The metal used in Swiss watches in of much higher quality than the materials used in less expensive watches. First of all, Swiss watches often are made with real 316L surgical steel, which has several benefits. If you scratch your watch, you can almost always polish it out. Steel takes and retains polish very well, so the watch will look like new for much longer. It is also less susceptible to rust, so it will not corrode. In short, part of the high price tag is for the watch’s longevity.
The Links and Case
The links and cases of Swiss watches are also made of steel. You can tell because they tend to be heavier than non-Swiss watches. Try one next time you are at a store and see a Patek Phillipe for sale. Unlike those made with steel, some watches made with rolling steel can even cause a scratchy feeling on your wrist or rub a rough spot on your skin. Also unlike steel, lesser metals will corrode your watch’s band.
The clear face of your watch, also called the crystal, is also of higher quality with Swiss watches, which usually use synthetic sapphire crystal. This material is very hard and scratch resistant. As with the steel, this material is used so the watch looks new for longer.
The link pins in Swiss watches are covered in sleeves, other watches do not have this feature. This keeps the metal parts from rubbing against each other and wearing.
The band caps, which hold the band to the case of a watch, are solid in these watches. In other watches the band caps are hollow and can easily break. Hollow band caps often have to be replaced over and over again.
The mechanical innards inside the watch make up a third to one half of the watch’s cost. The parts are handmade in Swiss watches, so all the bits, pieces, and metal gears are hand crafted and checked to work properly. This doesn’t often happen with other watches. In manufacturing plants for other watches, the gears are made out of plastic, and not every single watch is checked for quality assurance. There are drawbacks to the plastic gears, too. They wear more quickly than metal gears, and they are locked inside the watch, so they have to be totally replaced when they break. Metal gears, on the other hand, can be serviced.
Not all of us can afford a luxurious watch, but at least we can learn what’s so great about them so that if we ever can afford one, we’ll know why we want to buy one. Perhaps we can purchase that Patek Phillipe for sale.