Nearly all pens on the market are manufactured by turning. This means that the barrel is rotated between to fixed rods and cut by a tool to a round shape. The technology is quite effective and can cheaply create vast number of units in a short period of time. However it is limited to produce only a round body. Any other complex shape cannot be produced by employing this technique. This is way almost all pens on the market are round. Because of the complex, architectural shape of the Styljoux pens this technology cannot simply be used.

This is why we had to employ far more sophisticated machines normally used for production of high precision cases for luxury timepieces. At Styljoux we use five axis CNC machines to shape the exterior of barrels, turning machines to drill the inside cavity of the barrels, electric discharge machines to cut components, other drilling machines and engraving machines. Besides these state of the art machines we employ a vast array of rare and traditional crafts and techniques.

BAREL   MANUFACTURING

  • Cutting

  • Cutting

    The tungsten-carbide oscillating weight of the Le Calibre collection is cut using ultra-hard sawing machines. They alloy posed particular challenges due to the extreme nature of the metal. With a hardness of over 9 on Mohs scale is as hard as sapphire and can be cut only by using diamond cutting tools or cubic boron nitride.

    Electric discharge machine cutting:
    Also known as EDM machines. They allow workpieces to be cut from partially tempered pieces of metal. The machine's functionality is particular useful in production processes calling for minimum tolerances.

    Platinum parts are cut using a electrical discharge machine. Two blanks are cut from a one kilo block. For pens made of other precious metals the individual parts of the barrels are supplied as castings, while stainless steel and titanium are delivered in bar form and machined on turning and milling machine. The roundness of the parts must be accurate to a maximum tolerance of 0.03 mm.

  • Milling

    Complex shapes like Flamingo are fashioned using advanced CNC machined. The CNC machine used up to 24 different tools and five axes to machine the workpiece. The jig the workpiece is controled via axes B and C whilst the tools via axes X,Y and Z. In other words, horizontally, vertically and directly into dept. The machines are pre-programmed using latest generation CAD software.

    Barrels from titanium and steel 904L are shaped on this manner. The 904L steel we use for all our steel barrels requires a complicated series of steps. It is much harder than stainless steel 316Aisi and much more resistant to corrosion. If finished correctly it acquires a long lasting exceptions sheen.

  • Casting

    This technique is used for precious metals other than platinum. Rose, yellow and white gold barrels are shaped using casting. The casting is almost like alchemy. Only by perfectly understanding the properties of the metal and controlling the whole process Styljoux can guarantee a defect free, peerless, enchanting lustre on its writing instruments.

COMPONENT   MANUFACTURING

  • Milling

  • Milling

    Plates, bridges, cams rack are milled. CNC machines mill the blanks provided with the necessary drill holes and reamed. Generally speaking, the permited tolerances for workpieces are one hundredth of a millimetre but in some cases can be as low as four thousands of a millimetre. To achieve this level of precision, the temperature of both machine and coolant must not fluctuate more that 0.5° C either way.

  • Engraving

    Some of the parts and barrels of Styljoux writing instruments are engraved not only for decoration but also as means of identification. Parts such as plates and bridges are machine-engraved with the movement number, the Styljoux stamp and the words ' Swiss Made'. Two types of engravings are found: line and relief. Line engraving is particularly suitable for logos, coats of arms and monograms. It is possible to have different depths as well as different surfaces. Relief engraving is more demanding. Like a sculptor, the engraver works with a solid piece of metal, gradually removing the excess to create an image.

  • Stamping

    Primarily used for the dial of the Le Calibre collection. The blanks are stamped out of brass by blanking dies. The legs are hard soldered on and then the surfaces is polished, cleaned and treated to make it as smooth as possible. There are several different types of metal used for making dials are brass, silver, gold and aluminium. Lately aluminium has become very popular even for the most expensive dials because of the many complex colouring effects that can be achieved on it , its' durability and also the fact that many inks do not react with aluminium chemically.

    For classical dial printing of brass, silver or gold dials the first step is to lacquer the raw dial to keep the ink, which is oil based from contacting the metal directly. Direct contact between oil based inks and metal substrates eventually results in discoloration. This is caused by oxidation taking place on the surface of the dial metal and reacting with the ink. The lacquer acts as a barrier between the metal and the ink. The ink is printed over that. Prior to being lacquered, the dial is drilled to take the appliques.

ASSEMBLY

  • Assembly

  • Assembly

    The production of a pen culminates in its assembly and it is the care shown here that ultimately determines its character. For it is at this stage that the interaction of all mechanical parts designed to work together harmoniously with each other for years to come is checked, adjusted and set.

    Assembling the pen consists of putting together the nib system, release mechanism, oscillating weight, dial and clip pusher. At every stage of the assembly, functions are checked and fine adjustments are made. Finally the quality of the finished and assembled pen is checked once more. Only after this final step is completed successfully a pen becomes a Styljoux.

