Tag: Audemars Piguet Can Do Camouflage Ceramic Now – And I Hate How Much I Love It

Audemars Piguet Can Do Camouflage Ceramic Now – And I Hate How Much I Love It

One of the most interesting things I saw in Milan was a prototype of the AP Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph Tourbillon in a camouflage ceramic case. If you didn’t already think that AP was leading the cutting edge of ceramic technology in watchmaking, I don’t think you could argue otherwise now. Technologically, it’s advanced. Aesthetically, it’s wild. Sure, I wear camo occasionally. I grew up in the Midwest and spent much time in rural areas where camo is practical for hunting. But the camo I think of is not this kind of camo. This is pure, intense, loud streetwear camo. And I love it.
By my understanding, Audemars Piguet has figured out how to do basically any camouflage design in ceramic in a new Spark Plasma Sintering (SPS) technology process. In the process, the team carefully placed different colored ceramic powders in a circular graphite mold, which is sintered using a powerful electric current conducted through the graphite. The temperature rises rapidly while pressure is placed on either side of the mold, creating a ceramic disc. While the patterns are slightly different each time, they look similar at a glance enough to be serially produced. But AP can also easily change the pattern or design for endless potential custom unique pieces and patterns. They told me the brand carefully chose designs and colors in testing so the pattern showed up best. Sometimes, an idea works great on the created ceramic puck, but once you carve out the case shape, it’s hard to see. The discs are machined into the shape, pre-polished, and pre-satin-brushed before being hand-finished to get the satin finishing and polished chamfers.
I was standing there with the inimitable fellow workwear/military clothing lover Kristian Haagen when we were shown this watch, and I think you could have seen both our eyes light up. I immediately had a ton of questions. “Can you do other colors?” They pulled out a tray, including a UV reactive puck, where certain parts of the pattern glowed. “Other patterns? Could you do a duck camo on one and a tiger cam on another?” Sure, they told me, no problem. The implications are also wild when you realize that if AP is the only one doing this, it essentially could guarantee, at least for a time, that these printed watches are never replicated or faked on the secondary market. Finally, the brand teased in the press release that the technique can be done in multi-color gold, which will be shown in prototype form in the coming months. Gold camo? Bring it on https://www.perfectwrist.co.