For those who like ’em light, this one’s for you: the new version of the Linde Werdelin SpidoLite with a skeleton case, dial and movement.

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The objective of the SpidoLite series has always been to produce super-light yet rugged sports watches. In fact, this latest incarnation of the Spidolite really reminds me of the watch that first drew my attention to Linde Werdelin, the original SpidoLite from around 2009. In many ways, this new SpidoLite (especially the titanium version) is a bit of a “back to basics” exercise for the independent brand that showcases just how far it has come in defining its own aesthetic code, while considerably improving overall detailing and execution.

Linde-Werdelin-Spidolite-EvolutionLeft to right: 2009 SpidoLite “SA edition”, 2011 SpidoLite II, 2015 SpidoLite

Available in either grade 5 titanium or rose gold with a black ceramic bezel, the new SpidoLite’s case still retains the same proportions and cut-out treatment, measuring 44mm in diameter and 46mm in length. What I really like here is the alternating satin-brushed, matte and polished surfaces, highlighting the case’s unique architecture that much more.

The titanium version is in fact Linde Werdelin’s lightest timepiece to date, weighing a mere 62 grams without the strap and 88 grams with the grey rubber strap and tang buckle seen below.

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A detail worth mentioning is the redesigned solid caseback, which accoring to co-founder Morten Linde helps reduce the overall weight of the watch, apparently weighing 23% lighter than it’s predecessor (in the titanium version at least).

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While the previous SpidoLite iterations have featured solid, partially open dials revealing just small portions of the movement, the 2015 version takes an entirely different approach where the movement itself is skeletonized, with the dial being just the chapter ring and rehaut flange that is reinforced and centrally attached to the movement with a structure resembling some of the movement’s bridges.

The movement was custom-made by Chronode SA, the same manufacturer that has worked on HYT’s H1 movement as well as the first two MB&F Legacy Machine movements to name just a few, here using what I assume is an ETA-2892 base or Sellita equivalent.

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The movement features one of my preferred forms of power reserve indicators (though perhaps not so intuitive for the less seasoned horophile), where the barrel is openworked to allow a view onto the mainspring, meaning that the power reserve can be determined by looking at how tightly wound the mainspring is. It’s not pinpoint accurate, but it works.

Note the geometric triangular or “trigon” cutout patten above the barrel, a design cue that we’ll apparently be seeing more of from Linde Werdelin in the future.

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Now, the snob in me wants to nitpick over the skeleton movement’s lack of superlative finishing and decoration, but I have to be realistic.

Linde Werdelin have never been in the business of making haute horlogerie products with all the bells and whistles that we’d expect to find in brands with the words “tradition” and “history” mentioned at least once in every press release. Linde Werdelin make stylish yet robust sports watches for those who can afford them. And in a sports watch, hand-chamfering bridges and polishing screw heads add absolutely no value to its performance. Besides, the sandblasted and brushed finish for the plate and bridges actually fit quite well with the SpidoLite’s exoskeleton case.

What we have here is a cool, alternative sports watch that looks and feels good (to me anyways), and that you certainly won’t be seeing on every other guy’s wrist in the south of France this summer.

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The Linde Werdelin Spidolite is limited to 75 pieces in titanium and 75 pieces in rose gold, priced at CHF 15’000 And CHF 27’000 Respectively.

More information on www.lindewerdelin.com

Special thanks to Lena Michaels from Linde Werdelin’s London HQ for making this review possible.