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Visual Diagram of a Wrist Watch

Watch Guide
Watch Movements
Automatic watch An automatic or self-winding watch is a mechanical watch, whose mainspring is wound automatically by the natural motion of the wearer's arm, providing energy to run the watch, to make it unnecessary to manually wind the watch.
Quartz watch A quartz watch is a watch that uses a movement powered by a quartz crystal to. Quartz crystals are very accurate.
Automatic Quartz watch An automatic quartz watch is a watch that uses a movement that combine a self-winding rotor mechanism (as used in automatic mechanical watches) to generate electricity with a piezoelectric quartz crystal as its timing element. Such movements aim to provide the advantages of quartz without the environmental impact of batteries.
Manual Hand Wind A manual wind watch must be wound every day by the crown in order to run. Even with that inconvenience, they are still produced by the major houses in Switzerland. Some of the most beautiful pieces made today are manual wind.
Watch Functions
Alarm watch The watch alerts you with beeps at a pre-set time.
Altimeter A device that determines altitude by responding to changes in barometric pressure.
Atomic watches The watch can receive signals from six atomic clock radio broadcasts worldwide providing unerring timekeeping.The U.S. government operates an "Atomic Clock" in Boulder, CO. This Atomic Clock will not gain or lose a second in 60 million years.
Barometer A feature found on some watches, measures the atmospheric pressure.
Calendar A feature that shows the date, and often the day of the week. There are several types of calendar watches. Most calendar watches show the information digitally through an aperture on the watch face. Some chronograph watches shoe the information sub-dials on the watch face.
Chronograph A watch that includes a built in stopwatch function - i.e., a timer that can be started and stopped to time an event. There are many variations on the chronograph. Some operate with a center seconds hand which keeps time on the watch's main dial. Others use sub-dials to time elapsed hours, minutes and seconds. Still others show elapsed time on a digital display on the watch face. Some chronographs can be used as a lap timer (see "flyback hand" and "split seconds hand"). The accuracy of the stopwatch function will commonly vary from 1/5th second to 1/100th second depending on the chronograph. Some chronographs will measure elapsed time up to 24 hours. Watches that include the chronograph function are themselves called "chronographs." When a chronograph is used in conjunction with specialized scales on the watch face it can perform many different functions, such as determining speed or distance (see "tachymeter" and "telemeter") Do not confuse the term "chronograph" with "chronometer." The latter refers to a timepiece, which may or may not have a chronograph function, that has met certain high standards of accuracy set by an official watch institute in Switzerland.
Chronometer Technically speaking, all watches are chronometers. But for a Swiss made watch to be called a chronometer, it must meet certain very high standards set by the Swiss Official Chronometer Control (C.O.S.C.). If you have a Swiss watch labeled as a chronometer, you can be certain that it has a mechanical movement of the very highest quality.
Compass A compass that lets the wearer determine the geographical poles by means of a rotating bezel. The wearer places the watch so that the hour hand faces the sun. He then takes half the distance between the position and 12 o'clock, and turns the bezel until its "south" marker is at that halfway point. Some quartz watches have solar compasses that show directions on an LCD display.
Cosmograph The cosmograph differs to the chronograph in that the tachymeter is on the bezel rather than on the outer rim of the dial. This was invented by Rolex to create a more modern look to the watch.
Countdown timer A function that lets the wearer keep track of how much of a pre-set period of time has elapsed. Some countdown timers sound a warning signal a few seconds before the time runs out. These are useful in events such as yacht races, where the sailor must maneuver the boat into position before the start of a race.
Digital-Analog Watch A wristwatch containing both digital and analog displays.
Divers Watches Diver's watches are designed and manufactured especially for divers whose lives depend on the reliability of their watch in the water. Diver's watches must meet various standards regarding water resistancy, pressure resistancy, readability in the water, time presetting function (rotating elapsed time bezel), anti-magnetic ability, anti-shock, rust resistancy in salt water, manageability in water, ability to withstand sudden temperature changes, etc.
Dual Timer A watch that measures current local time as well as at least one other time zone. The additional time element may come from a twin dial, extra hand, subdials, or other means.
GMT Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) is also known as Zulu Time and UTC (Universal Time Coordinated). The Navy, as well as civil aviation, uses the letter "Z" (phonetically "Zulu") to refer to the time at the prime meridian. Generally when the GMT term is used with watches it refers to the ability of the watch that shows local time and the time in at least one other time zone in a 24 hour mode. The reason for showing the additional time zone in 24 hour mode is to allow the wearer to know if the second time zone is in AM or PM.
GPS The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a space-based global navigation satellite system (GNSS) that provides reliable location and time information.
Kinetic Refers to the Seiko line of Kinetic watches. This innovative technology has a automatic quartz movement that does not use a battery. Movement of your wrist charges a very efficient capacitor which powers the quartz movement. Once the capacitor is fully charged, models will store energy for 724 days without being worn. Of course, if the watch is worn every day the capacitor is continually recharged. The watch alerts you to a low capacitor charge when the seconds hand starts to move in two second intervals.
Moonphase display A graphic display by means of a specially shaped aperture in the dial to indicate the phase of the moon, i.e. full, new or somewhere in between.
Perpetual Calendar A type of calendar that automatically adjusts for months of different lengths and indicates February 29 in each leap year.
Power reserve indicator A feature that shows when the watch will soon need a new battery or winding. A battery reserve indicator on a quartz watch informs the wearer when the battery is low. Often this is indicated by the seconds hand moving at two or three-second intervals.
Rattrapante Used to describe the split seconds chronograph which has two seconds hands sitting atop one another. On depression of a third chronograph button (most have two), the flyback hand will stop in order to measure say, a lap time; repressing this button with cause the flyback hand to flyback(!) to the other seconds hand which has remained in motion.
Retrograde A watch with a retrograde display does not display the function in a circular fashion, as we are used to seeing. Rather, it sets out the functions in a linear manner. Instead of the hands going round in a circle, they travel along an arc, and when they get to the end, they jump back to the beginning.
Shock resistance As defined by U.S. government regulation, a watch's ability to withstand an impact equal to that of being dropped onto a wood floor from a height of 3 feet.
Solar powered watch A watch that uses solar energy (from any light source) to power the quartz movement.
Tachymeter A feature found on some chronograph watches, a tachymeter (also called a "tachometer") measures the speed at which the wearer has traveled over a measured distance.
Telemeter A telemeter determines the distance of an object from the observer by measuring how long it takes sound to travel that distance. Like a tachymeter (see "tachymeter"), it consists of a stopwatch, or chronograph, and a special scale, usually on the outermost edge of the watch face.
Thermometer A feature found on some watches, measures the temperature.
Tourbillon A device, invented by Breguet in 1801, in which the escapement is mounted in a small revolving cage as a means of overcoming the effects of gravity on the precision on a mechanical timepiece.
World time dial A dial, usually on the outer edge of the watch face, that tells the time in up to 24 time zones around the world. The time zones are represented by the names of cities printed on the bezel or dial. The wearer reads the hour in a particular time zone by looking at the scale next to the city that the hour hand is pointing to. The minutes are read as normal. Watches with this feature are called "world timers."
Yacht timer A countdown timer (see "countdown timer") that sounds warning signals during the countdown to a boat race