Royal Oak Chronograph 41mm Brushed Gold

Two brushed gold chronographs with the latest facelift and latest-generation movement join the Royal Oak’s 50th anniversary celebration.

Far from being a radical overhaul to celebrate its 50th anniversary, the Royal Oak Self-Winding Chronograph and Self-Winding Chronograph’s design evolution is a subtle continuation of Gerald Genta’s epic Spirit of the 1972 Royal Oak. The domineering octagonal bezel with eight exposed hexagonal screws, the tonneau-shaped case, the integrated bracelet and the string guilloche dial are all so sacrosanct, so deeply embedded in the identity of the Royal Oak that any normal No one would think of replacing it. Two 41mm self-winding chronographs with attractive brushed gold cases and Audemars Piguet for the 50th anniversary celebrations of the latest generation of integrated flyback chronograph calibre 4401. From May 2022 to July 2022, the 41mm frosted gold Royal Oak Chronograph will be available exclusively in Japan; in August 2022, they will be available worldwide.

The cases of these 41mm Royal Oak Self-Winding Chronographs are available in 18k white or yellow gold with a spectacular brushed finish. Frosted gold, also known as the Florentine finish, was introduced to The Associated Press by Italian jewelry designer Carolina Bucci. Commissioned by the Associated Press, Bucci created a special piece to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Royal Oak Women’s Watch, a watch recreated by Jacqueline Dimier in 1976, where Bucci placed her hammer on the watch surface and cause a stir. Using diamond-encrusted tools, artisans finely tap the case and bracelet to create tiny indentations that sparkle like diamond dust. However, the seductive texture that looked like it was covered in frost soon found its way into larger models of the 2017 Royal Oak Frosted Gold 41mm, followed by bolder versions such as this wild purple RO Chronograph .

One of the key design evolutions of the Royal Oak Time Date and Chronograph is the enlarged and polished bevel or chamfer, which can be appreciated on the beveled bezel on the dial and caseback. Given the grainy matte finish of these models, it contrasts with the bright polished bevels. Not only is the contrast evident, the chamfers also visually refine and reduce the size, making the 12.4mm thick case even slimmer. By the way, the sapphire caseback has also been revised to improve the fit with the case, making it more comfortable to wear on the wrist.

Similar to the non-brushed 41mm self-winding chronograph introduced for the Royal Oak’s 50th anniversary, the crown and pushers are screw-locked and are water-resistant to 50 meters. Another upgrade to the collection is a more pronounced taper for the integrated bracelet. The first link of the gold hammered bracelet where the case and bracelet meet is now trapezoidal when viewed from the side, with a noticeable reduction in thickness before the links begin to thin. The links are also thinner and lighter for more comfort.

panda dial
While these changes are invisible to most of us at first glance, eagle-eyed RO fans will notice that the hour markers and hands are now coordinated across the Royal Oak Self-Winding Time and Date and Chronograph models. If you compare them to the white 2021 frosted gold self-winding chronograph, you start to notice subtle differences. A key design feature of the new model is the Audemars Piguet signature in 24k gold, replacing the applied AP monograph and printed text of the earlier series. The new, more elegant signature comes from a chemical process called electrochemical growth, a feature used on code 11.59 and applied to the dial by hand. Naturally, the iconic Grande Tapisserie guilloché motif is used to adorn the dial and is picked in shades that match the yellow or white gold cases. Also of note is the date wheel that matches the color of the dial.

The dials of these brushed gold models differ slightly from other 41mm self-winding chronographs due to the contrasting panda-style chronograph. Both the platinum and gold models have black counters, and they all have snail-printed interiors. The applied gold hour markers and Royal Oak hands are treated with a luminous coating.

Caliber 4401
Originally appearing in the Code 11.59 collection in 2019, Caliber 4401 is AP’s in-house automatic integrated flyback chronograph movement. Unlike standard chronographs, flyback allows you to stop, reset and start the chronograph with one simple movement. This article reviews the movement in detail, equipped with a column wheel and vertical clutch, and offers a strong power reserve of 70 hours. The decoration can be seen from the sapphire caseback, and while the solid gold rotor does not commemorate the “50 Years” logo, it is openworked to reveal Côtes de Genève, circular graining and circular satin and polished chamfers.

Technical Specifications – Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Automatic Chronograph 41mm Brushed Gold
Case: Diameter 41mm x H12.4mm – 18k white or yellow brushed gold – Polished bevels and decorations – Turnlock crown and pushers – Anti-reflective sapphire crystal dial Front and case back – 50m water resistance
Dial: Grey or yellow dial to match case material – Grande Tapisserie pattern – applied yellow or white gold hour-markers and Royal Oak hands with luminous coating – Tonal date window at 4 o’clock – Black chronograph with Snailed – 24k Gold Hand Appliquéd Audemars Piguet Signature
Movement: Caliber 4401 – Automatic Internal Integrated Flyback Chronograph with Column Wheel and Vertical Clutch – 4Hz/28,800vph – 381 Parts – 40 Jewels – 70 Hours Power Reserve – Hours, Minutes, Small Seconds, 30 minute and 12 hour chronograph counter and date
Bracelet: Integral 18k White or Yellow Brushed Gold – AP Foldover Clasp
Reference: 26240BC.GG.1324BC.01 Platinum
26240BA.GG.1324BA.01 Gold

Richard Mille RM 88 Automatic Tourbillon Smiley: The Symbolism of the Smiley

Everyone desires to connect with others and spread happiness. With that in mind, what could be more symbolic than a smiley face? More than 50 years ago, a yellow circle with two oval eyes and a wide smiling mouth established itself as a collective symbol of positivity and pop culture. Today, our society cannot be imagined without the smiling face painted by Franklin Loufrani: it is a symbol of interaction.

