Titanium has been around for almost two centuries but it wasn’t until the last few decades that methods to extract it in sizeable amounts were properly developed, opening up a whole new world for the engineering industry. It has existed mostly in labs and as an aerospace material, but its unique properties have also made it a prized asset in the horological world.
There are many metals in which manufacturers can choose to craft their cases with, but titanium watches excel in terms of strength, toughness and weight. The unique metal has five times the strength of ordinary steel and is only half the weight. Another reason that makes it so lauded in watchmaking is the fact that it’s corrosion resistant. It’s impervious to all acids (except nitric acid — not that you’ll be anywhere close to some), and is hypoallergenic, making it suitable for many people with sensitive skin.
Its remarkable qualities could only be overshadowed by its price. Welding, forging and casting the metal is known to be extremely tricky, and only a select few artisans can manage the intricate workmanship that’s required for titanium watches. However if you can afford it, bragging rights include the fact that your watch is made of the same material as fighter jets.
Here are seven titanium watches to get you started on your collection.