Amazing combination of dual balance wheel and RO all-ceramic.
From classic self-winding watches to Grande Complications watches, there are many types of Royal Oak series watches, among which the most sought after watches have appeared. In addition to the ultra-thin Jumbo watch, the all-ceramic Royal Oak and the hollow double balance wheel are obviously very attractive in terms of attractiveness. So, what if you want to combine these two concepts? You will end up with an amazing Audemars Piguet, the new Royal Oak Double Balance Hollow 41 mm black ceramic that we are showing you today.
This is the first time the Royal Oak Double Balance Skeleton Watch is equipped with a ceramic case and bracelet. Prior to this, Tourbillon Extra-Thin, Perpetual Calendar (black ceramic, white ceramic and black ceramic with skeleton movement) and finally Tourbillon Chronograph Openworked all retained the full ceramic (case and bracelet) attire. Although ceramic is a common material on Royal Oak offshore watches, its use in classic Royal Oak watches is not common, especially because the case and bracelet are made of this material-this is by no means A simple task.
On the other hand, we have a double balance hollowed out concept, which is a very fascinating mechanical innovation introduced in the Royal Oak series in 2016. An alternative to the Royal Oak skeleton automatic winding, it has evolved into a completely skeletonized version of the 3120 movement. The new double balance concept is a watch designed for haute horlogerie lovers, whether it is the execution of its movement and decoration , Or its focus on timing. This impressive movement, combined with a complex all-ceramic case and bracelet, has become one of the most eye-catching Royal Oak models in the current series.
Classic Royal Oak style, all ceramic
The watch itself retains most of the elements of the previous Royal Oak Double Balance Skeleton watch. What we see today is mainly the evolution of materials and colors. Therefore, the diameter of the case is still 41 mm, and it has the iconic octagonal bezel with eight gold screws on the top. It has a relatively thin shape of 9.7 mm, a hexagonal twist-lock crown, and alternating brushed surfaces and polished decorations-these features have been retained despite the new materials. The main update involves the use of black ceramic for the case, bezel, crown and bracelet, which is a lightweight and super wear-resistant material. The bottom cover is made of titanium.
As we have explained many times, using ceramics for the Royal Oak is not a simple task. In order to maintain the exact same shape and finish as the stainless steel or pure gold watches, the Royal Oak ceramic watch requires a lot of time to process and hand-finish the parts-the bracelet alone requires 30 hours of finishing, which is longer than the steel version Five times. But obviously, the results are amazing. As you can see in the photo, the black ceramic material is also very interesting, depending on the light conditions, reflecting or absorbing ambient light.
Some evolutions on the dial side are also obvious. While retaining the movement, its decoration and the visible dual balance wheel module, the inner flange with the minute track is now treated in black to match the case. The hands and applied hour markers are still made of 18k pink gold with some luminous materials. The complexity of this Royal Oak double balance skeleton movement is not hidden in the display of this classic three-hand watch. There is no doubt that the protagonist of this show is a complex adjustment mechanism, highlighted between 6 o’clock and 9 o’clock, with golden bridges and balance wheels, in sharp contrast with the dark gray movement-just as you can see Seen, by hand, has sharp inner corners and hand-polished chamfers (and other decorations).
Double balance wheel concept
The principle of the double balance wheel, as we explained in this in-depth video, with Audemars Piguet CEO François-Henry Bennahmias, is all about timing performance. Compared with the traditional single balance movement, the advantages of installing this double balance device on the classic 3120 movement can be measured. The idea is to use the advantages of the two hairsprings, rather than the problems that follow. Double springs can improve accuracy. However, this structure (when you have two hairsprings on the same side of a balance wheel) is difficult to adjust and creates additional friction on the balance wheel shaft. Taking two springs made of the same alloy and separating them by 180° can completely eliminate this situation, which is conducive to the overall timekeeping performance of the watch.
In addition, Audemars Piguet’s solution is not a double balance spring but a double balance wheel, which means that the structure of the balance lever has a balance wheel and a balance spring on each side, allowing the watch to be adjusted from each side of the movement. Since the two variable inertia balance wheels face each other and the weight is perfectly distributed around the balance lever, the watchmaker can fine-tune the watch in all positions. In addition, since the weight on both sides of the balance bar is equal, this means that friction is reduced and the distribution is better.
Except for the hollow process and the double balance wheel structure, the rest of the movement is close to the classic Calibre 3120, which has been the core automatic movement of the brand for many years. The Calibre 3132 you see here runs at 3Hz and has a power reserve of 45 hours-shorter than the 3120, because the dual balance wheel consumes more energy. The back cover adopts traditional haute horology technology and a skeletonized 22k gold pendulum to show exquisite decoration.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak double balance wheel hollow 41 mm ceramic is another embodiment of the brand’s exquisite craftsmanship. The combination of tradition and innovation, the real AP style. Although the design and materials are technical, bold and ultra-modern, from the perspective of horology, this movement is an ode to traditional craftsmanship and timekeeping. This contrast has resulted in an amazing and eye-catching watch made with impressive expertise. The use of ceramics is once again very suitable for the Royal Oak concept, which makes the watch highly attractive.
Technical Specifications-Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Double Balance Wheel Hollow 41 mm
Case: 41 mm diameter x 9.7 mm high-black ceramic case, brushed and polished-octagonal ceramic bezel with 8 gold screws-sapphire crystal front and back cover-titanium back cover-ceramic screw locking watch Crown-50 meters water resistance
Dial: Openwork stone gray dial-rose gold applied hour markers-Royal Oak hands with luminous coating
Movement: Calibre 3132, internal-skeletonized automatic winding, balance wheel structure-26.59 mm x 5.57 mm-38 jewels-245 components-45 hours power reserve-21,600 vibrations per hour-hours, minutes, seconds
Bracelet: Black ceramic bracelet, brushed and polished surface-Titanium folding clasp