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  2. 15 Best Russian Watches

    15 Best Russian Watches

    Normally, when people think about watches, the brands that first come to mind are either Swiss or Japanese. However, there are other watch brands from different countries that also provide highly capable timepieces too. Brands like Skagen and Seagull are great examples of Danish and Chinese watchmaking, and they both showcase exceptional timepieces at rather affordable prices.  Many countries have their own unique take on watches. But for this article, we will focus on what Russian watchmaking has to offer. Stick around as we look at 15 of the best Russian watches available in the market. Maybe you might even see some underrated Russian brands that you are already familiar with. 15 Best Russian Watches 1. Vostok Amphibia Automatic (2415B/120509) Image By: Vostok Amphibia   Starting off our list is a Russian timepiece known for being one of the best affordable automatic diver’s watches out there. Worn by members of the Russian Navy, the Vostok Amphibia is a stainless steel watch that boasts great resilience and reliability. This iconic Russian timepiece dates back to the 1960s and is water-resistant up to depths of 200m. Today, the modern version of the Vostok Amphibia is still being manufactured, with strong shock and water-resistant properties. On top of this Vostok watch is a bold and large stainless steel rotating bezel, which wearers can use to keep track of elapsed time underwater. The Amphibia also has an analog watch face, which contains a mix of hour indices and numerals, arrow hands, and a deep red seconds hand, all applied with luminescence. This is all protected by a layer of scratch-resistant and impact-resistant mineral glass. Finally, this Russian watch is powered by an automatic Vostok 2415B caliber. You can purchase this watch for just $115 USD. 2. Sturmanskie Gagarin Classic Automatic (9015-1279600) Image By: Sturmanskie Based on the legendary Sturmanskie watch that Russian astronaut Yuri Gagarin brought to space, the Sturmanskie Gagarin Classic Automatic features a vintage design with a whole lot of history. The watch comes in a stainless steel case coated with rose gold PVD and is paired with a brown alligator leather strap. It is fitted with a layer of mineral glass and has a water resistance capacity of 50m. Though this watch is not ideal for deepwater activities like diving, it is good enough to withstand the rain and even a shower. The dial of the Sturmanski Gagarin showcases a unique waffle-like pattern. This is adorned with rose gold-tone hour markers and hands and a small date complication at 3 o’clock. At the top half of the watch face, you can also find the Sturmanskie signature and company emblem printed on the dial. This Russian timepiece runs on a self-winding 9015 movement, which wearers can view through the watch’s transparent case back. It retails at a price of $455 USD. 3. Raketa Classic Big Zero (0219) Image By: Raketa Watch Club Originally designed in the 1970s, the Raketa Classic Big Zero is the brand’s most iconic timepiece. Word has it that Russian Premier Mikhael Gorbachev once wore a Raketa Big Zero piece during his official visit to Italy. This Raketa watch utilizes a 38mm stainless steel case accompanied by a sporty black leather strap with red stitching. Its well-sized crown, which can be found on the left of the case, features a groove pattern for an easier grip. While the watch’s dial is protected by a layer of sapphire glass, its see-through case back is made from mineral glass. Its dial of the Raketa Classic Big Zero features pronounced triangle hour markers and numerals, with a “0” in place of the 12 o’clock marker. As the story goes, while in Italy, Mikhael Gorbachev used the watch’s design, particularly the “0” marker, to explain the new beginnings of Russia. Ever since then, Raketa has made Big Zero’s design a trademark of the brand. The black waffle-like pattern of the dial brings out the silver in its hands and indices. Underneath its watch face is a Raketa 2615 movement, equipped with a power reserve that can last up to 40 hours when fully wound. This Premier watch has a retail price of $955 USD. 4. Nesterov Russian Strategic Aviation (H0513B02-74DB)  Image By: Nesterov The brand Nesterov acquired its name from Peter Nesterov, a famed Russian ace pilot and founder of aerial acrobatics. Nesterov’s catalog is home to numerous aviation watches with distinct designs and colorways. Among all its timepieces, the Nesterov Russian Strategic Aviation is a particular standout. Encased inside 47mm of stainless steel, this oversized watch is equipped with a polygonal bezel that has a tachymetric scale for wearers to calculate their speed. Protected by a layer of mineral glass, its deep blue dial consists of applied hour markers and hands, along with unusual cushion-like chronograph subdials. A date window between 4 o’clock and 5 o’clock. The movement that operates below its watch face is a quartz caliber sealed shut by a solid steel case back. Coupled with a classic stainless steel strap, this Russian watch has a water resistance rating of 100m. You can purchase this watch for $290 USD. 5. Denissov Barracuda (3133.1026.R.B28) Image By: Denissov A military-inspired timepiece with stylish and exclusive looks, the Denissov Barracuda is a robust and versatile timepiece that you can bring anywhere. Its case is crafted out of stainless steel, with a polished and matte finish to give this Russian watch an exceptional luster. On the right side of the Barracuda’s case are two pushers and a screw-down crown to ensure waterproofness even at depths reaching 100m.  The Barracuda’s segregated dial is definitely something to behold. Its handsome interplay of brown and sunburst blue colors makes this an incredibly fun watch to wear. It features a blue outer ring that contains applied hour numerals and a brown inner section that features chronograph subdials and skeletal watch hands. Placed between the 6 o’clock marker and the Barracuda logo is a small outlined date window. This watch is powered by a manual-winding Poljot 3133 along with its 42-hour power reserve. This Barracuda watch costs around $870 USD. 6. Vostok Komandirskie K-20 Automatic (2416/020716) Image By: Vostok Amphibia While Vostok is mostly known for the Amphibia, its Komandirskie collection also has quite the following. With its affordable price, powerful automatic movement, and 200m of water resistance, the Vostok Komandirskie K-20 Automatic is one of the best value-for-money Russian watches on the market. This watch uses a stainless steel case topped with a black elapsed time bezel. Its teeth-edged crown is quite sizable to ensure an easy grip both on land and underwater.  Its white dial features black hour indices, applied hands, and a date aperture between 4 and 5 o’clock. You can find a small red star sitting nicely under the luminous hands, and it adds a splash of color to the black and white watch face. This watch is powered by a Vostok 2416 caliber, which is fitted with thirty-one jewels. To complete its sleek, professional look, Vostok pairs the Komandirskie K-20 with a three-link stainless steel bracelet. You can purchase this affordable Russian watch for around $100 USD. 7. Raketa Amphibia (0252) Image By: Raketa Watch Club The Vostok brand is not the only one with an Amphibia. With its depth-defying, 400m water resistance capacity, the Raketa Amphibia is a solid Russian diver watch that showcases incredible durability and strength. This watch comes in a cushion-shaped stainless steel case, with a layer of protective sapphire glass and a comfortable black silicone strap. Looking at the Raketa Amphibia in its entirety, it somewhat resembles the sporty looks of the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean.  The dial of this watch features a sequence of luminous numerals and orange hour indices. Paired with luminous silver hands, the Raketa Amphibia is simple but also highly legible. Like most Raketa watches, its 12 o’clock marker is replaced with the brand’s trademark “0.” Operating underneath the watch face is an automatic Calibre 2615, which features an accuracy rate of -10/+20 seconds per day and a 40-hour power supply. This watch retails at approximately $1,130 USD. 8. Denissov Number One (955.112.001.4.N1M) Image By: Denissov Denissov’s selection of consists of a diverse catalog of watches, spanning from sporty models to dressy ones. An example of Denissov’s take on a classic timepiece is Denissov Number One. It comes in a polished stainless steel case with a unique crown that resembles the ones seen on Cartier Santos-Dumont models. This Russian watch is water-resistant up to depths of 50m and comes coupled with a black stingray leather strap. Exclusively-designed minute and hour hands swivel round the pearl dial adorned with refined silver Roman numeral hour markers and a small date window at 6 o’clock. On the dial’s inner section, you can find the brand signature and the model name written in fine cursive print. Hidden below the watch face is an ETA 955.112 quartz movement that you can also find in certain watches from Certina and Tag Heuer. You can purchase this watch for around $235 USD. 9. Sturmanskie Arktika Day-Night (2432-6821355) Image By: Sturmanskie Worn by seasoned polar explorers and travelers, the Sturmanskie Arktika Day-Night is a reliable timepiece that will not back down from any challenge. Made out of stainless steel and paired with a black leather strap, the watch is not only sleek but also very comfortable to wear. Fitted on top of the case is a durable and lightweight acrylic glass resistant to all kinds of hard impacts and scratches. On this watch’s black dial are vintage hour numerals applied with Swiss Super-LumiNova. Placed at the center of the watch is a beautifully designed 24-hour time scale for wearers to keep track of another time zone. The red second hand and central time zone pointer add a bit of colorful flair to this watch’s black and steel aesthetic. This $280 USD watch is powered by a Vostok 2432 automatic caliber with a 33-hour power reserve. 