Nivachron Balance Spring Certina

Nivachron

Nivachron Hairspring

What is Nivachron?

Nivachron is the name of an anti-magnetic balance spring (aka hairspring) produced by Nivarox-FAR (a Swatch Group owned watch parts manufacturer specializing in escapement parts).

Materials:

Is Nivachron silicon? No.

Nivachron is a titanium-based metal alloy with magnetic resistant properties (source).

In ETA’s own words:

“The Nivachron balance spring is produced in the traditional way using a non-magnetic titanium-based compensating alloy.”

In other words, it is a regular balance spring but made with a proprietary metal that help to protect the spring from the ill-effects of magnetism.

Effectiveness Against Magnetism:

According to ETA, Nivachron “greatly reduces the influence of magnetic fields and residual effects on the watch’s operation.”

The keyword there is “reduces” not eliminates. Therefore, despite clever advertising and marketing campaigns, it’s important to note that Nivachron hairsprings are not 100% non-magnetic, they are magnetic resistant.

Also according to ETA (see video below), Nivachron springs reduce the effects of magnetic fields by a factor of 10 to 20. Perhaps you can also read this as: Nivachron balance springs are 10-20 times more resistant to magnetism than standard balance springs.

Aside from magnetism, Nivachron is also touted as being:

  • Resistant to temperature variations in normal wearing conditions.
  • Resistant to shocks in normal wearing conditions.

Brands using Nivachron:

This spring is found in some Swatch Group produced watch movements. For example, Certina is a Swatch Group owned brand that proudly boasts using Nivachron springs in many of their watches since 2019.

In Certina’s own words:

“Magnetic fields are hidden everywhere in everyday life – and represent a genuine threat to the rate precision of your mechanical watch. Certina is one step ahead. The innovative material known as Nivachron was developed specifically to increase the resistance to magnetic fields. So in 2019, sixty years after the première of the DS Concept, Certina set another new standard in terms of reliability.” –Source

Nivachron Balance Spring Certina

In the image above, Certina aims to demonstrate that a standard balance spring (nickel-steel alloy for example) on the left would be affected by the hovering magnet above. The Nivachron spring on the right remains unaffected (at least with that specific power of magnet, at that specific distance).

Movements using Nivachron:

Video: Nivachron Anti-magnetic Demonstration

Video: Certina | Nivachron balance spring inside the Certina DS-1 Big Date Special Edition

Additional Resources:

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