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Brand Review: Larcum Kendall (L. Kendall) Watches
The History and Exclusive Features of the Infamous Larcum Kendall Watches Larcum Kendall is one of the pioneers in the watch-making industry in London. He learned to make watches during the British watch-making golden years when there was a quest for an accurate way to determine the time. Longitude at sea gave rise to some of the world’s ever most excellent timekeepers. Larcum Kendal began with an impressive chronometer, Captain Cook, which he would refer to as my trusted friend. LarcumKendall will remain one of the renowned inventors in the watch-making space.
Larcum Kendall was born in 1719 and spent the earlier part of his career in London as an intern. He would work with the renowned watchmaker, John Jeffreys, before he decided to set up his own business, Furnival’s Inn Court, in 1742. Kendall Larcum had one brother, Moses. He was apprenticed to watch-making at John Jefferys for seven years while he was living with his parents in Westminster, London. In 1736, Larcum Kendall inherited his grandpa’s property, which enabled him to set up his watch-making brand immediately after finishing his apprenticeship. He began by working for the great clock and watchmaker, George Graham, as a specialist in making escapements. Larcum Kendal was raised up a Quaker, but he never stayed as one of their brethren. According to his obituary, Larcum Kendall never left that simplicity for which that religion is known for and admired. Larcum Kendall was highly respected as a craftsman. While working under Thomas Mudge and Graham, Larcum was part of the most exceptional team of watchmakers. Larcum Kendall seemed to have remained a loner in watch-making trade because he never became a member of the Clockmaker’s Company, and neither did he join any group of talented London watchmakers. However, Graham, Jefferys, and Kendall had connections with the pioneer precision watch and marine timekeeper maker, John Harrison.
Larcum Kendall was in 1765 appointed to the Board of Longitude as one of the panelists to witness the explanation of the construction of John Harrison’s fourth timekeeper at an event that took place between 14th and 22nd of August in 1765. During these deliberations, Larcum Kendall and the rest of the board members concluded that John Harrison keeps a copy of the timekeeper. Larcum Kendall is one of the contributors to the making of John Harrison’s fourth timekeeper.
Mr. Larcum was in 1765 appointed to the Board of Longitude as an expert in watch-making and was commissioned to make a marine chronometer, the K1, in the same year. The chronometer was completed in 1769, but it was put to the test later in the year by Captain James Cook during the second voyage on HMS Resolution.
The L. Kendall K1 Watch Collection
The K1 is a one-day marine timekeeper with a diameter of 102 mm. The K1 was completed in 1769, and a year later, it was inspected by the same group. Larcum Kendall was paid the agreed 450 Euros for adjusting the K1 in nine months. The K1 was sent for trials during James Cook’s second voyage of discovery of the South Seas. However, the initial design of the K1 was too complicated that even the Board commissioned Larcum Kendall to design a simplified version. The result was K2, which became famous for being on HM ship during the infamous mutiny. It comes with a white enamel dial, and it is an imitation of the H4. It features Arabic ten-minute figures, roman hour minerals, and scrolling decorations at its quarters. The K1 Collection comes with blued and polished poker hands and steel beetle and with a delicate steel pointer seconds hand that has a counted poised tail. The K1 Collection has a brass, which is a full plate fuse movement with a highly engraved slide plate, four turned pillars, third Wheel Bridge, and Balance Bridge. The plate of the K1 Collection is engraved as L. Kendall London 1769.
The timekeeper has a high level of brass-work finish, with all its brass moving parts highly polished. Its fusee features the maintaining power of Harrison, but it has a brass pipe around it. The K1 Collection has a nominal four-wheel train that features a remontoir attached to the fourth wheel. The third wheel of this timekeeper meshes with the fourth wheel and runs with the plate’s potence. The K1 has a remontoir spring leading to a fly and fifth wheel and can drive the fourth wheel or contrite that drives the steel escape wheel. The timekeeper features Harrison’s adapted verge escapement, which is made of diamond pallets. It acts as the hardened steel escape wheel. The hardened steel balance features of tampered form, three turns blued steel spiral spring, which is somewhat straight. It acts against a secondary curb pin and bimetallic compensation curb.
