US 3911668 A
A simplified watch includes a single hand which rotates once in a predetermined number of hours. The watch is rotatively mounted in a bezel that carries a rotatable disc. The disc and the bezel carry graduations and indications to aid in telling the time.
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
United States Patent Beguin Oct. 14, 1975  WATCH HAVING ONE HAND 1,851,824 3/1932 Fewell 58/126 R 3,431,722 3/1969 Haas  Inventor: g a Begum 2518 Nods 3,665,701 5/1972 Burdet 58/91 W1 zer an  Filed: 1974 Primary Examiner-George H. Miller, Jr. [2I] Appl. No.: 465,158 Attorney, Agent, or FirmGriffin, Branigan & Butler  Foreign Application Priority Data May 7, 1973 Switzerland 6769/73  ABSTRACT  U S Cl 58/85 58/91 A simplified watch includes a single hand which re-  39/00 tates once in a predetermined number of hours. The watch is rotatively mounted in a bezel that carries a  Fleldof Search 58/74, 85.5, 91, 126 R rotatable disc. The disc and the bezel Carry gradua  References Cited tions and indications to aid in telling the time.
UNITED STATES PATENTS 7 Claims, 5 Drawing Figures 1,393,569 10/1921 Richardson 58/126 R Oct. 14, 1975 U.S. Patent WATCH HAVING ONE HAND PRIOR ART In a conventional watch, time is displayed in an analog manner by two hands, one of which indicates the hour and the other of which indicates the minute. Today these watches very often include an additional hand indicating the seconds.
Nevertheless, certain users do not want or need to know the time as precisely as to the second, but only approximately. To satisfy this less exacting requirement, conventional watches, such as wrist-watches, pocket watches or clocks, employ a much too complicated construction. Moreover, if such known watches have to be made fully waterproof, as frequently is the case with wrist-watches, problems arise, because a waterproof passage for the winding stem has to be provided.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION An object of the present invention is to provide an inexpensive watch which is completely waterproof, and indicates the approximate time.
An object of the present invention is to provide a watch having no element traversing the watch case, and having only one hand and a bezel surrounding the watch case and presenting graduations, the watch case being mounted rotatively in said bezel. A particular embodiment of the invention is characterized in that the hand rotates once in three hours time.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF DRAWINGS An advantageous embodiment of the invention is described below with reference to the drawing in which:
FIG. 1 shows a partial sectional view across a watch according to the invention;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of the bezel of the watch shown in FIG. 1;
1 FIG. 3 illustrates the time setting of a watch according to the invention;
FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the waterproof watch case; and,
FIG. 5 is a perspective view of the described embodiment of the invention.
DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIIVIENT In the preferred embodiment illustrated in FIG. 1, a symbollically represented watch movement 1 is inserted in a watch case 2 comprising an upper transparent part 3 and a watch case back 4. The watch movement 1 is a movement which does not need any manual winding operation and may be an automatic watch movement or an electrical movement. The parts 3 and 4 forming the watch case 2 are connected together in an absolutely waterproof manner at the facing of the two rims 5 and 6. Due to the fact that no element, such as a winding stem, traverses the watch case 2, the two parts 3 and 4 can easily be put together in a perfectly waterproof way.
A hand 7, driven by the movement, rotates above a dial 8. The dial carries no indications or graduations and can therefore be mounted in any angular position. The watch case 2 is frictionally mounted in a bezel 9 surrounding the watch case 2 near the rims 5 and 6. The bezel includes a ring 10 having openings 17, 18 and 19 therein as well as certain graduations thereon. A rotative disc 11 showing the indications of the full hours, and possibly other indications, is located inside the bezel 9. Disc 11 is limited in rotation by a pin 15 penetrating into a groove of the disc 11. A ball 12, which is located on a spring 13 fixed in the lower part 14 of the bezel 9, positions the disc 11 in a manner such that the indications 16 (FIG. 5) appear in the windows 17, 18 and 19 (FIG. 5) respectively. The angular limitation of the disc 11 is such that hour indications 16 expected to appear in the window 17, for instance, can not appear in one of the other windows 18 or 19 and vice versa.
