Get Even More Visitors To Your Blog, Upgrade To A Business Listing >>

9 Types of Watch Bezels (What They Are Used For)

Tags: bezel bezels

INTRODUCTION
THE MYSTERIOUS “EXTRA” FEATURE

Welcome to Infinity Timewatch, and a guide on the different types of watch bezels. Watches come in all shapes and sizes these days, and some of them even come with an interesting “extra” spinning part on the bezel – Which, to the unknowing beginners, can be just another piece of decoration on the watch… Not knowing that they actually serve a useful purpose.

Even back in the 1950s, some watches already have Bezels to help divers keep track of bottom time, and when they should start to resurface. The designs of watch bezels have since evolved quite a bit, and we have all sorts of bezels today with different kinds of functionalities.

So in this guide, we will be walking through a few common types of watch bezels and what they are used for. Read on!

CONFESSION
AN HONEST DISCLOSURE

Quick, hide your wallets! We are affiliate/partners of eBay and Google. There are affiliate links and advertisements on this website. Whenever you buy things from the evil links that we recommend, we will make commissions. Nah. These are just things to keep the blog going, and allows us to do more reviews and give more good stuff to you guys - for free. So thank you if you decide to pick up our recommendations!

NAVIGATION
TABLE OF CONTENTS

Section A
What is Bezel?

Section B
Types of Bezels

Section C
Types of Materials

Section D
How to Change Bezel

Closing
What Next?

SECTION A
WHAT IS A BEZEL!?

Before we go into the different types of bezels, let us answer the million dollars burning question for the new watch enthusiasts – Just what the heck is a watch bezel?

THE BEZEL PART

To answer the question simply, the watch bezel is the rim of the watch cover, a ring that surrounds the crystals. Watch bezels can take on a number of designs – Some of these are just plain rings that are fixed, while some of them have numbers and can be rotated around.

SECTION B
TYPES OF BEZELS

Some watch bezels can be turned, some can be snapped on, while some are just plain fixed. Just what are they used for, and how do they work? Here are some of the common types of bezels and how to use them.

1) PLAIN BEZEL

WHAT IT IS

Plain bezels are fixed, don’t have any number markings, nor do they have any actual functions; They are just there to serve as aesthetics, to make the watch look more appealing – Although “plain” bezels do not have any functions, some of them may have engravings, patterns, and even jewels.

2) COUNT-UP BEZEL

WHAT IT IS

Count-up bezels usually have a 0 to 60 scale that aligns with the minutes in an hour, and some even have minute interval lines. As you can guess, count-up bezels are used to count the elapsed time once you set it.

Commonly found on sports and diver watches, count-up bezels are unidirectional that can be rotated only in the counter-clockwise direction. Although they can only track up to 1 hour, these are good enough for sports fans to know how long they have exercised, and divers to know how long they have been underwater.

HOW TO USE

  • To use a count-up bezel, simply turn the bezel until the 0 marker lines up with the minute hand.
  • That’s it, you can now read how long the time has passed since you have set it, up to 1 hour.

3) COUNTDOWN BEZEL

WHAT IT IS

Count-down bezels work the same as the count-up bezel, but the difference is that the count-down bezels works in a reverse way from 60 to 0. You can think of it as a stopwatch used for cyclists, racers, or runners. The other difference is that the count-down bezel can be turned both clockwise and counterclockwise.

HOW TO USE

  • To use a count-down bezel, simply turn the bezel until the 0 marker lines up with your desired time limit.
  • For example, the time is now 2:00 and you want to set a 30 minutes limit – Simply turn the bezel until the 0 marker lines up at the 30-minute mark of the watch face.
  • That’s it, you can now read how long the time has passed since you have set it, up to 1 hour.

4) TACHYMETER

WHAT IT IS

The tachymeter is another common watch bezel, and it is used to measure the speed based on the amount of time traveled at a given distance.