10. Nesterov LI-2D (H0984A02-45B) Image By: Nesterov The Nesterov LI-2D is a Russian stainless steel watch featuring a blue dial and an ever-reliable quartz movement. It has a case size of 45mm, making it a great timepiece for those who love oversized watches or have larger wrists. The royal sunblue dial is protected by a layer of scratch-resistant mineral crystal. The brand pairs this with a matching blue leather strap with white stitching.  Arranged on its blue dial are pointed hour indices, Arabic numerals, and outlined minute and hour hands. At each quarter of the dial are rounded green triangles that add a bit of variety to the watch’s design. This watch has a fairly simple style, but it appeals with its straightforward elegance. Underneath the watch face is a quartz movement that is covered by a solid steel case back. This watch has a budget-friendly price tag of $155 USD. 11. Raketa Copernicus (0231) Image By: Raketa Watch Club Inspired by the original Soviet Copernicus watch, the Raketa Copernicus pays tribute to the science of astronomy with its bold and planet-inspired design. With a water-resistant stainless steel case and top-notch, scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, the Russian watch is not just unique but also very durable. The push-pull crown on the right side of its case is also relatively large, allowing for an easy grip. With its standard 40mm diameter, the watch fits well on wrists of any size. The highlight of this watch, without a doubt, is its innovative watch face which allows you to tell the time in an unusual way. It features a blue dial with three planet-like structures occupying the surface and only a single red seconds hand. The two smaller circles, with red markers on their rims, are the hour and minute displays. The smaller “planet” is the hour hand, while the mid-sized ring represents the minute hand. The back of the timepiece has a neat partial display that gives you a view of the Raketa 2615 movement inside. You can get this watch for $1,290 USD. 12. Vostok Aviator Airacobra Quartz (V.1.11.0.034.4) Image By: Vostok Amphibia A handsome aviation timepiece with no frills, the Vostok Aviator Airacobra is a wonderful quartz watch with an appealing, minimalistic design. It comes in a perfectly round, lustrous stainless steel case with long, protruding lugs and an unguarded crown. Equipped with a water resistance capacity of 100m, this Russian watch’s quintessential aesthetic is complemented by a brown alligator leather strap. The dial of the Aviator Airacobra contains light-colored Arabic numerals and hour indices that blend nicely with its black backdrop. Its hands have been coated in luminescence to provide legibility even in dark environments. On top of the 6 o’clock marker, you can find a curved and elongated date window that shows the current date, as well as the previous and next dates. Beneath the dial is a Ronda 6003B movement with a battery life that can last up to 40 months. This watch costs $500 USD. 13. Sturmanskie Ocean 3133 (3133/1981599) Image By: Sturmanskie Showcasing accuracy, practicality, and reliability, the Ocean 3133 is a modern recreation of the iconic Sturmanskie watch with the same name. It comes in a stainless steel case coupled with a sporty blue leather strap with red stitching. The crystal protecting the watch’s face is made of mineral and gives a clear and unhindered view of the Ocean 3133’s nautical dial.  The dial of this watch, with its applied indices and hands, also contains a stopwatch and a telemeter scale. Wearers can control these features using the watch’s extra crown, on the left side of the watch, and two pushers. Located at the lower section of the dial is an outlined date window which takes the place of the 6 o’clock index. This $950 USD watch is powered by a reliable Poljot 3133 movement, which is equipped with a 42-hour power reserve and sealed by an engraved solid steel caseback. 14. Nesterov I-190 (H0983B02-14D) Image By: Nesterov Accompanied by a brown leather bund strap, the Nesterov I-190 is a stylish timepiece that boasts 100m of water resistance and an attractive copper-colored dial. This Russian wristwatch utilizes a 46mm stainless steel case topped with a layer of mineral glass. Its substantial 15mm thickness gives the Nesterow I-190 a bit of heft and presence on the wrist. The exquisite copper dial consists of inner and outer sections, each with different surface textures and designs. The smooth and brushed outer ring contains black hour markers and numerals that add more personality to the watch’s overall look. The inner circle with a guilloche engraving resembling the pattern of a clamshell holds the minute and hour hands, as well as the circular date aperture. Powered by a quartz movement, this affordable $130 USD Russian watch is definitely worth adding to your collection. 15. Denissov Free Rider (9015.1015.3B.B3) Image By: Denissov Our final timepiece is a model from Denissov that boasts an exceptionally sporty look. Housed inside a stainless steel case coated with black PVD, the Denissov Free Rider is a striking watch and rugged watch. Its water resistance capacity of 100m ensures that the Free Rider still looks good and works well even after a splash in the pool. Dark but somewhat flashy, this timepiece’s suave looks are completed by its black leather strap with orange stitching. Separated into an inner and outer section, the watch’s black dial sports an attractive design. Its outer ring holds a mix of orange-and-white hour markers and Arabic numerals that contrast sharply against their black backdrop. The inner section has a raised, tire-like texture, along with syringe hands that are applied with Super-LumiNova and a date window between 4 and 5 o’clock. This watch is powered by a Japanese Miyota 9015 automatic movement, complete with its twenty-four jewels and 42-hour power supply. This watch retails at $410 USD. A Brief History of Russian Watches While European and American watch manufacturers were already producing watches on a massive scale in the 1800s, Russia did not have its first watchmaker until 1927. In 1930, the Russian Labor and Defence Council founded the Moscow Watch Factory, which produced watches for the Soviet Government and the Red Army. One of their most popular timepieces was the Commander — a watch commonly used by officers of the Red Army. In 1941, the Moscow Watch Factory had to evacuate to the city of Zlatoust after an attempted invasion. A year later, the Chistopol Watch Factory, known today as Vostok, was established. In 1946, the Moscow Watch Factory started creating Pobeda watches. These watches had specifications specially approved by the leaders of the Soviet Union. During this time, most Russian watches were only being produced for the Russian Army. It was only in the 1950s that watches started to be manufactured for the general public. When the first Soviet satellite was launched in 1957, the Sputnik watch was made to commemorate this event. By the 1960s, the Russian watch industry had grown at an excellent rate, developing some stunning and rare timepieces. In the same year, the Moscow Watch Factory introduced the country to Poljot’s first watch. Russian watches also have quite a bit of history with space travel. In 1960, a Russian cosmonaut named Yuri Gagarin became the first person to traverse into outer space. Back then, there were no specific Russian watches produced for cosmonauts. Gagarin simply wore his own Sturmanskie watch for the flight. Later on, other cosmonauts started wearing Poljot and Strela watches to their space travels too. As such, from those days onward, Poljot, Sturmanskie, and Strela watches were inseparably linked with space. The Moscow Watch Factory later created the 3133 model — a versatile timepiece officially developed for the Russian army, navy, and Russian cosmonauts. Image By: Sturmanskie By 1965, watches manufactured by the Moscow Watch Factory were already being exported outside the Soviet Union. These timepieces were sent to 70 different countries, including the United Kingdom and the United States. Through their crucial role in developing the Russian watch industry, the Moscow Watch Factory was given the highest Soviet award in 1966. Four years after that, products from the Chistopol Watch Factory, whose timepieces were already being developed under the Vostok name, were exported to 54 different countries across the globe. Fast forward to this day, and the Russian watch industry has continued to thrive and grow. Some early Soviet brands such as Vostok and Sturmanskie are still creating watches to this day and have become some of the most well-known representatives of Russian watchmaking. In recent years, many other Russian watch brands have started to appear. Some of these brands source their movements from Vostok, while others use Swiss calibers in their watches. Whether it is a historical watch brand or a modern Russian watchmaker like Denissov, Moscow-Classic, Nesterov, or Raketa, these manufacturers are maintaining the tradition and soul of Russian watch history. Final Thoughts From this list, it is evident that Russian watches are highly underrated and deserve to be more under the spotlight. They are affordable, reliable, and quite easy to service. Additionally, they carry unique designs that make them stand out from their competitors. Although the Russian watch industry is rather young compared to the Swiss, Japanese, and German watch industries, their audience continues to grow steadily every day. No longer just a niche, Russian watches have become a beautiful part of the collections of many watch enthusiasts.  If you are looking to get your own Russian timepiece, you should definitely obtain one of the Russian watches listed above. That said, make sure to do some research and diligent inspection before finalizing your purchase. Cheap imitations of Russian watches, along with swapped-out parts and aftermarket modifications, are relatively prevalent. Featured Image By: Sturmanskie Looking for a great pilot’s watch? Have a look at this Guide on finding the perfect Glycine Airman

