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Audemars Piguet AP Royal Oak Offshore 44mm Steel & Ceramic...
TOP
Audemars Piguet AP Royal Oak Offshore 44mm Steel & Ceramic...
C$ 36,775
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
62
US
Audemars Piguet Offshore 37mm Stainless Steel with Diamonds
TOP
Audemars Piguet Offshore 37mm Stainless Steel with Diamonds
C$ 31,845
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
62
US
Chopard Mille Miglia
TOP
Chopard Mille Miglia
C$ 6,661
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Hublot Classic Fusion Yacht Club De Monaco
Hublot Classic Fusion Yacht Club De Monaco
C$ 11,992
Seller
GOLAN DIAMONDS
 
CA
Glashütte Original PanomaticLunar White Gold model # 900231140...
TOP
Glashütte Original PanomaticLunar White Gold model # 900231140...
C$ 13,318
Seller
AbsolutelyROLEX!
 
CA
Rolex Datejust
Rolex Datejust
C$ 4,500
Seller
Aaron Signature & Co.
 
CA
Hublot Classic Fusion Fuente Titanium (Limited Edition)
TOP
Hublot Classic Fusion Fuente Titanium (Limited Edition)
C$ 19,082
Free shipping
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Istock LTD
80
LV
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Perpetual
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Perpetual
C$ 18,988
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
90
US
Patek Philippe Annual Calendar | 5396R-001 | rose gold | full set
TOP
Patek Philippe Annual Calendar | 5396R-001 | rose gold | full set
C$ 41,583
Free shipping
Seller
A Collected Man
8
UK
Hublot Big Bang Aero Bang All Black
Hublot Big Bang Aero Bang All Black
C$ 13,325
Seller
Koosh Jewelers
 
US
Omega Speedmaster Reduced
Omega Speedmaster Reduced
C$ 2,785
Seller
H Williams Jewellery
 
CA
Rolex SUBMARINER Blue Two Tone 16613
Rolex SUBMARINER Blue Two Tone 16613
C$ 10,267
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Rolex Sky-Dweller 326935 Everose Gold Bracelet Rare Chocolate...
Rolex Sky-Dweller 326935 Everose Gold Bracelet Rare Chocolate...
C$ 48,635
Seller
GOLAN DIAMONDS
 
CA
Audemars Piguet AP Royal Oak 41 Stainless Steel Black Dial
TOP
Audemars Piguet AP Royal Oak 41 Stainless Steel Black Dial
C$ 25,316
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
62
US
Breguet Classique 3137
Breguet Classique 3137
C$ 24,651
Seller
Sourced Watches, LLC
 
US
Hublot Classic Fusion Aerofusion WBC  (Limited Edition)
TOP
Hublot Classic Fusion Aerofusion WBC (Limited Edition)
C$ 22,713
Free shipping
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Istock LTD
80
LV
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean
TOP
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean
C$ 5,730
Free shipping
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SLS TIME
90
US
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 | gilt dial | Pepsi bezel | full set
TOP
Rolex GMT-Master 1675 | gilt dial | Pepsi bezel | full set
Price on request
Free shipping
Seller
A Collected Man
8
UK
Hublot Big Bang Caviar All Black
Hublot Big Bang Caviar All Black
C$ 9,994
Seller
Koosh Jewelers
 
US
Rolex Submariner Date
Rolex Submariner Date
C$ 11,926
Seller
Aaron Faber Gallery
 
US
Rolex Daytona White 116520
Rolex Daytona White 116520
C$ 22,519
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Extreme Tourbillon Q1762470
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Extreme Tourbillon Q1762470
C$ 66,624
Seller
GOLAN DIAMONDS
 
CA
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean
Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean
C$ 24,224
Seller
Luxum Watch Group
 
US
IWC Le Petite Prince Pilot Chronograph IW377714
IWC Le Petite Prince Pilot Chronograph IW377714
C$ 4,997
Seller
WearingTime LLC
 
US
Blancpain L-Evolution Chrono Flyback Super Trofeo (Limited...
TOP
Blancpain L-Evolution Chrono Flyback Super Trofeo (Limited...
C$ 20,396
Free shipping
Seller
Istock LTD
80
LV
IWC Big Pilot
TOP
IWC Big Pilot
C$ 14,990
Free shipping
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SLS TIME
90
US
Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar 3448 | Archive Extracts |...
TOP
Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar 3448 | Archive Extracts |...
Price on request
Free shipping
Seller
A Collected Man
8
UK
Panerai Luminor Marina Automatic Black Dial
Panerai Luminor Marina Automatic Black Dial
C$ 6,529
Seller
Koosh Jewelers
 