HOW TO USE

  • Reset the stopwatch to 0.
  • So, let’s say that you want to know how fast a car is traveling across a 1 KM stretch of road – Start the stopwatch when the car is at the starting point, and stop timing when it reaches the end.
  • If the car took 20 seconds, read the tachymeter scale, and it should be traveling at around 180 KM/H.
  • This can also be used to calculate in other units. For example, we will time the car on a 1 mile stretch of road instead, and it took 30 seconds – The car is traveling at around 120 MPH.

Do take note that we are taking a reference to 1 full calculation unit here – 1 KM and 1 mile. So what if it is a sports event, where we are calculating the speed of a sprinter in a 200 meters run:

  • If the sprinter took 30 seconds, that will be an impossible 120 KM/H.
  • But since 200 meters is only 1/5 of 1 KM, we will divide 120 by 5 – That will give us a speed of 24 KM/H.

5) TELEMETER

WHAT IT IS

The telemeter is a rare classic that is used to measure the distance between the person and the location where an event is seen or heard. Soldiers use the telemeter to gauge the distance between them and the enemy fire, and it can also be used to measure the distance for events such as a lightning strike.

HOW TO USE

  • To use the telemeter, reset the watch seconds hand to the zero position.
  • Once you see lightning at a distance, start the stopwatch.
  • Stop the time when you hear the lightning.
  • The second hand will now show you the approximate distance between you and where the lightning struck.

6) GMT TIMEZONE BEZEL

WHAT IT IS

The GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) bezel is probably one of the most straightforward – It has a “regular” 24 hours marking and is used like a “second” watch face. As you can guess, the GMT bezel can be set to the time zone of where you are traveling to, so you don’t have to re-adjust the watch hands.

HOW TO USE

  • GMT watches have a secondary hour watch hand.
  • First, you might want to reset the bezel, so that the “0” or “arrow” mark lines up with 12 pm.
  • Next, set the secondary hour watch hand to the current GMT time (GMT +0).
  • Lastly, rotate the GMT bezel to the timezone that you want. For example, the timezone in Singapore is GMT +8. You just need to rotate the bezel counter-clockwise 8 times.

7) COMPASS

WHAT IT IS

Compass bezels are usually found in analog watches used by hikers, trekkers, and other outdoor activities. These bezels are marked with North, South, East, and West letters, and are obviously used for navigation. Interestingly though, the compass bezel is not magnetic nor electronic, and it will only work when you have the sun.

HOW TO USE

  • Make sure that your watch is in the level position, then point the hour hand at the sun.
  • If you are in the northern hemisphere, rotate the bezel until the S (South) is halfway between the hour hand and 12:00.
  • If you are in the southern hemisphere, rotate the bezel until the N (North) is halfway between the hour hand and 12:00.

That’s it, but please be aware that the directions will change over time as the sun moves, so always recheck every 30 minutes or so. Also, this method is definitely not as accurate as an actual magnetic compass or GPS. But it is a good backup method that will work as long as you have the sun and a watch – You actually don’t even need the compass bezel to tell the direction.

8) PULSOMETER

WHAT IT IS

The pulsometer is another classic that is used in the early 1920s by medical doctors and nurses to estimate a patient’s heartbeat rate through a scale marked on the bezel. All pulsometer bezels will have markers from a scale of 40 to 200, and there are also some pulsometer watches that also checks the respiratory rate of a patient. Analog pulsometer bezel watches are rare and expensive these days, ever since they have been taken over by the cheaper and more accurate electronic versions.

HOW TO USE

  • Start the timer when the pulsometer hand reaches 0.
  • Count the number of heartbeats for a good 15 to 30 times.
  • Stop the timer.
  • Read the outer scale to find out the heartbeat rate.

9) SLIDE RULE

WHAT IT IS

The slide rule bezel is sort of the swiss-knife of watch bezels. It can be used to do a whole load of different calculations such as speed, distance, flight time, multiplication, exponents, logarithms, fuel consumption and much more.

However, it is also one of the most complicated bezels – It does not use any of the watch hands but has a rotating plus fixed scale for multiple calculations. Although this is kind of “old school”, but it is still a great alternative if your smartphone or calculator runs out battery power.

