Victor's post below on his beautiful jump hour watch led me to think of VC's extraordinary pieces with alternative time display functions.
Looking at the wide array of watches I'm pretty amazed by VC's rich production of jump hour or wandering hours type time pieces and reminds me why I have so much respect and fascination for this brand!
Without being exhaustive here is a sample of some of the brand's creations:
Jump Hour from late 18th century
Called "à la Breguet" due to its richly guilloché dial. Hours jump type and placed at 12, seconds are read via the larger sub dial on the top part of the dial, minutes are read via the central hand and the date is indicated via the subdial at 6.
Jump Hour with wandering minutes and calendar: mid 20s
Typical of the Art Deco epoch all functions are read via discs: calendar on the top part of the dial, wandering minutes on a semi circle and hours right underneath.
Jump Hour from mid 30s
The hour appeture actually rotates to indicate the minutes and jumps once it reaches 60.
Bras en l'Air from late 20s to mid 30s
Part of the partnership with Parisian case maker Verger Frères, VC offered different characters on the dial whose moving hands indicated hours and minutes.
There are some jump hour wrist watches from the 30s of which I unfortunately do not have scans of. Seems like these alternative time indication displays fell out of fashion between 1940-1990 because we had to wait until 1994 to see the amazing Mercator series
Mercator Enamel dial, Americas: 1994
These enamel dial models were made in 1994 either with a dial representing the Americas or Africa/Europe/Asia. Made in 30 pieces each. Later VC also made special enamel dial versions for specific markets: ie: Hong Kong, Portugual, North America etc...
Mercator engraved dial 1995
A year after the limited enamel dial models VC launched the regular production Mercator models with engraved dials in YG and platinum. Produced until 2004 unofficial sources lead me to believe that aboout 500 Mercator models all dial/case combinations were made!!
Jump Hour or Heuse Sautante mid 1990
Made in YG and platinum, the minutes are indicated by a triangular shaped onyx.
Jump hour with retrograde minute indication, this watch was made in 200 pices in WG, 200 pieces in RG and 100 pieces in YG
Tribute to the Great Explorers 2004
Wandering hour watch with enamel dial on two levels. The first two series had dials representing the adventures of Zeng He and Magellan. Two other models with different dials will be presented in 2008. Total production of all 4 series should be around 240 pieces. There's an excellent film on these watches in the Goodies section.
Metiers d'Art Four Seasons 2005
Part of the 250th anniversary celebratory pieces these watches represented the 4 seasons (here winter is pictured). The Day, Date, and Hours are jump tupe whereas the minutes are wandering. Made in 25 sets of 4 pieces.
Metiers d'Art Les Masques 2007
On of this year's most amazing timpieces. With the same functions as the 2005 model the amazing dial and engraving work have truly made this watch into a modern masterpiece. Exists in a set of 25 with 4 pieces each, in 2008 and 2009 2 new sets will be presented. You can read more about this collection in the Articles section and an excellent film can be found in the Goodies section.