After three years of research and development by the Richard Mille team, the new RM 88 Automatic Tourbillon Smiley combines the iconic smiling face with a series of miniature sculptures. The result is a high-tech and creative timepiece. Limited to 50 pieces, this emotional watch is designed for watchmaking lovers who just want to spread the joy.

Smile: a universal language
Painted 50 years ago by Franklin Loufrani and first appeared on the pages of French newspaper France Soir in 1972, it remains a symbol of happiness today. The smiley face symbol is universal: a smile, recognizable anywhere in the world. One of the earliest recorded smiles in history dates back to 2400 BC and appears on a statue of a governor in Mesopotamia (now Western Asia). The meaning and image of a smile has changed significantly over the centuries and civilizations. For example, the smile on the Egyptian pharaoh sculpture is only faintly noticeable. It was a testament to restraint and self-control—values ​​that were considered particularly esteemed at the time.

Meanwhile, the emotional smile on the statue symbolizes happiness, prosperity and joy. By contrast, the smile appears very discreet in Leonardo da Vinci’s famous Renaissance portrait, the Mona Lisa. At that time, expressing one’s emotions was still considered inappropriate and indecent. Smiling was finally the norm in the work of the French court painter Elisabeth Vigée Le Brun during the Age of Enlightenment. In her work, the painter shows a blunt and broad smile.

As a true source of happiness, our smiles today can have many meanings. It is a gesture of joy or sincerity; it can be innocent or disarmed. This symbolism comes in the form of the RM 88 Automatic Tourbillon Smiley.

Artist Olivier Kuhn and his miniature sculptures
Engraver Olivier Kuhn is responsible for the playful design elements of the RM 88. Initially trained in custom motorcycles, Kuhn combines haute horlogerie, 3D design and jewelry making. He has been creating miniatures for eight years, as well as gold miniature sculptures in RM 88 – each weighing less than a gram.

In addition, Kuhn was involved in the creation of the miniature sculptures, from 3D design and fabrication to final installation into the watch, ensuring that the watch also reflects Kuhn’s artistic style. The manufacturing process of the sculpture combines time-honored watchmaking skills with modern technology. First, use a 3D printer to print resin. Then, before it is melted and replaced with gold, plaster is applied around it. Finally, the gold is shaped with special watchmaking tweezers.

The process enables refinement even in the smallest details. However, Kuhn’s biggest challenge, and the most complex part, was the combination of clouds and rainbows. This is because different fibers have to be connected, each requiring 25 hours of working time.

RM 88 Automatic Tourbillon Smiley case
The bezel and caseback are made of white ATZ ceramic, known for its high scratch resistance, while the case ring is made of red gold, harmoniously matched. Meanwhile, the domed bezel and satin finish are achieved through a delicate process using diamond tools. The recurring smiley face on the striking crown head adds another colourful, playful accent.

A surreal scene on the dial, seemingly straightforward from some sort of emoji world, bursts out of a colorful rainbow and ends in a cloud. Above this is a small seconds hand with a lightning bolt and a sun at its tip. This changes weather conditions every minute. Additionally, the wearer can admire blooming flowers, dark green cacti, golden sun and cheerful pink flamingos.

The three-dimensional effect of the artwork is punctuated by a cocktail with an umbrella. Meanwhile, the smiley face itself is mounted on a decorative bridge, creating the impression of floating. The movement bridge with its smiley face takes the form and color of the rainbow, creating the perfect backdrop for the entire spectacle. When the crown is pulled out, the function indicator at 3 o’clock shows the position of the winding (W) and hand setting (H). fake watch

openwork movement
Another major challenge was to leave enough space to best highlight the scenery without taking away the concept of the performance from the protagonist. With this in mind, the skeleton tourbillon movement CRMT7 was developed. The automatic movement with hours, minutes and functions displays at 4 Hz and has a power reserve of 50 hours.

The RM 88 is equipped with two base plates: one for the movement and one for decorative objects. This creates three-dimensional space, but at the same time remains elastic. The rotor, made of 3N gold, with the OneWay winding system and ceramic ball bearings, still offers an extraordinary view of the dial through the caseback.

The RM 88 Automatic Tourbillon Smiley is a dynamic piece that will not only bring a smile to the wearer, but also those who see it.

Brand Richard Mille replica
Model RM 88 Automatic Tourbillon Smiley
Reference RM 88
Case material ATZ white ceramic and red gold
Aspect 48,15mm x 39,74mm x 13,30mm
Water resistance 5 bar (~50 m)
Dial 3D dial with colorful elements
Strap/Bracelet Yellow Velcro Strap
Mobile movement CRMT7
Movement type automatic
Power reserve about 50 hours (± 10%)
Frequency 28,800 times/hour (4 Hz)
Function Hours, minutes, function indicator