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  4. A Complete Guide to the Swatch Sistem51 Collection

    A Complete Guide to the Swatch Sistem51 Collection

    The Swatch Group is famous for changing watchmaking forever as it salvaged multiple companies from the wrath of the quartz crisis. Since the company took its stand as a Swiss giant, its name became synonymous with affordable yet excellent timepieces. After 30 years of excellence, the company was challenged to release a watch that best described its heritage while also dictating its future. So, in 2013, everyone was treated to a modern icon — the Swatch Sistem51. What is the Swatch Sistem 51? The Swatch Sistem51 is quite a sight to behold. When it was first launched, it was conceptualized as a plastic watch. Plastic watches are actually quite typical for Swatch. However, what made the Swatch Sistem51 truly impressive was that it is a mechanical watch, unlike Swatch’s usual quartz-powered pieces. To put things into perspective, a simple mechanical movement typically has 130 components. The Swatch Sistem51’s self-winding mechanical movement truly outdid itself, with just 51 parts, and all of its cogs mounted on a single screw. In addition, it is also a true powerhouse caliber, with features like 90 hours of power reserve and top-notch accuracy. 5 Best Swatch Sistem51 Watches Swatch has a plethora of Sistem51 watches you can choose from. So, to help you decide which one to pick, we gathered 5 of the best Swatch Sistem51 watches for your perusal. 1. Sistem51 Sistem Pilote YIB404 The Sistem Pilote stands out with its unique all-black design. This model comes with a sunburst black dial that features a cut-out in the shape of a crescent. This allows wearers to view the movement at work through the face of the watch. This 42mm stainless steel watch also innovatively plays with blacks of various hues. From its dial case to its hour indices and hands, each of these comes in contrasting hues of black that allow for better legibility. In addition, this Swatch Sistem51 piece also has a silver second hand and a circular date window at 3 o’clock. With a comfortable black leather strap, this watch would make a fine everyday accessory. You can purchase the Sistem Pilote for just $245 USD. 2. Sistem5 Sistem White SUTW400 From a black Swatch Sistem51 watch, let us head to the other side of the color spectrum with a white edition. Also measuring 42mm in diameter, this watch, like most Swatch watches, is made mostly from plastic. The white strap comes in very durable rubber material. This Sistem White piece also has a circular date window at 3 o’clock, but this one comes in a bright lime shade. On the white dial are vibrant, multi-colored dots that give the timepiece more personality. Even the caseback and movement of the watch are brightly colored in a variety of different hues, spicing this watch up. This bold and bright Swatch Sistem51 piece has a price ranging from $100 USD to $110 USD. 3. Sistem51 Irony Sistem Soul YIS402 For those who prefer stainless steel watches, check out the Sistem Soul. This is a monochrome watch with a very minimalist design. The dial of the watch comes in white, while the stainless steel case bears a cool silver hue. The white dial also boasts an intricate geometric design that is sure to draw your eye in. Unlike the previous two models, this Swatch Sistem51 piece has a square date window. It is also marked with 60-minute markers in 5-minute increments and has a 24-hour layout to boot. In retail, this watch costs around $245 USD. 4. Sistem51 Sistem Thought The handsome Sistem Thought stands out as a contemporary take on military watches. This 42mm stainless steel watch in black also bears a striking black dial. It has a cut-out in the middle of the dial that gives you a glimpse of the caliber running underneath. It also boasts 12-hour markers and a peculiar date scale on the inner ring of the dial. This watch comes with a classy brown leather strap, so you could easily bring it to dressier occasions too. This Swatch Sistem51 piece retails at around $245 USD. 5. Sistem51 Sistem Col-Ora SUTB408 Much like the Sistem White, the Sistem Col-Ora boasts splashes of color in an otherwise simple, monochrome watch. The markers of this watch come in bright colors, with the caseback striped diagonally in the same hues. The strap of the watch also comes with vertical ridges for a little bit of texture. This is a plastic watch and costs around $150 USD in retail. History of the Swatch Sistem 51 The concept of the Swatch Sistem51 takes people back to the history of Swatch. Today, the company is better known for its colorful and popular designs, collaboration with artists, and marketing that targets the masses. However, Swatch is also remembered as a company that changed the way the Swiss watchmaking industry was run forever. Swatch was created in response to the horology industry’s quartz crisis. Prior to the 1970s, the industry was comprised only of mechanical timepieces. However, this all changed in the late 1970s, when there was a quartz watch boom. Quartz is cheap and can be mass-produced, and this greatly threatened the mechanical watch business, which is what the Swiss watchmaking scene is mostly composed of. This crisis completely overtook the Swiss market, so much so that James Bond — known for his Rolex watches at the time — even switched to using a digital watch from Seiko for a while. Nicolas G. Hayek is the person responsible for turning the Swiss watchmaking industry around. He created a company that was known as the Swiss Corporation for Microelectronics and Watchmaking Industries. This company, better known as SMH, became a merger of prominent brands including Omega, Tissot, and Longines. This company, which was funded by Hayek himself, reformed the watchmaking industry. Eventually, SMH was renamed the Swatch Group. Through this company, Hayek introduced the modern age of machination and continued to mass-produce Swiss masterpieces. Launching the Swatch Sistem51 In 2013, Swatch celebrated its 30th year in the industry. Creative director Carlo Giodanetti was asked to create a brand new Swatch timepiece for the brand’s 30th anniversary. Indeed, this was quite a challenge as he had to come up with something spectacular that still remained true to the idea of what Swatch is all about. At the 2013 Baselworld, Swatch pulled the curtains back on their Sistem51. Deemed as a spectacle and one of the most exciting launches of that year, the Swatch Sistem51 was a worthy tribute to Swatch’s 30th anniversary. The Swatch Sistem51 was notable for two reasons: firstly, it was a new, unique mechanical timepiece from a company that lived primarily on quartz movements. Secondly, the Swatch Sistem51 watches are sold at around 100 CHF to 200 CHF. This makes the Swatch Sistem51 the cheapest automatic Swiss watch on the market. Building the Swatch Sistem51 A mechanical movement follows some basic principles that need to be preserved for it to function well. Firstly, the mechanical caliber should have a mainspring barrel. It should also be wound by a peripheral rotor that powers the gear train. The gear train then functions at a rate controlled by the oscillating balance wheel as well as the ticking level escapement. What is impressive about the Sistem51 is that they kept all these intact with just 51 parts. Considering the average mechanical movement has around 130 components, the Swatch Sistem51, which has been slimmed down to just 51 parts, is truly a mechanical marvel indeed. In addition, the Sistem51 movement does not have any screws. All of its components are held together by metallic pins. You can see this through the clear caseback of a Swatch Sistem51 watch. Finally, for efficiency reasons and to stay true to the idea of a Swatch watch, the escape lever of the Swatch Sistemt1 also comes in plastic! There are some polarizing views about this but it helps make this watch truly affordable. The process of building the Swatch Sistem51 is also a technological marvel in itself. This is because the whole process is entirely robotized. ETA, Swatch’s movement manufacturer, put up an innovative facility in Boncourt, Switzerland for just this purpose. According to reports, the facility has a total of 400 machines installed that work non-stop, 24 hours a day, up to six whole days a week. These machines are responsible for creating the components in the Swatch Sistem51 movement. They are also in charge of fixing the movement into the main plate before moving on to the decoration of the watch. Using digital printers, each Swatch Sistem51 piece gets decorated according to different themes that best reflect Swatch’s affordable yet flamboyant design philosophy. Although Swatch does not share how many watches it makes a year, estimates suggest that around 4,000 Swatch Sistem51 are made every day. In 2016, Swatch built a second facility, doubling its production capacity. Combining the prowess of these two facilities, we are looking at an estimate of two million watches made every year. That is way higher than even Rolex! Final Thoughts On the whole, there are some polarizing views when it comes to Swatch. Watch enthusiasts have gone into endless debates over the brand’s use of plastic and flamboyant, loud designs. That said, you cannot deny that it has achieved an efficient marvel with the mechanization of the Swatch Sistem51’s production process. The Sistem51 is a true testament to Swatch’s ideals of affordability, efficiency, and innovation, and continues the legacy of Swatch’s colorful and accessible plastic watches. Looking for more affordable mechanical watches? Learn more about the Hamilton Khaki King and Seiko 5 watches. Photos courtesy of Swatch Group.

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  5. Top Affordable Mechanical Watches for Men

