Few collections from any manufacture are capable of rivaling the Classique’s height of restrained design sense, traditional finishing, impressive watchmaking, or value. Most will be aware by now that this accomplished range was spearheaded by a young Daniel Roth. In 1973, Roth set about bringing a perpetual calendar back to Breguet. Most will know the ref. 3310 as the Classique Perpetual, however, before that was this 3050 whos roots tie directly to to Roth’s past and a pocket watch he made for his studies at Le Sentier.
Perpetual calendars in 1970 were a niche interest and still quite uncommon, certainly nothing like as proliferated as they are today. Perpetual calendars were a last bastion of the highest order watchmaking when quartz crystals were causing chaos. Roth wisely recognized this early, and in the mid 70s Breguet debuted this 3050, a wristwatch whose movement and layout were both directly taken from a pocket watch made in his studies and applied to a wristwatch format. In 1986, this uncommon reference was replaced with the 3310. The latter addition of a power reserve in the 3310 meant an entirely new layout, one which was equally beautiful but far less classic in appearance. This 3050 is something quite timeless.
Moreover, its proportions are restrained at 36mm, with an aggressively thin 8mm height. The dial is made from a plate of solid gold with a galvanized silver surface, sporting a full clous de paris guilloché. Perhaps the most beautiful aesthetic touch, though, is the handset: characteristically Breguet with elongated stems. Each watch was numbered in series in the classic Breguet tradition, viewable on a plaque applied to the right hand date subdial. Breguet’s director at the time, Francois Bodet, was quoted as saying that only 2 or 3 perpetual calendars left the maison’s doors each year, as they required about thirty distinct watchmaking professions to create a single watch. All of this history and watchmaking effort, yet still 3050s will trade hands at or about 30K in USD today.
This example sports only minor surface wear across the highly polished bezel and lugs. Overall, there are no major bashes and the crystal is clear of the same abuse. Its dial is unaged. The watch comes with is original buckle, but no papers or boxes, from a well-regarded retailer.
Find this 3050 here from S Song Watches for 31000 USD.