X41(November 2019): where are we?

Wondering what we’ve been up to with your X41 since you ordered in November 2019? Here’s a little news bulletin that’s certain to answer at least some of your questions.

The machining of the watches is already underway

Before assembling all of the parts of a movement, first you have to machine them. This is done through a process called milling (for the bridges and plates). It starts out as a small, square brass plate. Then, cutters and drill bits remove sections of the material in order to sculpt the final piece.

Discover how the watches are machined in the first 65 seconds of this video:

What’s the purpose of the plates and bridges?

The plate (1) is the base of the movement, as all of the other parts are placed on top of it. There’s one plate per movement. 450 plates will be produced for the X41s ordered in November.

The bridges (2):

  • hold the parts placed on the plate in place (sandwiched)
  • house the parts of a complication (Grande Date bridge)

There are 5 bridges per movement and, as with the plates, they are made from brass, decorated and colored (metal, blue or black). 2,250 bridges will be produced for this edition.

Plates and bridges in this exploded-view drawing of the X41 movement:

Next after machining: coloring

Once the bridges and plates have been machined, next comes the coloring phase. There are 2 types of coloring:

  • electroplating deposits a very fine coat of metal on a part through electrolysis (in a bath):
    • metal movement: nickel coating
    • black movement: NAC coating (platinoid alloy)
  • the CVD (Chemical vapor deposition) treatment is applied in an airtight oven in a controlled atmosphere for blue movements. This is a method of vacuum deposition for thin films. Starting from precursor gases, the substrate is exposed to one or more precursors in a gaseous state, which then react with and/or break down on the surface of the substrate, leading to the desired deposition.

Next steps

There are many different steps to come. In fact, Fine Watchmaking requires a great degree of meticulousness and precision; especially the control phases:

  • Receipt of components followed by dimensional checks.
  • Decoration and coloring of the brass (sandblasting, bead-blasting, polishing, damaskeening/Geneva stripes, diamond polishing, and chamfering).
  • Decoration and coloring of the cogs, weights and bearings.
  • Assembly T0: parts which will no longer be removable (cogwheel mounted on an axle, jewel bearing set into the plate, etc…)
  • Assembly T1: parts which are removable, assembly of the movement
  • T2: packaging.
  • Final checks

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  1. Josh Simons says:

    Your brand and aesthetic seems so forward looking and enlightened — it’s very impressive.

    Why, then, do you use leather straps? For an increasing number of people “leather” does not mean “luxury”, it means “dead animal”. If you are fully throwing off the yoke of Swiss watchmaking conventions, please reconsider this choice for future projects.

    • Valentine
      Valentine says:

      Hi Josh,
      Actually we are on that path. Laure, our product manager, is always looking for new materials that are more eco-friendly and animal-friendly. For example, we will soon release the rubber bracelet 👌🐮

  2. Owen says:

    I particularly like the titanium x41 with what I think is your signature blue bridges. Will you offer a blue strap to compliment in the summer 21 offer?

    • Maurizio
      Maurizio says:

      We zullen de voorbestellingen deze zomer lanceren.
      Als u op de wachtlijst staat, sturen wij u een e-mail om u op de hoogte te brengen van de exacte datum 😉

      Ik wens u een fijne dag!

    • Maurizio
      Maurizio says:

      Hi Matthew,

      The X41 starts at around 5’390 CHF. If you sign up to the waiting list, you will be able to see the collection. We are planning to have pre-orders this summer.
      If you are new to the community, feel free to give us a call and we would be glad to explain to you how the pre-orders work, our different projects, and more 🙂

  3. Mark says:

    Fascinating stuff I love the way watch making tech has gone totally re interested big time and currently own around 40 time pieces, probably too many as they are impossible to keep working. So far liked this unique transparency with this involvement.

    • Maurizio
      Maurizio says:

      Good morning Mark,

      Thank you for your comment. I am glad to see that you appreciate the way we do things here at CODE41.
      A bit different from the traditional watchmaking style though we really think that transparency and community involvement is the way to go.
      If you are thinking of making your 41st watch an X41 (quite an appropriate position), do not forget to sign up to the waiting list 🙂

      Wishing you a nice day,

    • Maurizio
      Maurizio says:

      Merci pour votre message !
      Je me suis permis de vous inscrire sur la liste d’attente de ce projet.
      Ainsi, vous serez le premier à être informé de toute disponibilité et prix futurs.
      Je vous souhaite une bonne journée 🙂

  4. Klaus Müller says:

    Bonjour Sabrine,
    ich habe vor 2 Wochen meine X41 erhalten – eine wunderschöne Creation. Leicht, elegant, einfach ein Fest für alle Sinne. Vielen Dank euch allen für dieses Werk. Macht weiter so.
    Ich freue mich schon auf meine NB24.
    Dr. Klaus Müller