US
Louis Vuitton Tambour
Louis Vuitton Tambour
C$ 112,594
Seller
Aaron Faber Gallery
 
US
Rolex Sea-Dweller Deepsea 116660 "James Cameron" 44mm
Rolex Sea-Dweller Deepsea 116660 "James Cameron" 44mm
C$ 21,919
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Black Dial Men's Watch
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Black Dial Men's Watch
C$ 50,900
Seller
GOLAN DIAMONDS
 
CA
Corum Admiral's  Cup Competition
TOP
Corum Admiral's Cup Competition
C$ 4,156
Seller
Joaillerie Royale
469
BE
Audemars Piguet AP Royal Oak 41mm Stainless Steel White Dial
TOP
Audemars Piguet AP Royal Oak 41mm Stainless Steel White Dial
C$ 25,316
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
62
US
Blancpain Fifty Fathoms 500 Fathoms GMT (Limited Edition)
TOP
Blancpain Fifty Fathoms 500 Fathoms GMT (Limited Edition)
C$ 30,748
Free shipping
Seller
Istock LTD
80
LV
IWC Aquatimer Chronograph
TOP
IWC Aquatimer Chronograph
C$ 8,139
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
90
US
Panerai Luminor Power Reserve
TOP
Panerai Luminor Power Reserve
C$ 7,993
Free shipping
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Brilliance and Grace
55
US
Hublot Big Bang King Power 48mm All Black Unico
Hublot Big Bang King Power 48mm All Black Unico
C$ 14,657
Seller
Koosh Jewelers
 
US
Louis Erard Men's 1931 Collection Grey Dial Chronograph...
Louis Erard Men's 1931 Collection Grey Dial Chronograph...
C$ 5,062
Free shipping
Seller
D-FINITION
 
US
Rolex DAY-DATE 40MM 228206 Ice Blue Arabic Dial
Rolex DAY-DATE 40MM 228206 Ice Blue Arabic Dial
C$ 87,277
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Rolex Day-Date 40 Green Faceted Roman Dial
Rolex Day-Date 40 Green Faceted Roman Dial
C$ 43,171
Free shipping
Seller
Avital & Co Jewelry
5
US
Rolex Datejust QS SS 18K YG Gold Pink Diamond Dial Sapphire
Rolex Datejust QS SS 18K YG Gold Pink Diamond Dial Sapphire
C$ 4,664
Free shipping
Seller
SGA Watches & Jewelry
 
US
Patek Philippe Aquanaut 20th Anniversary 42mm White Gold Watch...
TOP
Patek Philippe Aquanaut 20th Anniversary 42mm White Gold Watch...
C$ 78,615
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
62
US
Omega Speedmaster Mark 40 Triple Calendar
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Mark 40 Triple Calendar
C$ 2,692
Seller
Vintage Watch Services
227
NL
Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Chrono Flyback Pam580 Pam00580
TOP
Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Chrono Flyback Pam580 Pam00580
C$ 14,657
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
90
US
Breitling Navitimer World
TOP
Breitling Navitimer World
C$ 6,196
Free shipping
Seller
Brilliance and Grace
55
US
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M Chronometer Co-Axial Blue Dial
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M Chronometer Co-Axial Blue Dial
C$ 3,731
Seller
Koosh Jewelers
 
US
Rolex GMT-Master
Rolex GMT-Master
C$ 19,654
Seller
Aaron Faber Gallery
 
US
Rolex DAY-DATE PRESIDENT
Rolex DAY-DATE PRESIDENT
C$ 16,856
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Rolex Daytona Leopard 18K Yellow Gold
Rolex Daytona Leopard 18K Yellow Gold
C$ 77,948
Free shipping
Seller
Avital & Co Jewelry
5
US
Tissot T0064071603300 Tissot Le Locle Mens Automatic Watch...
Tissot T0064071603300 Tissot Le Locle Mens Automatic Watch...
C$ 480
Seller
Luxury Discount Store
 
US
Patek Philippe Men's Aquanaut 40mm Stainless Steel Watch on...
TOP
Patek Philippe Men's Aquanaut 40mm Stainless Steel Watch on...
C$ 37,308
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
62
US
Pierre De Roche TNT Chrono 43 Men's Watch TNT10011ACTI0-001CAO
Pierre De Roche TNT Chrono 43 Men's Watch TNT10011ACTI0-001CAO
C$ 27,541
Free shipping
Seller
D-FINITION
 
