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5 Truly High End Hand Wound Chronographs


The hand wound chronograph is to a watch aficionado and enthusiast as the M badge is to a BMW fanatic. In essence, it's borderline a defining prerogative to any serious watch collector to add a manually wound chronograph to their collection at some point in their collecting journey. The joy of winding any hand wound watch is incomparable and very personal, but add a genuinely high end chronograph to the mix and what you have is a recipe for horological intertwinement and connection.


Here are som of the best truly high end hand wound chronographs that money can buy.



Patek Philippe 5172G Chronograph




  • Brand: Patek Philippe

  • Model: Chronograph

  • Reference: 5172G-001

  • Case: 41mm x 11.45mm

  • Case Material: White Gold

  • Water Resistance: 30m

  • Calibre: CH 29-535 PS

  • Calibre Provenance: Manufacture

  • Frequency: 4 Hz

  • Power Reserve: 65 hours


The successor to one of my favourite all-time watches in the 5170, the Patek Philippe 5172G Chronograph is Patek's answer to the market's demands: A manually wound chronograph that is timeless, classical and generational. The Patek Philippe 5172G Chronograph is a fantastic piece who's prowess lies on the caseback side where the CH 29-535 PS calibre is on full display. Beautiful, subtle and ultimately a wonderful example of a truly high end hand wound chronograph.


Vacheron Constantin Cornes De Vache 1955




  • Brand: Vacheron Constantin

  • Model: Cornes De Vache 1955

  • Reference: 5000H/000R-B059

  • Case: 38.50mm x 10.90mm

  • Case Material: Pink Gold

  • Water Resistance: 30m

  • Calibre: 1142

  • Calibre Provenance: Manufacture

  • Frequency: 3 Hz

  • Power Reserve: 48 hours


From Vacheron Constantin we have the Cornes De Vache 1955. With its distinct lugs, the Vacheron Constantin Cornes De Vache 1955 is by far the most classical looking hand wound chronograph in this list. Its proportions are fantastic, its details are aplenty and the finishing of the 1142 hand wound chronograph calibre is second to none. Just superb.


A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Up/Down




  • Brand: A. Lange & Söhne

  • Model: Datograph Up/Down

  • Reference: 405.035

  • Case: 41mm x 13.10mm

  • Case Material: Platinum

  • Water Resistance: 30m

  • Calibre: L951.6

  • Calibre Provenance: Manufacture

  • Frequency: 2.5 Hz

  • Power Reserve: 60 hours


Arguably the king of the hand wound chronograph, the A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Up/Down remains high up on the list of all-time greats in watchmaking. I can attribute the A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Up/Down's brilliance to the maison's unwavering pursuit of quality, finishing and horological prowess. Without a doubt one of the ultimate hand wound chronograph grails.


Breguet 7077 Tradition Chronographe Indépendant




  • Brand: Breguet

  • Model: Tradition Chronographe Indépendant

  • Reference: 7077BB/G1/9XV

  • Case: 44mm x 13.95mm

  • Case Material: White Gold

  • Water Resistance: 30m

  • Calibre: 580 DR

  • Calibre Provenance: Manufacture

  • Frequency: 3 Hz

  • Power Reserve: 55 hours


The avant garde Breguet 7077 Tradition Chronographe Indépendant comes in as the only openworked hand wound chronograph in this list. It's a beautiful rendition of a traditional manually wound chronograph paired with the eccentricities of Breguet's openworking brilliance. The Breguet 7077 Tradition Chronographe Indépendant is about as unconventional as they make them, but in its own right an absolute grail of a hand wound chronograph.


A. Lange & Söhne 1815 Chronograph Boutique Edition




  • Brand: A. Lange & Söhne

  • Model: 1815 Chronograph

  • Reference: 414.026

  • Case: 39.50mm x 11mm

  • Case Material: White Gold

  • Water Resistance: 30m

  • Calibre: L951.5

  • Calibre Provenance: Manufacture

  • Frequency: 2.5 Hz

  • Power Reserve: 60 hours


Last but definitely not least is the A. Lange & Söhne 1815 Chronograph Boutique Edition. In any of its many iterations, the 1815 Chronograph is utterly magnificent. While it lacks the industrial charm of the Datograph, the 1815 Chronograph is known by many as the quieter, more inconspicuous and more classical take on the traditional hand wound chronograph.


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