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Chopard Happy Sport 36 mm Automatic
TOP
Chopard Happy Sport 36 mm Automatic
AED 73,376
Free shipping
Seller
WatchesofMayfair.com
193
UK
Ulysse Nardin Automatic 18K Gold
TOP
Ulysse Nardin Automatic 18K Gold
AED 7,648
Seller
Vintage Watch Services
114
NL
Girard Perregaux Laureato 42mm automatico
TOP
Girard Perregaux Laureato 42mm automatico
Price on request
Seller
Zironi Oscar Srl
30
IT
IWC Portuguese Automatic
IWC Portuguese Automatic
AED 27,000
Seller
Private seller
AE
Corum Tabogan Steel Automatic
Corum Tabogan Steel Automatic
AED 7,775
Seller
Private seller
AE
Girard Perregaux Laureato Skeleton Automatic 42mm Mens Watch
Girard Perregaux Laureato Skeleton Automatic 42mm Mens Watch
AED 80,000
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE
Audemars Piguet Millenary Novelty Automatic
Audemars Piguet Millenary Novelty Automatic
AED 42,577
Seller
REPEATER.AE
AE
Frederique Constant Ladies Automatic World Heart Federation NEW
TOP
Frederique Constant Ladies Automatic World Heart Federation NEW
AED 4,998
Seller
BorysenkoWatch
UA
Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42MM Automatic Skeleton
Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42MM Automatic Skeleton
AED 155,129
Seller
Luxury Souq Dubai
AE
Bulgari Bvlgari OCTO FINISSIMO AUTOMATIC Titanium Watch
Bulgari Bvlgari OCTO FINISSIMO AUTOMATIC Titanium Watch
AED 38,800
Seller
The Store
AE
Romain Jerome Spacecraft Automatic LTD 99
Romain Jerome Spacecraft Automatic LTD 99
AED 52,574
Seller
The Golden Line
AE
Panerai Luminor Marina 1950 Carbotech 3 Days Automatic 44 mm
Panerai Luminor Marina 1950 Carbotech 3 Days Automatic 44 mm
AED 33,692
Seller
Cleopatra Watches & Jewellery
AE
IWC Aquatimer Chrono-Automatic
IWC Aquatimer Chrono-Automatic
AED 18,142
Seller
Limitedluxury
AE
Girard Perregaux Tourbillon Automatic
Girard Perregaux Tourbillon Automatic
AED 370,237
Free shipping
Seller
Rainbow Tech
AE
Panerai LUMINOR POWER RESERVE AUTOMATIC ACCIAIO - 44MM
Panerai LUMINOR POWER RESERVE AUTOMATIC ACCIAIO - 44MM
AED 26,500
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE
Audemars Piguet Millenary Automatic Piano Forte Limited
Audemars Piguet Millenary Automatic Piano Forte Limited
AED 67,383
Seller
REPEATER.AE
AE
IWC Portofino Automatic Moon Phase 37 Edition
IWC Portofino Automatic Moon Phase 37 Edition
AED 27,540
Free shipping
Seller
Timepiece360
AE
Richard Mille Automatic Flyback Chronograph
Richard Mille Automatic Flyback Chronograph
AED 677,534
Seller
Luxury Souq Dubai
AE
Harry Winston Premier Excenter Time Zone Automatic Rose Gold...
Harry Winston Premier Excenter Time Zone Automatic Rose Gold...
AED 70,000
Seller
The Store
AE
Chopard Imperiale Automatic 40mm Ladies Watch
Chopard Imperiale Automatic 40mm Ladies Watch
AED 24,065
Seller
The Golden Line
AE
Audemars Piguet 15400ST Royal Oak Automatic 41mm
Audemars Piguet 15400ST Royal Oak Automatic 41mm
AED 52,944
Seller
Cleopatra Watches & Jewellery
AE
Omega Seamaster Automatic Chromo 176.007
Omega Seamaster Automatic Chromo 176.007
AED 10,252
Seller
Precision Watches
11
UK
IWC Ingenieur Automatic
IWC Ingenieur Automatic
AED 20,733
Seller
Rainbow Tech
AE
Panerai RADIOMIR 1940 3 DAYS AUTOMATIC TITANIO - 45MM
Panerai RADIOMIR 1940 3 DAYS AUTOMATIC TITANIO - 45MM
AED 30,359
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE
Omega Automatique, en or jaune 14 KT
Omega Automatique, en or jaune 14 KT
AED 7,438
Seller
Joaillerie Landauer
6
FR
Montblanc Star Automatic
Montblanc Star Automatic
AED 7,500
Seller
Timepiece360
AE
Harry Winston MIDNIGHT DIAMOND STALACTITES AUTOMATIC 36MM
Harry Winston MIDNIGHT DIAMOND STALACTITES AUTOMATIC 36MM
AED 95,891
Seller
Luxury Souq Dubai
AE
Bulgari Bvlgari OCTO FINISSIMO AUTOMATIC Titanium Leather Watch
Bulgari Bvlgari OCTO FINISSIMO AUTOMATIC Titanium Leather Watch
AED 37,600
Seller
The Store
AE
ASCALON 30 jewels Automatique vintage
ASCALON 30 jewels Automatique vintage
AED 1,291
Seller
lesmontresanciennes.com
34
FR
Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Stainless Steel Silvery White...
TOP
Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Stainless Steel Silvery White...
AED 16,037
Seller
VIP WATCH & JEWELLERY
16
HK
Chronoswiss Imperator Automatic
TOP
Chronoswiss Imperator Automatic
AED 14,187
Free shipping
Seller
Deluxe ( Asia ) Ltd
9
HK
Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42 Automatic
Roger Dubuis Excalibur 42 Automatic
AED 55,536
Seller
Rainbow Tech
AE
Hublot Classic Fusion Automatic Titanium 45mm
Hublot Classic Fusion Automatic Titanium 45mm
AED 33,321
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE
Omega Seamaster Diver 300m 41mm automatic blue 2531.80.00
Omega Seamaster Diver 300m 41mm automatic blue 2531.80.00
AED 6,344
Seller
Luxury-Time
196
DE
Omega Speedmaster Reduced Automatic Chronograph
Omega Speedmaster Reduced Automatic Chronograph
AED 6,519
Free shipping
Seller
wagener-gold International e.K.
702
DE
Breguet Marine Automatic Big Date 39mm Stainless Steel
Breguet Marine Automatic Big Date 39mm Stainless Steel
AED 38,134
Seller
Luxury Souq Dubai
AE
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 18K Rose Gold Automatic Watch
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 18K Rose Gold Automatic Watch
AED 136,900
Seller
The Store
AE
Omega Genève automatique vintage
Omega Genève automatique vintage
AED 2,625
Seller
lesmontresanciennes.com
34
FR
Rolex Datejust 18k Rose Gold And Steel Black Automatic...
TOP
Rolex Datejust 18k Rose Gold And Steel Black Automatic...
AED 43,477
Seller
VIP WATCH & JEWELLERY
16
HK
Breitling Colt Automatic
Breitling Colt Automatic
AED 5,180
Seller
BraKar LLC
 
