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Citizen: The 50th anniversary of The Titanium watch

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March 2020


Citizen: The 50th anniversary of The Titanium watch

Citizen embarked on the research and development of titanium as a material for watches in the 1960s. In 1970, the brand unveiled the world’s first titanium watch: the X-8 Chronometer.

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itizen embarked on the research and development of titanium as a material for watches in the 1960s. In 1970, the brand unveiled the world’s first titanium watch: the X-8 Chronometer.

It is because CITIZEN believes in titanium's potential that it spent half a century on refining the technology. Lightweight. Scratch resistant. Gentle on the skin. Corrosion resistant. CITIZEN Super TitaniumTM
It is because CITIZEN believes in titanium’s potential that it spent half a century on refining the technology. Lightweight. Scratch resistant. Gentle on the skin. Corrosion resistant. CITIZEN Super TitaniumTM

Back in the 1960s, the exteriors of most watches were brass with metal plating. Since the plating often peeled off and the watches were rust-prone, the idea of a watch being something that lasted a lifetime was little more than a fantasy.

Europa Star 1986/1987
Europa Star 1986/1987
Europa Star 1987
Europa Star 1987

Processing was not the only challenge. Titanium also lacks any natural lustre and scratches very easily. Citizen’s research into surface treatment focused on improving titanium’s appearance and boosting its hardness. These efforts produced a series of new technologies including glass multilayer coating, but the biggest breakthrough was the invention of Duratect, Citizen’s proprietary surface-hardening technology. Thanks to Duratect, Citizen became able not only to create beautifully finished scratch-resistant polished surfaces, but also to produce titanium watches in an unprecedented range of colours.

In 1970, Citizen unveiled the world’s first titanium watch: the X-8 Chronometer. Stronger. More elegant. More comfortable.

Europa Star 1994
Europa Star 1994
Click on the image to enlarge / PDF
Click on the image to enlarge / PDF
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