Today let’s take a closer look at another great example of a 40mm Blancpain Leman from the first decade in the 21st century: the triple calendar Leman Quantieme Complet reference 2863-1130. Among other timepieces from that collection the 2863 has captured a special place in the hearts of seasoned Blancpain enthusiasts.
The second generation Leman
In the early 2000s Blancpain renewed their successful Leman collection, previously known as the 2100 series. The first new models with a now 40mm case were the Flyback Split Second ref 2086F and the GMT Reveil ref 2041.
In 2005 the Flyback Grande Date ref 2885F and the Aqua Lung Grande Date ref 2850A followed. The two subsequent years saw the launch of the Ultra Slim Grande Date ref 2850, the Double Time Zone ref 2860 and the Flyback Quantieme Perpetuel 2685F.
One more timepiece from that era was the topic of this blog post, the Quantieme Complet ref 2863, made in three versions: the white dial 2863-1127 and the black dial 2863-1130, both in stainless steel, and the rose gold 2863-3642 with an opaline dial.
An era of true innovation
Blancpain had a very strong first decade: they created a plentiful of new movements, with the famous caliber 1315 powering the all new Fifty Fathoms ref 5015 in 2007 as possibly the best known example.
In addition they brought an innovative travel/alarm watch with the Leman GMT Reveil, the only instantly jumping double window date with the Flyback Grande Date and the Aqua Lung Grande Date, they also updated their movements with multiple calendar functions to be secured from manipulation at the wrong time, so damage could bo longer be done to the mechanism.
With the Leman Quantieme Complet 2863 they even went one remarkable step further: this timepiece was the first to feature a system of patented under-lug correctors to set the calendar indications.
This solution not only makes the small (not very pretty) push buttons in the case flanks obsolete, it also makes the calendar setting a comfortable, quick and actually very enjoyable exercise. There’s no tool needed, your fingernails do the job of adjusting the calendar indications within a few seconds perfectly.
This movement was already used in the preceding 38mm Quantieme Complet, but it looks a bit different in reference 2863.
Oscillating at 3Hz, cal 6763 is based on cal 1150 and therefore offers four days of power reserve. The decoration with Geneva stripes and perlage is enhanced by the use of heat blued screws, a characteristic element of the 20mm Leman timepieces. The 18ct gold rotor carries the engraved and lacquer filled Manufacture logo and signature also in blue.
A 40mm case with a height of 11mm is of course a perfect size to stand the test of time. The perfectly rounded shapes of the Leman have also proven that they are just as beautiful today as they have been almost 30 years ago.
The dial of the 40mm Quantieme Complet is using applied Arabic numerals and indices filled with white SuperLuminova. The ebony black dial has the typical multi layer appearance, with a sunburst finish in the center and a radial finish for the hour marker ring.
Despite the many indications, the dial is beautifully balanced: the applied 12 together with the day and month windows and the Blancpain signature build a well proportioned counterweight to the small seconds with moon phase indication. The outer rim of the dial carries the subtle printed date indications, the date hand with the crescent shaped red lacquered tip is corresponding nicely with the overall design, the time indication with the large luminous sword hands clearly remains the dominant visual focus.
The Leman Quantieme Complet 2863 had a rather short time of production, and the watch is probably more rare than various limited editions of other models.
One might ask why that is, given the obvious beauty and great functionality of this watch. Maybe timing was just not right for this marvel, it was offered right in the period of ever growing watch sizes and more extrovert designs.
To me the Quantieme Complet 2863 is a perfect example of the second generation Leman: innovative, timeless and a future classic. These watches were the quintessential blend of classic and sports watch elements, a timepieces that fit every occasion and moment.
You find part one of the Leman series overview here, part two here and part three here in the blog. Other 40mm Leman timepieces are also featured in dedicated blog essays: the Flyback Split Second A’Toute Vitesse here, the GMT Reveil East Coast Jewelry here, the Aqua Lung Grande Date here, the Ultra Slim Grande Date here and the Flyback Quantieme Perpetuel here.
Since the Leman series has been discontinued for a while it is no longer featured on the Blancpain website. But you find the Villeret Quantieme Complet 6654 here, this watch is the current equivalent to the 2863, although significantly different in its aesthetics.
I hope you enjoyed this Flashback essay and the photos.