However, copper does have certain properties and characteristics that make it challenging for watchmakers to use it. For example, oxidation and discoloration. Even exposing the metal to the elements such as salty ocean water and the sun’s ultraviolet rays can cause the copper in the metal to react. In addition, sweat can also cause the copper in the metal to react.
Enter Rolex’s Everose® gold, an alloy that is made of gold, copper and a touch of platinum. (ratios are kept secret though). Why platinum? It acts as a bonding agent and protects the alloy from discoloration. It also provides that luster that people have come to expect from any gold Rolex.
Why did Omega use Sedna as the name for its alloy? It happens to be, and perhaps not so coincidentally, that Sedna is not only the name of a reddish planetoid in the outskirts of our solar system, but Sedna is also an Inuktitut name for an Inuit mythological goddess of the sea and marine animals also known as “mother of the sea” or “mistress of the sea”. It gives them the opportunity to pair their proprietary Sedna alloy with not only the first Sedna watch Omega ever made, the Omega Constellation, that often had an image of a space observatory on the case back. Two of their most famous watch collections. These are, of course, the Omega Speedmaster made famous because of the Moonwatch used in many NASA missions including the original moon landing in 1969. The other is the Omega Seamaster, a favorite with professional divers. So the name Sedna was most likely very carefully chosen by their branding department. Sedna for space would be a Sedna gold Omega Speedmaster and Sedna for the sea would be a Sedna gold Omega Seamaster.
This top-shelf German watchmaker has a proprietary gold of their own called Honey Gold which has a unique hue that is only slightly rosy. Like Rolex, they keep their formula a well-kept secret but what we do know about it is that it is significantly harder than platinum and has been around since 2010. Lange claims that the processes to create and finish a watch made with this precious alloy is very difficult. Therefore, they only use Honey Gold on their most exclusive models.
Hublot is all about fusion and creating new materials so it should come as no surprise that they have developed some pretty high-tech gold as well. In 2011, and after two years of R&D in conjunction with a Swiss research institution and university called EPFL (École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne), the gold alloy that was produced was so high-tech that they call it Magic Gold. What’s so magic about it?
This bronze-colored hue of gold is being hailed as the first and only 18kt gold alloy that is scratch-proof, not scratch-resistant, scratch-proof meaning that both the watch material and its finish are impervious to nicks and dings, virtually indestructible.
This has been achieved in Hublot’s research laboratories by fusing Gold (Au) with Boron Carbide (B4C). It is in fact so hard a material that only diamond-tipped tools, wire-cutting, or ultrasonic and laser machining can be used to shape them.
These tubes are then sent to a 3rd party lab to be certified that they meet all the requirements of an 18Kt gold alloy. This process is so time-consuming and tedious that only 300-350 watches can be produced each year in Magic Gold.
The standard 18Kt rose gold (5N) is achieved by combining gold with 20.5% copper. However, to get that more fiery tone of rose gold that you will only find in Hublot’s King Gold, you will have to add a higher percentage of copper. Hublot also makes use of platinum in the mix which helps to keep the luster and longevity of the color.
Redder than the standard 18Kt rose gold (5N), Panerai’s proprietary rose gold alloy is known as Goldtech. It has a beautiful sunset hue by combining gold with more copper than your standard rose gold.
It’s more of an exclusive metal and isn’t found on many of their watches but the models that use it are absolutely stunning. Use the button below to browse watches by Panerai.