    Top Affordable Mechanical Watches for Men

    When looking for an affordable timepiece, many people do not usually consider a mechanical watch. At least, they do not do so at first. More often than not, people would opt for a quartz wristwatch due to its price, which tends to be cheaper. To be sure, there are many high-quality quartz watches out there with great prices, but there are also numerous outstanding mechanical timepieces in the market that come with similar, affordable price tags. Despite being quite economical, each mechanical model is packed with complications and quality that you can trust. For this article, we will be taking a look at some of the best affordable mechanical watches available for the dashing enthusiast. 20 of the Best Affordable Mechanical Watches in the Market Affordable mechanical watches are not the easiest things to come by. But do not fear, for we have you covered. Listed below are 20 of the best affordable mechanical watches in the market. Keep in mind that the models are listed in no particular order and each piece is an excellent choice in its own right.  1. Seiko 5 SNK805 Image by: Ebay Our list starts with the military-inspired Seiko SNK805 from the Seiko 5 line, which features a no-nonsense matte-finish green dial that keeps things simple, with an inner ring for hour markers. Its outer ring contains numerals for the minutes and seconds, and a day-and-date complication at 3 o’clock. The 38mm stainless steel case is modest, lightweight, and unassuming in the best possible sense. Inside the watch is a reliable 7S26C mechanical movement that performs beyond the watch’s approximate price point of $100 USD. Combined with a green nylon strap, this affordable Seiko mechanical watch is homey and constantly ready to go. 2. Orient TriStar  Image by: Ebay When people ask about an affordable mechanical watch from Orient, the response is usually the Bambino. And without a doubt, the Bambino is great. Its elegance and affordability are undeniable. But Orient also has another affordable mechanical timepiece, which many people argue is actually better than the Bambino: the Orient TriStar. Marked by the three stars applied on its watch face, the TriStar has a history that dates back to the 1970s. The brand states that the TriStar was originally meant to be an option for countries with less access to replaceable quartz watch batteries. Weighing in at 40mm in diameter, the TriStar possesses a timeless look with its stainless steel case and classy light brown nylon strap. While some TriStar models can reach up to $200 USD, other pieces will only cost you around $100 USD. 3. Invicta Pro Diver 8926 Image by: Invicta Watch The Invicta Pro Diver is renowned in the watch community as one of the best affordable alternatives to the Rolex Submariner. In many respects, that statement does hold. First of all, an Invicta Pro Diver is worth around $100 USD. That affordability in itself should already be a point for consideration. The watch comes in a 40mm stainless steel case that has a water resistance capacity of 200m, and a matching, sleek stainless steel bracelet. Working behind the black dial is an NH35A mechanical movement, and you can view the caliber at work through an exhibition-style case back. In terms of looks and functionality, the Invicta Pro Diver is quite the selection. Sure, it’s not an actual Rolex, but it is definitely a great option as a mechanical watch, especially if you are working with a budget.  4. Citizen Promaster NY0040 While the Invicta Pro Diver is a great bargain, you can take a serious step up forward in terms of diver’s watches by shelling out a little more moolah for a Citizen Promaster. The Citizen NY0040 is an ISO-certified diver’s watch with a depth rating of 200m and a high-visibility black dial. Its 46mm stainless steel case features a blend of brushed and polished surfaces, giving it a rugged and super sporty appearance. Inside the case is an in-house 21-jewel Miyota 8200 movement. Truthfully, this is a watch that wants the attention, and if its specs are not enough to get yours, then maybe the under-$300 USD price tag will. 5. Timex Marlin Automatic California Dial Image By: Timex Timex describes the Marlin Automatic California as a watch inspired by vintage models during the 1930s to 1940s. With its classic looks and hand-wound movement, the Marlin Automatic California exudes sophistication and never fails to catch the eyes of on-lookers. Its rose gold-colored case is sleek in every sense of the word and gives the watch a luxurious feel. Beneath its alluring black dial is a tried-and-tested automatic movement equipped with 21 jewels and a 40-hour power reserve. Taking everything into account, it does come as quite the shocker that something this beautiful and reliable only costs around $250 USD. 6. Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical Hamilton is always a great choice when it comes to affordable automatic watches. The Khaki Field Mechanical is a piece of American watchmaking that pays homage to Hamilton’s rich heritage. Though the case leans towards the small side, measuring only 38mm in diameter, its brushed case, simple dial layout, and hacking capabilities allow this Hamilton to stand as a genuine American military field watch. Usually supplied with an ETA 2801-2 automatic movement, the Khaki Field Mechanical boasts a vintage military aesthetic and retails at under $500 USD.  7. Tissot Everytime Swissmatic Coming in at around $400 USD, the Tissot Everytime Swissmatic is a stylish yet affordable piece from the T-Classic collection, and is one of Tissot’s best entry-level mechanical watches. This watch offers the best of Swiss watchmaking, with its clean and minimalistic aesthetics. Its stark black dial contrasts delightfully against its silver-toned indices, long hands, and slim stainless steel case. This elegant look is topped off with a classy black leather strap. Apart from its dressy looks, another impressive aspect of the Everytime Swissmatic is its movement. Its automatic movement boasts a power reserve that can last up to 70 hours and has an accuracy of +/- 10 seconds per day. For such an affordable price, it would prove quite a challenge to find a mechanical caliber as capable as this one. 8. Bulova Aerojet 98A187 While tourbillon watches are beyond the budgets of many, Bulova has a budget-friendly open-heart timepiece that almost anyone can afford. Covered by a 41mm stainless steel case, the Aerojet 98A187 showcases a grey dial with rose gold-colored indices, dauphine hands, and a circular window at 6 o’clock to give the dial a faux-tourbillon aesthetic. The window puts the spotlight on the Miyota movement’s balance wheel, where you can see it oscillate back and forth. You can also view the Miyota in its entirety through the Aerojet’s exhibition-style case back. The Bulova Aerojet 98A187 can be purchased at just only $299 USD. 9. Seiko Prospex “Save the Ocean” Samurai SBDY019 The “Save the Ocean” Samurai is a Seiko timepiece that needs no introduction. Several aspects make this Prospex diver iconic, including its design, heritage, reliability, and its price. To be exact, the Seiko SBDY019, also known as the SRPC93, is priced around $500 USD. Made in collaboration with Fabien Cousteau, grandson of world-renowned marine biologist Jacques-Yves Cousteau, the enigmatic SBDY019 comes in a 43.8mm stainless steel case paired with a dark matching sleek silver bracelet of the same material. Of course, the real star of the show is the watch’s dial. Its uneven blue gradient emulates the imagery of ocean waters, which is thematic on-point, considering this Seiko Samurai is a diver’s watch. The 4R35 movement that powers this mechanical watch is reliable and has manual winding and hacking capabilities.  10. Orient Kamasu Image By: StufflerMike (Watchuseek) It is pretty hard to find a mechanical watch under $300 USD. It is even more challenging to find one that also comes with protective sapphire glass, which is typically the most expensive of watch crystals. Fortunately, you can get all this and more with the Orient Kamasu. The Kamasu, formerly known as the Mako 3, is a diver’s watch that boasts a sturdy stainless steel case, 200m of water resistance, a layer of sapphire glass, and a cool blue rotating bezel. Inside the casing is a mesmerizing blue sunburst dial with outlined indices, hands, and a day-and-date window. This watch is powered by an automatic Orient Caliber F6922, which many say is able to match the reliability and accuracy of Seiko’s movements. Overall, this watch offers so much for so little, and is one of the best value-for-money mechanical timepieces you can get. 11. Vostok Amphibia Automatic Image By: Vostok Amphibia People who know about Vostok watches will definitely vouch for how great the Amphibia really is. As a brand, Vostok is the watch supplier for the Russian army. The Amphibia, in particular, is an affordable and robust watch made to withstand different environments. Costing around $90 USD, this Russian stainless steel mechanical watch with 200m of water resistance and a reliable Vostok automatic movement. This watch comes in a variety of colors and designs, meaning you certainly will not be limited by your options, and will easily be able to find a Vostok Amphibia that suits your specific tastes. Each Amphibia timepiece also has a power reserve that lasts for 31 hours when fully wound.  12. Nodus Sector Field Image By: Nodus Watches Sold at approximately $425 USD, the Nodus Sector Field is a mechanical field watch that comes with a variety of functions for your everyday needs. Its stainless steel case features a mix of bead-blasted and polished surfaces, a sapphire crystal, and a water resistance rating of 100m. The brown sunburst sector dial is beguiling, to say the least, and it comes with a sword-shaped handset that matches well with the overall design scheme of the watch. Underneath the watch face is a Seiko NH35 automatic movement, which Nodus regulated in four positions to achieve a precision rate of +/- 10 seconds per day.  13. Fossil Inscription Automatic Image By: Fossil Oftentimes, wearers like to be able to see their watch’s movements in action. However, not all wristwatches come with a display case or skeleton dial. In this case, we have found an affordable watch with a suave skeleton dial that allows you to view its intricate mechanical movement at work. The Fossil Inscription can come in a smoke or gold-tone case and boasts an octagonal curvature with screws unusually placed at each end of its bezel. It has a case size of 42mm, but its short lugs make it look much slimmer. This watch only has a water resistance capacity of 50m, which is not surprising considering its beautiful skeleton dial. Still, the Fossil piece is attractive and makes for a trusty $250 USD timekeeper. 14. Swatch Sistem51 Irony Sistem Boreal Image By: Swatch Even after years, the Swatch Sistem51 remains a fresh and modern take on mechanical watches. Assembled by an army of robots, each Sistem51 watch comes with an automatic movement equipped with 51 components, a central screw, and a 90-hour power reserve. There are many Sistem 51 timepieces to choose from, and they are all superb options. But one model that instantly catches our attention is the $215 USD Sistem51 Boreal. With its one-of-a-kind celestial dial, this Swatch watch comes in a finely-polished stainless steel case coupled with a matching stainless steel bracelet. Its beauty is magnificent and it is an affordable mechanical model that belongs in anybody’s collection. 15. Victorinox Swiss Army Alliance Mechanical Image By: Victorinox Retailing at approximately $650 USD, the Victorinox Swiss Army Alliance Mechanical stands as the highest-priced affordable mechanical watch on our list. From its looks alone, you can understand why this Victorinox timepiece fetches such a price. It is both classy and sporty, and fits snugly thanks to its 40mm diameter and 9.9mm height. Located underneath the gorgeous asphalt-like watch face is an authentic Swiss ETA 2892 automatic movement, which you can view clearly through the exhibition-style rear case. Equipped with triple-coated anti-reflective sapphire glass, 100m water resistance, and adequate lume, the Alliance Mechanical is an exceptional mechanical timepiece that instantly ups your class once you wear it. 16. Hamilton Khaki Field King Auto Image By: Hamilton Watch Its moniker of “King” is not just for show. With its handsome looks, military heritage, sturdy structure, and 80-hour power reserve, the Hamilton Khaki Field King Auto rightfully earns its title as the king. If you have been looking for an affordable mechanical watch for a while now, you should know that it is not easy finding something this capable, worth around just $575 USD. This Hamilton Khaki Field watch boasts a 50m water-resistant stainless steel case that uses an anti-reflective sapphire crystal on top. Its H-40 movement has a frequency of 21,600 vibrations per hour and can be viewed through the open case back. 17. Marathon General Purpose Mechanical Image By: Marathon Watch The Marathon General Purpose Mechanical is a watch that leans on the small side, both in size and price. Worth around $360 USD, the General Purpose Mechanical sports a slender 34mm Fibershell case. Though the watch is quite slim in structure, its automatic movement packs a sizable punch. The timepiece uses a Seiko NH35 self-winding caliber, a kind of mechanical movement that winds itself through the natural motion of your wrist. After being fully wound, this Marathon wristwatch can last up to 41 hours. Sheltered by scratch-resistant sapphire glass, General Purpose Mechanical is dust-proof and water-resistant up to depths of 30m. 18. Laco Augsburg Image By: Laco Available in both 39mm and 42mm sizes, the Laco Augsburg boasts a highly legible dial with leaf-style hands and a generous amount of lume. Its Laco 21 automatic movement features manual hacking, which is a nice benefit to have on a $400 USD watch. Its case has some incredible profiling for an entry-level Flieger timepiece, and its case back provides a nice view of the mechanical movement in motion. 19. Tissot T-Classic Le Locle Powermatic 80 Another member of the T-Classic series, the Tissot Le Locle Powermatic 80 is an opulent yet luxurious mechanical watch that you will certainly want to try. Like the Khaki Field King Auto, the Le Locle Powermatic 80 costs around $575 USD. The model we have for this list is the Le Locle T006.407.16.053.00. This Powermatic 80 timepiece features a 39mm stainless steel case and a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal. Its sector dial sports a vintage design with a patterned black surface, silver-toned Roman numerals, and leaf-shaped hands. Running the watch is the Powermatic 80 movement renowned for its 80-hour power reserve. 20. Seiko Presage Cocktail Time “Blue Moon” SRPB41J1 The last watch on this list is this stunning Presage piece Seiko made in collaboration with renowned Japanese bartender Ishigaki Shinobu. Commonly known as the Blue Moon, the SRPB41J1 is a prime example of exceptional Japanese watchmaking. Without a doubt, the best part about this watch is its dark blue sunburst dial. Its overall design and how it plays with light makes the watch an outstanding yet affordable work of art. Protected by a 40.5mm stainless steel case, the Blue Moon utilizes an automatic 4R35 movement. Tried and tested, this movement exhibits reliable accuracy and a 41-hour power reserve. If you want a mechanical watch that looks captivating while only costing you around $440 USD, look no further than the SRPB41J1. What is a Mechanical Watch? Essentially, a mechanical watch is a timepiece that utilizes a clockwork mechanism to tell the passage of time. This differs from a quartz model, which functions electronically with the help of a small battery. There are two kinds of mechanical watches: hand-wound and automatic. Hand-wound models get their power from being manually wound on a regular basis. Automatic movements, on the other hand, can supply power to itself through a self-winding apparatus. Mechanical watches, both hand-wound and automatic, typically have five main components: a mainspring, a gear train or wheel train, a balance wheel, an escapement mechanism, and, of course, a dial.  The mainspring is a spiral torsion spring that acts as the power source of the timepiece. Generally, the mainspring must be wound regularly, either by hand or by a self-winding apparatus, to keep the watch functioning. The energy received from the mainspring transfers via the gear train to the balance wheel. As the balance wheel oscillates back and forth from the force, the escapement mechanism releases the gear train to move forward with each swing of the balance wheel. This, in turn, moves the watch hands forward at a steady rate, making the watch “tick”.  Now, when you buy a mechanical watch, you need to bear a few things in mind. These models are very different from the regular quartz watches you see every day. If you are new to the concept of mechanical timepieces or have never invested in one, doing a bit of research will save you from a lot of unwarranted stress and will ensure that you are ready for your first mechanical timekeeper. Why Are Mechanical Watches So Expensive? Most mechanical timepieces tend to be more expensive than their quartz counterparts. While not all mechanical watches come at prices that break the bank – hence the point of this guide – there are several reasons why mechanical watches tend to be pricey in general. Quality First and foremost is the quality. Compared to quartz movements, watchmakers craft their mechanical movements with materials of the highest quality. As a result, the parts in a mechanical watch tend to be more durable, reliable, and resilient. When put together expertly by a skillful watchmaker, each component makes up a clockwork mechanism movement that is built to last for a lifetime. Craftsmanship Next, we have the craftsmanship of the watchmaker. It is not easy to forge a mechanical movement. It takes years of experience and practice to master the art. There are hundreds of parts that form an intricate structure inside a timepiece. How a watchmaker puts them all together, without any component misaligning, is a testament to the watchmaker’s craft. Heritage The third reason for the elevated prices of mechanical watches involves the watchmaker’s heritage. While there is a universal standard to making watches, each brand has its own method of creating a mechanical timepiece. A mechanical watch that is handmade traditionally is unique, as it highlights authenticity and exclusivity. Although the industry continues to dish out innovation after innovation, what remains true to every brand is the traditional values they personally imbue in their timepieces. Value All things put together, a mechanical watch comes out as a horological work of art. And just like a work of art, its value increases as time passes. In general, mechanical watches always appreciate and have a higher value over time, and this is especially true of models from the most recognized brands such as Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Audemars Piguet. Final Thoughts These mechanical watches are always fascinating to look at, especially when they come with a transparent case back that allows you to see their mechanical movements in all their glory. Seeing every component at work reminds you of the effort and expertise a watchmaker invests into their craft. Now, nobody is saying you should not splurge on a brand like Rolex or Omega, if you are able to. After all, luxury watches, including mechanical ones, come at a much more exorbitant cost due to their overall elevated value. That said, our list today is a reminder that you can still acquire an exceptional mechanical wristwatch without ever having to break the bank. Looking for fine additions to your Classic Watch collection? Have a look at this article on 20 Classic Watches that also act as collectible pieces Photo credits to WatchShopping.com unless otherwise stated.

