***Waterproof Watches Myth-Busting
few years ago I said that there is no such a thing as a waterproof
Little did I know that this statement would upset
so many watch enthusiasts! The avalanche of replies could be summarized in
one sentence: my Rolex/Omega is waterproof, and has been so for decades -
so Nick, you don't know what you’re talking about.
But let me explain what I meant.
The whole idea of making a waterproof watch is really a novelty.
For 500 years, watch and clock makers - and their customers - never really
thought about 'waterproofing' timepieces. There was no need for
waterproofing, and even if there was - one crucial element was missing: the
high-tech materials capable of 'sealing' two surfaces. Nowadays, synthetic
rubber o-rings are commonly used in many water-resistance applications, but
the rise of o-rings was really a post-WW2 affair.
Another modern watch sealing material is Teflon - which really
kicked into mass use in the 1970s. Teflon is commonly used as sealant
between glass (crystal) and metal, and rubber as sealant between two
highly-polished steel surfaces.
True water-resistant watches hit the market in the 1960s. The
market leader was Rolex and Omega - and both companies are still regarded
as makers of true divers’ watches. Of course, the competition has
increased in the last two decades.
There are two myths associated with water resistance. The first
one is the 'depth' in meters printed on the watch dial. In reality, that
information is often the result of ambitious marketing rather than factual
engineering. The second myth can be formulated like this: "Once waterproof,
always waterproof". The truth is that for a watch to remain
water-resistant, frequent maintenance is required: a new set of seals must
be fitted at least every 3 years. In addition, a new winding crown (which
contains o-rings inside) should be replaced as well. Only then will your
watch be suitable for serious water-related activity.
maintenance = no water resistance.
Vintage watches (watches older than 30-40 years) should NEVER be
worn in the water. Avoiding shower and sauna is sign of sophistication and
Complete the blanks:
responsible watch owner does not wear their watch in the
Seal replacement and water resistant test should be carried at
least once every _____ years.
____________ watches should never been worn in water.