Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?
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  1. #1
    Member SpaceCadet65's Avatar
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    Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    I find it puzzling that people are so obsessed with how smooth second hand sweeps across the dial. I have had a variety of movements in my watches over the years from 3Hz. Seiko, ETA Powermatic and Orients all the way up to a 36k El Primero. The smoothness in the higher beat movements is completely lost on me. In fact, it reminds me of the electric cafeteria clocks we all had in grammar school that said Westclox, General Electric, or Ingraham on them. Those second hands were absolutely smooth. So the smoothness of the sweep doesn't evoke quality to me necessarily.

    Is it important to you. If so, why?
    rfortson and Toothbras like this.
    Casio G-Shock AWGM100-1ACR, Glycine F-104, Hamilton Khaki Aviation, 1950's Jules Jurgensen 14k Manual Wind, 1940's Longines 14k Fancy Lug Manual Wind, Orient Kamasu, Orient 1970's Automatic "TV Dial," Oris Williams F1 Team, RADO D-Star, Sea Gull Tonneau GMT, Seiko 5 SNKE51, Seiko Recraft SNKP25, Seiko 5 SNZH57, Simplify 2200 Series "The Penguin," 1978 Timex Automatic Chrome, Tissot Luxury Powermatic 80 COSC, Vostok Amphibia 420 Bronze Mod.


  2. #2
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    It looks cooler.

  3. #3
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    I can't explain why; I just like a sweep second hand. It just seems more satisfying and hypnotic than a quartz style jump seconds lumping it's way round the dial.

    I know what you mean about those electric clocks, I just bought one for my kitchen thinking I'd like it, but somehow it's a bit sterile.

    But on a mechanical watch it's just different. The 4Hz centre seconds on my Sinn 104 is nice to watch even though it's not entirely smooth. The small seconds on my 4Hz Navitimer is not as satisfying to watch somehow; I think it's smaller scale hides the slightly steppy 4Hz movement. Watching a larger hand sweep round the outside of a dial is more fascinating.

    I have a Spring Drive GS on my want list for it's smooth centre second hand.

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  5. #4
    Member brandon\'s Avatar
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    Who doesn’t like smooth!

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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    It's also lost on me. I've never needed to know the time to the second so I actually never really notice the seconds hand movement. For me it's primarily something to indicate that the watch is running and I seldom stare at it for long enough to notice how smoothly it's moving.
    Sevenmack and brandon\ like this.

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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    Quote Originally Posted by meson1 View Post
    I can't explain why; I just like a sweep second hand. It just seems more satisfying and hypnotic than a quartz style jump seconds lumping it's way round the dial.

    I know what you mean about those electric clocks, I just bought one for my kitchen thinking I'd like it, but somehow it's a bit sterile.

    But on a mechanical watch it's just different. The 4Hz centre seconds on my Sinn 104 is nice to watch even though it's not entirely smooth. The small seconds on my 4Hz Navitimer is not as satisfying to watch somehow; I think it's smaller scale hides the slightly steppy 4Hz movement. Watching a larger hand sweep round the outside of a dial is more fascinating.

    I have a Spring Drive GS on my want list for it's smooth centre second hand.
    pretty much how I feel, can't explain it either.
    Grand Seiko SBGJ227 "peacock"
    Mr. Jones Number Cruncher
    Magrette Leoncino
    Magrette Moana Pacific Black
    Breitling Navitimer 01
    Breitling superocean II 44

    Orient Mako USA 2
    Orient Sentry
    Kentex Skyman
    Timex iron man
    Vostok Amphibian Classic
    Vostok Amphibia 1967 bronze
    Seiko SRPA83


  8. #7
    Moderator Public Forum GlennO's Avatar
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    I don't really think that there's a huge obsession with a smooth sweep. If there was, we'd all be wearing Spring Drives, Precisionists or tuning forks.

  9. #8
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    I find it puzzling why people are obsessed with other people being obsessed

  10. #9
    Member BigSeikoFan's Avatar
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    I find the tick-tick-tick of quartz movements jarring. Time does not move in discrete steps; it moves continuously so I think second hands should mimic that.

    Besides, it looks nicer.
    Well, I was standing on a corner in Winslow, AZ and Clara Oswald slowed down to take a look at me and my GS Tiffany SnowflakeTM...

  11. #10
    Member nachodaddy's Avatar
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    Re: Why the obsession with a smooth second hand sweep?

    Just because someone has a preference doesn't mean he has an obsession.

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