The Heat Is On
Avant-garde watch company Roger Dubuis is known for its thrill-seeking approach to watchmaking and the Excalibur Quatuor is a fine example of that. This outrageously complex timepiece, however, has already been on the market since 2013. What’s new about it is the case material, which has never before appeared in the luxury watch industry: cobalt chrome. An alloy that is extremely strong, hard and corrosion-resistant, it looks deceptively nondescript.
This special alloy is made by a unique process called MicroMelt, where the metal is first melted down and then put through a high-pressure jet of inert gas. This causes it to become atomised, breaking down into fine powder form. The powdered metal then goes through a sieve, gets poured into canisters, and put through high temperature and pressure to achieve optimal material density. Finally, the resulting raw material is machined into watch cases. The final product appears not too different from common case materials like white gold or platinum or even stainless steel, but this cobalt-chromium alloy offers supreme strength and hardness.