The K1 has a jewelling that extends to the escape wheel, balance, third wheel, contrite wheel, and all feature pallets and end stones, as mentioned above. The K1 is held in a large, silver case that measures 28mm deep, 124mm wide, and 165mm high. However, both the outer and inner cases of this timekeeper are hallmarked for London. It comes with Peter's case mark. The K1’s case was rhodium plated back in the 1940s, and it features a few slight scratches to its finish. Its movement is in excellent working condition and has perfect dial enamel. The K1 was commissioned in 1766 by the Board of Longitude, but it was completed three years later. Captain Cook used the K1 during his second and third voyages of the South Seas, but the timekeeper was later issued to Captain Philip and the first colony in Australia. It was then passed to Admiral Sir John, who used it in HMS victory before returning it to the Board of Longitude in 1802.
The L. Kendall K2 Collection
Kendall’s marine chronometer, K2, was one of the timekeepers aboard the HMS Bounty 1789. It would have quite an adventure. Mutineers seized the K2 and went with it to the Pitcairn Islands, immediately they took over the ship. The Pitcairn Islands was a group of Islands situated right in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. The K2 was passed through several mutineers before Mr. John Adams decided to exchange it with a traveling Nantucket Captain in 1808 for a silk handkerchief. However, the chronometer was confiscated from its owner by the Chilean Governor, who then sold it to Captain Thomas Herbert. It is Captain Herbert who returned the K2 to England in 1843 after over forty years of voyaging around the world.
The L. Kendall K4 Watch Collection
It is a Swiss-made, automatic chronometer personalized to Larcum Kendal specs. It comes with Rotor in silver 925, but unlike other popular chronometers, the K4 Collection function indicating the North Star. Its features include chronometer, hours, seconds, counter 24 hours, and minutes. The K4 Collection comes with a diameter of 46 mm and stainless steel. It has a width of 19 mm and four special construction components, which are fixed together to improve its waterproofing capabilities. The K4 Collection has a flat 2mm thick, high quality curved sapphire on the back. Screws are used for sealing and fixing the back of the K4 Collection. The K4 Collection comes with flat shape dials and hands with a unique design. It has 100 mt, 10 ATM water resistance capabilities.
The L. Kendall K5 Watch Collection
It is a Swiss-made, automatic chronometer that comes with mechanical Dubois Depras customized to Kendall specs. Its functions include data, seconds, minutes, and hours recording. Like the K4 Collection, K5 Collection has a width of 19 mm and a diameter of 46 mm. It is fitted with a 316 Plus stainless steel cover, and its case has four components, which are fixed together to achieve excellent waterproofing capabilities. It has a flat 4 mm thick curved sapphire that is made with high quality material. The back of the chronometer is fixed and sealed with screws. It features hand-finished and handmade finished calf leather, which is carefully processed and selected to give the strap a distressed look and feel. The K5 Collection also features a personalized steel buckle in sextant shape. Its water resistance capabilities are 100 mt, 10ATM, which are similar to the K4 Collection.
The L. Kendall K6 Watch Collection
The K6 Collection was launched in 2015, and it comes with deep historical roots within its identity. It is a Swiss-made, automatic AJS personalized to specs of Kendall. It has a Rotor in Silver 925, but its functions indicate the North Star like the K4 Collection. Its features include data disk, seconds, minutes, and hours at 12 o’clock. It has a stainless steel cover with a width of 20 mm and a diameter of 46 mm. Its construction case has three components, which are fixed together to add to its waterproofing properties. The K6 Collection comes with flat shaped superimposed dials that are attached to straps with Kendall design. It has a flat 4mm thick sapphire on the face, and it is sealed and fixed with unique screws. Like other models, the K6 Collection has 100 mt, 10ATM water resistance capabilities.