US
Panerai Luminor Submersible 1950 Carbotech 3 Days Automatic 47 mm
Panerai Luminor Submersible 1950 Carbotech 3 Days Automatic 47 mm
AED 57,387
Seller
Rainbow Tech
AE
Patek Philippe Aquanaut Automatic Black Dial Stainless Steel...
Patek Philippe Aquanaut Automatic Black Dial Stainless Steel...
Price on request
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE
Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic NEW Ref. BGO40C14TTXAUTO
Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic NEW Ref. BGO40C14TTXAUTO
AED 41,742
Seller
Fabel GmbH
117
DE
Omega Speedmaster Reduced Automatic Chronograph - Sapphire
Omega Speedmaster Reduced Automatic Chronograph - Sapphire
AED 9,582
Free shipping
Seller
wagener-gold International e.K.
702
DE
Hublot Classic Fusion Automatic Skeleton
Hublot Classic Fusion Automatic Skeleton
Price on request
Seller
Luxury Souq Dubai
AE
Franck Muller Curvex Secret Hour Silver Dial Automatic Watch
Franck Muller Curvex Secret Hour Silver Dial Automatic Watch
AED 79,500
Seller
The Store
AE
Rolex Sea Dweller Stahl 16600 Automatik
Rolex Sea Dweller Stahl 16600 Automatik
AED 24,459
Seller
Juwelier Rieger
99
DE
IWC Pilots Stainless Steel Blue Automatic IW327004
TOP
IWC Pilots Stainless Steel Blue Automatic IW327004
AED 11,815
Seller
VIP WATCH & JEWELLERY
16
HK
Longines Master Automatic Chronograph
Auction
Longines Master Automatic Chronograph
AED 3,938
Estimated price
Seller
Catawiki BV
 
