Roger Dubuis has always had a strong drive to innovate, not only in a technical but also in an aesthetic sense. This means that they need to think outside the box in all different dimensions and keep their eyes open to new materials, but also new applications of existing materials. With the Excalibur Blacklight, they took the lab-grown sapphire crystals, commonly used in the watch industry as the ‘jewels’ or ‘rubies’ which are placed inside the movement as bearings for the gears and other parts that are prone to wear, and applied them in a completely different way.
The Excalibur-collection is already known for its heavily skeletonized calibers, and Roger Dubuis plays with this aspect by adding tubes made of lab-grown sapphire crystals in a contrasting color as a grid over, under and through the movement. This not only adds another layer to the already very three-dimensional design of the watch but also comes with quite an unexpected feature; when exposed to UV-light they will light up, creating a visual effect never seen before in a wristwatch.
Roger Dubuis is making three different versions of the Excalibur Blacklight, all powered by caliber RD820SQ. 28 pieces will feature a pink gold case, while the brand will make 88 pieces each of a version in white gold, as well as in titanium with a black DLC coating. All three feature a diamond set bezel, but also the outline of the micro-rotor are set with these precious gemstones. Roger Dubuis has been able to produce the sapphire crystal tubes into different colors, so even when they are not exposed to UV-light, they add an attractive element to the watch. While they don’t have a true function, they make an otherwise very serious watch a bit more playful. Despite its avant-garde design is the Excalibur Blacklight made with traditional craftsmanship, as also this model is awarded the coveted ‘Geneva Seal’.
source: hautetime.com BY MARTIN GREEN