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LIP T18 Original: The New Watch Model From LIP

Watches can be a good investment for those who are knowledgeable about the market and have a passion for collecting.

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Today, we’re going to talk about a model from LIP. LIP is a French watchmaker that was founded in 1867 in Besançon, France. The company has a long history of producing high-quality mechanical watches, and has been responsible for a number of significant innovations in watchmaking over the years. If it’s been a few years now that the French watchmaker announced working on a new in-house caliber, today we have more information about it. This is a revised and increased edition of the brand’s T18 caliber which has just celebrated its 90th anniversary! The first LIP watches to be equipped with this caliber called LIP T18 Original will be marketed in September.

LIP T18: A Classic Created In 1933


Developed in 1933 by André Donat at the request of a certain Fred LIP, the LIP T18 was born. What is so special about this caliber? “For the first time, the manufacture of the parts is divided into several stages and the various parts that make up the movement are assembled on the assembly line. The LIP T18 therefore becomes the first mass-produced French movement, repairable and revisable by all of the brand’s reseller watchmakers,” the Besançon company said.

Interesting detail, a certain Yuri Gagarin wore for his 1961 space flight a Sturmanskie (“navigator” in Russian) watch whose caliber is an “unofficial” T18, the plans and manufacturing methods having been stolen by several Soviet manufacturers in the 30s.

sturmanskie 1

A Sturmanskie watch equipped with an “unofficial” T18 caliber

The LIP T18 Original is a mechanical watch movement that was developed and produced by the Franco-Swiss company LIP in the mid-20th century. The movement is renowned for its precision and reliability, making it a popular choice among watch enthusiasts and collectors.

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The T18 Original was introduced in the 1950s and features a number of advanced technical features for the time, including a shock-resistant balance wheel and an Incabloc anti-shock system. These features help to ensure the accuracy of the movement, even in challenging conditions.

The T18 Original was used in a variety of watch models produced by LIP, including the iconic Himalaya and Nautic-Ski watches. The movement is a manual wind movement, meaning that it must be wound by hand in order to operate. It has a power reserve of around 40 hours, meaning that it can run for approximately two days without needing to be rewound.

The LIP T18 Original movement was also used as the basis for a number of other movements produced by LIP, including the T18 Flyback and the T18 Super Compressor. These movements were used in a range of different watch models produced by the company, and are highly sought-after by collectors today.

With dimensions and specifications identical to the very first T18 from 1933, this movement allows the French brand to reconnect with its origins. Only the cock has been slightly redesigned to become through and more solid. It gives the new visual signature to this in-house movement.

LIP therefore always chooses a caliber designed to run on watches equipped with barrel-shaped cases. From a technical point of view, the parts of the caliber T18 Original are machined in Switzerland by the La Joux-Perret factory and then decorated and assembled by Humbert-Droz in Besançon. It offers a mechanical movement hand-wound operating at 21,600 oscillations per hour and has a power reserve of 42 hours.

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Overall, the LIP T18 Original is a highly respected mechanical watch movement that played an important role in the history of watchmaking. Its precision, reliability, and advanced technical features continue to make it a popular choice among watch enthusiasts today.

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