IWC Ingenieur Automatic
IWC Ingenieur Automatic
AED 20,363
Seller
Rainbow Tech
AE
Panerai LUMINOR SUBMERSIBLE 1950 AMAGNETIC 3 DAYS AUTOMATIC...
Panerai LUMINOR SUBMERSIBLE 1950 AMAGNETIC 3 DAYS AUTOMATIC...
AED 33,321
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider Pirelli – Automatic Skeleton
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider Pirelli – Automatic Skeleton
AED 273,466
Seller
Fabel GmbH
117
DE
Omega Seamaster Professional 300m Automatic - 41 mm
Omega Seamaster Professional 300m Automatic - 41 mm
AED 6,957
Free shipping
Seller
wagener-gold International e.K.
702
DE
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Automatic Flying Tourbillon 45 mm Ro
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Automatic Flying Tourbillon 45 mm Ro
Price on request
Seller
Luxury Souq Dubai
AE
Richard Mille RM 011 Automatic Flyback Chronograph Dual Time...
Richard Mille RM 011 Automatic Flyback Chronograph Dual Time...
Price on request
Seller
The Store
AE
Hublot Classic Fusion Titanium black Automatic 42mm TOP Rubber
Hublot Classic Fusion Titanium black Automatic 42mm TOP Rubber
AED 17,497
Seller
Uhrenkapital
182
DE
Rolex Lady Datejust White Gold And Steel Dark Grey Automatic...
TOP
Rolex Lady Datejust White Gold And Steel Dark Grey Automatic...
AED 34,243
Seller
VIP WATCH & JEWELLERY
16
HK
Urwerk UR 202 Mens Automatic Watch 202/WG
Urwerk UR 202 Mens Automatic Watch 202/WG
AED 488,713
Seller
Luxury Bazaar
34
US
Chopard Happy Sport Medium Automatic
Chopard Happy Sport Medium Automatic
AED 69,790
Seller
Rainbow Tech
AE
Breguet Reine de Naples Mother of Pearl Dial Automatic Ladies...
Breguet Reine de Naples Mother of Pearl Dial Automatic Ladies...
AED 39,986
Seller
Haute Horologe
AE

Automatic Watches: Self-Winding Mechanical Timepieces

Automatic watches are powered by the natural motion of your wrist while you wear them. This type of watch has a rich history reaching back to the 18th century. Today, countless brands produce their own automatic calibers for their watches.

Highlights

  • Automatically wound by the natural movements of your arm
  • Environmentally-friendly: No batteries to produce or throw away
  • The Rolex Oyster Perpetual is one of the most famous automatic watches
  • John Harwood is considered the inventor of the automatic wristwatch
  • Automatic watches available in almost every price range

Automatic Watches: Self-Winding Timepieces

Automatic watches fall under the larger umbrella term of mechanical watches. They offer a key advantage over manual timepieces: They wind automatically via the movement of the wearer's arm. An oscillating mass inside the caliber is responsible for winding the spring. Today, this is in most cases a winding rotor. It is flexibly mounted so that gravity pulls it towards the center. When you're wearing the watch and move your wrist, the rotor moves and gives the caliber new energy. Automatic watches don't require batteries, making mechanical watches comparably more environmentally friendly than battery-powered quartz watches.
Automatic watches are available from almost every famous watch manufacturer in all price ranges. Less expensive models are often powered by base calibers made by the ébauche manufacturers ETA, Soprod, or Sellita. Various manufacturers use these calibers in a more or less reworked form in their watches. These calibers even power the watches made by famous brands such as Breitling and TAG Heuer. However, both manufacturers have developed their own in-house movements as well.
Rolex and Patek Philippe are some of the most well-known watch manufacturers. Unlike many other brands, these two Geneva-based manufacturers don't outsource base calibers. Instead, they use their own. For example, Rolex's caliber 3130 is considered very robust, reliable, and precise. These qualities and more make the caliber one of the best automatic movements on the market; it powers Rolex watches such as the Submariner. Since Rolex produces their watches almost entirely in-house, production is costlier. This results in higher prices for automatic watches with in-house movements.

