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Case Coatings.


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I’ve noticed that some watch manufacturer’s use less familiar (to me) coatings on watch cases, particularly the Russians. Though I suspect other makers use them too.

Rekord uses Palladium plating which is supposed to be harder than gold plating.

Vostok uses Titanium nitride which is not unlike PVD, so I’ve read, and is harder than chrome plating.

I would guess that durability is related to the thickness of the coating as with more familiar processes?

Any one know what the benefits or otherwise these alternative coatings have?

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Hello Stan,

I think that with most platings, thickness is the issue, although some plating materials are harder than others, for example, 9 carat gold is harder than 18.

I think that palladium plate is more to do with nickel than chrome.

PVD is not really a plating, it's a process where the material almost becomes part of the surface and is applied under a vacuum using an electrical charge. It is very strong indeed and was originally used as a coating on drill bits and other engineering tools to increase durability - this gives a good idea how hard a PVD coating is.

Hope this helps and I'm happy to be corrected if my info is not sound.

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I think many manufacturers have used nickel palladium, which to all intents looks similar to chrome, but with a slightly differing sheen. I prefer it to chrome plate.

Poljot have used it a lot I think.

Stan, i think your Poljot is nickel palladium if I remember correctly.

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Hi Jot,

That's right, it's very pricey, that's why they mix it with nickel or chrome. It tends to have the same kind of sheen as " white gold ". It is also very hard wearing and scratch resistant in it's pure form.

I wish NiPd was used more than chrome plate - it's far more attractive IMO.

Take care.

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I guess we get what we pay for, as always (most of the time).

The Russians (and others) may use "alternative" case coatings but they seem to be comensurate with the price of the watch. Good value from the Russians normaly.

I've always liked stainless steel, solid gold or gold filled cases. But not all the watches I like have such high quality cases.

With any kind of plating or "coating" I supose it depends on the quality of materials and the thickness of it.

It's a shame there isn't a home "case re-plaiting kit" available. So many nice cases out there that need to be replaited at a reasonable cost. sad.gif

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I've seen watches with all sorts of plating over the years and the drawback is they all wear on the high points after a while.

Can't beat stainless steel watches IMO. Although a solid material like gold is fine on dress watches.

BTW Heuer watches used some sort of black plating on some of their models in the 70's and I haven't seen one that doesn't look awful now. sad.gif

Anyone know what the plating was?

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