What time does your watch change the date?

Thread: What time does your watch change the date?

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  1. #1

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    What time does your watch change the date?

    Hello,

    I'm sure for some of you it doesn't really matter but I've found prestigious watches that change the date at 2:30 while very cheap watches do it at 12:00 sharp.

    I was looking these days at a 1000USD Longines Lungo Mare (I've tried 3 of them) and all change the date at 2:15 - 2:30.

    Is it so difficult for a Swiss prestigious manufacturer to make a 1000$ watch change the date at 12:00 while a 20$ crap watch will do it perfectly.

    So what time does/do your watch/es change the date?

    Johnaeus

  2. #2

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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    No one really cares about this? it is just another aspect of the "accuracy".

    Best.

  3. #3
    Member BruceS's Avatar
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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    I've experienced the same thing you have. Most of my mechanicals are very close to midnight on the change. Some with both day and date will start an hour before, then end up close.

    The funny thing, well actually irritating as hell, is that my quartz Omega Seamaster changes over around 0200, while every other lower priced quartz watch I have (not talking digital here) changing right at midnight. I think that's just inexcusable in a quartz watch. It also keeps worse time than any other quartz watch I own. Price doesn't always equal quality!
    Wear what you like.

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  5. #4
    Member eptaz's Avatar
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    Omega's explaination

    Omega offers an explaination in an FAQ on their site.
    Why does the date on most Omega watches change over a period of 1.5 to 2 hours?
    Omega uses this date-change system so that the date-change is clearly visible around midnight and that there is no confusion as to the moment of the date-change.The date of the day that is drawing to a close can be seen in full until 11.45pm. At midnight, the date of the day drawing to a close is still entirely visible at the bottom of the date window, with the new date appearing at the top of the window. Then, the new date moves down through the window and the previous day's date gradually disappears. This operation is completed by 1.30am at the latest.Avoid changing the date manually between 9pm and 2am, since this is the period during which the automatic date-change is in operation.

    I'm not sure about similar manufacturers, but I imagine their reasoning is the same. It's not considered a shortcoming or a fault, just a different way of doing it. I'd expect they'd call it a "feature."

    eric

  6. #5
    Member cnmark's Avatar
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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    Some day/date change observations:
    Fortis B-42 Marinemaster (ETA 2836-2): At 23:54:48,5 exactly
    Fortis B-42 Pilot Pro Chrono GMT (ETA VJ7750): start around 22:30, finish around 00:30
    Dead cheap diver (with 0 [zero] jewel ETA quartz movment): At 00:00 exactly

    Does not matter at all for me. It's known that it happens, and that the change gear is engaged over a period of time. That's why nearly all manufacturers add a warning in the instruction manual not to adjust the day/date between 20:00 and 02:00 (or whatever period is appropriate).

  7. #6

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    Re: Omega's explaination

    Quote Originally Posted by eptaz View Post
    Omega offers an explaination in an FAQ on their site.

    Why does the date on most Omega watches change over a period of 1.5 to 2 hours?


    Omega uses this date-change system so that the date-change is clearly visible around midnight and that there is no confusion as to the moment of the date-change.The date of the day that is drawing to a close can be seen in full until 11.45pm. At midnight, the date of the day drawing to a close is still entirely visible at the bottom of the date window, with the new date appearing at the top of the window. Then, the new date moves down through the window and the previous day's date gradually disappears. This operation is completed by 1.30am at the latest.Avoid changing the date manually between 9pm and 2am, since this is the period during which the automatic date-change is in operation.
    I'm not sure about similar manufacturers, but I imagine their reasoning is the same. It's not considered a shortcoming or a fault, just a different way of doing it. I'd expect they'd call it a "feature."

    eric
    Thank you very much eptaz. You really cleared my doubts. I always considered this a fault but now I am seeing it differently.

    Regards,

    Johnaeus vbmenu_register("postmenu_298322", true);

  8. #7
    WX1
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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnaeus View Post
    No one really cares about this? it is just another aspect of the "accuracy".

    Best.
    Heh, are you kidding, I was waiting for this thread. How the heck did I manage to miss this one at the onset, I’m on this board so many times a day, heh.

