The latest chapter of Richard Mille’s collaboration with Rafael Nadal-one of the most successful figures in the history of watchmaking-takes the tourbillon movement to a new level, especially in terms of shock resistance.
To pay tribute to Rafa’s motherland, the new Richard Mille RM 27-03 Rafael Nadal’s eye-catching red and yellow hues are achieved by impregnating a fine layer of silica that is only 45 microns thick with a colored resin according to a proprietary process developed in Switzerland. Before heating to 120 °C, the filaments are layered.
After the composite material is made, several hours of milling and finishing operations are required to produce the housing and components. The quartz fiber used in this case is water resistant to 50 meters, has a very favorable strength/weight ratio, and is anti-allergic and highly resistant to ultraviolet rays. Its dimensions are 47.77 mm x 40.30 mm x 12.75 mm.
But the main innovation of this watch is that its tourbillon movement can withstand shocks of up to 10,000 grams. Due to years of research and development and hours of testing, especially the “Pendulum Impact Test”, which simulates the linear acceleration due to sudden movement or impact on the wearer, this new threshold has been reached. This extraordinary resistance is achieved by assembling an ultra-light tourbillon movement on a carbon TPT hollow one-piece base plate-the strap has been cancelled-the accuracy is the closest to the micrometer, and the reduced number of components in this configuration allows for additional lightening Weight, reduce the weight of the entire watch.
The surface treatment of the new RM 27-03 movement is impressive. The hand-polished tapered angle and satin surface set off the sparkle of fine micro-sandblasting elements. The sharp, streamlined curve, large wheel and mechanical winding tourbillon that beats at 3 Hz are all reminiscent of the front of a bull. This is a symbol of Spain and a symbol of Nadal’s choice.
The Quartz TPT crown is used for winding and time adjustment. It is in the shape of a tennis ball and brings the final touch to the watch. Its torque limiting safety system prevents accidental over-winding, which could damage the winding stem or apply excessive pressure on the barrel. The fast-winding barrel provides a constant flow of energy for a full 70 hours of running time.
The new elastic belt, called “comfort” belt, provides an alternative to Velcro belts and is lighter. It should be pointed out that the use of high-tech materials to develop and carry out such technologically advanced projects is extremely challenging and requires cutting-edge machinery and professional operators.
Large companies have spent years developing and investing a lot of money to use similar materials in the production of cars, airplanes or yachts. Imagine applying the same craftsmanship and technology to the production of 50 limited edition watch. It is easy to understand that a huge investment in a relatively small project has an inevitable impact on the final price of the product. But the result is that the exclusivity of the product comes not only from the brand value, but also from the inherent technical value.