Non-Screw down crown and water resistance
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Thread: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

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  1. #1
    Member Alpental's Avatar
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    Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    Hey folks, about to pick-up my first Zenith. I'm looking at the new Defy Classic in black ceramic. I see it listed as having a water resistance of 100m. However, the crown is not screw down, which makes me a bit nervous. I want to treat this watch as a legitimate sport watch, which means water submersion, but I have a mental block against non-screw down crowns.

    Any experience with these or similar Zenith watches getting wet?

    Thanks!
    Current Watches: Rolex Submariner Date 116610; Rolex Datejust 41 126300; Zenith Defy Classic Black Ceramic; Zenith El Primero Chronomaster 42mm; Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical; Seiko 'Turtle' SRP779; Casio G-Shock DW-5600E

    Past Watches:
    Rolex Submariner No-Date 114060; Rolex Submariner Hulk 116610LV; Rolex Submariner 16610; Rolex Explorer II 16570; Rolex Datejust 1601; Tudor Black Bay Red ETA; Omega Speedmaster Professional 3570.50; Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 2201.50; Omega Seamaster 300m Professional 2531.80; Omega Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial; IWC Mark XVI; NOMOS Metro Datum Gangreserve 1101; NOMOS Metro Datum 1102; NOMOS Orion Anthracite 307; Seiko 'Turtle' SRP777; Seiko SKX007

  2. #2
    Member GmtMasterIII's Avatar
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    I've wondered the same thing myself and am interested in hearing others reponses.

    I have an El Primero ChonoMaster which has a push down crown and apparently 30 meters / ~90 feet of water resistance. Now, 90 feet technically should be more than enough to take swimming in a pool which is max 6 feet deep , but like you, I don't feel comfortable nor want to take the chance wearing in there.

    I'll put the Submariner on when I go near water, but I'm just curious to hear others opinions.
    Alpental likes this.

  3. #3
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    I'd never take a watch without a screw down crown into the shower, let alone submerse it under any pressure. The only exception might be if I knew that the watch had a waterproofing system like I once saw on an older Seiko: two or three small rubber rings on the winding stem (in appropriate notches). These mean that even with the crown out, there is some protection since these rings grip the inner surface of the crown tube. But I think that most brands only have crown gaskets.

    We once had a member a long time ago who really lost out. He had a Zenith Port Royal Elite and took it swimming. For some reason, water got in and trashed the movement. Zenith told him that they would have to install a new movement - and gave him a bill larger than that for the original watch! The trouble was that he had bought it before and trashed it after the time of the great price increases of the early 2000s.

    For those who want to take the gamble, all I can say is "Lasciate ogni speranza voi ch'entrate!"

    Hartmut Richter
    Alpental likes this.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    Just my 2 cents, I've had many 10 bar wr watches and some i have used in the sauna, hot tub and pool. I know the risks but I had a Tissot pr516 back in the 70's at university and used it for 4 years while in the pool and hot tub. I got 5 years out of that watch and did not even have it serviced. I think what I've read in previous posts is that a 10 bar rated watch is sealed within the watch and a screw down crown locks the crown to the case to prevent damage to it. IMHO if a watch is 10 bar, swimming should be no problem.
    Alpental likes this.

  6. #5
    Member yankeexpress's Avatar
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    Properly designed non-Screwdown crowns are just as water resistant. The screwdown feature is more for the dive watches so that the crown is not snagged and accidentally popped.
    Sebast975, Alpental and Drksaint like this.
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  7. #6
    Member Longjean's Avatar
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    Zenith 420 chronograph with snap back and non screw down crown or pushers rated at 100m versus Seiko titanium quartz chronograph with screw back but without screw down crown or pushers?

    I take my Seiko swimming but would not immerse my Zenith despite the probable terminal consequences of getting water into a quartz movement.

    Perhaps I am being harsh but replacing a screw back with a snap and back and increasing the water resistance to 100m is counter-intuitive to me.
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  8. #7
    Member GmtMasterIII's Avatar
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    My thoughts on the matter are if it doesn't have a screwn down crown and caseback, why risk it? It could be fine, or, like Hartmut Richter mentioned above, you could be looking at a full movement replacement.

    I'll be keeping my ChronoMaster away from water regardless. The quickset pushers are just another point of failure for water.
    Last edited by GmtMasterIII; September 13th, 2019 at 16:29.
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  9. #8
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    One or two further issues are the fact that:

    1. if you take a headlong dive into the water with arms outstretched, the instantaneous pressure on the crown when hitting the water may well exceed the 10 bar or whatever your watch is designed and tested to take

    2. if you take the watch into a hot shower, the metal may expand to the point where it isn't quite as waterproof as it was when it was tested in the servicing centre

    3. if you shower and use a lot of soap, the water tension may be altered by the soap to the extent that it is easier to get past the gaskets

    I can only repeat: I wouldn't do it!

    Hartmut Richter
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  10. #9
    Member SWIMTEXAN's Avatar
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    Re: Non-Screw down crown and water resistance

    Quote Originally Posted by Alpental View Post
    Hey folks, about to pick-up my first Zenith. I'm looking at the new Defy Classic in black ceramic. I see it listed as having a water resistance of 100m. However, the crown is not screw down, which makes me a bit nervous. I want to treat this watch as a legitimate sport watch, which means water submersion, but I have a mental block against non-screw down crowns.

    Any experience with these or similar Zenith watches getting wet?

    Thanks!
    I've worn the Cronometro Tipo CP-2, the Doublematic, the Heritage Limited Edition (1 of 25) and the C.01 in the water. Never any issues. Wear it in the water, the Defy is a robust piece. Give the Manufacture some credit for building a fantastic piece that is true to the water resistance.

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