At first sight, you could say that all watches are the same and maybe you’re right….”they show you what time is it ¿no?”. But if you pay a closer atention to them and give a second look, it’s possible to identify many differences between them. Those differences are the ones that determine the type of watch you’re looking at.
Special jobs or activities require certain features within a watch, and because of that, form what I’ve read you can group the types of watches into five big categories:
DIVERS: specially designed to be used underwater. Main characteristics: water resistant, strong lumen to be seen in the darkness, special bezel to track the diving time and encarved drawing in the backside of the case. Maybe the two most famous ones, are the Rolex Sea Dweller Deep Sea (picture) or the Omega Seamaster, mainly for their appearance in the James Bond Movies, but that’s another story.
FLIGERS: specially designed to be used by pilots. Main characteristics: big clear dial, strong lumen to be seen in the darkness, long spades and a triangle instead of the 12 number. They got very famous after world war II. One of the clearest example is the IWC Mark XVI.
CHRONOGRAPHS: specially designed for exact time measuring. Main characteristics: 2 o 3 subdials for the tracking of seconds, minutes and hours (if they have a 3rd subdia), a bezel with tachymeter for speed calculation and long thin spades. Some divers and fliger watches also include the chrono functionalities, but the “pure blood” are only chrono.
Perfect example, are the famous “first watch on the moon”, the Omega Speedmaster (picture) or the Rolex Daytona.
WORLD TIME: specially designed for following the time, at least, 2 different time zones. This feature is also included in some of the other types to enhance their usage as timekeepers. Main characteristics are additional spade for the second time zone (called “GMT”) and numbered dial between 1 and 24. Maybe it`s not a very well known one, but the PAM63 (picture) is a good example.
COMPLICATIONS: this is how special features or complex manufactured elements on an automatic or hand-whelled watch are called. Many elements are included in this category like: the power reserve indicator, moonphase indicator, perpetual calendar or the most amazing one, that is the tourbillon. I don’t know how to explain it easily so I show you a video of a tourbillon at work and the definition in the wikipedia.
I personally have reduced this categorization to two types:
– formal, watches I wear with a suit
– informal, watches I wear when dressing casual.
I believe that there’s a watch for each ocasion and I take my time, every day, to decide which one to choose depending on what I’m going to do and how I going to dress. In future posts I will introduce you to them but in the meantime let me ask you:
– Do you always wear the same watch?
– Did you know about the different types of watches?
– Do you have your own categorization?