Vacheron Constantin Toledo – Watch Collection Celebrates the 1950s
Historical watchmaking innovation is resurrected in the Vacheron Constantin “Historiques” collection, which features modern versions of unique watches from the company’s history, spanning more than two millenniums. Since 2005, when the line was re-launched as part of VC’s 250th Anniversary celebration, the company has added a new watch per year to the “Historiques” collection. The Toledo 1952 is part of that collection, featuring a dial face that includes a sapphire moon phase display, with an improved full-calendar movement. The Vacheron Constatin Toledo 1952 is distinguished by its rectangular, but curved, case. Considered a rare find, the VC company also manufactured the Toledo 1957, a round version of the 1952 model.
The 21st Century adaptation of the Vacheron Constantin Toledo 1952 doesn’t waiver much from its 1950’s predecessor. The case is the same size, 36×43 mm, though considered large at the time. The triple-date complication displays the hours, minutes, small second, hand-type calendar, phases of the moon, day, date and month, but is modernized to include automatic winding. The full-calendar movement requires only once-a-year setting to allow for leap years. This most recent edition of the classic watch is available in 18K white gold or 18K 5N pink gold, both with alligator leather straps.
As was common in the 50s and 60s, the triple-date display has been recreated on the Toledo 1952 with the classic blue moon phase, showing the waxing and waning of the moon. The backdrop for the moon phase movement is pinstripe guilloche work, an intricate engraving technique. Mechanically, the timepiece beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour, thanks to the Vacheron Constantin original 36 jewel 1125/1225 self-winding caliber movement. It has more than 40 hours of reserve power.
Every Vacheron Constantin timepiece is stamped with the prestigious Hallmark of Geneva, and the Toledo 1952 is no exception. This certification is awarded only to Genevan watchmakers that abide by strict guidelines for horological excellence. Technical specifications must be met, including 12 specific criteria for ensuring movement perfection. The VC company received its first certification as early as 1901. Tracing its roots back to 1755, the VC company was launched by a young watchmaker, Jean-Marc Vacheron. Through the generations, VC expanded into overseas markets and Francois Constantin was brought in to assist with those operations. Horological innovations attributed to VC include the first winding crown, which replaced the winding key, and the invention of a machine capable of mass producing small watch parts and dials.