Many people now choose to own more than one watch as there is such a magnificent range of international brands and styles to choose from to suit every mood, celebration or purpose. Choose from Fraser Hart’s outstanding selection of international watch brands.
At Fraser Hart we believe that good product knowledge is essential in helping you to make your product selection. Let us share some of our knowledge with you.
The five main types of watches available are: Mechanical, Self Winding Automatic, Quartz, Kinetic and Solar.
A mechanical watch is a traditional watch movement powered by a main spring. This watch will need to be fully manually wound. The frequency of winding can vary between once every 24 hours to once every 7 days. The instruction booklet which comes with each watch will advise the optimum frequency.
The power source of a quartz watch is a battery. This battery in turn causes a quartz crystal to vibrate 32,768 times per second. These vibrations are then reduced to one beat per second which in turn drives the hands or digits on a watch face.
Automatic (self winding) Watches
These watches wind themselves as the wearer moves their wrist, a weight or rota spins inside the watch as the wearer moves winding the watch up. An automatic watch when fully wound will run for up to 7 days and can be manually wound if necessary.
A kinetic watch does not need a battery and does not need winding. Kinetic watches use the movement of the wearers arm similar to an automatic watch to produce an electrical energy to keep the watch running. Once a kinetic watch is fully charged it can keep time for up to 6 months even when not being worn.
Solar watches are powered by light, the photo electric cell stores the charge in a capacitor which works like a battery only in this instance the capacitor does not need regular replacement and does not compromise on accuracy. Solar watches also have the same accuracy as quartz watches but never need a battery. The cell charges continuously in any kind of light to run forever.
An explanation of some of the terms used in watches:
- Analogue - a traditional watch face with a dial, hands and numbers or markers that present a conventional display of 12 hours.
- Chronograph – a watch with a stopwatch function. Most have two or three sub dials for measuring minutes and hours. It can be used in conjunction with specialised scales on the bezel e.g. tachometer for determining speed or telemeter for distance.
- Chronometer – a watch which has been tested at various temperatures and positions and meets the accuracy standards set by Swiss Controle des Chronometres (COSC).
- Digital – the display of time in numbers or digits instead of hands. These numbers appear in a Liquid Crystal Display or Light Emitting Diode.
- Divers Watch – Most divers’ watches will have a unidirectional rotating bezel, screw down winding crown and case back. They must be water resistant to at least 200 meters.
- Dual time – measures local time and one other time zone.
- Perpetual Calendar – a calendar that adjusts automatically for the different length of each month and leap years. They can be quartz or mechanical movements.
- Sapphire Crystal - This is the clear cover on the watch face (often referred to as the watch glass) Glasses can be made of glass, plastic, mineral crystal or Sapphire Crystal - the latter is a scratch-resistant synthetic material and the best of the watch glasses available.