    I’m quite happy to say that my fav’ manual wind/auto’ in my collezioné, a Hamilton Khaki Aviation QNE, is the only watch I can honestly say changes the date right at midnight or a seconds approaching midnight. That was SUCH a revelation, I laughed out loud (yes, at midnight) when I first saw the thing, up the last second/seconds skeptical and all. Lately, I have to admit, the date changes right at midnight, mostly.

    That all having been said, ah, doesn’t really matter if it’s, what, anything inside a minute, changes the date. Heck, as long as you ain’t talking 5 minutes before or after. I’ve never seen that, and, not bragging here, but, I can assure, right now at least, my watches (I don’t have a lot, granted) change the date as described above.

    I really don’t recall (I mean, I woulda’ noticed; date change is important to me too; it’s something I observe w/watches I recently acquire. Sat’ nights, my non-watch aficionado buddies [well, not as much as me at least] have graduated from “what? Hot date waitin’?” if we’re out and about and I suddenly look at my watch around midnight – Saturday’s the day I reserve to observe “date change”; please, gotta get up early during the rest of the week, earn to PAY FOR WATCHES, bwhwhah! – to, “oh, new watch, I see.”) date changes happening to any of my watches AFTER midnight. So, I dunno if I’d appreciate that more or not. I’d think not. I mean, if the date only realizes, “OH, GOSH, IT’S TOMORROW” I have this vision of gears, mainsprings, balances, etc. on my autos and the quartz functions on my quartzs yelling at the date, “c’mon, get wit’ it, man,” hehheeh.

    Then again . . . the date function is just cheddar when it comes to watches. It IS a needed function, yes, but, I’ve seen some purty nice models w/out date function that I’d gladly add. Might not end up as my fav’ model, but, indeed, would be a watch where I can have one less function to worry over regarding its mechanics or accuracy.

    Can’t speak for the aforementioned Omega, but, I attribute the date accuracy to the ETA movement. I could be wrong (something I’m not afraid to admit, ‘ long as I learn somefin in the process ), but, the Hamilton (I should say Hamiltons; I have two more where the date works just as well. My fav’s the Aviation QNE, though, oh, did I mention that already?) is under the Swatch umbrella, eh?

  9. #8
    Member spvwolfy's Avatar
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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    I have no idea when my watch chages the date. I hadn't thought about until now. If it changes at 2:30am, then that IS the correct time yes, since DST changes then too.
    "He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog. You are his life, his love, his leader. He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart. You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion."

  10. #9
    Member JohnF's Avatar
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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    Hi -

    Ahhh, the complexities of data changing mechanisms.

    Just to give a bit of background: the date changing mechanism is completely on the dial side of the watch. Here is where the date (and day of the week where available) ring is located.

    Basically, the way it works is that a small gear is driven off the hours hand. This is geared at 1:2, so that it rotates once per 24 hours. There is a pin or something similiar that presses against a lever that moves between two positions (usually with some spring tension) that uses a small finger of metal to grab a tooth on the date ring which moves the date from one position to the next.

    That is a very generic description of how the date function works: the devil, of course, is in the detail. I've got a wonderful 1960s vintage Gruen with an AS calibre inside that Gruen modified to have what is called a click-date: at exactly midnight, the data clicks one position further within about 1/5th second or so. The mechanism behind this is very fickle and relies on some significant spring leverage to get that fast movement, which in turn is powered off the hours hand via the 1:2 step gear.

    Now, this is complex and maintaining it is expensive: my watchmaker, when he did the revision of the watch, spent as much time on getting the date to properly "pop" as he did on the entire rest of the watch!

    The classic ETA 2824 or 2986 automatics use a much, much more relaxed spring and mechanism to change dates, as most people aren't up to watch it change (or don't really care very much...yes, there are people like that...). There is no way to know the exact mechanism used without taking the watch apart, and even then this is an area where some watchmakers don't really spend a lot of time on, as no one usually specifies "I want the date change to be as exactly on 12 as possible".

    It's really a trade off between complexity and reliability. The more complex this mechanism, the closer you will get to a fast date change that will work at midnight exactly. But it makes the watch movement more expensive.

    Now, there are some inexpensive watches that do it more exactly, as you mention: their mechanisms are usually, however, considered throw-aways that aren't easily repairable. There is also the issue of patents involved...
    Hope this clears up any questions...

    JohnF
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  11. #10
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    Re: What time does your watch change the date?

    Watching my citizen Eco drive roll over right now. I can't believe it's the 11th. God bless America

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