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Old 29-10-2017, 11:35   #1
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Stop button on mechanical watch

Hello all,
My name is Francesco, I am not new here but I will introduce me as I am into something new: I am into preparation for the 2018 Golden Globe Race.

I have a technical question about... watches.

For those who do not know, in the Golden Globe we are only allowed to navigate with sextant and watch, old style. The watch must me mechanic (no quartz).

My question is:
do you know of any feature in any watch allowing to take a stop through a button that will stop the quadrant on REAL TIME (not chrono time)?
In fewer words, a button that when pushed stops the hours,minutes,seconds of the watch...
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Old 29-10-2017, 11:52   #2
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Re: Stop button on mechanic watch

Francesco,

I do not know of a mechanical watch that does what you are asking for, but I am sure one could be found--for a price! This was traditionally done by using a mechanical stopwatch to transfer the exact time of sight to the ship's clock, which I assume the rules would allow you to use...

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...9bcd8e87cbb9fc
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Old 29-10-2017, 12:13   #3
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Re: Stop button on mechanic watch

Thank you
So, the practsise you suggest is, for example, taking a stop on the chrono when the height is taken then go down to chart table and stop again taking note the time on ship's watch. Then make a subtraction?
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Old 29-10-2017, 15:37   #4
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Re: Stop button on mechanic watch

Last time I looked for a mechanical marine grade chronometer I run into some VERY steep prices. Thousands of freedom tokens. Beware.

Buying an old s/h piece not worth the risks.

And yes, a mechanical stopper watch is started on the clock (on the boat chronometer) then stopped on sight. You can still buy inexpensive Russian stoppers at ebay.

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Old 29-10-2017, 15:57   #5
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Re: Stop button on mechanic watch

Like this:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Soviet-Russ...QAAOSwR0JUOpit
The stop button stops one second hand, while the other keeps on moving. another push, and it catches up.
I used one when I learned Celestial Nav, (which I have since forgotten everything about)
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Old 29-10-2017, 16:41   #6
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Re: Stop button on mechanic watch

Just out of curiosity -- can you use a shortwave radio to set your watch/clock to a time standard like WWV?
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Old 29-10-2017, 16:57   #7
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

I suggest joining the NavList group and asking any questions in both forums.
The NavList folks are dedicated strictly to celestial and related topics and are more likely to have a grasp of practicalities of all parts of the navigation task.

http://fer3.com/arc/
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Old 30-10-2017, 07:56   #8
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

Yes. This one shown above will do the stop work fine.

But what about the chronometer ?

I missed a fine Wempe last year at 500 freedom tokens (local shop window), but I missed it, gone, forget this one, sailing with somebody else.

All the others seem to be 1500 units and upwards for unknown condition (buy unseen).

I have investigated locally for cleaning and certification work. I found one guy ready to do this for less than 500 units.


https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fro...meter&_sacat=0

I have seen a handfull of new units Nardin, Glasshute, etc. priced at 15k plus. Glusshutte comes with an elegant navigator watch, still ...

So, how much are we expected to pay for a proper maritime chronometer, s/h, in good condition (certified) and sight seen?

500 ?
1500 ?
15000 ?

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Old 30-10-2017, 09:21   #9
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

I collect mechanical watches so am fairly familiar with a range of them. I think the function you're looking for is fundamentally at odds with any sort of chronometer grade watch; if you were to stop the main mechanism (as opposed to the chronograph function), the watch would no longer be accurate. An alternate method would be to synchronize the chronograph with the main time keeping (start the chronograph when the main time second hand hits 12) and proceed from there. You could probably do the same thing with your regular watch and a separate stop watch.

FYI if you want the most accurate and reasonably affordable mechanical chronometer/chronograph wrist watch on the market, that would likely be a contemporary Omega Speedmaster. They run about $3k. You would likely want to have the watch regulated if it did not meet COSC standards, which is I believe +6/-4 seconds per day accuracy. A well regulated (to five positions) chronometer grade watch should be able to hold to +1/-1 second per day.

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Old 30-10-2017, 10:08   #10
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

Most quality Japanese or Swiss mechanical movements are capable of "hacking" i.e stopping all hands when unscrewing and pulling out the crown to the last stop. As mentioned before, however, when stopped, the watch will have to be reset to the proper time when restarted.
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Old 30-10-2017, 11:40   #11
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

Good luck in the race.
I think you can find COSC certified (new) chronometer for around $ 1,000-1,500. Check lesser brands like Tissot or Mido.
I am not an expert but I cannot imagine a chronometer that can both be stopped for recording the sight time and than reset to run on the original time count. This will require the time mechanism to continue running in the background while the hands are arrested. If such watch exists it will be highly complicated and ecpensive to match.
As I see it, and others in this thread suggested, the easiest way is to use a stopwatch that you start at a known/noted time and stopped when the sight is taken, than adding the stopwatch elapsed time to its start time.
By the way - how do you stop any watch exactly on the point of time of your sight (assuming you have only two hands)?
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Old 30-10-2017, 14:01   #12
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

Quote:
By the way - how do you stop any watch exactly on the point of time of your sight (assuming you have only two hands)?
I used to simply subtract a few seconds from the noted time, worked ok for me. But really, when making observations from a very low height of eye whilst bouncing about at sea, a few seconds of error in the time are the least of your worries!

