Time Keeping and Timelines

When we think of time, most of us are either setting an alarm “the night before” to drag ourselves out of bed “the next morning” to go to work or make an important meeting. We closely listen to the “lunch bell” and keenly clamp our ears open for the “knock off bell”; scramble in transport ticket lines, race through the streets or curse when we are stuck in traffic.

Time Keeping and Timelines

Time and space have become so precious in everything we do that devices for measuring and keeping time, are developing very rapidly with today’s technology. Where once upon a time it would take thousands of years to discover, invent and create or manufacture such a device, now through technological evolution these devices are not only hand wound or battery driven, they are now computerised, “blue-toothed”, heat or light and/or statically driven. Modern devices are set to almost do everything from measuring and recording our heart rates to nearly practically kick starting our hearts if they miss a beat.

Different reasons for wearing watches and the way we want them to look have set inventors and designers and jewellery makers into the largest competitive market to date. Whether it be a diamond set glamorous piece to set off a wealthy look or a divers watch that will tell the wearer everything they need to know about the ocean and their work, a lovely pendulum swinging and chiming grandfather clock that reminds us of our childhoods, a simplistic stylish clock to match our décor of the day, or a barometer/thermometer/date telling clock so we just have to take a quick glance and know what our day is bringing us.

At Seaspray Jewellery we commend ourselves for quality. We are not only Diamond and Gemstone specialists, Jewellery designers and retailers, we also stock an amazing selection of watches and clocks for all diverse selections and tastes for any genre. Seaspray Jewellery understands the precious commodity of “TIME” and reasons for choosing a watch or clock may vary from fashion or wealth to décor or memories of their youth and even for the work and wear capability e.g. diving, running, nursing or business management.

Looking at the history and timeline of the watch or any timekeeping device, the value of time is truly precious in that it simply “does fly by” when we are not paying attention. What we fit into our daily lives in modern times would leave the “Ancients” cringing at the very thought of the future. Seaspray stocks devices which give respect, value and reflection to all the qualities necessary in choosing an item in keeping you informed with time giving essence to your purchase.

Let us now take a short look at the history of time keeping.


Time Keeping and Timelines

Horology is the actual science of measuring time. This may be done with watches, clocks, sundials, hourglass, clepsydras (water clock which is the flow of liquid from one container to another and measured), timers, atomic clocks, marine chronometers (measuring longitude and astral connection for the length of travel on the seas) and more.

History of Time Keeping

Time Keeping and Timelines

The earliest findings of some of the oldest devices for detection and measuring of time stems back 6000 years ago to Babylon. From here the Ancient Egyptians (3500BC) spent 3000 years with scientists and engineers of their time, developing ways to make man made devices to keep time. They erected obelisks outside temples and royal buildings which cast shadows onto precisely decorated spirals on the ground and took the Babylonians discoveries along with the Summer Solstice and Winter Solstice and daylight hours, turning them into a way to measure time. The Greeks and Romans, Chinese, Indians, Europeans, Japanese (over many centuries) had Philosophers, Inventors, Scientists, Engineers and craftsmen who worked tirelessly to create the now modern devices we see today.

Sundials were taken by the Greeks and Romans and further developed. In the 11th Century BC, Su Sung (Chinese) developed the Water Clock; 1510 – German – Peter Henlein developed the first modern mechanical clock; Leonado de Vinci has recordings of the workings of Pendulum clocks in his engineering notes; Plato developed the first alarm clock based on a water clock; 1776 – Jean-Moyes Pouzai came up with the chronograph stop watch; 1525 – Jacob Zech, the mechanical analogue chronometer (longitude); Then you have the timekeeping which was purposely created for religious reasons to regulate prayers and how often. This became and important development in cultural and social structure and discipline.

Understanding Watch Movements

Time Keeping and Timelines

Watches are man-made devices which consist of Mechanical Movements or Quartz Movements. If we break the two down simply it is easy understand the difference.

