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  1. #21

    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Quote Originally Posted by Kessler View Post
    I'll do my best chaps, but I'm by no means an expert:

    Quartz watches maintain their time by vibrating a tiny piece of quartz back and forth. Watches of this type are nowadays usually inexpensive but they are consistently highly accurate. They are also pretty much maintenance free (aside from changing the batteries). 90% of the time quartz watches are powered by a simple battery, however it is possible to power them by sunlight or by kinetic movement of your wrist. Look to Japan for good examples of this sort of movement. I believe Citizen do quite a lot of work with kinetic and casio similar for solar power.

    Mechanical watches are driven by an array of complicated gears and springs. There is considered a certain artform in the craftsmanship of these movements which some people are willing to pay for. In terms of accuracy, a good mechanical timepiece may lose up to 10 or gain up to 6 seconds a day as very few are dead on accurate, unlike a quartz or atomic watch. Whilst initially you may wish to think that a mechanical watch is a maintenance free option that never needs its battery changing, they do need to be serviced every 4-5 years. This can cost from 100 up to about 10% of the initial purchase price of the watch.

    Mechanical watches can be divided into two categories:
    Manual: You wind the crown every few days to load the mainspring, this powers the watch.
    Automatic: There is a small semicircular weight which rotates through a ruby onto a spindle. As there is very little resistance on this, the weight rotates with your wrist's movements and loads the mainspring - from then forth the way the watches work is very similar. It's worth noting here that if you don't wear your automatic watch for about 3 days, then it will stop working.

    Most mechanical watches you can buy these days are automatic (sometimes called self winding), though there are a few exceptions. Seiko actually produce very good automatic movements, but they are subject to a lot of snobbery from elitist watch aficionados who believe that a proper watch has to have a mechanical Swiss movement.

    Personally, I find automatic watches wonderful. I love the idea that I'm wearing a beautifully intricate piece of engineering on my wrist. I also really like the idea that a quality automatic watch can last a lifetime, provided it's well maintained. There's also a cracking second hand market for automatic watches, and it's perfectly conceivable to pick up a bargain, get it refurbished or simply serviced and crack on using it every day. Almost like a classic car, there's a lovely feeling of history and character that you get from doing that, in my opinion.

    In truth, I can't see myself handing over money for a quartz watch ever again, but, I completely get that some people just want to be able to tell the damn time, so that's fine with me.
    Amazing thanks for the feedback! Have to say having read this i'm sat thinking i'd go for a Quartz... Purely cause its more accurate and going to be less hassle getting it serviced etc etc.. What is it that makes people go for mechanical?! is it purely based on the intricacy and engineering that goes into making them??

  2. #22
    Kessler's Avatar

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    Jan 2014
    There's a fair few reasons out there really. I can only speak for myself, but:
    • As you say, the intricacies of the engineering in them appeals to my geeky side. There are some incredibly cool examples of this.
    • I like the longevity. Sure, you are meant to get them serviced - but I know a couple of people who have had Rolexes for 30 years that have never been touched by a watchmaker. There's a certain appeal that the watch could well outlast me.
    • Sweeping second hands are just plain cool
    • They're usually a pretty sound investment, and rummaging around for the perfect used watch is something I enjoy
    • I like watches. Plain and simple. I mean, a Ford Fiesta does pretty much everything that a Ferrari does, for less running costs and in some cases more comfort. But, I'd still be queuing up for the 'rarri. To me it's a similar mentality.
    • The fact that they require movement from you appeals. I can't really elaborate on this too much, but it just feels a bit more organic to me.

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