Jim

Oh, I too am curious: are radio receivers allowed for time checks? If so, superb accuracy isn't so necessary in one's timepiece, for it can be corrected daily if needed.
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Old 30-10-2017, 14:30   #13
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

I investigated the Speedmaster series (along with half a dozen of other chronographs watches) some time back and I believe I had found that not all in the series were made as proper mechanical/manual watches. I believe I found some that were quartz watches. Double check if buying.

I think two of the series give a high chance of being accepted the Moon(watch) and the Chrono. But when I searched the web both were listed at 5k plus. That was maybe 2 years ago. Maybe now they are not that expensive anymore.

I, personally, would not be very comfortable with this watch on my wrist (I tend to smash and part with my watches in mysterious ways) and to be used below deck as a chronometer it has a wee face compared to the real thing.

A huge plus is that they are waterproof while many boxed marine chronometers are not.

It looks like the new Globe sailors must be well off?

To afford chronometers, sextants, cotton sails and hempen sheets ... items today only found in Toplischt catalogue.

And, more frankly, it is odd (to me) that the organizers require somewhat antique, possibly less reliable and more difficult equipment while at the same time some contestants may lack some navigation skills required to use such equipment. Like timing the sight.

PLS do not treat my above sentence as criticism of OP's skills. It is NOT. It is an observation on the Globe organizers.

Good luck to OP finding the tools and sailing the route!

Cheers,
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Old 30-10-2017, 14:54   #14
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

Was interested as to what the regs where, taken from the 2018 GGR web site.


The 2018 Golden Globe Race will require all entrants to use only the same type, or similar equipment and technology that was carried on board Robin Knox-Johnston’s 1968/69 race winning yacht Suhaili. Entry is by invitation only, for sailors aged 18 years and older at the start on June 16, 2018. Entrants must show prior ocean sailing experience of at least 8,000 miles and another 2000 miles solo in any boat, by 30th April 2018.

This is an around the world solo race that is totally unique and OPEN to all. Yes, there are yacht design limitations, unlike the first Golden Globe, as this is also a salute to Suhaili, but if there were not, it would become just another competition to see who can get the best sponsorship. This race has created something that the average sailing person worldwide (with commitment) can compete in. It is therefore truly an Open Race as it is not open in class, but truly Open to All. Entrants currently include young, old, experienced, amateur, professional, coastal, offshore, cruising and adventurous sailors from 15 countries.

This is a non-stop one-class race, so any entrant forced to make one stopover, or break the seal on their portable GPS chart plotter, will not be eligible for any official Golden Globe trophies, refund of entry fee or completion plaques, but can remain in the event, being moved to the ‘Chichester Class’. They will receive a ‘Chichester’ finishing plaque, provided they finish no later than 1500hrs on 22nd April 2019. Any entrant making two stops is disqualified.

Each entrant will be supplied a standard Race Pack by the event organisers. The technology may change, but it will include, but not be limited to:
• A stand-alone satellite tracking system (the skippers cannot see) for web tracking updates.
• A two-way satellite short text paging unit. (to race headquarters only) for twice daily 100-character text reports.
• Two hand held satellite phones (for important calls to Race headquarters only) for one a week safety check in only.
• A sealed box with a portable GPS chart plotter (for emergency use only)
All Entrants will be tracked 24/7 by satellite, but competitors will not be able to interrogate this information unless an emergency arises and they break open their sealed safety box containing a GPS and satellite phone. Doing this however, has consequences. By breaking the seal, competitors will be deemed to have retired from the Golden Globe Race, and instead will be relegated to the Chichester Class as if they had made a stop.
Approval for Production yacht types for entry into the Golden Globe Race has now been restricted to the following 22 yachts with the following general specifications:
  • Of fibre reinforced plastic construction.
  • Designed prior to 1988 and have a minimum series of 20 yachts built from one mould.
  • Have a hull length of between 32ft and 36ft. Bowsprits, wind vanes and outboard rudders, boomkins, pushpits and pulpits are not measured.
  • Have full-length keels with rudders attached to the trailing edge.
  • A minimum design displacement is 6,200kg.

2018 Golden Globe Race approved designs: Westsail 32 • Tradewind 35 • Saga 34 • Saltram 36 • Vancouver 32 & 34 • OE 32 • Eric (sister ship to Suhaili) • Aries 32 • Baba 35 • Biscay 36 • Bowman 36 • Cape Dory 36 • Nicholson 32 MKX-XI • Rustler 36, Endurance 35, Gaia 36, Hans Christian 33T, Tashiba 36, Cabo Rico 34, Hinckley Pilot 35, Lello 34, Gale Force 34.
Only the design is approved to compete in the Race.

The structural integrity, build quality, or suitability of any boat to survive the event, will be the sole responsibility of the entrant. All Boats are required to undergo refits and surveys to ensure they are up to the task of crossing oceans. During those refits mast height, boom length, bowsprits and ballast must not exceed original design specifications. Refit must stay true to the original design and production boat fitout and components may not be lightened. Strengthening is allowed, together with extra standing rigging. By maintaining the production boat status for the Race, resale values are assured
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Old 30-10-2017, 15:18   #15
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Re: Stop button on mechanical watch

An odd lot of regs! Not clear if dacron sails/cordage are legit, along with other items like radio rx. Perhaps there is a more comprehensive list for those actually entering. Also a bit odd that they are saluting Suahili, a timber boat of individual execution, but requiring entrants to be FRP and from a list of production boats. Oh, the race is open to all, but is by invitation only???

Kinda weird, but I guess they can posit any rules they want.

Jim
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