What a "watchmaker" used to be...

by technoguy


There was a time, like about two centuries ago(!), when a "watchmaker" was a skilled artisan who actually made a watch movement and its case by hand. Then, with the introduction of equipment to make gears, this ability was slowly lost by those making watches, but they still referred to themselves as "watchmakers". Today, the slide in watchmaking abilities continues downhill.

Most "watchmakers" today are only capable of making repairs using parts that someone else made with a machine. They no longer physically make the watch and, ultimately, are really only doing a more advanced version of what the members of this forum do...only with better facilities and tools. Yet, they still refer to themselves as "watchmakers". Perhaps, it would be more accurate if they called themselves "watch technicians".

In the future, with the advent of mass produced cases, dials, and movements, the mere swapping of these components by a person will immediately confer the title of "watchmaker" upon him.


Posted on Oct 3, 2005, 2:51 AM

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