Watch Key Terms to Know
Understanding the Parts of a Timepiece
A high-quality watch will retain its premium value over time and remain a practical accessory fit for everyday use and wear. Before investing in a luxury timepiece, it is important to understand the essential key terms and have a basic knowledge of a timepiece’s components and functions. Saint Cross has the expertise that you need and this guide explains the fundamental watch terms to get you started.
Dial: The dial is commonly known as the face and displays the time which can be shown in numerals, markings, and hands depending on the watch’s design.
Case: The watch movement is protected by the case. To give the watch an attractive appearance, this container can be found in many shapes including square, tonneau, and the common round.
Caseback: The back of the watch is known as the caseback and when removed, the inside of the watch is revealed. Some designs feature a transparent caseback to allow for the inside movement to be seen. The caseback will also have the name of the brand, water resistance, and other details engraved on it.
Crown: Located on the side of the watchcase is a small knob known as the crown. This knob is used to adjust the time and date, as well as keep the movement running in non-automatic timepieces.
Crystal: A clear protective case made from acrylic, glass, or synthetic sapphire that envelopes the watch face is referred to as the crystal. While synthetic sapphire is the most expensive, it is much more scratch-resistant in return.
Bezel: The watch crystal is surrounded by either a metal or ceramic ring known as the bezel. The bezel can be purely decorative or contain a scale for measuring time and other features.
Gasket: To protect the timepiece from water damage during normal wear, the gasket creates an airtight seal around the crown, crystal, and caseback. The small ring is made of rubber and needs to be inspected every few years to prolong water resistance.
Movement: Within each timepiece is a mechanism that powers its functions. There are several inner-working mechanisms including battery-powered quartz and mechanical movement, which can be either automatic or hand-wound.
Caliber: The term caliber is used to denote a movement with a specific model name. Over time watchmakers have built upon original movements to craft in-house creations. A caliber can indicate movements from their origin, reference, architecture, and maker.
Manual Winding: A manual wound watch is one that requires regular winding in order to keep the time. The winding of the crown works by tightening the spring and can mostly hold time for 36-48 hours.
Automatic: A more popular alternative, automatic movement powers the mechanical watch from the motion of a wearer’s wrist. The automatic watch is much easier to use, as one does not have to rely on manually winding the crown.
Quartz: Battery-powered watches utilize a quartz crystal to power their movement. Quartz-powered timepieces are exceedingly accurate and can be found with hands or digital displays to portray the time.
Saint Cross: Your Guide to Luxury Timepieces
As an Authorized Rolex Dealer, at Saint Cross, we help each of our guests discover a luxury timepiece to add to their collections and are eager to answer any questions that you may have. Explore a wide selection of only the finest timepieces at our Los Angeles jewelry showroom. Find out more about the products and services we offer by sending us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.