Watches glossary


Swiss made:

All watches offered by ChronoCentral are Swiss made as indicated on the dial. All movements used by ChronoCentral Timepieces are Swiss made (Valjoux, Eta, Soprod etc.).

Automatic:

The system was invented in Switzerland by Abraham Louis Perrelet in the 18th century: the mainspring is wound by the natural motions of the wearer’s arm. On the basis of the principle of terrestrial attraction, a rotor turns and transmits its energy to the spring by means of an appropriate mechanism. The number of watch components varies between 50 for a 3 hands to 300 for a chronograph. The power reserve of an automatic or self-winding watch indicates the number of hours it takes to a movement to stop ticking (for example 46 hours for the F-80 GMT). Automatic movements are appreciated by watch fans (“a watch with a soul”) and are environment friendly (no need to change battery).

Three examples of popular automatic movements:

Rotor:

The oscillating mass which winds an automatic movement. A rotor is commonly free to rotate 360 degrees and may wind the watch when it is rotating in one direction only or in both, through the use of reverser wheels and gears. The manufacturer logo is usually engraved on the rotor, which is sometimes treated with black Ion Plating. The rotor and the watch movement can be seen on all Salvatore Ferragamo automatic watches through a transparent back case made of sapphire crystal.

Tourbillon:

Device invented by Bréguet to eliminate errors of rate in the vertical positions and therefore compensate the effects of the earth attraction on the movement. It consists of a mobile cage carrying all the parts of the escapement, with the balance in the centre. The escape pinion turns about the fixed fourth wheel. The cage makes one revolution per minute, thus annulling errors of rate in the vertical positions. Tourbillon watches are rare, complicated, and difficult to create, belonging therefore to the most expensive timepieces.

Chronograph:

Defines a movement with two independent time systems: one indicates the time of day, and the other measures brief intervals of time. Counters registering seconds, minutes and even hours can be started and stopped as desired. It is therefore possible to measure the exact duration of a phenomenon. Not to be confused with the chronometer or COSC - Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres, which is an official Swiss certificate proving the preciseness of the movement in multiple positions, under various pressures and temperatures. Chronographs are used for sports activities or as an accessory showing a sporty lifestyle.

GMT (GREENWICH MEAN TIME 2 TIMEZONES):

Mean time at the meridian of the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, which is the prime meridian of the world. GMT is a civil time beginning at midnight. At Salvatore Ferragamo Timepieces there is one watch which is GMT (or 2 time-zones): the F-80 chronograph automatic GMT. To read the time in the second time zone, follow the blue hand and read the 24 hours scale: the white part of the scale indicates the day-time, the black part between 18 and 6 shows the night.

COSC (CHRONOMETER):

A chronometer is a high-precision watch capable of displaying the seconds and housing a movement that has been tested over several days, in different positions and at different temperatures, by an official neutral body (COSC). Each chronometer is unique, identified by a number engraved on its movement and a certification number given by the COSC. Each movement is individually tested for several consecutive days, in 5 positions and at 3 temperatures. Each movement is individually measured. Any watch with the denomination "chronometer" is provided with a certified movement.

Mohs Scale:

Scale created in 1812 to measure the resistance of materials to scratches. As the hardest known naturally occurring substance, diamond is at the top of the scale (10). Diamonds: 10 - Rubies: 9 - Ceramic: 8 to 9 – Steel: 7 to 8 - Titanium: 6 - Pure 24 K gold: 2,5

Titanium:

A strong, low-density, highly corrosion-resistant, lustrous white metallic element that is used for low weight, strength, and high-temperature stability. Titanium is much stronger and lighter than stainless steel. It is also hypo-allergenic and used in the High Technology industry.

Ceramic:

Keramos in Greek means fired pottery. In watchmaking, ceramic is a high-tech material, generally made from aluminium and zirconium oxides (polycrystals) for the manufacturing of cases and decorative elements (for example links of the F-80 models). It can be scratched only by Rubies and Diamonds. Ceramic has also the advantage to keep the same colour over a long period of time.

