Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding
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  1. #1
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    Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    Good evening,

    I was looking at purchasing my first automatic watch. Looking at either a Tissot or Hamilton. The salesman noticed I was riding a motorcycle (Harley Davidson). He said he didn't recommend wearing a automatic watch while riding the motorcycle because the vibration might damage the mechanism in the watch. I've never heard this so I figured I'd ask here. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    I ride a motorcycle nearly everyday. All of my watches are automatics. I haven't had an issue yet. Your results may vary (disclaimer in case it is different for you).

    My current bike is a 2004 Kawasaki Mean Streak 1600. It has a single pin crank and therefore has a similar sound as the Harley. I bet it vibrates a little less though.

    For what it's worth, the first auto that I used with the bike was a Seiko Monster, which is known around here to be VERY reliable, and known to take a beating and keep on ticking.

    I also wear a Lew & Huey Orthos and today I wore my new Zelos Chroma 2. See my sig, I've worn all those watches while riding my bike.

    I have a co-worker who has a Harley chopper he built himself (he is very good at it). He also owns a Patek Philippe. He doesn't wear that while riding his hog, not only due to vibration concerns, but also because he doesn't want it to fall off and loose it!!!

    I've heard about the vibration being an issue, but I haven't experienced it yet. My suggestion, first try with a less expensive one, and one known to be "robust".

    Hope that helps!
    Lord Monocle, bald1der and Badiker like this.
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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    Quote Originally Posted by bald1der View Post
    Good evening,

    I was looking at purchasing my first automatic watch. Looking at either a Tissot or Hamilton. The salesman noticed I was riding a motorcycle (Harley Davidson). He said he didn't recommend wearing a automatic watch while riding the motorcycle because the vibration might damage the mechanism in the watch. I've never heard this so I figured I'd ask here. Thanks.
    The salesman is an idiot...you can ignore him.
    kendalw3, bald1der, jlow28 and 2 others like this.

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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    The vibrations from a Harley - which are visible from 20 meters - could exacerbate the wear on the mechanism. I rode a few different Yamaha cruisers during the 1990s wearing my Rolex Datejust all the time with no problems. But they were much smoother rides. So sell the Hog and play it safe.
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    when I used to have a motorcycle I was wearing my seiko automatic with no problem. Granted I didn't ride that often for long periods of time. However I know that Harley is designed to have a huge amount of vibration compared to all other bikes and it could have a negative effect on your watch

  7. #6
    Member Lord Monocle's Avatar
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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    I've worn autos on my Yamaha plenty of times.

    Your wrist is an amazing shock absorber and heat sink. Just wear the watch.
    kendalw3, bald1der and anabuki like this.
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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    Quote Originally Posted by MediumRB View Post
    The vibrations from a Harley - which are visible from 20 meters - could exacerbate the wear on the mechanism. I rode a few different Yamaha cruisers during the 1990s wearing my Rolex Datejust all the time with no problems. But they were much smoother rides. So sell the Hog and play it safe.
    I'd sell all my watches before I sell the Harley!! lol

  9. #8
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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    That's why I choose :

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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    Quote Originally Posted by bald1der View Post
    I was looking at purchasing my first automatic watch. Looking at either a Tissot or Hamilton. The salesman noticed I was riding a motorcycle (Harley Davidson). He said he didn't recommend wearing a automatic watch while riding the motorcycle because the vibration might damage the mechanism in the watch. I've never heard this so I figured I'd ask here. Thanks.
    I see that comment as a precaution against customer claims. The bike's vibrations might cause more wear in the long run, but they will not damage it so that it fails any time soon. Automatic movements are much tougher than that. However, the vibrations may cause the watch to speed up or slow down noticeably while you ride. Shaking movements affects the balance wheel oscillation. So the manufacturer cannot guarantee that a watch keeps its specified precision while riding vibrating motorbikes, which is something some customers might perceive as a watch failure.
    Barry S and anabuki like this.

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    Re: Automatic Watch and Motorcycle riding

    Quote Originally Posted by bald1der View Post
    Good evening,

    I was looking at purchasing my first automatic watch. Looking at either a Tissot or Hamilton. The salesman noticed I was riding a motorcycle (Harley Davidson). He said he didn't recommend wearing a automatic watch while riding the motorcycle because the vibration might damage the mechanism in the watch. I've never heard this so I figured I'd ask here. Thanks.
    I don't know what year your Harley is but all the modern bikes are either rubber mounted or have balance shafts to reduce the vibration. I have a Sportster with the rubber mounted engine and for the most part any vibration is no worse than what you feel in the steering wheel of a car at speed when you have a tire slightly out of balance. Ride the bike. You put far more G's on you watch swinging your arm around all day than you would riding the Harley.

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