INNOVATION

Representing tradition at its most dynamic, Styljoux constantly pushes back the frontiers of the penmaking art through its achievements at the cutting edge of innovation. It has confirmed its pioneering role by breakthrough developments in areas as micro-mechanics, material technology, fluid and nib technology.

The Styljoux brand is therefore meant to evolve. It will accommodate all the technical progress and future developments that serve to advance mechanical functionality, long-term reliability and comfort.

WORLD

FIRSTS

  • Titanium

  • Gold
    The most precious writing instruments have been traditionally made from precious metal, usually gold.

    Gold Styljoux pens possess a truly captivating radiance, born from many experiments in perfecting the use of this most desired of metals. Only by being involved in the whole process can Styljoux guarantee a peerless, enchanting lustre on its writing instruments.

    Styljoux exclusively uses 18 ct gold, an exclusive alloy composed of 750%(thousandths) of pure gold, plus exactly the right mixture of elements including silver, copper, platinum and palladium necessary to produce the different types of 18 ct gold: yellow, red and white. Styljoux's closely-guarded formulas ensure exceptional durability, polishability-and an extraordinary sheen that lasts for generations.
  • Platinum
    It is the rarest and most noble of the precious metals. While it looks similar to white gold, it weighs more than half as much. It is extremely rare - all the platinum ever mined would fit into the average living room.

    It has been very rarely used in penmaking due to very high costs and technological limitations.
    It takes three times longer to produce a platinum barrel than one in gold, as slower tool speeds and lower pressures have to be applied to platinum to minimise friction and tool wear.

    Having different metallurgical properties to gold, we exclusively polish platinum by hand employing specialised polishers. The intricate process involves eliminating all the machining marks by applying successively finer grades of abrasive paste to achieve the characteristic lunar lustre of platinum.
  • Titanium
    With the highest strength-to-weight ratio of all metals and great resistance to corrosion it has been often called the space-age material. Not surprisingly, its use has been pioneered by NASA for the construction of space shuttle. Since then, it has been used extensively in Formula 1, aeronautics and defence.

    There are over 20 different grades of titanium available. At Styljoux we mostly use Grade 5 titanium due to the exceptional combination of resistance to wear, tensile shocks and lightness. Also it is hypoallergenic meaning it is biologically neutral, so it won't cause irritations or allergies.

    With its dark grey colour and usually matt finish it lends Styljoux pens a sporty, stealth look. It is also print resistant and has an improved grip compared to polished steel.
  • 904L Steel
    The most ubiquitous metal used for fine pens and watches is steel. It is a strong, silver coloured metal highly resistant to corrosion and impact. It has overtaken gold as a metal of choice due to its modern and unfussy look.

    All Styljoux steel pens are made from 904L steel. A superalloy much superior to the 316L
    AISI steel commonly used in fine watches and pens. It is completely non-magnetic and does not corrode. It acquires and exceptional lustrous sheen when polished.
  • Carbon Fibre
    Carbon fibre is a long, thin strand of material about 0.0002-0.0004 in (0.005-0.010 mm) in diameter and composed mostly of carbon atoms. The carbon atoms are bonded together in microscopic crystals that are more or less aligned parallel to the long axis of the fibre. The crystal alignment makes the fibre incredibly strong for its size. Several thousand carbon fibres are twisted together to form a yarn, which may be used by itself or woven into a fabric.

    Its high stiffness, high tensile strength, low weight, high chemical resistance, high temperature tolerance and low thermal expansion, make them very popular in aerospace, civil engineering, military, and motorsports.
  • Forged Carbon
    Styljoux experimented with forged carbon writing instrument parts since the beginning of the decade and developed a keen sense for the material's potential. Forged carbon is the registered brand of an aeronautical company in the region of Lyon, France. The idea of using carbon for the barrel or other elements of the writing instrument originated in a meeting between Iunal Giumali and Vincent Duqueine, head of the French company.

    To take advantage of this material, Styljoux developed extensive know-how, from manufacturing to equipment, based on the forging method employed in aeronautics. "The process utilized in aeronautics isn't suitable for pen making because it is intended for very large pieces. We have kept the same philosophy but have modified the technique for heating and cooling the molds", explains Yves Leuba, head of Styljoux forged carbon department. The first model featuring forged carbon, the Styljoux Forged Carbon, came out in 2014.

    Forged carbon has obvious qualities: it is very resistant, while remaining very light. From an aesthetic point of view, its marbled effect, satiny and soft to the touch, is particularly prized. The Styljoux Le Calibre in gold weighs about 251 grams, whereas the model in forged carbon weighs no more than 62 grams. Each pen is unique because the carbon fibres are distributed in a random manner in the mold. When the material is compressed under heating, it evolves in an unpredictable way.

    Based on this success, other models in forged carbon will followed, such as the much anticipated Styljoux Grand Prix Monaco, to be presented at the Basel World in 2015.
  • Magnesium
    As part of our commitment to use the most advanced and innovative materials on the market in order to advance the art of penmaking in 2013 we have premiered magnesium.

