H40 Roger Dubuis Hommage Monopusher in Rose Gold
It is an unfortunate truth that, in our little world, hommage is often a dirty word. This doesn’t have to be the case, it’s just what happens when inspiration is taken lazily. Too many companies can easily copy design elements, grab a Miyota, and call it a day. But the H40? That’s an hommage like a Singer DLS is an hommage to the 964. It’s an hommage like The Killers are an hommage Oasis or David Bowie. In many respects, these could all be said to be as interesting as their inspirations. Or at the least, their takes are unique and considered. This H40 Monopusher is not a direct copy of anything, no. More a nod toward a forgotten era of incredible watchmaking, seen through the lens of a luminary 90s independent.
The very early work of Roger Dubuis’s eponymous brand started in ’95 and is not like the latter post-’03 era when the man left. Much of this time was a fascinating study of RD’s obsession with Patek Philippe having worked in their restoration department previously. Historically, these pieces forgotten about for at least a decade; we all owe a debt of gratitude to Silas at A Collected Man for bringing these to attention. The early hommages chronographs of both Roger Dubuis and Franck Muller ticked on everyone’s radar after a few traded through their hands. If I may boldly speak for the community, we all went ‘Wait, RD made THAT in the 90s?’ Sadly, as RD was only making these for eight years before leaving, they’re even less common than the similar early Franck Muller hommage work. And, objectively, I think it’s fair to say the watchmaking is on another level too.
It’s a Lemania 2310 here, but finished and regulated by RD himself to the level of Geneva Seal. As the dial’s ‘Bulletin d’Observatoire’ denotes, each movement was tested for accuracy at the Besançon Observatory, whose standards were significantly more exacting than COSC. This is serious. That calibre 65 was then cased in 40mm rose gold and given a dial that is a classic two-register with Breguet numerals, skeleton feuille hands, and attractive diamond indices. RD’s sense of restrained design was not lacking . . .how that’s changed. For each variant in the hommage series, no more than 28 examples were made. They are numbered in series, engraved on case side. But the Monopusher is the most scarce of the lot. It is said that far fewer than 28 examples for each metal. You’ll be waiting awhile to pick up another.
This example is lightly worn, and that’s it. No bashes, no damage on the dial, nothing. Case engravings are all very deep. It comes with its original box from a well-regarded California retailer.
Find this H40 Monopusher here from The Keystone for 68000 USD.