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What are automatic wrist watches?

Tuesday Dec 9, 2008

A tiny machine on your wrist, no battery, no solar panel, no LED’s, powered by the motion your body makes while you live your life. Intricate and precise, automatic wrist watches have a symbiotic relationship with you that no other time keeper has. What? Your cell phone keeps perfect time? I don’t want to hear it. The weight and heartbeat of a good automatic wrist watch has the power to make the wearer happy. A mechanical Breitling chronometer makes whirring, clicking, clunking and ticking noises that sooth my soul and relax my mind. It brings you back to a time when craftsmanship was what mattered and the things we bought were not disposable. I personally have trashed at least five cell phones, but I have every automatic watch I ever bought (and a couple of quartz watches as well–don’t tell anyone).

Automatic wrist watches, also known as self-winding watches are watches with a winding mechanism that is powered by the movement of your arm. This does away with the need to wind the watch. They have a small weighted rotor in the shape of a half-circle that spins on a center pivot. Wearing the watch causes the rotor to spin. This motion is translated into power through a series of gears that wind the mainspring. A clutch keeps the watch from becoming over wound. For serious detail on how this works check out this article on wikipedia.

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