The Defakto Watch Manufactory

The watch manufactory Defakto was founded by Raphael Ickler in 2009 and stands for minimalistic designed, high quality watches made in Germany. The watch brand Defakto offers puristic watches from its own production, direct communication and a good price-performance ratio through focusing on direct sales through this website. After graduating from the "Digital Media Art" master's program at the Art University in Bremen, the 33-year-old designer and founder Raphael Ickler has been directing the independent watch brand Defakto in full-time from Berlin. The offered high quality Defakto wristwatches are the result of a long family experience in the watchmaking industry. This tradition goes back to 1924, when Karl Ickler founded the today internationally renowned Ickler GmbH in the watch and jewelry manufactory city Pforzheim. To this day, high-quality watches and watch cases are manufactured in the fourth generation at the foot of the Black Forest. Since 2017, the Defakto Design and Development Office has moved to Karlsruhe. 

Defakto is a member of "Deutscher Werkbund", an institution founded in 1907 by Peter Behrens, "Wiener Werkst├Ątten" and others. This economic-cultural "association of artists, architects, entrepreneurs and experts" was and is an important initiator in the fields of modern architecture and industrial design. Later the Bauhaus movement emerged from it. In addition to the stand-alone watch design and the high-quality in-house production, the one-man structure of the company Defakto is a further unique feature. All areas starting from the idea, the concept, the final design and development of a Defakto wristwatch, many parts of production, surface treatment, engravings and watch making processes, the complete assembly, logistics and customer communication, all product photography and web design come from a single source. This self-sufficient, sustainable development and care process leads to honest, stringent products and direct communication directly with the responsible person - a situation hard to find elsewhere.

Adress and Contact Information


Raphael Ickler 
Designer, Founder, Manager

VAT-IdNr: DE 2937 94831
Studio: Defakto Uhren, Karl-Wilhelm-Str 12, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany 
Manufactory: Defakto Uhren, Ickler GmbH, Hirsauerstr 214, 75180 Pforzheim, Germany
Email: info_at_defakto-uhren.de
Telephone: +49 (0) 721 78168812        
Social Media: TwitterInstagramFacebook



Design and Manufacture of a Defakto Watch

The wide range of manufacture in Germany is an integral characteristic of Defakto. Only few watch brands can offer such a high in-house added value. On the design level all watches of the Defakto collection are fully attributed to minimalism. This mindset is supported by the puristic form of the high-quality Ickler manufactory watch cases and the reliable tact of highly functional Swiss and Japanese movements. Defakto watches also have advanced design concept aspects in terms of function and time perception. As an example the Defakto Kinetik┬┤s design is based on the interaction of the skeleton watchbands, the resulting geometrical constellations and better readability. For the Eins and Mono one-hand watches, fifteen or five minute indexes convey a more relaxed experience of time and aim to achieve a laid back behavior of the carrier.

The in-house built Defakto watch cases are manufactured of 316L stainless steel or CuSn8 bronze. The black coating used on some watch case surfaces consists of PVD, a highly durable material originally used for the hardening of industrial milling tools. The built in, high quality movements are Swiss Made (ETA 2824, Ronda 712, Ronda 6004.D) or Made in Japan (Miyota 9015) and known for their reliability in everyday life. All Defakto watches are available with black or white dial as well as in material or surface variations and can be further customized on customer request. For the partly used fluorescence the biodegradable Superluminova from the Swiss company Tritec is used. Almost all Defakto watch models are available without logo as Inkognito version. As matter go fact these models can be worn right and left-hand. 

Production processes of a Defakto Watch

Development process of a Defakto watch dial


Production steps of a Defakto watchcase

Working on a watchcase blank with the turing lathe

Cnc-milling a Defakto watchcase out of the blank

Remaining chips before entering recycling circle

Detail of a finished Defakto bronze watch case

Preparation for watchmaking process

Example for used watchmaker tools

Quality check of components to be installed

Placing watch hands, adjusting hand status

Preparation of assembly

Assembly of automatic movement to watchcase

Preparation of additional parts assembly


Quality check of topring, watchback and clasp

Processing laserengraving on watchback

Example for surface treatment (brushing)


Detail of a finished Defakto watchcase after brushing, polishing and engraving processes

Example of raw sandbursted surface on a Defakto Akkord

Almost ready-made Defakto Vektor

Placing and pressing in sapphire crystal to watchcase

Checking water resistance

Checking the time based accuracy of an assembled automatic Defakto watch

Assembly of watch strap components to the watch 

Final visual control of a finished Defakto wristwatch

Final Defakto Dialog Pvd that has passed all manufacturing and quality-check processes

Ready for shipment - Defakto Kinetik in appropriate, handmade Defakto cardboard packaging