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  6. 5 Things to Remember About Mechanical Watches

    5 Things to Remember About Mechanical Watches

    A mechanical watch uses a clockwork mechanism to measure the passage of time. These watches are driven by a mainspring which must be wound either periodically by hand or via an automatic winding mechanism. To put it differently, the watch requires an automatic winding to operate. These watches do not work on battery, and this quality, thus, makes them valuable. These classic wristwatches are simply amazing. Although they are expensive, they are worth buying. If you have a mechanical watch, then you must surely be earning these benefits. First of all, they last for a lifetime. Their longevity can’t be doubted because they feature a well-built mechanism. Secondly, you won’t have to worry about replacing the batteries. And lastly, these watches have a clear sapphire casing on the back, which gives a clear view of fascinating rotations. In short, you can’t really go wrong with mechanical watches. Now, when you buy mechanical watches, you need to remember a few things. Since they are different in mechanism from the normal watches that we commonly wear, their care and working mechanism differ as well. If you are new to mechanical watches or if you still haven’t invested in one, then you need to keep the following in mind. 1: Craftsmanship   This is what fascinates us when we buy mechanical watches. If you are an engineer, you will definitely consider the craftsmanship of a mechanical watch. There are hundreds of parts that form an intricate structure inside the clock. They are all assembled to create a lifetime piece. Today, you will find so many different pieces of craftsmanship that are improved, refined, and perfected, giving the best-complicated movements! 2: Durability Mechanical watches are passed from generation to generation because they ensure durability and can run for a lifetime. However, this is not the case with quartz watches. They are simply a buy-and-throw object. You must have bought many quartz watches, but they die in a year or two. They can’t be kept for long. But luxury watches can give you a lifetime experience. These watches, even if kept for ages, do not go out of fashion, or worse, stop working completely. The mechanical engineering that lies behind their making never lets them fail, thus, making them durable. 3: Heritage  Mechanical watches have been in the markets for the longest time. Many innovations are taking place as time goes by, with new features and modern parts being added to the mechanical watches. The good news is: they never get old. Their beauty stays, and even after so long, they would still continue to tick. When it comes to the heritage of a mechanical watch, the brand and watchmaking tradition counts a lot. However, the advantage of having a mechanical watch is that you can keep it as an heirloom. In the age of discoveries, modern technology is taking over old things. But what is irreplaceable is a mechanical watch. Its value never fades since it’s a piece of art! 4: Value  Things that possess great craftsmanship tend to increase in value. In general, mechanical watches always have a higher value, especially if they are made by top-tier brands such as Rolex, Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, and so on. The value of their vintage watches has increased too much in the past years. On the contrary, quartz watches can be very cheap or slightly expensive, but they are never as costly. Some people do not appreciate fine craftsmanship or mechanical watches and compare them to quartz watches. There’s no doubt that mechanical watches come with an unmatchable value. 5: Aesthetics  The last thing you should remember about a mechanical watch is its aesthetics. After the preparation of its inner machinery, it’s put into a beautiful case that allows one to see all the intricate machinery inside. If you buy a mechanical watch just by looking at its case, then you might only admire its beauty from the outside. On the other hand, if you go for mechanical watches, they would not only let you praise them from outside, but the inner workings of the parts and the beauty they hold would make you appreciate the craftsmanship as well. Some watches do not have a complicated dial, and they do not show the inner workings from the top. But when you flip the watch, its see-through caseback will definitely catch your gaze. After all, how can you miss watching the stunning movement that goes on behind to give you the perfect time? Conclusion These watches are always fascinating. Seeing every component moving reminds you of the effort and engineering that are invested in the masterpiece.

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  7. Best Mechanical Watches for Men

    Best Mechanical Watches for Men

    To many watch aficionados, the only kind of watch to wear are mechanical watches. But with so many out there, the abundance of choices can be overwhelming. While we can’t go through them all, let’s look at a few of the best mechanical watches to consider. Yes, Quartz is More Accurate Before the Quartz fans start screaming, we should get this one out of the way. It is true, quartz watches are slightly more accurate than mechanical watches. While today’s technology means mechanical watches are getting more and more accurate, they will still never be as accurate as their quartz cousins (at least not in our lifetimes). Results vary, but you can expect a good quartz watch to lose only a few seconds a year while a well-made mechanical watch may lose a few seconds per month. But that is a small price to pay for the wonder that is a mechanical watch. Tag Heuer Autavia Isograph If we remember much from the 1980s style, it was that things were big and bold. Hair was sprayed high, shoulder pads got ridiculously puffy and punk-inspired ensembles broke norms with shredded style. It was in the 80s that the Tag Heuer Autavia thrived. Discontinued in 1985, the model recently made a triumphant return. As its name suggests, the watch blends the style of race-inspired timepieces with made-for-pilots “aviation” watches. The result is a wonderful hybrid that comes in a carbon composite case that can take one heck of a beating. Since it’s antimagnetic, shock resistant, and gravity resistant, it’s durable enough to take anything most men can dish out. The round case wears large at 42mm, but not so big and bulky that it doesn’t dress up nicely on a fine leather strap. Rolex Yacht-Master II Detractors of the classic Rolex Yacht-Master II may say that the watch wears too heavy. And they may have a point. With a diameter of 44mm and a bold angular lug design, it does present large. It’s one of the biggest offerings Rolex has in its repertoire. But most watch lovers will say that’s the beauty of the timepiece. It’s a guy’s guy watch that proudly puts its heft on display. With water resistance up to 100 meters, it’s built tough and designed for the adventurous spirit. That’s not to say it doesn’t have its finer side. Eighteen carat gold hour markers give it an air of sophistication while the instantly recognizable Ring Command bezel gives it a big, bold, blue show that most men would be proud to heft around on their wrists. Longines HydroConquest Automatic Diver You may be aware that the Swatch Group produces Longines timepieces. And Swatch is known for its whimsical watches, with lots of plastic pieces you may get in a variety of colors to add a splash of fun to an everyday outfit. That doesn’t mean you can’t look to them for a fine automatic watch. The Longines HydroConquest is a perfect example of this dichotomy. This is a classic men’s watch, with a bold blue dial, silver-white indices, and a traditional no-nonsense case style, which doesn’t go too big with a 41mm diameter. The result is a masculine piece that doesn’t try to overcompensate. Adding to its old-school aesthetics, the screw-down crown and link bracelet tells the world you’re a traditional man with traditional tastes. www.instagram.com/p/BwFJndVBs0T/ Tudor Black Bay If you are going for all of the hallmarks that traditionally go into a watch for a man — clean lines, form following function, and a pedigree that goes back decades — one should not look past the Black Bay. While we first saw the line in 2012, its roots go much deeper, back to Tudor foray into dive watches with the Submariner in 1954. Today, the Tudor Black Bay, which comes in over a dozen varieties, continues that tradition with models like the Black Bay P01. With a 42mm diameter case, it has a manly vibe, that’s softened by a satin stainless steel finish. But this watch was made for men of action. It’s waterproof to 200 meters, has a crown at the four o’clock position to protect it from any bumps the watch may take on its side, and locks down its bezel with a unique hinge system. It’s no surprise this model is based on a design from 1967 intended for divers in the U.S. Navy and given the apt code name “Commando.” Hublot Classic Fusion Ferrari GT Putting this monster on your wrist, with a bold 45mm carbon-fiber case, might draw accusations of overcompensation. Driving a Ferrari might do the same. But for guys who want things big, bold, and luxurious, the Classic Fusion Ferrari GT 3D Carbon (also available in titanium and “King Gold”) is a perfect choice. Hublot began its association with Ferrari back in 2011, drawing inspiration from the Gran Turismo racers of the Italian auto legends. This one just screams for attention, with a busy skeletonized dial and subdials that seem to float over the action. The self-winding flyback chronograph’s movement is made up of over 350 parts, all moving in precise unison to create a show worthy of the Ferrari name. Mechanical Watches Conclusion Of course, there are more. Lots more. Most major brands have dozens of mechanical offerings. But if you keep your eyes peeled and mind open, we’re sure you’ll find that perfect mechanical watch to put on your wrist.

