Ceramic average Joe thinks first of dishes, vases and tiles. However, ceramic producing watches as well as other niche material (E.g. carbon or bronze) due to several advantages definitely has its raison d ‘ être.
Reason to go enough for me in this article on the Properties of ceramics and the most important brands that build ceramic watches.
Properties and applications of ceramic
The pottery-making is already many thousands of years old: in the Neolithic age, as people were settling down, were storage containers for food from ceramic burned-finally Yes all the stuff from the agricultural cultivation in the absence of Tupperware had to be stored somehow.
Of course, tableware, vases etc. still made of ceramics are produced. Under the name of technical ceramics, the material has found but also feed into many other areas such as medical technology (as dentures) or the furnace construction. Ceramic tiles protect the gaunt including space shuttles during re-entry into the atmosphere.
Ceramic has several beneficial Propertieswhich make the material interesting for the production of clocks : a ceramic is scratch resistant, sturdy, heat-resistant, corrosion-resistant and has a very fine feel. A great advantage compared to dark PVD coated steel watches is also, that ceramic watches no color can flake.
On the other hand ceramic is also comparatively easy and suitable for those who have an Nickel allergy. Because: Stainless steel is always made with nickel. Only the so-called surgical steel (316-L stainless steel) contains a low nickel content, that allergy sufferers have no problems. High quality watches are however always made of nickel-free stainless steel.
Due to the properties of ceramics many manufacturers in the medium have taken to high price segment, to make at least the bezels made of scratch-resistant ceramic. That also makes sense, since the bezel normally one of the scratch catcher No. 1 is.
As an example, which was Breitling SuperOcean 44 or the comparatively cheap new Tissot PRS 516 automatic model series called, put on ceramic bezels:
The disadvantage of ceramic is that’s comparatively easily can – logically, but, because a crash of the coffee cup from the table onto a hard floor survived these to all rarely. The watch manufacturer IWC writes in this regard but hope making:
The high-tech ceramic, as used in watches, characterized especially by much purer raw materials and complex manufacturing processes. In contrast to the porcelain clay, it therefore also not easily cracked.
Still, Too gruff to should not deal with a ceramic Watch: images broken or broken on ceramic watchesemerge from time to time In the NET – definitely not a pretty sight and the repair cost is often accompanied in the field by 2/3 of the new acquisition or more.
Also the price is often pretty crisp for clocks with Full ceramic case . This is among other things because that is the production quite challenging : ceramic case shrink during firing about one-third. The challenge therefore is to take into account the loss of size to jeopardize such as not the water resistance or the exact fit of Crown or pushers in the production.
For techies-IWC writes to:
While plastics itself liquify bare heating, the powdered material must be turned in the ceramic, first into a homogeneous mass. For this, a thermoplastic binder is mixed with the zirconium oxide. As a bound granulate’s can be injected at a temperature of 170 degrees Celsius in the form. Because the housing ring has some very big games, a challenge is the danger of large air pockets and the control of casting. With the completion of the casting, the so-called Greenfinchis created. Each is individually thoroughly investigated the nature of its surface and then processed further with first precise holes. […]
In the production of the Omega Speedmaster ceramic version of dark side of the Moon that specifically looks (source: Omega):
Learn more about the production steps at Omega (including the ceramic dial), there is in this beautiful PDF:ceramic production steps at Omega for the Speedmaster dark side of the Moon (source: Omega).
Apart at the beginning of the many effect hashed, there are also some nice moving pictures:
All in all is still greatly underrepresented ceramic compared to stainless steel watches housings. However, there are some fancy models that I want to introduce you here…