top of each other. Once the creation of this material had been developed, it took two years for Linde Werdelin to be capable of creating the Oktopus case (on which the material was first used), before it was another two years to perfect the Spido case.
As a result, this watch is tough with a capital T and a technical tour de force, with the outer case and bezel contrasted with an accented yellow dial and TiN treated detailing, whilst parts of the skeletonised movement have been darkened with a DLC coating to provide even greater contrast.
Now this is what I am talking about! Finally I had found an iteration that spoke to me; pushing the brand’s philosophy to its limit whilst introducing a significant horological aspect in its skeletonization. It is worth noting at this point that the execution of the skeletonization is excellent and maintains a good balance between intrigue, design and legibility. After all, if you’re stuck in a blizzard, the last thing you need is to be unable to tell the time!
It’s at this stage there will be plenty commenting: well are you really going to be wearing a £14,000 watch whilst free skiing in hazardous conditions?… Well some might, but overall the naysayers might have a point. Perhaps not. But in my opinion what is vital is brands remain true to their principles. Linde Werdelin was formed as a result of one of its founders, Jorn Werdelin, breaking his back whilst skiing. This must have been horrific but, out of such trauma, something wonderful has been created. To me, watches are about stories and so, when I think of this particular brand I see it as making high end, sporty timepieces that give the impression they are, indeed given this material they might actually be, unbreakable.
That’s what the Spidolite 3DTP Carbon does for me. It marries technology with aesthetics, lightness with ruggedness. Its toughness makes it versatile in so many ways, it seemingly able to handle any situation thrown at it, albeit I would advise against wearing it with a suit; this is a sports watch through and through. But that does not detract from how stunning a piece it is and if you are one of the 75 to own one, you are very lucky indeed.
The Linde Werdelin Spidolite 3DTP Carbon retails for £14,400. Given their limited production, it is very difficult to find on the secondary market so don’t expect much change from the RRP if you do.