How to

Different uses for a Chronograph

We all know what the Apollo 13 astronauts used their chronographChronograph A chronograph complication is a feature in a watch that allows the wearer to measure elapsed time in addition to telling the time. It works by having a separate set of gears and levers, called the chronograph mechanism, which is activated by pressing a button or a pusher. The chronograph mechanism starts and stops the chronograph's second hand, which is usually located on the watch's dial, separate from the regular watch hands. The elapsed time is usually displayed on a sub-dial or a register on the watch's dial. [Learn More] for? As eternalized with the Omega Speedmaster ‘Silver Snoopy Award’ limited edition, they used it to time their perfect rocket burst, to get back to earth.

Now here are some of the most popular answers we collected why YOU use your chronograph, feel free to add more suggestions in the comments and we’ll update the list.


  1. Stop watch : To time ‘stuff’. It seems watch fanatics boil a lot of pasta, as this was highlighted most often!
    • Boiling pasta, eggs and food;
    • Timing commutes & work breaks;
    • Monitoring your parking time to avoid missing to re-fill the parking meter.
  2. Date function : Stopping the seconds hand on the exact second that equals the date (.e.g. stopping the seconds hand on second 5, to signify it is the 5th day of the month);
  3. Reminder function : Also often used by us, simply set the chronograph to remind you had to do something. E.g. is it YOUR day to pick the kids? Start the chronograph and stop it as it points to YOU (30 seconds). Now you know the reminder is for YOU every time you look at your watch;
  4. Rotating Bezel : Alternative way to apply the rotating bezel principle. Right before you start a new activity (e.g. workout) start your chrono and stop it when it lines up with the minute hand. Then when you finish your activity, have a look at your watch, you will clearly see how many minutes have passed since you stopped your chrono (and started your activity);
  5. Second time zone : If you time it correctly and keep the chronograph running, you can use the subdials to track a second timezone. Simply start your chronograph when it is exact 12 o clock in the timezone you want to track. The subdials will now show the exact time in the second timezone. Note that this only works if your chronograph function can track 12 hours (e.g. Speedmaster);
  6. Lucky number 8: Set the chrono hand on your lucky number… feel lucky all day long


These are the different uses we ‘grouped’ to date. Anything to add? Please let us know in the comments!


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