Touting the Sustainable Aspects of a Mechanically Powered Watch

In a world of battery driven devices, there is an attraction to the simplicity that accompanies a device that is
human powered. Hand crank ice-cream makers, phonographs and push lawn mowers, were all part of daily
life a century ago. As electricity became more readily available to the consumer, the push was on to convert
many household items to electric power. When a hand powered device would be sufficient, we have seen a
proliferation of electrically powered devices such as pencil sharpeners, can openers, clocks, and watches.

Electric power is unnecessary when human power is available with little effort, and advancement has been
made revisiting the use of "bi-product" energy. With the recent increased awareness of the consequences of
overuse of our finite sources of energy and increase in unnecessary waste, what could be more sustainable
than the wind-up pocket watch or the automatic wrist watch (powered by the movement of the arm during
daily activities). Modern quartz watches keep very accurate time with little fuss. But when the battery needs
replacement or the watch fails to operate, both items add to the ever increasing electronic waste stream. A
good quality mechanical watch can be maintained indefinitely, provide a link to the past, and keep time good
enough for our daily life.

So, when you need to replace your watch, give some consideration to purchasing an older mechanical
pocket or wrist watch. There is an abundance of medium grade watches (wrist or pocket) available for
purchase. Many of these are quite beautiful, and speak to a previous generation that valued craftsmanship.
Good quality watches can be found for under a $100. With a proper initial cleaning/oiling/regulation using
modern lubricants, these can run for many years without servicing. In a small way we can develop a more
sustainable way of life that can spill over into other aspects of our life.

Here is an interesting take on this subject
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