US
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M
TOP
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M
C$ 4,397
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
90
US
Panerai Luminor Submersible
TOP
Panerai Luminor Submersible
C$ 7,594
Free shipping
Seller
Brilliance and Grace
55
US
Hublot Big Bang 44 mm
Hublot Big Bang 44 mm
C$ 15,990
Seller
Koosh Jewelers
 
US
Omega Seamaster
Omega Seamaster
C$ 9,261
Seller
Aaron Faber Gallery
 
US
Rolex MILGAUSS
Rolex MILGAUSS
C$ 7,968
Seller
Chronostore
 
US
Rolex Yacht-Master 40 18K Everose Gold
Rolex Yacht-Master 40 18K Everose Gold
C$ 30,113
Free shipping
Seller
Avital & Co Jewelry
5
US
Richard Mille RM055  White Ceramic and Titanium Asia Edition...
TOP
Richard Mille RM055 White Ceramic and Titanium Asia Edition...
C$ 213,194
Free shipping
Seller
Iceberg Jewelers
142
US
Rolex Air King Precision
Rolex Air King Precision
C$ 2,398
Free shipping
Seller
Elite Fine Jewelers
 
US
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Off Shore WIth Diamonds
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Off Shore WIth Diamonds
C$ 78,616
Seller
Royal Time
49
US
Panerai Luminor Marina 1950 3 Days Auto Pam1312 Pam01312
TOP
Panerai Luminor Marina 1950 3 Days Auto Pam1312 Pam01312
C$ 8,395
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
90
US
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Automatic Watches: Self-Winding Mechanical Timepieces

Automatic watches are powered by the natural motion of your wrist while you wear them. This type of watch has a rich history reaching back to the 18th century. Today, countless brands produce their own automatic calibers for their watches.

Highlights

  • Automatically wound by the natural movements of your arm
  • Environmentally-friendly: No batteries to produce or throw away
  • The Rolex Oyster Perpetual is one of the most famous automatic watches
  • John Harwood is considered the inventor of the automatic wristwatch
  • Automatic watches available in almost every price range

Automatic Watches: Self-Winding Timepieces

Automatic watches fall under the larger umbrella term of mechanical watches. They offer a key advantage over manual timepieces: They wind automatically via the movement of the wearer's arm. An oscillating mass inside the caliber is responsible for winding the spring. Today, this is in most cases a winding rotor. It is flexibly mounted so that gravity pulls it towards the center. When you're wearing the watch and move your wrist, the rotor moves and gives the caliber new energy. Automatic watches don't require batteries, making mechanical watches comparably more environmentally friendly than battery-powered quartz watches.
Automatic watches are available from almost every famous watch manufacturer in all price ranges. Less expensive models are often powered by base calibers made by the ébauche manufacturers ETA, Soprod, or Sellita. Various manufacturers use these calibers in a more or less reworked form in their watches. These calibers even power the watches made by famous brands such as Breitling and TAG Heuer. However, both manufacturers have developed their own in-house movements as well.
Rolex and Patek Philippe are some of the most well-known watch manufacturers. Unlike many other brands, these two Geneva-based manufacturers don't outsource base calibers. Instead, they use their own. For example, Rolex's caliber 3130 is considered very robust, reliable, and precise. These qualities and more make the caliber one of the best automatic movements on the market; it powers Rolex watches such as the Submariner. Since Rolex produces their watches almost entirely in-house, production is costlier. This results in higher prices for automatic watches with in-house movements.

Buying Tips

If you're searching for an automatic watch, the hard part is actually choosing one. Should it be large or small, simple or extravagant, affordable or expensive? The selection is ample for every taste and budget. Pre-owned automatic watches from Citizen, Seiko, or Swatch are available for around 50 euros. These watches often only have three hands for the hours, minutes, and seconds. Some also have a date or even day/date display.
In the price range between 100 and 200 euros, you can find diverse new automatic watches from brands like Seiko or Fossil. Pre-owned watches from long-established manufacturers such as Tissot, Hamilton, or Longines cost up to 500 euros. The situation is similar in the 1,000 euros and under price range, though here you can also find new models from the German brand Marcello C.
In the 1,000 euro price range, you can find pre-owned Omega or Breitling watches. New automatic three-hand watches are available from Oris, Raymond Weil, or Rado.
However, if you're looking for an automatic chronograph, you need to adjust your budget accordingly. A pre-owned automatic chronograph costs at least 500 euros; this applies to watches from brands such as Tissot or Hamilton. New chronographs cost a few hundred euros more, around 800 euros. These watches are often powered by ETA's Valjoux 7750, which is considered one of the most successful automatic chronograph calibers in the world.
If you're searching for a new automatic Rolex, you need to plan on spending at least 3,000 euros. You can purchase the introductory model, Oyster Perpetual, for this price. You can occasionally find pre-owned vintage watches from this Genevan manufacturer for less than 1,000 euros. The Submariner, one of the first and most famous diving watches in the world, is available pre-owned for around 4,100 euros. New, it costs around 5,600 euros. Rolex's chronograph, the Daytona, is available for around 7,500 euros.
The most expensive automatic watches are from brands such as Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe. These watches are often made of platinum or 18-karat gold and feature countless diamonds on their dial and/or case. At times, these watches are also incredibly expensive as they're rare vintage watches coveted by collectors. Prices over 1 million euros are not too rare when it comes to these watches.

