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The Way Automatic Watches Work


Whatever Happened to Winding?

According to your age, you might or may not remember seeing your father wind his watch each night before likely to bed. If he didn’t, he’d surely wake to a watch that had stopped. Those days became history with the advent of the automatic watch. What makes it automatic? It still has the same basic mechanism to help keep the watch working, but how that mechanism is powered changed just how we looked after our watches.

All mechanical watches work in the same manner. They need a movement of a series of gears to tick of increments of time, which registers as movements of the hands on the face of the watch. A rotor in the watch sits on a staff in the middle of the watch’s movement. It rotates in a round motion and winds the mainspring which is the foundation of power in mechanical watches. By having an automatic watch the winding of this spiral spring is done automatically with any arm or wrist movement.

Self-winding, automatic watches work great for folks who wear the watch daily, but if you don’t wear the watch frequently, it takes manual winding about twice a week. Even automatic watches will stay working better if they are wound manually about once every two weeks because it will help keep carefully the watch lubricated. It is really a misconception that automatic watches never need any winding, as it all depends on the movement of the arm to help keep it functioning well.

A power reserve lets the movement of one’s watch keep time for ranging from 10 and 72 hours. There’s something called an electrical reserve, and the larger the reserve, the longer your automatic watch could keep running without further movement or manual winding.

Rolex was the first watch manufacturer to devise and patent the rotor system that’s still used today. They named it the Perpetual and it had been the main popular Oyster line created in early 1930s. Emile Borer was the Rolex technician who came up with the system, but he wasn’t the first ever to develop a rotor. That distinction visits Swiss watchmaker, Abraham-Louis Perrelet so long ago as 1770. This is quite the invention as it wouldn’t be until much later with time that wrist watches were worn and there just wasn’t enough physical movement with a wallet watch to produce it a feasible way to maneuver the rotor and wind the mainspring.


Automatic watches vary from quartz watches which are powered by batteries and not by either an information or automatic winding system. Powered with a battery, the quartz crystal in a very quartz watch vibrates nearly 33,000 times per. Watch batteries last about couple of years, where automatic watches have an endless source of power: movement or motion.

Quartz watches account fully for most moderately priced watch sales today, but connoisseurs of watches still just like the prestige and elegance of a well crafted mechanical watch. Automatics have started to regain a few of the quartz market in recent years accounting for huge increases (95%) in sales between 1993 and 1995.

Lubrication is essential to keeping an automatic watch running well. Watches could be lubricated by manually winding the watch periodically and taking it into a jeweler once about every 3 to 5 years. When winding an automatic watch , just wind it about 30 to 40 times or and soon you feel some resistance. Keeping the watch is really a watch winding box is also a good way to help keep the watch lubricated.

Automatic watches are also quite affordable. They really come in every price range. Some economical brands include Invicta watch and Orient watch , and then a price can reach to the extremely expensive range with regards to the embellishments or the prestige of a particular brand.


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