Skeletonised automatic movement with hours, minutes, date and variable-geometry rotor.
The introduction of the RM 005 automatic timepiece in 2004 was one of the first successes for the brand on a global scale.
Times change quickly however, and by 2006, market tastes were already turning to larger case sizes, which led to the creation of the RM 010, which measured 48 mm x 39.30 mm x 13.84 mm compared to the more discreet 37.8 mm x 45 mm x 11.45 mm dimensions of the RM 005. Mechanically, the gear train remained identical but with a higher level of skeletonisation for the baseplate and bridges.
There were also minor changes, such as the colour of the jewels used in certain areas and the watch’s water-resistance (the RM 005 is the only non-diving RM watch to be water-resistant to 100 metres; the RM 010 is water-resistant to 50 metres).
The RM 010 is the incarnation of what a non-tourbillon wristwatch should be according to Richard Mille’s vision.
The RM 010 thus featured a baseplate and bridges in grade 5 titanium, an alloy composed of 90% grade 5 titanium, 6% aluminium and 4% vanadium.
This same material is frequently used in the aerospace, aeronautics and automobile industries and is prized for its strength and resistance to corrosion.
Applying the same methodology as that used in racing car engine development, the baseplate was ‘ribbed’ to make it as light as possible, while retaining its strength and flatness (it is hard to imagine that almost 2 kilos of pressure are being held under control within the movement). The characteristics developed for these watches went on to become the pillars of the technical philosophy underpinning virtually all RM automatic movements.
The RM 010 also incorporated a variable-geometry rotor, which was created to optimise the rotor’s winding motion. This complication exemplified the brand’s characteristic attention to detail. This complex rotor, built up in several sections and composed of three different materials, allows the inertia of the rotor to be altered by either speeding up the winding process in the case of minimal arm and hand movements, or by slowing it down when high activity sports are being performed. As a result, this invention allows the movement’s winding mechanism to be optimised and tailored to the owner’s lifestyle.
New iterations of the same principle have since been incorporated into many RM watches.