The Technology Behind Automatic Watches

The mainspring of an automatic watch is, as the name suggests, automatically wound by the movement itself. The mainspring is wound, becomes tense, and stores energy. This happens through the natural movements of the wearer's arm when the watch is on his or her wrist. This mechanism eliminates the need to manually wind the mainspring. Instead, an oscillating mass - often the rotor - winds the mainspring. Gravity causes the flexibly mounted rotor to move towards the center and a gear-train transfers the energy from the rotor's movement to the barrel. Viewed from a physics standpoint, the mechanism converts kinetic energy into potential energy.
There are automatic movements that wind in one or both directions. Bi-directional winding movements have so-called reverser gears. These ensure that the rotor winds the barrel in both directions. Uni-directional winding movements actually wind bidirectionally, but the mainspring is only wound in one direction. Both variants have a reduction gear which converts the fast movements of the rotor into slower movements with more torque. The end of the mainspring is not directly connected to the barrel so that it doesn't snap off when it's fully wound. The outer end of the spring is outfitted with a bridle, which keeps the pressure on the mainspring's outermost coil. When not fully wound, that pressure allows the outer end of the mainspring to be caught in a notch in the barrel wall. Once the spring is fully wound, it moves along to the next notch.
Automatic watches have many advantages: They're comfortable, environmentally-friendly, and usually more precise. This improved precision is due to the mainspring, which is always tense and has a more constant torque than mainsprings in hand-wound calibers. This has a positive effect on the amplitude. The amplitude is the balance wheel's degree of rotation and refers to the wheel's maximum rotation angle between equilibrium and a reversal point.

Technical Details of Automatic Watches

  • The winding rotor winds the mainspring in the barrel
  • Advantages: no manual winding required, environmentally-friendly, more precise
  • Uni-directional and bi-directional winding movements

The Origins of Automatic Watches

Automatic winding is one of the most important and long-lasting innovations in the history of watchmaking and the mechanism is one of the most widespread complications in use today.
Today's automatic watches can trace their origin back to the year 1729. Abraham-Louis Perrelet improved the winding mechanism of pocket watches in the 18th century. A small key was required to wind a movement before this improvement. Since the key was never there when you needed it, winding mechanisms that didn't require a key were in high demand. Perrelet wanted to invent a self-winding pocket watch. In 1770, he introduced his pedometer watch after countless attempts. The watch had an oscillating weight which teetered back and forth as the wearer walked. The motion caused the oscillating weight to tense the mainspring. Perrelet also developed a caliber with a winding rotor which swiveled above the movement. With these innovations, the groundwork for today's automatic watches was laid.
Refined men carried their pocket watches tucked away safely in their jacket, vest, or pants. The timepieces barely moved while in their pockets, which meant that the oscillating mass didn't have enough energy to wind the mainspring. The crown-wind method solved the key-wind problem in the mid-19th century, making the automatic pocket watch superfluous.

The First Automatic Wristwatches

The French watchmaker Léon Leroy was also a pioneer in the development of automatic watches. He presented his first automatic wristwatch in 1922. Some of these watches even had a date display. However, Leroy was far away from being able to mass produce a series.
The British watchmaker John Harwood lead automatic wristwatches to series production. He began working on automatic movements in 1922. Two years later, he patented his work, paving the way for the first series-produced automatic wristwatches.
Rolex's Oyster Perpetual was one of the first automatic wristwatches. Rolex introduced the watch to the market in 1931. It's one of the few early models that has lasted over the years and is still produced today. The principle behind Oyster Perpetual's winding rotor is at the heart of every modern automatic wristwatch.

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