HOW TO USE

Here are some examples that you can use the slide rule bezel for calculation:

  • 1st scenario – If you want to calculate the multiplication of 4 x 12. Set the number 12 on the outer bezel opposite the 10 on the inner scale. Check the opposite of 4 and read the answer which is 48 on the outer scale.
  • 2nd scenario – Calculation the conversion from miles to kilometers. 1km is approximately 0.621 of a mile. Rotate the number 6.21 on the outer bezel opposite the 10 on the inner scale. For any given amount of miles, read the outer ring value and the number of kilometers will be shown on the inner ring. Example: 300 miles (outer ring value of “3”) equals about 482 km.

SECTION C
WATCH BEZEL MATERIALS

Watch bezels are made with different materials, each with its own advantages and disadvantages – Let us take a look at a few common materials that watch manufacturers use in this section.

1) CERAMIC

Produced with high-tech engineering, ceramics are composites of glass, silicon, graphite, and even diamond. They are strong, durable, scratch resistant, all while being lightweight. As you can expect from this “premium material” – They are expensive to manufacture.

Ceramic bezels have actually been around since the 1960s, but it was not until technology made them more affordable with mass-production in the 2000s. Watch companies like Rolex, IWC, and Omega usually produce these high-end ceramic bezels.

Advantages:

  • Scratch and heat resistant, great under hot conditions.
  • Strong and lasts for a very long time which makes ceramic bezels appealing

Disadvantages:

  • Might shatter if a ton of force is applied on the bezel
  • Very expensive to replace compared to other bezel materials

2) STEEL

Steel bezels are both hard and waterproof which makes it very popular among scuba divers, swimmers, and pilots. They are a common and versatile material, even during the early days of the watch industry – The first stainless steel watch was the Rolex’s Submariner in 1953 that has a rotating bezel, and the high-end watches continue to use stainless steel in the market today.

Advantages:

  • Waterproof and suitable for water sports.
  • Durable and takes punishments well.
  • Cheaper to replace than ceramic bezels.

Disadvantages:

  • Easily exposed to scratching and prone to discolorization.
  • Can be heavy which adds weight to the watch.

3) ALUMINUM

Aluminum bezels are actually the cheapest compared to all the other materials. Many budget watches contain aluminum bezels which are easily mass produced by watch industries. They are cheap and are easily available in the market so replacement is not a big issue.

Under a hot sun, however, the discolorization effect is stronger than the stainless steel. It was used to replace the expensive ceramic watches at the time by Rolex until they change it to Cerachrom ceramic watches.

Advantages:

  • Cheapest material to produce as a bezel among the other two materials
  • Easily attainable

Disadvantages:

  • Easily exposed to scratching and prone to discolorization.
  • Might not be as appealing as the other two materials

SECTION D
HOW TO REPLACE A WATCH BEZEL

This is a small extra section for those of you who looking to change the watch bezel, or fix a stuck bezel – Here is how to change a watch bezel by yourself. It is actually pretty easy if you have the right tools, but if let the professionals do it for you if you are not confident.

REMOVING A WATCH BEZEL

For this method, you will need a dull knife:

  1. Locate the notch between the bezel and the watch case.
  2. Take your knife and slide the blade carefully between the watch case and the bezel.
  3. Twist the knife until the watch bezel pops out freely and you can remove it using your hands.

Be extremely careful when handling the blade – Even though it is a dull blade, slipping will damage the watch and you will cut yourself. Putting the bezel back is as simple as snapping it into place, but do take extra note that there may be rubber gaskets and washer rings that you may need to orientate properly first.

CLOSING
WHAT NEXT?

We have come to the end of this guide, and I hope that it has helped you to better understand and read watch bezels. With that, if you have some stuff to share with this guide, please feel free to comment below. Good luck!

The post 9 Types of Watch Bezels (What They Are Used For) appeared first on Infinity Timewatch.



This post first appeared on XXXXXx, please read the originial post: here

Share the post

9 Types of Watch Bezels (What They Are Used For)

×

Subscribe to Xxxxxx

Get updates delivered right to your inbox!

Thank you for your subscription

×