Richard Mille has debuted its landmark new timepiece the RM 037 and the new automatic caliber CRMA1. Gearing up for SIHH 2012 in January, the new timepiece represents an original concept by the Richard Mille movement designers in Les Breuleux, Switzerland.
This automatic winding caliber created from skeletonized grade 5 titanium sports an oversize date at 12 o’clock and a function window at 4 o’ clock. Two subtly shaped pushers are located at 4 and 10 o’clock. The pusher at 4 o’clock allows one to select the winding (W), neutral (N) and hand setting (H) functions with a simple push. An aperture located at 4 o’clock shows the function selected. The second pusher, at 10 o’clock, controls date changes, useful when one is traveling or needs to correct the date for months with 29, 30 and 31 days.
The RM 037 is fitted with a new crown mechanism, patented by Richard Mille for its own movement. Traditionally, a crown is attached directly to the movement, which means the watchmaker will need to insert the stem at the point of assembly. A direct connection between the movement and crown can be the cause of damage to the movement, especially after a sharp knock to the crown. The engineers at Richard Mille found a solution to this problem by integrating the crown in the case of the RM 037. This eliminates the need for a stem, and the risk of losing the crown or breaking the stem in the movement after a knock is minimalized. The crown is available in polished grade 5 titanium, red gold or white gold with double seal O-ring and collar in Alcryn.
Forty-four different stamping operations are required for the three main components of the case (bezel, caseband and case back). The machine tooling process requires two days of adjustment for the bezel, two days for the caseband and two days for the case back. The empty case requires more than 255 tooling operations and more than five hours of glazing and polishing in the final stage. The complex shape of the case is obtained thanks to a five-axis machine. On each case, the “Richard Mille” engraving on the back and inside curve requires 45 hours. The tripartite case is water resistant to 50 meters, ensured by two Nitril O-ring seals. The case is assembled with 20 spline screws in grade 5 titanium and abrasion-resistant washers in steel 316L.
Many details form the signature of the RM 037: power reserve of 50 hours, a new rotor with variable geometry, a free sprung balance with variable inertia, and the extensive use of spline screws throughout the movement. Extreme technique, sophistication and hand-finishing in the great tradition of Swiss watchmaking … the new in-house caliber CRMA1 is an exceptional piece which exemplifies the innovative style that is Richard Mille.