Buying Tips

If you're searching for an automatic watch, the hard part is actually choosing one. Should it be large or small, simple or extravagant, affordable or expensive? The selection is ample for every taste and budget. Pre-owned automatic watches from Citizen, Seiko, or Swatch are available for around 50 euros. These watches often only have three hands for the hours, minutes, and seconds. Some also have a date or even day/date display.
In the price range between 100 and 200 euros, you can find diverse new automatic watches from brands like Seiko or Fossil. Pre-owned watches from long-established manufacturers such as Tissot, Hamilton, or Longines cost up to 500 euros. The situation is similar in the 1,000 euros and under price range, though here you can also find new models from the German brand Marcello C.
In the 1,000 euro price range, you can find pre-owned Omega or Breitling watches. New automatic three-hand watches are available from Oris, Raymond Weil, or Rado.
However, if you're looking for an automatic chronograph, you need to adjust your budget accordingly. A pre-owned automatic chronograph costs at least 500 euros; this applies to watches from brands such as Tissot or Hamilton. New chronographs cost a few hundred euros more, around 800 euros. These watches are often powered by ETA's Valjoux 7750, which is considered one of the most successful automatic chronograph calibers in the world.
If you're searching for a new automatic Rolex, you need to plan on spending at least 3,000 euros. You can purchase the introductory model, Oyster Perpetual, for this price. You can occasionally find pre-owned vintage watches from this Genevan manufacturer for less than 1,000 euros. The Submariner, one of the first and most famous diving watches in the world, is available pre-owned for around 4,100 euros. New, it costs around 5,600 euros. Rolex's chronograph, the Daytona, is available for around 7,500 euros.
The most expensive automatic watches are from brands such as Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe. These watches are often made of platinum or 18-karat gold and feature countless diamonds on their dial and/or case. At times, these watches are also incredibly expensive as they're rare vintage watches coveted by collectors. Prices over 1 million euros are not too rare when it comes to these watches.

The Technology Behind Automatic Watches

The mainspring of an automatic watch is, as the name suggests, automatically wound by the movement itself. The mainspring is wound, becomes tense, and stores energy. This happens through the natural movements of the wearer's arm when the watch is on his or her wrist. This mechanism eliminates the need to manually wind the mainspring. Instead, an oscillating mass - often the rotor - winds the mainspring. Gravity causes the flexibly mounted rotor to move towards the center and a gear-train transfers the energy from the rotor's movement to the barrel. Viewed from a physics standpoint, the mechanism converts kinetic energy into potential energy.
There are automatic movements that wind in one or both directions. Bi-directional winding movements have so-called reverser gears. These ensure that the rotor winds the barrel in both directions. Uni-directional winding movements actually wind bidirectionally, but the mainspring is only wound in one direction. Both variants have a reduction gear which converts the fast movements of the rotor into slower movements with more torque. The end of the mainspring is not directly connected to the barrel so that it doesn't snap off when it's fully wound. The outer end of the spring is outfitted with a bridle, which keeps the pressure on the mainspring's outermost coil. When not fully wound, that pressure allows the outer end of the mainspring to be caught in a notch in the barrel wall. Once the spring is fully wound, it moves along to the next notch.
Automatic watches have many advantages: They're comfortable, environmentally-friendly, and usually more precise. This improved precision is due to the mainspring, which is always tense and has a more constant torque than mainsprings in hand-wound calibers. This has a positive effect on the amplitude. The amplitude is the balance wheel's degree of rotation and refers to the wheel's maximum rotation angle between equilibrium and a reversal point.

Technical Details of Automatic Watches

  • The winding rotor winds the mainspring in the barrel
  • Advantages: no manual winding required, environmentally-friendly, more precise
  • Uni-directional and bi-directional winding movements

The Origins of Automatic Watches

Automatic winding is one of the most important and long-lasting innovations in the history of watchmaking and the mechanism is one of the most widespread complications in use today.
Today's automatic watches can trace their origin back to the year 1729. Abraham-Louis Perrelet improved the winding mechanism of pocket watches in the 18th century. A small key was required to wind a movement before this improvement. Since the key was never there when you needed it, winding mechanisms that didn't require a key were in high demand. Perrelet wanted to invent a self-winding pocket watch. In 1770, he introduced his pedometer watch after countless attempts. The watch had an oscillating weight which teetered back and forth as the wearer walked. The motion caused the oscillating weight to tense the mainspring. Perrelet also developed a caliber with a winding rotor which swiveled above the movement. With these innovations, the groundwork for today's automatic watches was laid.
Refined men carried their pocket watches tucked away safely in their jacket, vest, or pants. The timepieces barely moved while in their pockets, which meant that the oscillating mass didn't have enough energy to wind the mainspring. The crown-wind method solved the key-wind problem in the mid-19th century, making the automatic pocket watch superfluous.

The First Automatic Wristwatches

The French watchmaker Léon Leroy was also a pioneer in the development of automatic watches. He presented his first automatic wristwatch in 1922. Some of these watches even had a date display. However, Leroy was far away from being able to mass produce a series.
The British watchmaker John Harwood lead automatic wristwatches to series production. He began working on automatic movements in 1922. Two years later, he patented his work, paving the way for the first series-produced automatic wristwatches.
Rolex's Oyster Perpetual was one of the first automatic wristwatches. Rolex introduced the watch to the market in 1931. It's one of the few early models that has lasted over the years and is still produced today. The principle behind Oyster Perpetual's winding rotor is at the heart of every modern automatic wristwatch.