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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Laco Special Edition Project

Good news for fans of Laco watches; the German watch manufacturer along with Watchuseek have consented to a custom watch project to be created within this special sub-forum.

As co-moderator of the Laco Forum, I have been asked by the manufacturer to manage this project and handle its administrative functions to ensure that everything runs smoothly. As such my goal is to keep everything well organized, not only to avoid confusion during the design process, but also to make sure that anyone new to the project can quickly familiarize themselves with its details and progress. With this in mind, I'd like to ask everyone's co-operation by not creating any new threads within this sub-forum and by posting all comments within an appropriate existing thread. If you're not sure where to put your comment, you can always default to this General Discussion thread. Any new threads will be deleted without notice and its contents moved to an appropriate thread.

In order to keep the cost of this new Laco limited series watch within reason and to expedite its manufacture, Laco has somewhat restricted the scope of this project. For example, we will need to choose an existing Laco case for the basis of the watch (Flieger 42 and 45 mm, Marine 42 mm, Einsatz Black 46 mm, and Laco 69). However, there is still a lot of room for customization and project participants will need to actively work on deciding most of the key design characteristics of this Special Edition watch.

Here's a list of what the project's participants will need to decide:
  • The theme for the watch. Will it be an historic B-Uhr or a modern version of a Navy watch?
  • A name for the watch.
  • Determine which of the existing Laco watch cases should be used for this project and what type of finish it should have.
  • Which movement it should use; a vintage Durowe INT 7425-4 handwinding movement or a modern ETA 2824.2.
  • Design of the dial and hands.
  • The engraving details for the back and/or side of the watch.
  • The final presentation of the watch including strap and box.

The watch will be produced as a Limited Edition of ONLY 50 samples. Its cost has not yet been fully determined as an accurate price can only be decided upon once all the design elements have been established - however, Laco has given us a rough estimate of 898 EUR for its base price . Every one of the 50 watches will require a 50 percent deposit before Laco will begin their manufacture.

The duration of this project will be determined by how quickly we decide upon each of the design elements. Laco has already indicated that it will take roughly 14 weeks just to prepare the movements (if the Durowe movement is chosen) and that work will only begin once all the deposits have been collected. As with any project watch, participants should expect delays and have extreme patience. Be warned; this is not a quick process if you're an impatient person.

Finally, Laco has agreed to help us with prototype drawings and artwork. However, we will need to supply them with 300 dpi files, in either a jpg or ai format and expect a one to two week return period for drawings from their end. Artwork will undoubtedly be one aspect of this project that will affect the length of time required for the watch's design and its manufacture.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
2011 Laco Special Edition Project - PROGRESS REPORT

If you're new to the 2011 Laco Special Edition Project, this post will help to familiarize you with the project's progress. This brief synopsis will also save you reading through numerous threads and hundreds of posts just to get 'caught up' on what has already happened in this project.

STEP ONE: Project Theme

The first element that was tackled by the project's participants was deciding on a general theme for the project watch. Many options and ideas were discussed and a list of nine different themes was established and voted on. The winner was the Artillery theme, which is based on an historical Beobachtungsuhr (B-Uhr or Observation watch) that was originally manufactured by A. Lange & Söhne for use by Messbatterie (measurement artillery battery) troops during World War II. Unfortunately, concise information pertaining to the original uses of this particular watch appears to have been forever lost. Despite this, the project's participants who voted for this theme were particularly intrigued by the unique design of the watch's dial, which features reversed numerals so that the watch could be used for photographic purposes. Although a couple of contemporary versions of the Artillery B-Uhr do exist - Aristo for example has a version of this watch in their collection - the forum's participants felt that they could create a more historically accurate version of this very rare military timepiece. You can read through the discussions concerning the project's theme in this thread. You can also review the results of the vote here.



STEP TWO: Project Case

The next item up for debate was the watch's case. We had to determine which of the existing Laco watch cases would be used as the basis for this project. The merits of every available case were discussed and after a vote was held, it was decided to use Laco's current 45 mm B-Uhr case. This case was chosen because it best represented the one used for the original Artillery B-Uhr, which measured a whopping 65 mm - not including the crown! Laco's existing 45 mm case is a very accurate representation of the cases that were manufactured by Laco during World War II and were sold to the Luftwaffe. Assuming that Laco had been awarded the contract to supply an Artillery B-Uhr as well, we're quite confident that it would have been manufactured using a case nearly identical to the one chosen for this project.



STEP THREE: Project Movement

At the heart of the project is the watch's movement. Laco provided us with three options to choose from when it came to the base movement: A vintage Durowe INT 7425-4 that would result in a project price of 1,498 €, a decorated version of the Durowe INT 7425-4 that would increase the cost over the original 1,498 €, or an ETA 2824.2 modified to handwinding (base project price 950 €). The vote went to the modified ETA 2824.2, mostly because its cost was more modest and more of the project's participants would be able to afford it. The discussion pertaining to the movement can be found in this thread.




STEP FOUR: Case Back and Finish

We're currently in the process of discussing the finish of the watch case and the information that should be engraved on the watch's case back. You are welcome to join our discussion in this thread.
 
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