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  8. Watch Movements: Which is Right for You?

    Watch Movements: Which is Right for You?

    Out of all accessories a man can have, a watch is the most prominent one. Watches reflect your personality more than anything else. They make you look stylish as well as well-groomed. We know how and why watches are so important when it comes to men’s attire, but how to choose the best one? What makes a watch perfect? What makes it worth buying, and above all, which of the watch movements are right for you? Types of Watch Movements: If you ask any watch love or watch collector what are the makings of a good watch, their first choice would be movement. To understand watch movements, think of it as the heart in the human body. There are three types of movements in a watch: Mechanical Automatic Quartz Mechanical Timepieces with mechanical winding are traditional pedigree; even the fact that you have to self-wind the watch doesn’t really matter as it’s the mark of a classic watch. How does it work? Well, the easiest way to explain is that every mechanical watch has a coil: a mainspring. You wound the mainspring, and when it starts to unwind, your watch’s seconds’ hand starts to tick. Every watch’s coil or mainspring is different in length; the longer the coil is, the more reserve hours you get. Pros of a Mechanical Watch When it comes to a mechanical watch, you don’t need a battery, so there is no question about the power running out in your watch. There is a reason why they are called classics. The simplest way to start your watch again is to wind it up again; there is nothing better than being able to wind your watch yourself. No more tedious trips to the watch shop to get the battery replaced. A mechanical watch is noiseless; you don’t get to hear the tick-tick of the second’s hand. The movement is sweeping. Watch enthusiasts love this one bit more than anything in a mechanical watch. There is no craftsmanship like the one in a mechanical watch. It’s truly amazing how a watchmaker puts minute pieces together to give us the perfect time. Cons of a Mechanical Watch Manual winding can be a tedious job for some. Getting a battery-operated watch is less hassle. It’s suggested that you wind your watch every day for perfect timing. Some can go for two days without winding even. A mechanical watch is pretty sensitive to many things, especially the four ominous forces namely dust, moisture, shock, and magnet. So, you have to be very guarded with your mechanical watch. Automatic There isn’t much difference between an automatic and mechanical watch. They both work with the help of mainspring and gears. But an automatic watch is powered by your wrist and doesn’t need winding. The watch works while you wear it because of the rotor that mimics the movement of your wrist throughout the day. If you plan to rest your watch for days, make sure you place it in a watch winder that will keep it running. Pros of An Automatic Watch There is no need to replace batteries as there are none on the watch. You don’t have to self-wind the watch as its movement is fueled by the movement of your wrists. With automatic watches, you get smooth movement, no tick-tick of the seconds hand in automatic as well. The automatic watches are also a masterpiece of craftsmanship. They are just as complicated as mechanical watches. Cons of An Automatic Watch Same as a mechanical watch, automatic watches are also affected by the four forces and they can seriously mess up the watch. You will need a watch winder to store your watch if you aren’t planning to wear it for a long time, or else the time and calendar will get stuck to one point. Although they aren’t expensive, they are one additional item that you have to buy other than your automatic watch. You will need to tune up your automatic watch with regular intervals, or it will lose its accuracy. Automatic watches can be expensive. Quartz Quartz is the most common movement in all watches if you are wearing one. It’s battery-operated, which means it’s pretty accurate. You will never have an extra sec, or you will never lose a second if you are wearing a quartz watch movement. These watches are more trustworthy and can withstand the four forces better than automatic or mechanical. Most sports, pilots, as well as field watches, are quartz. Pros of a Quartz Watch The time on quartz watches is perfectly accurate. This is the best advantage of having a high-quality quartz watch. You don’t need to wind it; quartz watches are low-maintenance watches. Not only are these watches are durable, but they are also more affordable. Cons of a Quartz Watch There is not much history really with a quartz watch; it’s just like a machine, same with any other device. You also get the annoying tick-tick of the second’s hand; there is no smooth movement. Watches are the reflection of a man’s personality. But it’s a fact that they can be pretty expensive. So, explore your choices when it comes to watch movements and get the best one for yourself!

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  9. Choosing Between Different Watch Movements

    Choosing Between Different Watch Movements

    When it comes to jewelry, people have always been fond of watches. In fact, watches have now become a part of everyday life. Everyone has different taste on the basis of which different styles and series of watches they choose. So, if you are in a dilemma of selecting a watch to present to someone, you have to consider some main points to choose the best from the stock, like watch movements. Let’s start discussing the different types of watch movements that are out there. The movement of a watch is considered as “the heart” of the watch. It handles the inner mechanism that encompasses the sweep of the watch’s hands around its face. There are three types of movements we’ll go over. Different Watch Movements 1: Mechanical Watches A mechanical watch is actually a special piece reflecting the true craftsmanship and engineering after the manufacturing process of a watch. Mechanical watches have the power preserved in the mainspring. If the coil is long, the period of power reservation is long too. The usual length of the mainspring is 9-13 inches. Mechanical watches are the masterpieces of the craftsmanship. Let’s discuss some of the features. Character: The springs and gears that make the caliber of a watch are termed as character. The tiny little gears and springs that combine to form the movement of the watch truly reveal the engineering skills of manufacturers. These are the most time important and time-consuming part, making the watch work magnificently. Movement: Mechanical watches do not make the “ticking” sound. The watch works smoothly with the smooth movement, symbolizing the calmness. Battery: Unlike in quartz, a battery is not needed for the mechanical watch to work. This manual winding watch has the ease that you don’t need to move yourself to the jewelry store to change the power cell of the watch. The power is stored inside the spring. Regular Winding: The watch requires regular winding. This allows people to wind their watches once a day. This might be annoying for some people, but others enjoy this thing. Accuracy: Not all mechanical watches are accurate. These watches have an accuracy of 99.99%. But the accuracy starts to taper off with age. To tune up its accuracy, you need to take it to the jeweler every 5 to 10 years. The environmental factors can also change the accuracy. Sensitive: A mechanical watch keeps the time running smoothly with the help of the movement, consisting of gears and springs. These elements are sensitive to dust, moisture, and magnets, etc. which can destroy the smoothness and working of the watch. 2: Automatic Watches Automatic or self-winding watches are much like mechanical watches, but they do not require manual winding. The watch gets the power your movements throughout the day while wearing it. The “rotor” present in the watch is connected to the mainspring. The rotor then winds the mainspring as it moves. The slipping clutch helps the watch to prevent from getting over-wound. Character: Just like a mechanical watch, the watches have the same craftsmanship factor. The power is stored in the spring, and the movement consists of gears and spring. Smooth movement: Unlike a quarts watch, the movement of an automatic watch is smooth. Self-winding: A self-winding watch doesn’t require the user to wind the watch regularly. The movement of your hand automatically winds the watch to preserve the power. Accuracy: An automatic watch has the accuracy same as that of a mechanical watch. However, it will lose some accuracy over time and will also need tuning. It will provide accuracy up to 99.99%. Sensitive: The watch movement, also known as “the heart” of the watch, is sensitive to the environment.  The sensitivity is the same as that of a mechanical watch. 3: Quartz Watches Quartz watches are incredibly accurate and affordable. Mostly, quartz watches are preferred more than mechanical and automatic watches. Accurate: A quartz watch is the most accurate of all the watches. These watches never miss a second throughout the day. Durable: If you are a worker and have a rough and tough job, quartz watches might be the right decision for you. These watches are durable and strong that can help you keep your work going. Affordable: These watches are of an affordable price. You can buy an elegant design watch along with the strong features at a low rate. A good variety is available and the price is still affordable. Less maintenance: Besides changing the battery every year, there is little maintenance you have to perform on a quartz movement watch. Sound: This watch produces a ticking sound that might be unpleasant for some people. If you are such a person who doesn’t like the ticking sound, you must go for an automatic or mechanical watch. However, some people like the ticking sound of a watch.