Mechanical movement has a sweeping motion which is very accurate and lower friction. The craftsmanship is much more skilfully and expertly crafted and mainly used in luxury watches. There are hand-wound movements which use energy from a wound spring and passed through gears in the mechanics, either manually or automatically self-winding. They generally last 30-40 hours on a single wind, however some are known to last up to 10 days depending on their craftsmanship.

“A mechanical movement, on the other hand, uses energy from a wound spring, and keeps time through the regulated release of that energy through a set of gears. Mechanical watches are never battery-powered and usually run for about 30 to 40 hours on a full-wind, though some can last as long as 10 days. These movements are often unique and proprietary to their manufacturer, and while they will need service on occasion, they’ll outlast any owner with proper care. Mechanical movements can be hand-wound or self-wound via your wrist’s motion during wear, which is known as “automatic” — a different thing, entirely, than quartz movements. Mechanical timepieces are also sometimes harder to spot, but look for second hands that “tick” multiple times per second. This gives the watch that “sweeping” effect — think of the intro from 60 Minutes.”

Quartz movement devices have individual ticks. They are accurate and require minimal maintenance usually just a new battery required. They generally lack the technical craftsmanship (although movement in Swiss brands e.g. Patek Phillippe – follow strict quality standards).

“A quartz movement works by using a small piece of the vibrating mineral — guess which one? — that’s powered by the battery, a microchip, essentially, that converts those vibrations into time. This allows for incredibly accurate measurement, as quartz timepieces are accurate to within half a second per day. These movements were first invented in the late 60’s, when the new technology was incredibly expensive. Now, they’re the most inexpensive and widely-used movements on the market, thanks to the magic of mass manufacturing. You can spot most quartz movements by their single “tick” of the second hand. One per second, of course.”

More information can be found by watching Difference Between Watch Movement Types and What's the Right Way to Make Your Watch Tick?.

Jewels in a Watch

Time Keeping and Timelines

When you see a watch that reads 15 Jewels or 25 Jewels on the face of a watch, this literally means real Sapphires or Rubies are used in the workings or a watch. Jewel bearings are used to predominately to balance and create low friction with the gears and energy in the mechanics. This is important for longevity and dimensional accuracy of a watch.

A lot of people choose such a watch so as to have it for a “lifetime” or to hand down through generations as an heirloom. Originally precious stones such as diamonds, sapphires, rubies and garnets were used in watches, however today, with the making of synthetic gems, “Corundum” is used. The more jewels, the less friction and today manufacturers such as “Seiko” use them to justify the price of their watches.

Adina Watches and Clocks at Seaspray Jewellery

Here at Seaspray Jewellery, we are proud to stock Adina clocks and watches. Adina started in 1971 with owner Robert “Bob” Menzies. It is Australia’s only watch brand that designs and assembles its complete watch collection here in Australia. The brand has grown from 3 models in the collection to over 600 with 20 employees, over 50% of whom are watchmakers or watchmakers apprentices.

Bob Menzies uses the highest quality Swiss and Japanese imported parts. Bob started his interest following and observing his father around the world working and repairing watches and decided to continue the love of watches and clocks into modern times. He loves the aspect of the memories of sounding pendulum clocks and the ticking of a large grandfather clock that may have stood in the corridor of a great grandparent’s home. The team at Adina are passionate about delivering exceptional products with great service to retailers like Seaspray, and they are all made here in Australia!
“The clock division comprises of the 3 distinct sectors.
  • Quartz wall and mantle clocks
  • Mechanical Grandfather, wall and mantle clocks
  • Government and corporate logo wall clocks

The quartz portion of the retail sector is served by a vast array of styles and price points all retailing below $300. Every style of home and office is represented here through being conservative or quite flamboyant.

Mechanical clocks (clocks that must be wound) appealing to traditionalist and the top end of the clock market are well served by any of the all timber wall chimers, mantle chimers or grandfather clocks. All are powered by the famous German clock maker Hermle & Sohn movements. 

The government and corporate sector is supplied with logoed or non logoed on wall clocks for any indoor use in a variety of sizes and finishes in a multitude of price points. For instance it’s more than likely if you are sitting a test at the University of Queensland you will be looking at an Adina clock.“

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