Meteorite Dials?
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  1. #1
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    Meteorite Dials?

    A few questions for you Muonionalusta meteorite mavens:

    Does a meteorite dial have any effect on the magnetic properties of a watch? Being composed mainly of iron and nickel there must be some consideration, I would think. Could it act like the soft iron anti-magnetic shielding used in some watches? Or could it be prone to magnetization because after all, it is iron?
    Will it corrode? Raw iron can literally turn red overnight in the right conditions.

    Inquiring/simple minds need to know.
    The great Confucius said that he would rather be a profound political economist than chief of police.

  2. #2
    Member Slm643's Avatar
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    Good question! I've been thinking getting a watch with one...

    Sent from my K92 using Tapatalk

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    Member JacobC's Avatar
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    All I know is that these dials are treated and "stabilized" to prevent decay.

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    Member Nokie's Avatar
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    I can't decide if I like them or not.

    Guess that means I am off to a rocky start.........
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  6. #5
    Member Slm643's Avatar
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    I've seen some that look glossy, matte, some look like they are painted or colored somehow..

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    Member Igorek's Avatar
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    I think Romain Jerome made these watches.
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  8. #7
    Member TwentiethCenturyFox's Avatar
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    Omega has used them on their Dark Side of the Moon Speedy watches. I would say there is no issue with them being magnetized if they are charging 10k for a watch. Just a guess though.

  9. #8
    Member ffritz's Avatar
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    Quote Originally Posted by slorollin View Post
    Does a meteorite dial have any effect on the magnetic properties of a watch? Being composed mainly of iron and nickel there must be some consideration, I would think. Could it act like the soft iron anti-magnetic shielding used in some watches? Or could it be prone to magnetization because after all, it is iron?
    A meteorite dial does not influence the magnetic / antimagntic properties. Muonionalusta iron is ferromagnetic like soft iron, but since it's only the dial, the movement will not be protected from magnetism.

    Quote Originally Posted by slorollin View Post
    Will it corrode? Raw iron can literally turn red overnight in the right conditions.
    No. The Muonionalusta meteorite contains 8.4% nickel, which is just enough to make iron corrosion resistant (Ni >8%). I replaced the dial center of a Parnis pilot watch with a small disc of mounionalusta iron and experimented with it a little. If you polish the material, it's actually surprisingly hard to etch the Widmanstätten pattern back in. The muonionalusta meteorite is very corrosion resistant. But when you think about it, that's not surprising at all: that meteorite impact took place about a million years ago(!). If the material was not very corrosion resistant, there would be absolutely nothing left to find after that much time in the soil..


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  10. #9
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    Quote Originally Posted by ffritz View Post
    A meteorite dial does not influence the magnetic / antimagntic properties. Muonionalusta iron is ferromagnetic like soft iron, but since it's only the dial, the movement will not be protected from magnetism.



    No. The Muonionalusta meteorite contains 8.4% nickel, which is just enough to make iron corrosion resistant (Ni >8%). I replaced the dial center of a Parnis pilot watch with a small disc of mounionalusta iron and experimented with it a little. If you polish the material, it's actually surprisingly hard to etch the Widmanstätten pattern back in. The muonionalusta meteorite is very corrosion resistant. But when you think about it, that's not surprising at all: that meteorite impact took place about a million years ago(!). If the material was not very corrosion resistant, there would be absolutely nothing left to find after that much time in the soil..


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    Thanks ffritz! I knew someone here would have the skinny. The knowledge amassed here is amazing.
    ffritz likes this.
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  11. #10
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    Re: Meteorite Dials?

    Quote Originally Posted by Slm643 View Post
    I've seen some that look glossy, matte, some look like they are painted or colored somehow..

    Not painted, dyed. Paint would cover up the patterns. Dying is used to accentuate them from time to time, plus to give a particular look:

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    Image copied from WatchReviewCenter; the watch is the Parmigiani Tonda 1950 titanium Abyss Meteorite. One of my favorites; quite possibly the watch I'd buy if a) I could find it, and b) needed a high-end, fairly formal dress watch. I live in southern New Mexico; formal means buttons and long sleeves. :)
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