On “How to get along with a mechanical watch” and “To keep better accuracy”, you can see various tips and topics to use a mechanical watch comfortably such as introduction of its charming points and its most important part for keeping its accuracy, tips for keeping the watch running, tips for keeping its accuracy, etc.
How to get along with a mechanical watch
It has a special taste to use a mechanical watch. It may be because you can look after this and that of it though today we have many ways to see what time it is.
A mechanical watch is one of products with highest precision which everybody can use in everyday life. It is a symbol of machine technology, which has been advanced with improvement of modern science and technology since the 17th century in Europe. The mechanism inside is excellent, showing a summit of beautility of a machine. And it is powered by a spring, needs your winding to get its life. If you forget to wind up its mainspring, it will soon stop. Its time may become much incorrect if you don’t care for a while. The time ticked on a mechanical watch may touch its owner’s life.
When, where and how it is used, The time on a mechanical watch may show various facets reflecting its user’s life. To use a mechanical watch is, in a sense, a try to get feel back to the time.
Most of things are powered by electricity today.In such an electrical world, it can be a special enjoyment to give power, adjust the time and take other care for a mechanical watch. Citizen’s mechanical watches will support you to live a life with a certain rhythm by keeping time in accuracy enough for daily life as an everyday partner if you use them with care.
Mechanical watches are powered by a spring. You can also find a spring as power source in daily products such as a music box or a toy vehicle.
For example, on a music box, turning a key winds up a spring. As the spring is loosening, a music cylinder in the box rotates. Pins on the cylinder flick the comb in the box to play a tune.
On a mechanical watch, on the other hand, turning the crown winds up the mainspring in it and gears and wheels rotate as the mainspring is loosening. The moving gears and wheels move the hands of the watch and shows the time at last.
For a mechanical watch as well as a music box, the power source is your action to wind a spring up. It is owing to you, whether you wind up the mainspring periodically if a mechanical watch keeps running for a long time.
The mainspring is directly wound up when you rotates the crown. When wearing the watch, your arm’s movement rotates the oscillating weight in it to wind the mainspring automatically.
The mainspring of a mechanical watch is fully loosened in a few days without rewinding though it is loosening very slowly.
In addition, it is when the mainspring is sufficiently wound that the moment in which a mechanical watch keeps its accuracy best.
It is the best that you wear it every day and wind up the mainspring using the crown, if possible.
Higher technology and more advanced mechanism are required to keep time with higher accuracy. In the course of seeking higher accuracy, mechanical watches have made progress to become one of products with highest precision in the human history which everybody can use in everyday life.
Even a mechanical watch with such high precision may show larger inaccuracy per day than that written on specifications in a short period such as in a few days. In addition, every mechanical watch has different inclination of inaccuracy. Mechanical watches are a little bit like living thing in a sense. Perhaps it is a fun of using a mechanical watch to find its habits little by little.
Observe the watch for a week or 10 days to find its inclination of accuracy and adjust the time at least once a few days to keep accuracy sufficient for daily use.
An analog quartz watch is powered by electric motors to drive its gears. On the other hand, a mechanical watch is powered by the mainspring to rotate its gears and wheels.
Also, as the key parts of accuracy, equivalent of the pendulum of a grandfather clock, a quartz watch uses a quartz crystal oscillator, which oscillates periodical signals as it is energized. On the other hand, a mechanical watch uses a balance, which rotates back and forth periodically and keeps pace of movement of gears. On mechanical watches with transparent case backs, you can see periodical rotating back and forth of the balance.
Quartz watch Mechanical watch Power source battery spring Accuracy Based on oscillation of an energized quartz crystal
(ordinary 32 768 Hz)
Based on rotation of a balance
(5 - 10 beats/sec. (2.5 - 5 Hz))
Unit of accuracy Month (monthly accuracy) Day (daily accuracy)
When you want to see an approximation of accuracy of your mechanical watch, wind up the mainspring and adjust the time every day (at the same time if possible) and record inaccuracy since the previous day at the time adjustment for a week or 10 days.
The average of daily inaccuracy recorded in the period shows daily accuracy of your watch.
Generally, accuracy of a mechanical watch is handled in daily basis (daily accuracy). However, observing in a short span such as a day or a few days, it may show larger inaccuracy than that written on specifications even when it has no problems. Also, every mechanical watch may have different inclination of inaccuracy even in a single model.
Accuracy of a mechanical watch may be affected by degree how much the mainspring is wound, environmental temperature, posture of the watch (direction of gravity force to the watch), etc. Its daily accuracy becomes stable if you make conditions of use constant by not wearing it in a extreme environment and fix the way it is placed in when not worn.
When the daily accuracy of your watch found through the method above is much worse than that on specifications even though it is not used in an extreme condition, it may need check and adjustment. Consult your dealer or an authorized service center.
To keep better accuracy
A mechanical watch is powered by a spring (mainspring). As the mainspring is loosening, the power to rotate gears and wheels gradually becomes weaker. Though it takes 2 or 3 days to get the mainspring fully loosened, it is when the mainspring is sufficiently wound that the moment in which a mechanical watch keeps its accuracy best.
To keep better accuracy, it is recommended to wind up the mainspring using the crown every day.
The balance is the key part for accuracy of a mechanical watch. It is the equivalent of the pendulum of a grandfather clock.
Movement of the balance is affected by gravity force. For example, when you wear a watch, its posture changes in many ways as you are moving your arm. As the posture is changed, direction of gravity force to the watch also changed and it varies motion of the balance. Variation of motion of the balance results in unstableness of accuracy of the watch.
In addition, as every mechanical watch has a little different characteristic even in the same model. some may be affected more by the way of placement while they are not worn.
It is recommended to keep placing a watch in the same posture when you don’t wear it.
The balance, the key part for accuracy of a mechanical watch, is made of metal and it expands or shrinks as temperature varies. Its expansion and shrink cause frequency variation of motion of the balance. In addition, material characteristics of the hairspring, which moves the balance back and forth, may vary slightly corresponding to temperature. The elements above may move the hands of the watch forward or backward.
It is recommended not to use or store a mechanical watch in extreme conditions such as too cold or too hot environment.
* It is recommended to use this watch within +8 °C - +38 °C (46 °F - 100 °F).
Many metal parts such as the balance are used in a mechanical watch. Magnetism affects them and accuracy of the watch in consequence.
Do not allow the watch to come into close proximity to items with strong magnetism such as below: smartphone, tablet, tablet cover, earphones, speakers of other portable devices, magnetic health devices, magnetic latches of refrigerator doors, clasps of handbags, etc. Take special care when put the watch in your bag.
Examples of everyday items with strong magnetism
Keep the devices and equipment at least 5 cm away from the watch.
Accuracy of a mechanical watch is owing to evenness of rotation of the balance. Strong shocks and continuous shocks strongly affect movement of the balance and give very bad effect to accuracy of it. Strong shocks may even deform or break the balance.
Take care not to drop the watch and not to play sports which may give strong shocks to your wrist such as golf or tennis.
Parts inside of a watch will gradually be worn and deteriorated as you use it for a long time. In addition, oil on the parts will also get dirty and deteriorated little by little.
For checking and replacing parts and part lubrication, we recommend you to ask for periodical check (every two or three years if possible) and overhaul the watch.
Consult your dealer or an authorized service center.