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Glossary

Glossary - H

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HAMMER

Steel or brass element used in movements provided with a repeater or alarm sonnerie. It strikes a gong or bell (s).

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HAND

Indicator for the analogue visualization of hours, minutes and seconds as well as other functions. Normally made of brass (rhodium-plated, gilded or treated otherwise), but also steel or gold. Hands are available in different shapes and take part in the aesthetic result of the whole watch.

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HARDLEX CRYSTAL

Is Seiko's trademarked name for a hardened mineral crystal.

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HEART-PIECE

Heart-shaped corn, generally used to realign the hands of chronograph counters.

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HELIUM VALVE

Valve inserted in the case of some professional diving watches to discharge the helium contained in the air mixture inhaled by divers.

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HEXALITE

An artificial glass made of a plastic resin. Back in the 1960's, many watches used either mineral glass or acrylic crystals. These are not difficult to scratch, but very inexpensive to replace. Now though, most all luxury watches use the highly scratch resistant synthetic sapphire crystals, there are some styles/brands that use the Hesalite (a name brand of fine acrylic crystal). The reason for this is directly related to the watch's certification for use in space or in high stress/impact situations. While sapphire crystals are less prone to scratching, they can be shattered. When shattered, they break into tiny fragments that would be hazardous in some environments. So the Hesalite crystal is maintained on some specific models as a safety feature.

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HUNTER CALIBER

A caliber characterized by the seconds hand fitted on an axis perpendicular to the one of the winding stem.

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