Richard Mille RM 033 Extra Flat Automatic

An extra flat movement is something most subtle and elegant in the world of horology since the expertise of the watchmaker resides in achieving something almost invisible. The constraints of producing this model are made even more challenging given the limited space available.

In the case of the automatic extra flat wristwatch the RM 033, one of its characteristic lies in the placement of the RMXP1 caliber’s automatic micro rotor to the side rather than the center of the movement, thus saving precious millimeters in total height. As a result, this movement has a diameter of 33.00 mm while its thickness is only of 2.60 mm.

To provide perfect weight distribution for this decentral rotor to function optimally, it has been designed to wind bi-directionally and is manufactured from solid Platinum, allowing for efficient winding as well as compact dimensions of the extra flat skeletonized movement.

The caliber RMXP1, with 29 jewels and beating at 3Hz, has a free sprung balance with variable inertia. This type of balance wheel represents the ultimate in innovation. It guarantees greater reliability when subjected to shock and also during movement assembly and disassembly, hence better chronometric results over time. The regulator index is eliminated and a more accurate and repeatable adjustment is possible thanks to 4 small adjustable weights located directly on the balance.

For the creation of the RMXP1 caliber, the bottom plate bridges and balance cock are made of titanium. The manufacturing of these components in grade 5 titanium with Titalyt® treatment for the bottom plate and black PVD coating for the bridges allows the entire ultra thin assembly to be given great rigidity, as well as precise surface flatness which is essential for the perfect functioning of the gear train as well as stability of the movement. The baseplate and all titanium parts have been subjected to separate and extensive validation tests to insure optimal strength requirements. The round case design of the RM 033 measures 45.70 mm x a mere 6.30 mm in thickness. The curving case back has become the trademark of the entire Richard Mille collection. This tripartite case with a complete integration of the lugs into the case system is water resistant to 30 meters, ensured by two Nitril O-ring seals. It is assembled with 16 spline screws in grade 5 titanium and abrasion resistant washers in 316L stainless steel.

Many details form the signature of this simple and elegant watch, such as the free sprung balance with variable inertia, a power reserve of 42 hours, the extensive use of spline screws throughout the movement, the rigorous design and execution of the case, the ceramic crown sealed with double seal O-rings.

Technical details
Model: Richard Mille RM 033 Extra Flat Automatic
– Round case – available in titanium, 18k white gold or red gold.

Movement
– CALIBER RMXP1: skeletonized automatic winding movement with hours, minutes and off-center monoblock platinum rotor. Diameter: 45.70 mm x 6.30 mm.
– Power reserve: Circa 42 hours.
– Diameter of the movement: 33.00 mm
– Thickness: 2.60 mm
– Number of jewels: 29
– Barrel arbor – in 20AP steel
– Balance: Glucydur, 4 arms, inertia moment 5.75 mg.cm2, angle of lift 53º
– Frequency: 21,600 vph (3Hz)
– Balance spring: Nivaflex
– Shock protection: Incabloc 908.22.211.100 (transparent)

– Monoblock Micro rotor: Following on from the rotor with variable geometry that contributed to the success of Richard Mille’s automatic calibers, a new winding device is introduced in the RM 033. By using a platinum, decentrally positioned micro rotor, the barrel can be efficiently wound and an extra flat skeletonized movement can be achieved.

– Free sprung balance with variable inertia: This type of balance wheel represents the ultimate in innovation. It guarantees greater reliability when subjected to shock and also during movement assembly and disassembly. Hence better chronometric results over time. The regulator index is eliminated and a more accurate and repeatable adjustment is possible thanks to 4 adjustable small weights located directly on the balance.

– Bottom plate, Bridges and Balance cock made of titanium: The manufacturing of these components in grade 5 titanium – bottom plate with Titalyt® coating and bridges with PVD coating, allows the whole assembly to be given great rigidity, as well as precise surface flatness that is essential for the perfect functioning of the gear train. The skeletonized baseplate and the bridges were subjected to separate and extensive validation tests to insure optimal strength requirements.

– Spline screws in grade 5 titanium for the bridges: This permits better control of the torque applied to the screws during assembly. These screws are therefore unaffected by physical manipulation during assembly or disassembly and age well.

Case
It retains the same characteristics and attention to detail in case design with a vast number of stamping and machining operations required for this round case with a total height just a mere 6.30 mm. The design and execution of this watchcase typifies the complete conceptual approach to all parts of the movement, case and dial. As a result, everything has been constructed according to an extremely rigorous specification. For example, a casing ring is no longer used and the movement is mounted on chassis mounting rubbers (ISO SW) fixed by 4 titanium screws. The tripartite case is assembled with 16 spline screws in grade 5 titanium and abrasion resistant washers in 316L stainless steel and complemented by the additional integration of the lugs into the case’s torque screw system. The tripartite case is water resistant to 30 meters, ensured by two Nitril O-ring seals.

– Spline screws in grade 5 titanium for the case: This permits better control of the torque applied to the screws during assembly. These screws are therefore unaffected by physical manipulation during assembly or disassembly and age well.

– Interior flanges: In carbon fiber, with hour index points filled with approved luminous material. Minute flange in black carbon fiber.

Dial
– In sapphire (thickness: 0.30 mm) with anti-glare treatment (2 sides).

Crystal
– Bezel side: in sapphire (1800 Vickers) with anti-glare treatment (2 sides).
– Thickness: 1.00 mm
– Case back: in sapphire with anti-glare treatment (2 sides)
– Thickness: at the center 1.00 mm and at outer edges 1.53 mm

Crown
– In ceramic, with double seal O-ring and detailing in titanium, 18k red or white gold.

Finishing

Movement
– Bottom plate in hand-ground grade 5 titanium, wet sandblasted, Titalyt® treated
– Bridges wet sandblasted, top surface polished by hand, grade 5 titanium PVD treated
– Locking sections hand polished
– Burnished pivots
– Diamond polished sinks on the bridge side
– Pinions with undercuts
– Sandblasted and rhodium-plating, beveled wheels (before cutting the teeth)

Gear wheels
– Concave chamfering with a diamond tool
– Circular-smoothed faces
– Polished angles
– Rhodium-plating (before cutting the teeth)
– Minimum manual correction to the wheels undertaken in order to preserve geometry and performance

Steel parts
– microblasted and hand-drawn surfaces
– sapphire blasted surfaces
– anglage and polishing by hand

Profile turning
– lapped and polished ends
– burnished pivots

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