Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???
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  1. #1
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    Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    I was thinking the other day about why it is that we are so interested/fascinated/obsessed with watches. It occurred to me that one of the least-discussed attributes of watches in the forums is that we wear them so that WE KNOW WHAT TIME IT IS. That led me to think about what standards we apply to this simple question: "Does my watch tell me what time it is to my satisfaction?" To follow this question, I timed my three favorite mechanical watches for 24 hours. I did not include my quartz pieces because that seemed like a whole different discussion. Here is what I found:

    Bathys 100 Fathoms - +40 sec.
    IWC Aquatimer -4 sec.
    Seiko SBDC007 "Sumo" +2 sec.

    The least expensive watch keeps the best time. The Bathys needs regulating. I throw it out there for your comments. Let's hear it.

    Paul

    _____________
    Currently onboard:- - Sea-Gull 1963 Airforce Chrono Reissue - Magrette Regattare Bronze
    Halios Laguna - -IWC Aquatimer - -Omega SMP - - Omega DeVille Prestige
    Seiko Sumo "the Big Orange" - - Assorted Vostoks- - - Omega PO "The Grail"
    - -WUS Chinese Forum Design Project Gone but not forgotten: Anonimo Sailor Diver Tissot T-Touch - - Omega X-33 - - Bathys 100 Fathom
    Science Experiment: Pulsar Quartz Alarm (convinced me I will never have a career as a watchmaker)

  2. #2
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    My job is superbusy - I'm a supervisor in a work comp claims office. I have meetings and other things going on all day. I want to know what time it is about every half hour.

    BUT

    I was raised by a father who collected both custom knives and good watches. And I inherited this passion. For me, it's about the same thing - the tool as sculpture. The beauty of the flow of metal and jewels, wood, carbon fiber, whatever - it's art that WORKS, it's art because it works, because its not just some thing, but a practical working tool that is also beautiful.

    I feel like I know what men have felt for thousands of years, as they held their personal weapons up for inspection in the lamplight - it is a part of us, it extends our capabilities, and to make them also beautiful and wonderful is to incorporate that into ourselves as well. And the watch inherits this same emotional attachment, which is why mechanical watches seem to (generally) inspire more emotion in people - it's the difference between having a fine .45 auto, and a one of a kind hand-made custom knife. One is more practical, surely - but the other is more special.
    paulie485 and Brasseye like this.

  3. #3
    Member Metlin's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    There's an underlying assumption here that I would question: that some of us have watches with the intent of keeping time. That's quite incidental.
    Brasseye likes this.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    Quote Originally Posted by Metlin View Post
    There's an underlying assumption here that I would question: that some of us have watches with the intent of keeping time. That's quite incidental.
    Go on. What other reasons?

    Paul

    _____________
    Currently onboard:- - Sea-Gull 1963 Airforce Chrono Reissue - Magrette Regattare Bronze
    Halios Laguna - -IWC Aquatimer - -Omega SMP - - Omega DeVille Prestige
    Seiko Sumo "the Big Orange" - - Assorted Vostoks- - - Omega PO "The Grail"
    - -WUS Chinese Forum Design Project Gone but not forgotten: Anonimo Sailor Diver Tissot T-Touch - - Omega X-33 - - Bathys 100 Fathom
    Science Experiment: Pulsar Quartz Alarm (convinced me I will never have a career as a watchmaker)

  6. #5
    Member Metlin's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    Quote Originally Posted by paulie485 View Post
    Go on. What other reasons?
    There's a similar thread on the Public Forum -- Why do you have so many watches?

    I'll reiterate my response here:

    Quote Originally Posted by Metlin View Post
    For the same reason I have a few hundreds of ties and cuff links and a (large) closet full of sport coats, suits, shoes, and miscellaneous clothing items that would put a haberdashery to shame.

    Watches are jewelry (the only real jewelry that men can really wear), and I think that they are an integral part of a man's style (and consequently, his wardrobe). A watch for every occasion.

  7. #6
    Member fasthandssam's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    Well, I half agree with Metlin but I wouldn't go so far as to say that it is "incidental" to me. A watch's time-keeping qualities are an important part of what interest me in watches- however it is not THE MOST important. The craftsmanship involved, the technical innovation, and the aesthetics of a watch all excite me more than the fact that they keep time. The ability for a watch to keep the time to a reasonable degree of accuracy is sort of like a baseline for me; it is a necessary requirement, but once that threshold has been crossed it is not an important determinant factor- otherwise I would only wear quartz. I would never wear a beautifully-made, technically innovative watch with an indestructible case if it could not tell the time. If its function, for example, was to tell me the depth of a dive, or the pressure of the atmosphere, or anything else that may or may not be possible for a mechanical watch to do- if it couldn't tell the time, it would not interest me.
    RichieP likes this.

  8. #7
    Member emarti17's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    Men wear watches because they need to know the time to do their important man things.


    But seriously it's so I know when I'm supposed to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner.
    MotoDC likes this.
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    Rolex, Omega, TAG Heuer, Hamilton, Seiko, Ocean7

  9. #8
    Member Rulle7's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    Watches seem to be very much like cars...the basic utility of time telling or A to B transportation can be had relatively inexpensively in both cases.
    That some people care to spend great sums of money on a more well engineered car
    or a more aggressively / beautifully designed car mirrors the psyche of the watch consumer, I would think.
    The time telling as incidental is actually very apt as well, how many high performance cars are used to their intended purpose? Not many, perhaps sadly.
    Status or its sibling, fashion or a passion for engineering and/or design seem to make many watch ( as well as automotive ) manufacturers prosper.

  10. #9
    Member azpops's Avatar
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    Well I guess I should’ve listened an wore a mask while in the paint booth, because the most enjoyment I have is when I wear a watch at night. This is when I hit it with my UV flashlight so I can look and stare at it’s lume.

    If I need to know the time, I look at my phone.

    Pops
    Have a great day, or night! ...

    Pops



    ... ...

  11. #10
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    Re: Keeping Time - Why Do We Do This???

    I must say, the integral part of wearing a watch is to tell time. Last year when I went to China and forgot my Gshock, I found it a painstaking and arduous task to look around for a clock to tell the time from.

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