Great article about chronographs

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Great article about chronographs

Postby jkbarnes » Sat May 12, 2018 9:30 pm

Came across this article while looking for info on chronographs. Very interesting read.

https://www.watchtime.com/featured/buyi ... s-to-know/
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby opettaja » Wed May 16, 2018 3:10 pm

Came acros the same article the other day when searching for info regarding the C7 chrono quartz. Just a quick question, what are peoples views regarding running the chrono constantly? I know with a quartz we are talking earlier EOL for the battery, but how much does it really affect it? Also, especially regarding automatics, people say it will wear the mechanism prematurely, does anyone actually know of any cases of this? I really like a chrono but also very much like centre seconds as on my Citizen.
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby Thermexman » Wed May 16, 2018 3:55 pm

In answer to you questions regarding mechanical Chronographs being kept running, your answer is in the following excerpt from the OP’s linked article. Read it all as there’s a yes and no aspect to the answer based on the type of Chrono mechanisms used.

“The horizontal meshing system is aesthetically pleasing because it enables the owner to watch the chronograph engaging and disengaging. However, meshing teeth can cause the chronograph seconds hand to jump when it starts, and because the teeth used for chronograph coupling have a different shape, or profile, than teeth used for continuous power transmission, regular or continuous chronograph use can cause the teeth to wear. The extra wheels in this system can also sap the mainspring’s energy, affecting the balance wheel’s amplitude, and so, timekeeping. The other main contender in this arena is known as the vertical clutch. Though not as aesthetically pleasing (because the chronograph engagement takes place largely out of sight), this system offers some advantages. It reduces chronograph drag, the chronograph seconds hand does not jump when started, and the chronograph can run continuously without causing excessive wear.

In simple terms, in the vertical system, the chronograph is always “in mesh” with the timekeeping wheel train, and a clutch engages and disengages the chronograph. The clutch means smooth starts for the chronograph seconds hand, and the “always in mesh” feature means that starting the chronograph does not generate significant additional drag. The drawbacks include cost, poor aesthetics, and the fact that the vertical clutch can be difficult to service. If you’re a traditionalist who will happily trade a bit of precision for the joy of watching your chronograph in action, the horizontal coupling system is for you. If you’re more concerned with precise starts and stops, or if you like to leave your chronograph running all the time, consider the vertical clutch variety.”
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby opettaja » Thu May 17, 2018 5:54 am

Thermexman wrote:In answer to you questions regarding mechanical Chronographs being kept running, your answer is in the following excerpt from the OP’s linked article. Read it all as there’s a yes and no aspect to the answer based on the type of Chrono mechanisms used.

“The horizontal meshing system is aesthetically pleasing because it enables the owner to watch the chronograph engaging and disengaging. However, meshing teeth can cause the chronograph seconds hand to jump when it starts, and because the teeth used for chronograph coupling have a different shape, or profile, than teeth used for continuous power transmission, regular or continuous chronograph use can cause the teeth to wear. The extra wheels in this system can also sap the mainspring’s energy, affecting the balance wheel’s amplitude, and so, timekeeping. The other main contender in this arena is known as the vertical clutch. Though not as aesthetically pleasing (because the chronograph engagement takes place largely out of sight), this system offers some advantages. It reduces chronograph drag, the chronograph seconds hand does not jump when started, and the chronograph can run continuously without causing excessive wear.

In simple terms, in the vertical system, the chronograph is always “in mesh” with the timekeeping wheel train, and a clutch engages and disengages the chronograph. The clutch means smooth starts for the chronograph seconds hand, and the “always in mesh” feature means that starting the chronograph does not generate significant additional drag. The drawbacks include cost, poor aesthetics, and the fact that the vertical clutch can be difficult to service. If you’re a traditionalist who will happily trade a bit of precision for the joy of watching your chronograph in action, the horizontal coupling system is for you. If you’re more concerned with precise starts and stops, or if you like to leave your chronograph running all the time, consider the vertical clutch variety.”


Thanks for that Thermexman, my main question should have been how many people do let their chromosomes run constantly or sometimes just let them run all day? I still have yet to see some conclusive comparisons of a chrono that has been constantly run vs one not run, whether mechanical or quartz.
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby missF » Thu May 17, 2018 9:55 am

that's a great article - thanks for posting it :thumbup:

i'm absolutely fascinated by this:

Activate your chronograph for a short time when you have an idea you want to remember. Later, when you see the odd elapsed time, it will jog your memory (assuming the idea is still in there).

using your watch as a way of 'storing' a memory is inspired! i'm going to give it a try next time i need to remember something :D :D
'The only reason for time is so that everything doesn't happen at once'........Albert Einstein
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby Amor Vincit Omnia » Thu May 17, 2018 6:42 pm

Great article. Thanks for sharing.

With regards to running the chronograph, I only do that when I am timing something. As explained elsewhere, chronographs tend to be a work watch for me. When they are new or I haven’t used them for a while, I might run them briefly just to make sure everything is in good order.
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The half minute which we daily devote to the winding-up of our watches is an exertion of labour almost insensible; yet, by the aid of a few wheels, its effect is spread over the whole twenty-four hours.
Charles Babbage


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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby jkbarnes » Thu May 17, 2018 7:58 pm

missF wrote:that's a great article - thanks for posting it :thumbup:

i'm absolutely fascinated by this:

Activate your chronograph for a short time when you have an idea you want to remember. Later, when you see the odd elapsed time, it will jog your memory (assuming the idea is still in there).

using your watch as a way of 'storing' a memory is inspired! i'm going to give it a try next time i need to remember something :D :D