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  10. Tools You Should Have for Your Watch Repair Kit

    Tools You Should Have for Your Watch Repair Kit

    Ever want to fix your own watch, but you just do not have the right tools? Fear not, for we are about to go over with you all you need in order to have your very own watch repair kit. One thing many watch enthusiasts experience is “tumbling down the rabbit-hole” of timepiece obsession. What we mean is that a significant amount of people keep falling deeper and deeper into watch culture, and they end up becoming absolutely enamored with the inner workings of their watches. One result of such a tumble is people wanting to repair their own timepieces, which can be an incredibly fun endeavor. If this practice interests you, you are going to want to own some, or even all of the following tools for your own watch repair kit. Components of a Watch Repair Kit Multiple Tweezer Sizes A crucial tool you will need is tweezers, which lets you grab hold of tiny parts of the watch for extraction and repair. You will likely want to keep multiple tweezers of different sizes, especially since there is a diverse range of components in a watch, each with their own sizes and handling needs. Crystal Remover One way into a watch is by removing its crystal. Additionally, many watch repair enthusiasts like to temporarily take their crystals off a watch to give them a polish. Either way, your best bet is to use a crystal remover tool to do so. Crystal Polisher You want your watch to look sleek and brand new throughout its lifetime. While the internal mechanisms will inevitably wear down over time, your crystal does not have to. Instead, give it a polish every once in a while, with a specialized crystal polisher, and it will look as good as new. Miniature Screwdrivers Just about every timepiece out there is held together by screws, so you will need a screwdriver to take them apart. Of course, manufacturers use a range of screws with varying sizes for different models. What you will need is multiple miniature screwdrivers, which will allow you to unscrew a watch easily no matter what size it is. Hand Installation Instruments Part of the watch repair process involves taking the hands in and out of the casing. You might do this for a variety of reasons, including repair, a need for polish, or a full-on part replacement. Regardless, handling such a delicate object on your own is not in your best interest. Instead, get a hand installation tool to do the job for you. Winder One thing that mechanical watches often need is their handsprings wound. While you may be able to do this task by hand, you will find the process much more effective with a winder. This is because such instruments allow for a better grip and superior torque, which come in handy when working with such small objects. Metal Polisher An important aspect regarding the aesthetics of your watch involves the metal of your case and possibly your strap if it is made out of metal. Over time, metal cases and bracelets will start to lose their shine, especially if you expose your watch to rough conditions. You can reverse this trend using metal polishing products and tools. Oil and Oiling Instruments When it comes to timepiece functions, friction is your enemy. That is why you should invest in some oil and oil-applying instruments in your watch repair kit. Just like with a car, you need things to be slick for the machinery to work correctly. Regularly oiling a few key parts will do just that. Case Openers Though your screwdrivers will help a lot in opening a watch, you will likely need some additional assistance for the case. No watch repair kit is complete without a case opener. The reason for this is that timepieces are built incredibly well, some to the point where they can function hundreds of meters underwater. Taking apart that kind of resiliency takes much more than just a screwdriver and your bare hands. Band Pins and Pin Removers Lastly, we have band pins and pin removers. One of the best things about watches is that you can substitute your strap with another one at any time. Through this process, you can change the entire look and feel of your timepiece with ease. Though doing so is not difficult, it does require specialized tools like band pins and pin removers. 10 Best Watch Repair Kits  Now that we know all the different tools that you need to repair a watch, let us take a look at some of the best watch repair kits available out there.  1. Vastar Watch Repair Kit  Starting off with a very versatile set from Vastar, this is great for both professionals and those who enjoy DIY activities at home. For less than $20 USD, you get a complete kit with around 151 pieces of watch repair tools and components. One of the best things about this particular kit is that it comes with a case opener, which can be adjusted for cases up to 52mm. This means that dealing with both standard and oversized timepieces will no longer be a problem. Moreover, this watch repair tool kit also contains a spring bar remover for bracelet adjustments, anti-magnetic tweezers for better battery handling, and a manual for overall guidance.  All these, and more, are encased in a nylon zipper bag, making this kit easy to bring anywhere and everywhere. If you prefer a more vibrant-looking tool kit, this Vastar set also comes in an all-pink color variation as well.  2. Stalwart  Next up, we have a watch repair tool kit from a brand that is best known for offering a wide selection of tools. Stalwart is a pretty popular company in the DIY community because they offer a variety of tool sets for both general and specific uses. For example, Stalwart’s watch repair kit includes 144 pieces of watch tools and components with an affordable price tag of around $18 USD. These include a watch back pry opener, a case holder, anti-magnetic screwdrivers, a link remover tool, a bunch of spring pins, and lots more.  However, despite its affordability and completeness, this Stalwart set also has its downsides. First, it does not come with an instruction manual, which means it is less user-friendly to amateurs and beginners. Second, since Stalwart is a quite renowned brand, counterfeit products with their name on it do exist, so you have to be extra cautious when buying.  3. Kingsdun  Kingsdun is a Chinese brand that manufactures a variety of professional and special tools. They have partnerships with companies from different parts of the globe such as  Walmart, SMC Corporation, and many more. I mention this because, in order to have such big affiliates, you have to offer truly reliable and trustworthy products – and Kingsdun certainly meets that standard. Kingsdun’s DIY Watch Repair Tool Kit comes with 208 pieces of equipment and components. Aside from the usual tools, it also includes case wrench teeth, a bracelet holder, a spring bar tool with a scale, a cleaning cloth, and lots of spare components as well. It also comes with a bag and an instruction manual which makes everything easier, from storage to the actual repair process.  While the number of parts in Kingsdun’s watch repair kit may be intimidating, this is a great option for those who want the security that comes with having spare or duplicate components.  4. Stago  Stago is for those who already have some sort of experience with repairing their watches. In comparison to the previous kits mentioned, this one is a bit more pricey because it is definitely a long-term investment. This particular watch repair set has a total of 141 pieces with a price tag of approximately $40 USD. It includes a variety of quality tools and components such as an adjustable case opener, a watch case knife, link removers, a magnifying glass, a cleaning tool, waterproof paste, and many more.  Those who own this specific watch repair kit from Stago have said many good things about it. On the whole, it is perceived as a great tool set for collectors and enthusiasts who do self-maintenance for their timepieces.  5. Ohuhu  This next watch repair kit from Ohuhu is one of the most affordable yet quality sets out there. It comes with a total of 174 pieces of watch tools that are either made of durable plastic or stainless steel. Priced at around $17 USD, you might initially think this is a scam, or that the tools are not well-made, but those who have used Ohuhu’s watch repair set have nothing but praise for it. This kit includes the usual adjustable case opener, knife, tweezers, strap spring pins, screwdrivers, a case holder, link removers, and the like. Lastly, all these tools come in a nylon carry-on for easier storage and portability.  If your watch warranty has run out and you do not want to fork out money for every new repair or watch maintenance, then this Ohuhu repair kit is perfect for you. For such an affordable price, you can get a set of long-lasting, reliable tools that get the job done.  6. EzTool  EzTool is actually a company that is based in Australia, but offers their products worldwide. They provide quality tools that specifically cater to those in the watch community, regardless of their level of experience. Their watch repair tool kit retails at around $35 USD and is ideal for simple watch maintenance and repairs. Some of the tools and components included are as follows: a Jaxa case opening wrench, anti-magnetic tweezers, a spring bar tool, a link remover, and more.  The best thing about this particular watch repair tool kit is that it comes with a guidebook that has step-by-step instructions and photos. EzTool has really put in an effort to make the watch repair process easy and straightforward for beginners, yet also accessible and high-quality for seasoned DIY individuals.  7. Bergeon  Bergeon is one of the most renowned manufacturers of watch tools in the industry. They are a Swiss company that offers a variety of horology-related instruments, equipment, and components. Their products are professional-grade, which means that their prices are higher compared to most tool kits out there. An interesting thing about Bergeon is that they sell both Swiss-made sets and individual tools which is perfect for serious collectors and experts who really invest in these kinds of products.  The Bergeon 7812 Professional Grade, priced at approximately $226 USD, is a watch repair tool kit with a total of 18 pieces included. It consists of tweezers, screwdrivers, flat nose pliers, a spring bar tool, a wrist-measuring band, a case opener with a knife, a pin extractor, and more. However, unlike most of the sets mentioned on this list, the Bergeon 7812 does not come with any pins, so you will have to purchase those separately if needed. Overall, this watch repair kit is definitely a recommended investment for professionals and those who are serious about watch repair and maintenance.  8. Zexett Zexett is another brand that offers good quality tools and equipment. Their watch repair kit is a 200-piece set that is great for both beginners and experts. It includes opener knives, tweezers, adjustable case openers, a hammer, precision screwdrivers, replacement needles, spring pins, and more. All these tools and components are packed in a zipper carrying case with mini compact containers which makes it more convenient storage and portability-wise.  The great thing about the Zexett watch repair tool kit is that it comes with a very detailed manual. Even if you are new to DIY watch repair and maintenance, you will not have to worry too much because you simply have to read the instructions provided and follow accordingly.  9. BYNIIUR  BYNIIUR offers another watch repair kit that is perfect for general use, without breaking the bank. It has a price tag of around $17 USD which is definitely a steal for all that you are getting. This watch tool kit is a 155-piece set that can be used for both simple and complex repairs. It includes an extra large wrench case opener, a band link remover, tweezers, a case pry opener, pliers, a band holder, and many more.  The cool thing about this watch repair kit is that most of the tools and components are made out of durable stainless steel. This means that they are expected to last a long time, which is great for watch enthusiasts out there who constantly find themselves repairing their timepieces.  10. Onmust  Onmust’s watch repair kit serves as another affordable option for both amateurs and experts who enjoy tinkering with their timepieces. For approximately $23 USD, you can get a watch repair tool set with the following components: an adjustable watch case opener (up to 55 mm), a watch case holder, a pry knife, a spring bar tool, a hammer, a cleaning cloth, and more.  The interesting thing about this kit is that it comes with a watch capping machine, which makes everything, from the disassembly and assembly processes to the adjustments, a lot easier. While the current kits have instruction manuals included, some of Onmust’s old watch repair kits do not, so just make sure to check the kit thoroughly, especially if you need a guide.  Which watch repair kit should you buy?  After going through that list of the best watch repair tool kits on the market, some of you may be even more confused, faced with so many options. Here are some tips to guide you before you actually make the purchase. Know Your Level  If your watch is way past its warranty date and you do not want to spend a lot of money for a repair, then you have to check how confident you are with tinkering. If you have some experience with fixing devices or appliances then you can probably handle a simple watch repair as well. If you are a complete amateur, make sure to get a user-friendly watch repair kit, preferably with a clear instruction manual, rather than a complex one. Acknowledging your level at this kind of DIY task will help you narrow down your choices.  Know Your Watch  This one is pretty self-explanatory because there are some watch repair kits that cater to specific case sizes or structures. You have to be aware of the anatomy of your watch so that you will not accidentally buy the tools of the wrong sizes or shape. I mean, for example, you cannot exactly fix an Apple Watch with the standard watch repair kit, right?  Don’t Be Deceived By Numbers  Just because a kit is cheap or expensive, does not necessarily mean it is worth it or good either. In addition, even though having spare components can come in handy, having more pieces or components does not always equate to a better tool set. Do not be fooled by simple numbers. You have to do your own research by reading reviews in order to find out if the watch repair tool kit you are looking at will really fit your needs.  Alternative to Watch Repair Kits: A Watch Repair Specialist Many watch enthusiasts think that getting a watch repair kit and maintaining their timepieces by themselves will be a pleasurable experience. While the majority of them are correct, others find that this goal is simply too much work. If the latter describes you, do not think that taking your watch to a watch repair specialist is a loss. Instead, realize that this endeavor just was not for you and let a professional do the work for you! That said, repairing your own watches can come with a variety of benefits. In our opinion, the most rewarding part is how intimate you can get with your piece of machinery. Instead of only gazing at the outside of the watch, you get to understand and have a hand in the maintenance of the inner workings as well. While it may take a while to become proficient at watch repair, there is a good chance that you will fall in love with the process, so you certainly should not hesitate to at least try. Final Thoughts As far as making a purchase, your best bet is to buy a full watch repair kit that has most or all of the tools you want in it. Purchasing tools individually is likely not in your best interest due to expense and the amount of time you will have to spend looking for the right tools. Once you get that perfect watch repair set, however, you can easily split your favorite timepiece open and see just what is on the inside.

