Linde Werdelin is a name you hear more and more, even amongst collectors who are usually only into famous brand name watches. This horological version of David, is working very hard at taking on the Goliaths of high end watchmaking. They do that in sometimes surprising ways, like with the SpidoSpeed Black Diamond or by lowering the water resistance of their new divers watch.
But although all these moves and actions work quite effectively in today’s market, how will their products be judged in tomorrows’ market? Ironically, it’s time itself that will judge not only the staying power of a watch, but also its collectability. That is a whole different ball game, and one in which even powerhouse brands don’t always score as well as they’d like.
Although it takes time to see how Linde Werdelin will perform, we can examine if they have the elements needed to make it to the starting line. To determine this we tested a SpidoLite II from Linde Werdelin.
The SpidoLite II watch is a whopping 44mm wide, and 46mm tall. Maybe in today’s watchworld not even that impressive, but with its skeltonized case in the sinister titanium it is an impressive watch to see. However, the first thing you experience when you strap on the SpidoLite II is that it is a gentle giant. The titanium case makes the watch comfortably light to wear and the integrated strap fastens it to the shape of your wrist perfectly.
Fortunately, Linde Werdelin is one of those brands that has invested in a well designed buckle. The strap not only easily guides through the buckle but also stays in line with the design of the watch. Small details like these will have quite an impact on the daily pleasures you get from a watch and also significantly contribute towards the appreciation of a brand in general.
Another important factor is the movement. Linde Werdelin doesn’t have the ambition of becoming a manufacture but prefers to work closely with top suppliers within the industry. In this case they chose the Concepto caliber 2251. This movement is based on the design of the Valjoux 7750 but without the chronograph complication. The movement in this watch is a strength as well as a weakness. It is no secret that watch collectors love manufacture movements; however, it is also no secret that some manufacture movements don’t always perform as you would expect from such a high end and expensive piece of micro-engineering. The Concepto caliber doesn’t have those problems, and Linde Werdelin invested significantly in changing the look and feel of this movement.
The SpidoLite II offers a lot to look at , from the angles of the case to the partially skeletonized dial. Because of the blued hands it is quite easy to read, yet there is no other watch out there that even looks remotely like this one. The “stenciled” date ring is a superb addition to this watch. It doesn’t draw all the attention away from the rest of the design, as date-functions sometimes have a tendency to do and at the same time manages to be there when you need it.
Although in the end it will be the opinion of the general public that will decide how collectible Linde Werdelin’s products will become in the long run, they have already proved that they are capable of making very solid watches with a clear DNA. Because all of their watches are only made in very limited editions, this SpidoLite II comes, for example, in a run of 100, they will never be common and more of a connoisseur’s choice. And that happens to be a very promising place to be when we are talking about collectability.