Me too. I think it sounds intriguing, but I don't understand exactly how it will trigger the memory. I could see me saying to myself, "I started this so I wouldn't forget. Now what was it I didn't want to forget?"
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby jkbarnes » Thu May 17, 2018 8:00 pm

On a related not to all this, can anyone tell me what happens when a sub dial on a quartz chromo laps itself? Does it continue timing or stop? I can think of a number of things beyond 30 minutes that I'd want to time, and I wondering if I can if the chromo doesn't have a 12-hr sub dial.
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby missF » Thu May 17, 2018 8:24 pm

jkbarnes wrote:
missF wrote:
using your watch as a way of 'storing' a memory is inspired! i'm going to give it a try next time i need to remember something :D :D

Me too. I think it sounds intriguing, but I don't understand exactly how it will trigger the memory. I could see me saying to myself, "I started this so I wouldn't forget. Now what was it I didn't want to forget?"


i guess it depends how strongly you make the connection in your mind between the offset chronograph hand and whatever it is you want to remember. there are more foolproof ways of remembering things (like storing them in your mobile phone?) :lol:
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby gaf1958 » Fri May 18, 2018 12:09 am

jkbarnes wrote:On a related not to all this, can anyone tell me what happens when a sub dial on a quartz chromo laps itself? Does it continue timing or stop? I can think of a number of things beyond 30 minutes that I'd want to time, and I wondering if I can if the chromo doesn't have a 12-hr sub dial.

From my answer to your question in another thread :)

jkbarnes wrote:Forgive the potentially naive question, but I’m assuming one can time beyond 30 minutes with the C3 Malvern GT even though the sub-dial only goes to 30 minutes, right? One would simply need to keep track of the fact that the 30 minute sub-dial has “lapped” itself, so to speak, right?


Yes, that's correct. I have a C7 quartz chronograph which uses the same 5021.D movement as the C3 Grand Tourer. I just tested it and it continues past the 30 minute mark - mine is currently at around 44 minutes, having completed one full lap of the minute timer, currently on its second one. Hope that helps...
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby jkbarnes » Fri May 18, 2018 12:18 am

gaf1958 wrote:
jkbarnes wrote:On a related not to all this, can anyone tell me what happens when a sub dial on a quartz chromo laps itself? Does it continue timing or stop? I can think of a number of things beyond 30 minutes that I'd want to time, and I wondering if I can if the chromo doesn't have a 12-hr sub dial.

From my answer to your question in another thread :)

jkbarnes wrote:Forgive the potentially naive question, but I’m assuming one can time beyond 30 minutes with the C3 Malvern GT even though the sub-dial only goes to 30 minutes, right? One would simply need to keep track of the fact that the 30 minute sub-dial has “lapped” itself, so to speak, right?


Yes, that's correct. I have a C7 quartz chronograph which uses the same 5021.D movement as the C3 Grand Tourer. I just tested it and it continues past the 30 minute mark - mine is currently at around 44 minutes, having completed one full lap of the minute timer, currently on its second one. Hope that helps...

Sorry, I must have missed your reply. Once threads drop off the portal page I kinda lose track of things.
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby jkbarnes » Fri May 18, 2018 12:21 am

gaf1958 wrote:
jkbarnes wrote:On a related not to all this, can anyone tell me what happens when a sub dial on a quartz chromo laps itself? Does it continue timing or stop? I can think of a number of things beyond 30 minutes that I'd want to time, and I wondering if I can if the chromo doesn't have a 12-hr sub dial.

From my answer to your question in another thread :)

jkbarnes wrote:Forgive the potentially naive question, but I’m assuming one can time beyond 30 minutes with the C3 Malvern GT even though the sub-dial only goes to 30 minutes, right? One would simply need to keep track of the fact that the 30 minute sub-dial has “lapped” itself, so to speak, right?


Yes, that's correct. I have a C7 quartz chronograph which uses the same 5021.D movement as the C3 Grand Tourer. I just tested it and it continues past the 30 minute mark - mine is currently at around 44 minutes, having completed one full lap of the minute timer, currently on its second one. Hope that helps...

And thanks by the way! That's super helpful. I really like the C3 GT and want to actually make use of the timer. The things I'd need/want to time would typically fall between 30 and 60 minutes. A 30 minute sub dial is too short and a 12 hour sub dial is too long. A 60 minute sub dial would be just right!

Now, to convince my wife not to take offense at my buying another CW and giving the C65 Vintage she gave the occasional day off...
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby Richard D » Fri May 18, 2018 1:12 am

Fascinating read and explains why I’m drawn to my favourite CW, the C900 Harrison Single Pusher Calibre JJ02, hand-wound chronograph, with a modified Unitas 6497 movement. In the story of the C900 Simon de Burton wrote, ‘the tourbillon, the minute repeater and the perpetual calendar are often cited as representing the pinnacle of the watchmaker’s art while the chronograph is regularly taken for granted. In reality, the mechanism which can accurately dice time into fractions of hours, minutes and seconds remains one of the most notable complications of all and is still among the most exacting to create, especially when its functions are controlled by one pusher rather than the usual two’.

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What’s not to like........


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Great article about chronographs

Postby gaf1958 » Fri May 18, 2018 1:13 am

jkbarnes wrote:Sorry, I must have missed your reply. Once threads drop off the portal page I kinda lose track of things.


To misquote a frequently heard google comment “View unread posts” is your friend... :)
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Re: Great article about chronographs

Postby jkbarnes » Fri May 18, 2018 1:41 am

gaf1958 wrote:
jkbarnes wrote:Sorry, I must have missed your reply. Once threads drop off the portal page I kinda lose track of things.


To misquote a frequently heard google comment “View unread posts” is your friend... :)

Haha! I never even noticed that until your post prompted me to look for it! Problem solved, thanks!
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