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  11. History of Watches: A Quick Timeline

    History of Watches: A Quick Timeline

    Watches have been around for a long, long time. But what is the actual history of watches? Ever asked yourself, “When was the watch invented?” Or wondered how they’re made? Watches today are not what they used to be. Take a look at a smartphone for example. What we know is that it can take calls, send texts, track fitness data, and carry out scores of other functions. At this point of highly advanced technology, it is interesting to look back throughout history and understand where watches came from in the first place. Below, we briefly go over the history of watches from when were watches invented to now. Invention of the Clock Before we talk about watches and the invention of them, we must go over the history of timekeeping devices. Though early civilizations used primitive time-telling devices, such as sundials, the first clock was invented by the English in 1275. In the beginning, they were so basic that all they could do was ring a bell at every hour. Still, engineers and blacksmiths collaborated for hundreds of years and eventually were able to build clocks that looked roughly like the mechanical ones we have today. They also started to experiment with metals outside of the traditional material, steel. That included silver, bronze and brass. Pocket Watch History When was the pocket watch invented? These were such primitive times that the famous religious figure John Calvin actually banned the wearing of jewelry in Switzerland. This opened up a massive opportunity for anybody in Switzerland that could create pocket watches. Historically, the first of them was produced in the late 1500’s and like the earliest clocks, only had an hour hand. As the utility and popularity of pocket watches became apparent, the industry was further funded and advanced. The result was more reliable pieces, the inclusion of minute and second hands and a growing consumer base. Widespread Adoption In the 19th century, the industrial revolution had taken hold and every industry was experiencing massive improvements. Many changes took place, but the most prominent were superior products, lower prices and mass production. One sector that was swept up in this wave of productivity was pocket watches, and they finally reached the mass market. Before this, only the wealthy could afford such expensive and luxurious timepieces. Now, commoners could afford them too. The Wristwatch History  Though wristwatches had been around for centuries, their use was not widespread. In fact, they were primarily worn by wealthy women. The reason was that at first all watches were too expensive for common people. Then, after the prices fell, there were still very few people wearing them because they were considered a women’s style, and not many women chose to wear watches. What shifted this trend was the adoption of men using wristwatches in the military. This began in 1880 when Constant Girard decided to outfit his German naval officers with wristwatches. In the following years, doing so became more and more popular. Use on the Battlefield We’re talking about the history of watches, but watches have a history with history itself. Though WWI had many massive implications, one of the less significant ones was the use of military wristwatches. What happened is that soldiers in the trenches did not want to take a watch out of their pockets every time they needed to check the time. They opted for the more functional wristwatch, which could be checked immediately and did not require the soldier to take one of their hands off their weapon. Beyond convenience, having the time handy was a critical factor in making military maneuvers. The reason is that different groups of soldiers could coordinate attacks even if they could not communicate. Instead, they would agree to attack at a particular time and use their watch to confirm coordination. Wristwatches Take Over After the war, it was now acceptable and trendy for men to wear wristwatches.  Watch company marketing departments began to use depictions of soldiers wearing wristwatches to sell them to other men. Additionally, men who had worn them throughout the war had become accustomed to doing so and wanted to continue that habit. The result was an explosion in the popularity of wristwatches, which allowed them to nearly take over the entire pocket watch market. Technological Developments Once watches became a massive industry, money came pouring in for research and development. This led to added features such as chronographs, quartz movements, useful bezels, and more. The result was a diversification of the functions watches could carry out, which further expanded the market for them. Watches Get Smarter In the last twenty years, computers have been getting smaller and smaller. First, they went from the size of entire rooms to personal computers. Next, we developed laptops and smartphones. Now, in the modern age, we can fit advanced computers in tiny compartments that fit on our wrists. The result is smartwatches like the Apple Watch. There is still a large market for vintage style watches, but smart innovations are changing the watch industry in rapid fashion. When you go shopping for watches online, most of the pieces you come across are vastly different than timepieces were throughout history. The reason is that what you see today is the accumulation of hundreds of years of advancements. Now, whoever you are and whatever you are looking for, there is a piece for you. You just have to go find it.

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  12. Watch Guide: How Are Watches Made?

    Watch Guide: How Are Watches Made?

    The question “how are watches made?” is a bit too general to answer as is. Instead, we should focus on a specific type of watch. Luckily, there is one that is profoundly more interesting than the rest: Mechanical. Lets look into how to make a watch. Generally, the most expensive and sought-after watches are mechanical, as opposed to quartz or digital. If you browse the website of a genuine luxury brand, the odds are that the vast majority of their pieces are mechanical and have a hefty price tag. The reason is that the inner workings of these watches are incredibly intricate, and many consumers see them as works of art. For this reason, we will point our focus to mechanical watches, with a few ending notes on other variations. Aesthetic and Functional Vision Watches have been around for a long time. Ever thought about how watch parts are made? Before any production begins, the watch manufacturer needs to have a plan. One part of that plan is deciding on the aesthetics and functionality of the watch. As far as aesthetics, they need to focus on issues like color, size, buckle type, and more. For functional aspects, the manufacturer has many options such as bezel function, showing the date, being water resistant to great depths, or having a chronograph. These decisions are important because they change the personality of the watch entirely. If you go one direction, you get a minimalist watch that just tells the time. On the other side of the spectrum, you might get a piece with a significant amount of functions and a design that turns heads. Once the manufacturer decides precisely what they’re trying to do with a piece, they can move on to the next step. High-Tech Movement Design The second aspect of pre-production planning is designing the movement of the watch, which is defined as the mechanics behind its various functions. Generally, this is some combination of springs, screws, wheels, and other typical mechanical pieces. Of course, not every watch is the same. Sometimes a manufacturer will want to create a unique movement, or they will include a difficult function like a full year calendar or chronograph. To do this, manufacturers use computer programs. This allows their engineers to develop perfect systems that are sure to function correctly. Once the movement is settled on and designed, it’s almost time for production to get started. Choosing Materials The last decision watchmakers need to make before beginning production is what material they want to use. (The standard is stainless steel.) Those include precious metals, ceramic, leather, expensive plastics and more. Again, these decisions are based on what the manufacturer’s goals are with the watch. If they want to create a bare bones model that is meant to solely tell time without costing too much, they will choose steel. If they are in the luxury space and want to create a piece with some flash, they may choose gold or silver. In-House or Partnership? Ever wondered how to build a watch? At this point, the manufacturer has a plan for the aesthetics, functionality, movement, and materials. Finally, they can move on to producing the watches. There are two ways to go about this. First, they can create the watch entirely or mostly in-house. This means that rather than sourcing their parts and materials from other businesses, they build a watch from the ground up. This is typical of luxury manufacturers, who pride themselves on controlling every aspect of production. The alternative is choosing a partner to produce some or all of the watch. That can mean contracting out individual pieces then assembling in-house, or submitting a design to a factory and having them build the entire watch. This practice is generally characteristic of more affordable brands. Hand or Machine? The final step in production is to decide which aspects of their watches will be hand built versus which will be built by machines. As with the former point, there is a split here for luxury and affordable pieces. In general, expensive pieces have more handmade aspects, while affordable watches are entirely machine-made. How Quartz and Digital Differ The other primary movement type, quartz, undergoes a similar process. The only difference is that the inner workings of those watches are usually less complicated than mechanical. For digital watches, the steps are again roughly similar, but when creating the dial and inside of the watch, they opt for digital circuitry. If you’ve ever wondered why watches are so fascinating, perhaps this article has answered that question. The potential reason is that an incredible amount of time, effort, and creativity goes into making a timepiece. The manufacturer must make choices regarding aesthetics, functionality, movement, materials, and production specifics. Of course, you don’t see any of this when you make your purchase. Instead, you see only the result: A masterpiece. Now that you know how watches are made and the watch making process, maybe you’ll appreciate the little wrist pieces a little more.

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