Stainless Steel vs. Titanium

Over the past decade a new metal has come to the market of metal watches, this metal is titanium. This is not surprising after all titanium is 30% harder than steel while weighing only about half. This metal has become increasingly popular with sports and diver chronographs because it is waterproof and it does not corrode even in the harshest conditions. Additionally, some wearers may feel a discomfort after wearing a chronograph for a long time. Titanium which is hypoallergenic resolves this issue. Unlike stainless steel titanium is a non-reactive metal. Practically, this means that titanium  does not react with the owner’s sweaty wrist and it cannot result in any rash or leave any residue.

However, titanium has one Achilles heel: it isn’t very ductile. Under very high pressure a titanium watch case can crack. Such damages cannot be fixed. Since titanium isn’t malleable, a crack cannot be welded together like you would with stainless steel watch. Further, this metal scratches easier than stainless steel, and once titanium gets a scratched it cannot be removed. This is not a problem with stainless steel because if it receives any mark it can be easily removed via polishing. Thankfully, watch companies are aware of this flaw and they cover their titanium chronographs in various special scratch resistant coating.  Although, titanium can be coated it cannot plated, so it is impossible to plate your titanium watch in gold. Practically, this means that your titanium watch can be made only in one color. Stainless steel is cheaper and a classic choice for metallic chronographs. Although it is heavier this isn’t such a problem if the owner prefers a bulkier type of watch. And as mentioned earlier it can be easily plated with any finish, allowing you to have a watch that can come in many classical styles.

Whether, you choose titanium or stainless steel chronograph mainly depends on what you want to accomplish with your watch. Generally, titanium is great for diving chronographs and it has a great aura of contemporary style. Stainless steel on the other hand, has been used in watchmaking for decades and it definitely has more of a classy tone.