A visit to the Lange manufactory in Glashütte.Date: Nov 14, 2010,05:54 AM - (view entire thread)
A visit to the Lange manufactory in Glashütte
An tour of the Lange Uhren factory in Glashütte covering the manufacturing and finishing of parts, assembly and testing, including in-house hairspring production
By Su Jia Xian (SJX)
Lange watches are today made at the Lange I and Lange II buildings on Altenberger Straße. Originally the premises of clockmaker Strasser & Rohde, Lange set up here after the company was re-established in 1990 because the original Lange building at Ferdinand-Adolph-Lange-Platz 1 was owned by the town of Glashütte and unavailable.
Fortunately in the year 2000, the town of Glashütte agreed to sell Lange the building at Ferdinand-Adolph-Lange-Platz 1 which was not only the Lange workshop but also the residence of the Lange family before the war. Today the building houses the administrative offices of Lange, as well as the service and restoration departments.
Funnily enough, Glashütte Original sits in between the two Lange sites on Alterberger Straße and Ferdinand-Adolph-Lange-Platz. Across on one side from Ferdinand-Adolph-Lange-Platz 1 is Nomos while opposite on the other side sits casemaker SUG, partially owned by Sinn. Glashütte is the centre of German watchmaking.
The Lange manufactory seen from Altenberger Strasse
My guide for the tour was Arnd Einhorn, Lange’s Director of PR, and someone who has been with the brand since almost day one. It was my tremendous pleasure to be shown around the manufactory by Arnd.
This report will take you through the manufactory. Since being re-established, Lange has gradually grown its technical and manufacturing capability for movements. Lange has invested a tremendous amount in its factory, especially given its small output. Most notably it makes it own hairsprings. While there is no official word on this, I would surmise Lange also makes components for other Richemont Group companies. If you can only read one post of the eight parts I recommend clicking on the one covering hairspring manufacture.
Above: The main lobby of Lange
This epic post is largely factual with lots of photos. I will post a concluding article later on, after readers digest this. But to sum up my feelings about Lange Uhren: it is a small manufacture staffed by talented, but also proud yet humble, craftsmen and women – there are 450 staff making only a few thousand watches a year – who believe they are making the best watches in the world – and in many ways they are right.
My future posts will cover other aspects of Lange, including restoration and the town of Glashütte itself.
click here to continue the tour.