    The Styljoux barrels are made of an extremely rugged and light alloy called Magnesium-Aluminium classified as AZ91. This alloy is composed of magnesium 90% and aluminium 8.9%.

    Magnesium density is of 1,74 g/cm3, which means it is one of the lightest metals used for construction.

    After a long and delicate machining phase, this alloy is given an electro-plasma oxidation treatment named Titalyt II.This treatment is a cristalline oxide ceramic with a high ratio of high resistant composites such as MgAl2O4 spinels. This improves both hardness and scratch resistance of this alloy, and also its wear and corrosion resistance.

    The treatment applied to Magnesium-Aluminium is biocompatible.
  • Ceramic
    In simple terms, a ceramic is a non-metallic material that has been created by the action of heating and cooling. The high-tech ceramic used by Styljoux is made from zirconium oxide.

    This material has gained increased popularity due to its exceptional properties. It is comparable in lightness to aluminium, extremely scratch resistant and skin friendly.

    Engineering ceramics is extremely difficult. It requires special know-how and machinery. However, when rightly done it yields a finished product of beautiful aesthetics and perfect shape.

    Styljoux ceramic pens are carefully brought to a matte or polished finish. The Styljoux polished finish is a particularly prised for the deep lustrous look and warm tactile sensation.
  • Ultra-light resin alloy
    Ultra-light resin alloy is a special type of resin, developed by the brand's alchemists within the labs of the company. Chemically, it is a Polyepoxde resin which is seven times lighter than stainless steel and four times lighter than titanium, but with 700 vikers hardness.

    The typical titanium grade 5 used for haute horology has a hardness of 250 vikers which effectively means that the Styljoux resin is three times more resistant to scratches.
  • Ruby
    Rubies or jewels, as they are known, were developed in watches to reduce friction at the points of heaviest wear. When metal rubs against metal and when oil breaks down, the damage to pivots and bearings can be rapid and destructive.

    In most watches these jewels are used for all the pivot points in the gear train, as well as in the anti-shock settings. As the complexity of watches has increased so has the number of jewels used in the mechanisms.

    To ensure robustness and smooth mechanical operation of the movement, the rubies are machined to nanometre precision and polished through a process that necessitates up to eleven different steps.

    Now for the first time in penmaking, due to the necessity to protect moving parts, Styljoux has introduced functional jewels in Le Calibre collection. 5 jewels designed to improve the operation of the mechanism and extend the life of your pen for the generations to come.
  • Sapphire
    The introduction of the Styljoux SM 005 Sapphire is a giant penmaking milestone of technical achievement. Never before had such a complex barrel design for such a complex movement has been manufactured in pure sapphire.

    The entire top barrel and cap are cut and milled from solid blocks of sapphire. The production of this sapphire structure took years of research and testing in order to ensure an adequate response to the demands of strength and comfort.

    Sapphire is known as a particularly scratch-resistant material with a hardness of 1,800 Vickers.
    Made of aluminium oxide (Al2O3) crystals, it is transparent thanks to its molecular composition. The machining of such components was the biggest challenge faced by the House of Styljoux, a challenge made all the more difficult as the sapphire machining process is exceptionally delicate.

    Although extremely tough, sapphire does not allow for even the slightest error during milling and cutting. Creating a barrel of this quality took over 1000 hours of machining, of which 430 hours were spent on pre-forming the barrel components and 350 hours on polishing the whole pen. For excellent optical properties, the whole pen has been treated with an anti-glare coating and ultra-sound polished.
  • Tungsten
    In its raw form, tungsten is a hard steel-grey metal that is often brittle and hard to work. If made very pure, tungsten retains its hardness which exceeds even special steels.

    Of all metals in pure form, tungsten has the highest melting point at 3,422 °C, lowest vapour pressure (at temperatures above 1,650 °C, 3,000 °F) and the highest tensile strength which make it notoriously difficult to machine. Also it is remarkable for the very high density similar to that of platinum.

    Because of its unique qualities it is used to create super-alloys for extreme hard cutting and drilling tools, rocket nozzles, turbine blades or for military applications.

    Shaping and finishing tungsten alloys for the Styljoux weight adjustment mechanism has required the attention of a specially assembled team, over a one year period. No compromises were allowed as despite the technical challenges, it is the ideal material for a small volume oscillating weight.

    Finishing tungsten at jewellery standard has been in itself a challenge as the existing tools and machines were simply unable to work this ultra-hard metal.
With the highest strength-to-weight ratio of all metals and great resistance to corrosion it has been often called the space-age material. Not surprisingly, its use has been pioneered by NASA for the construction of space shuttle. Since then, it has been used extensively in Formula 1, aeronautics and defence.

There are over 20 different grades of titanium available. At Styljoux we mostly use Grade 5 titanium due to the exceptional combination of resistance to wear, tensile shocks and lightness. Also it is hypoallergenic meaning it is biologically neutral, so it won't cause irritations or allergies.

With its dark grey colour and usually matt finish it lends Styljoux pens a sporty, stealth look. It is also print resistant and has an improved grip compared to polished steel.

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