Scuba diving is a popular recreational sport and a dangerous sport that requires proper preparation and monitoring. If the diver rises too fast, it may cause decompression sickness, causing pain or even life-threatening. As the depth increases, the physiological effects become more apparent. Reliable dive meters and depth gauges are an essential part of diving equipment to monitor depth and record the duration of underwater adventures. Using decompression tables requires two variables.
Mechanical depth gauges are an essential element of professional diving watches.
Traditionally, divers use dive meters and depth gauges to calculate decompression times at a certain depth. Today, many divers choose to use dive computers, but many still carry mechanical depth gauges, even as a spare.
The Favre Leuba Bathy 160 from the 1960s was one of the first diving watches to be fitted with a mechanical depth gauge.
In the 1960s, watchmakers including Favre-Leuba, Nivada and Aquadive developed watches with mechanical depth gauges. These depth gauge watches are built for practical purposes and are intended to replace stand-alone depth gauges or dive computers. Their design and architecture are so fascinating that even non-divers will love it at first sight. From a technical point of view, these watches use a variety of solutions, here are a few examples:
IWC Marine Timepiece GST Deep Sea One diver’s watch with mechanical depth gauge.
The Bourdon tube was invented around 1850 and is still widely used to measure liquid pressure. It is made of flat round tubes, coiled into a circular arc shape. When pressurized, the tube tends to straighten, which activates the pointer. This system is used in the 1999 IWC Marine Timepiece GST Deep Sea No. 1 diver’s watch. The Deep Sea One diver’s watch has two hands, one to show the wearer’s current depth, and the other to record the wearer’s deepest diving depth.
IWC Marine Timepieces Deep Sea 2 and Deep Sea 3 Diver Watches are equipped with mechanical depth gauges.
Another solution that converts pressure into a reading is a pressure membrane or tankless tank. Pressure membranes have been used in the IWC Marine Timepiece Deep Sea 2 and Deep Sea 3 Diver Watches. Unfortunately, IWC recently decided to remove the Deep Sea III from the current collection, which means that the brand no longer offers diving watches with depth gauges.
A perspective view of the Jaeger-LeCoultre MasterCompressorDivingProGeographic watch, showing how the pressure film is connected to the gear, rack and pinion, which senses the pressure of the aisle and drives the pointer.
Blancpain X Fathoms Mechanical Depth Gauge Diver’s Watch
In recent developments, BlancpainXFathoms mechanical depth gauge diving watches also use films made of amorphous metal. This concept watch has a diameter of 55.65 mm. It is equipped with a mechanical depth sounder up to 90 meters deep and can record the dive depth. There is also a separate mechanical 0-15 meter depth sounder at 15 meters water The measurement error is only 30 cm. In addition, XFathoms is also equipped with a 5-minute retrograde stop timing function, which is used when diving for decompression stops.
Favre Leuba Raider Bathy 120 MemoDepth
At Baselworld 2018, Favre-Leuba launched the RaiderBathyMemoDepth diving watch using a tankless tank. The case back is equipped with a grid that allows water to establish contact with the tankless tank. As the pressure increases, the tankless tank shrinks. Linear motion is transmitted to the gear mechanism and converted into rotary motion. The watch shows depth through two scales: the blue central hand (coaxial with the hour and minute hands) shows the current depth, and the subdial at 3 o’clock records the maximum dive depth (up to 120 meters), which can be reached by The button at the o’clock position resets.
Oris Aquis Depth Gauge dive watch, simple and practical.
Another simple, practical and reliable solution for making a depth gauge diving watch is to use a capillary. The Oris AquisDepthGauge dive watch has an access hole at 12 o’clock on the mirror, and a channel is embedded along the outer edge of the mirror (50% more than the thickness of a regular mirror). When a diver dives while wearing a watch, the small hole allows water to enter the channel. As the pressure increases, the volume of air in the channel is continuously compressed. With the yellow mark on the dial, depth information can be read. (Photo / text watch home compiled by Xu Chaoyang)