REVIEW: A. Lange & Söhne Saxonia Thin
May 9, 2013
Just last year, A. Lange & Söhne added a thin model to their Saxonia collection. Not just another thin model — at 5.9 mm in height — it is the thinnest watch ever created by the Glashütte based watchmaker. And now, the Saxonia Thin, which was originally available only in pink gold, is also available in a beautiful white gold case.
The case, which is fully polished (except for the case back, which is brushed around the edges of the sapphire glass), measures 40 mm in diameter, an ideal size for a modern dress watch. I wore it for a few weeks, and while this type of watch typically goes best with a suit or button-down, it works well with t-shirt and jeans as well. It looks and feels so good on the wrist, that I found myself wearing it every chance I got.
To produce a timepiece measuring only 5.9 mm thick, A. Lange & Söhne had to develop an even thinner movement. At 2.9 mm in the height, the manually wound in-house caliber L093.1, like the case, is the thinnest ever produced by Lange. And like all of their movements, it is decorated and assembled by hand, precision adjusted in five positions, the plates are made in untreated German silver and the balance cock is engraved by hand. Additionally, the movement is assembled and disassembled twice before being delivered (a quality control element practically unheard of at any other watch manufacture). Apart from the thinness and the exquisite finishing, this movement also has another very nice feature, a 72-hour power reserve. Many watches in this category, or this small, have a full day less of power reserve, making it this German dress watch, that much more appealing.
As Lange transitions to in-house manufactured balance springs for all their movements, some older calibers have not yet been redesigned to include the in-house springs. Thankfully, this an all new caliber, and so it does utilize the superior Lange produced hairspring.
The movement consists of 167 parts, 21 of which are jewels, and 3 of which are screwed gold chatons. A shock resistant screw balance beats at a cadence of 21,600 semi-oscillations per hour (4Hz).
From the beautiful solid silver argenté dial to the faceted rhodium gold baton-shaped hour indexes, and the rhodium gold hour and minute hands, this simple time only watch — is Bauhaus design at it finest.
The White Gold Saxonia Thin is presented on a hand-stitched black crocodile strap with a Lange prong buckle in solid white gold.
At the other end of the spectrum from A. Lange & Sohne’s famous chronograph calibers, which are arguably some of the most beautifully finished movements in the world — there is the simple look of the new Saxonia Thin. Inside, is a newly developed thin, manually wound three-quarter plate movement that may not be as intricate as a Datograph, or as spellbinding to look at, but like every Lange timepiece it is finished to absolute perfection. And besides, the beautiful crafted argenté dial and polished rhodium hands and markers are to die for. (Ref. 211.026)