Tungsten:

A steel-grey metal, remarkable for its robust physical properties. Scratch-resistant and permanently shiny if polished, tungsten is about 10 times harder than gold, 5 times harder than tool steel and 4 times harder than titanium, measuring between 8 and 9 on the Mohs scale. Tungsten inserts are featured on the black ceramic bezel of the F-80 COSC.

Rubber:

Caoutchouc or natural rubber is a product of the milky juices of several tropical and sub-tropical plants. Soft and flexible, caoutchouc represents an excellent material for watch bands used for regular sport or diving activities and can be found on some F-80 44mm models. Rubber can also be produced synthetically:

being anti-allergic and more flexible than any leather, synthetic rubber (silicone) is used on some less expensive watch models.

Alligator leather:

A type of leather species Alligator mississippiensis. Alligator leather is very durable and also very expensive. All of which comply with the strictest provisions of the Washington Agreement, i.e. these leathers come from controlled stocks.

Saphire chrystal:

Synthetic sapphire used for watch glasses. It is one of the hardest substances and is extremely scratch-resistant (9 out of 10 on the Mohs scale).

Gold:

Gold is naturally yellow in colour. Gold in its purest form is defined as 24 karat. Pure gold is too soft for most uses and must be mixed, or alloyed, with other metals. Gold in 18k represents an alloy that contains 18/24 parts gold respectively. This value could also be expressed in percentages of purity as 75% for 18k.

Rose gold or pink gold:

Rose gold (4N), also commonly referred to as pink gold. It is a gold alloy, generally containing about 1/5 copper: the higher the content of copper, the more red the gold appears.

Ion plating:

Ion plating is one of the most advanced surface finishing processes in the trade, consisting of applying corrosion-resistant metal coatings through a physical vapour deposition (PVD) process. While in traditional plating processes, the gold coating on the surface of the case can be rubbed off easily, ion plating makes the gold plating more durable, more resistant, and also has a higher brightness. Ion plating involves adding of a titanium nitride layer, which has a high chemical stability, to the component to be plated. To this, is then added a gold coating. The plating obtained through Ion plating is five to eight times better than that obtained through traditional methods in terms of wear and corrosion resistance.

Stainless steel:

Stainless steel is used for jewellery and watches. 316L is the stainless steel commonly used for such purpose. It can be re-finished by any jeweller and will not oxidize or turn black. Grade 316 is the standard molybdenum-bearing grade, second in importance to 304 amongst the austenitic stainless steels. The molybdenum gives 316 better overall corrosion resistant properties than Grade 304, particularly higher resistance to pitting and crevice corrosion in chloride environments. Grade 316L, the low carbon version of 316 and is immune from sensitisation (grain boundary carbide precipitation). Thus it is extensively used in heavy gauge welded components (over about 6mm). There is commonly no appreciable price difference between 316 and 316L stainless steel. The austenitic structure also gives these grades excellent toughness, even down to cryogenic temperatures. Compared to chromium-nickel austenitic stainless steels, 316L stainless steel offers higher creep, stress to rupture and tensile strength at elevated temperatures.

Luminescent hand:

Numerals, markers and hands can be coated with Superluminova (non-radioactive and non-toxic strontium aluminate based afterglow pigments), so that they can be read in the dark. This type of photoluminescent pigments operate like a light battery. After sufficient activation by sunlight or artificial light, they glow in the dark. The brightness depends on the time, intensity and colour of the light to which the watch was exposed before.

Guilloché:

As opposed to a flat colour, a guilloché dial is textured with engravings. Few examples of dials used in the Salvatore Ferragamo Timepieces collection: spiral guilloché on the Salvatore automatic, horizontal texture on the F-80.

Côtes-de-Genève:

Also known as „Geneva bars“. A decoration consisting of undulating lines, reminiscent of waves and frequently used to embellish superior quality movements.