Watches, especially those produced by renowned luxury brands are pieces that have been around for centuries in our culture and are one of the most worn pieces of accessories around the world. For many, watches are a symbol of status, which is why they always search for the next great watch, in the hope that they will be perceived as a majestic, strong guy. We’ve discussed watches before in our articles and today we want to dive deeply into the world of fine crafting and to focus on very precise aspects, such as: what the difference between a chronograph and a chronometer are, what is movement in the language of watches and whether serial numbers are important or not.
Some watch brands have established a name for themselves, and have a strong tradition that is backing them up. Some brands, such as TAG Heuer for example are known world-wide for their quality timepieces that are synonymous with luxury and style. The brand was founded in the 1860s in Switzerland and the rest is history. To this day, Swiss watches are some of the most sought for watches which is why brands such as TAG Heuer offer everything from sports watches and chronographs to masterfully crafted dress watches.
Tradition and history are important elements when it comes to buying a watch, as a brand that positively checks both is a brand that has created a name for itself and that has withstood the test of time. Withstanding the test of time is something any good watch should do.
Let’s look at some of the elements that differentiate an average watch from a good one, and what you should learn about your timepieces:
One of the first things you should learn about watches is that there are the different types of movements. The movement is the force behind the pieces’ motion. It’s amazing how much precision and craftsmanship is needed to create a good watch. You would be amazed to learn that it’s not an easy job. There are different types of movements in the world of luxury and mainstream watches, the most common being the following:
Jewel movement. Jewel movement is usually the type of movement kept only for the most high-end of high-end watches. Such pieces use jewels for their movement and you will notice that the more jewels a watch has in its mechanism, the more expensive it is. Generally, watches with jewel movement have 19 jewels placed inside their mechanisms.
Quartz movement. The quartz movement is the most common type of movement and is not very much associated with luxury watches. However, quartz movements are very accurate and you can rely on them very well, the only reason they are so popular is because they are less expensive and easier to make, which is not what the average luxury watch hunter is looking for. A watch with a quartz movement sends an electric current from a battery to a small quartz crystal. This crystal vibrates at predictable and precise rates. If you want to know the exact numbers, you should know that it is: 32,768 cycles per second.
Mechanical movement. The mechanical movement is one of the oldest types of movement, but it is still very important and very used. Mechanical movement uses energy that is created by a wound spring. When this releases energy, the energy makes the watch’s mechanism to move and this can last for decades with no need of a battery.
Self-winding movement. Watches with self-winding movement have a mainspring. This is wound either by automatic movement or by hand. A balance, which is the terms for a precise mechanism transfers the power of the spring to the hands of the watch.
Chronometer vs Chronograph
You might have heard a lot about chronographs and chronometers, but didn’t know what the difference was.
A chronometer is a watch that has the absolute highest standard of precision. Chronometers are only watches that work on automatic or mechanical movements. Watches that work with quartz movement are not designated as “chronometers”. In order for a watch to be called a chronometer, it has to pass a lot of tests, which are demanded by the COSC, which is the Swiss Official Chronometer Control. These tests last 15 days and make sure the watch’s movement is as close to perfection as possible, and are run under water, under different temperatures and in different positions. Automatic or self-winding watches cannot offer such a perfect measurement of time, which is why chronometers are generally also more expensive than chronographs.
Chronographs are watches that have stopwatch capabilities. Chronographs use diverse counters to measured elapsed time. These counters can register hours, minutes and seconds and give the watch carrier the ability to time a certain activity or process.
Luxury watches, but also most premium watches have a serial number attached. Serial numbers are useful for the buyer, as they ensure him that the piece he owns is legit and of good quality. Authorized dealers of premium watches generally have access to databases where they can find the serial number of each watch they own and sell. Should you decide to spend a lot of money on a watch, you should make sure it is the one you want and that its source is the one you need it to be.
To conclude, we need to say that you should know exactly what you are buying when you want to add a watch to your wardrobe. Knowing what you are wearing says that you are a man who is paying attention to details and who thoroughly understands his fashion. If you don’t know much, or want to learn more about a specific watch, you can ask the store’s clerk, or customer service representative to show you more. This is also a sign of a good service: receiving all the information you need about a product is key, as, you know how they say: if you understand it, you can explain it, and if you don’t –you don’t.
Having a watch correctly strapped to your wrist, not too tight and not too light, is definitely a way to complete a look and to express yourself through your clothes, while telling a story about your vision and inspiration, which is what fashion, in the end, is all about.
Fraquoh and Franchomme
P.S. What are you looking for when you are browsing for watches? Share your comments below and remember that you can subscribe to our website to receive more articles on fashion and lifestyle or you can follow us on social media!