At the recent SIAR (Salón Internacional Alta Relojería) in Mexico City, one particular Richard Mille caught our eye. Its the Richard Mille RM 63-02 World Timer. Perhaps its because we were fresh from our research on World Time watches which we did to write the Andersen Genève Tempus Terrae article. Perhaps, from the many world time watches in the Cottier tradition, most strike us overly complex dials and operations, and the new RM 63-02 sets out to be make operations simple. No fuddling with the crowns, just turn the bezel. But we get ahead of ourselves.
As is typical in Richard Mille designs, the dial is almost non-existant. Hour markers are engraved on a sapphire crystal dial, which allows a clear view into the supporting structures of the bridges and the movement. Two rotating rings are at the edge of the dial. The outer one shows the cities, and the separate inner ring to indicate the local time is all of the dial.
The bezel which rotates and moves the outer ring to set the local time is the key to the simplified operations. It is mounted on ball bearings for smooth operations.
When the name of the wearer’s current city is positioned at 12 o’clock, the RM 63-02 automatically recognizes this as the local time. Time in 23 other cities around the world can also be immediately read on the graduated 24-hour flange. This blue and white disk distinguishes nighttime and daytime hours, automatically incorporating the correction hour by hour.
Direct and much more intuitive than using a second crown typical of the Cottier designs which is used in Patek Philippe, Andersen Genève Tempus Terrae and others. The bidirectional bezel interacts directly with the heart of the movement, and controls the turning of the outer ring. The inner ring is connected to the world time mechanism.
The movement is a new automatic movement: the CRMA3, assembled around an electroplasma-treated grade-5 titanium plate—the same material used for the majority of its bridges. The sculptural upper bridge is made from black-rhodium-plated, polished and circular-grained german silver, with round openings that provide glimpses of the going-train and World Timer mechanism in action.
The movement is enhanced by the hand finished in traditional anglage, drawn out edges, circular-graining and micro blasted bridges.
Case is in Grade 5 Titanium and is vertically satin brushed with polished edges.