The waterproof watch case shown in FIG. 4 can easily be introduced from below into the bezel shown in FIG. 2. Once inserted, the case is frictionally held in the bezel and can be rotated therein by hand in the manner shown in FIG. 3. Because of the construction of the ring 10 of the bezel 9, a watch case including a movement and a hand can be inserted in different bezels and bracelets by the user.
The invention provides a watch having no winding stem, since the time setting of the watch according to the invention is not made in the usual manner by rotating the hand 7 relative to the movement 1. Instead, the whole watch movement and its case are rotated relative to the bezel.
In an embodiment wherein the hand 7 rotates once in three hours, the ring 10 of the bezel 9 is divided in a manner to indicate at three positions located at an angle of one to the other the full hours indications. Every 120 portion itself is divided into four parts by lines 21 corresponding to the quarters of an hour. Lines 22 divide the quarter of an hour sections into intervals corresponding to five minutes (FIG. 5).
For the time setting of the watch according to the invention, the whole movement, that is, the unity of the watch case 2, is rotated relative to the bezel 9 in the manner shown in FIG. 3 to bring the unique hand 7 in front of the division of the ring 10 of the bezel 9 corresponding to the time to be indicated. Between the five minutes indications 22 the hand 7 can easily be positioned with sufficient accuracy to indicate the minute.
Since the hand rotates once in three hours, the user of the watch should know more or less which time it is. In fact the risk of confusion is unlikely for instance, between 7h 20min and 10h 20min either in the morning or in the afternoon, or between 11h 40min and 2h 40min or 9/1 05min and 12h 05min.
The disc 11 can be rotated by hand from one to another position so that in the three windows 17, 18 and 19 the following numerals will be displayed: in the window 17, one of thenumerals 1, 4, 7 or 10; in the window 18, one of the numerals 2, 5, 8 or 11; and in the window 19, one of the numerals 3, 6, 9 or 12. Thus, it is possible to be reminded in which hour one lives, if the most probable hour indicating numeral 16 (FIG. 5) is displayed in the closest window to the hand.
To make sure that no wrong numerals are displayed in the windows if one omits rotating the disc 11 every three hours, the latter presents a fifth position in which no numerals at all appear in the three windows. This is the position in which the disc 11 will mostly be as soon as the user of the watch knows which numerals can appear in the respective windows. In fact it is very easy to remember that the numerals three, six, nine and twelve appear in the window 17 located at the emplacement of the twelve in a conventional watch. Moreover the numerals four and eight appear at their usual places and all other numerals appearing in one of the two windows 18 and 19 are either one more or one less than three, six, nine or twelve.
Some additional positions of the disc 11 can be reserved to display colored areas either to modify the aesthetics of the watch or to remind the user of an appointment.
In view of what has been stated above, the watch shown in FIG. 5 indicates either 12h 35min or 9h 35min.
It is obvious that many changes can be made on the embodiment of the invention described hereinabove. For instance it is possible to design the bezel 9 without the disc 11, which means that the user has to know exactly the position of the full hours indications. On the other hand, such an embodiment of the invention allows a lot of different very pleasant aesthetics and very simple watches. In fact, in this case the bracelet and the bezel 9 showing on the ring 10 and the lines 21 and 22 can be made of one single moulded synthetic piece.
In a different embodiment the four numerals which alternatively appear in one of the three windows can be inscribed all together at the places of the windows, so that the disc 11 is not necessary. In this case the aesthetics may suffer.
In an other embodiment of the invention, since the time graduations are on the bezel 9, the watch case 2 can be transparent in its top part as well as in its lower part, and the dial 8 can be omitted, so that the watch movement 1 shows to the viewer.
It is obvious that the watch according to the invention can also be equipped with a movement whose single hand rotates once in one, two, three, four, six or twelve hours. i
In a different embodiment of the invention, the disc 11 may show the full hour indications in an arrangement in which the numerals expected to appear in the window 17 are, for instance, located on a different diameter than are the numerals expected to appear in the window 18 or the numerals expected to appear in the window 19. If furthermore the three windows l7, l8 and 19 respectively are each located on the same diameter as the numerals expected to appear in it, the disc 11 needs no angular limitation in its rotation, because the display of a numeral in a wrong window is not possible.
The advantages of the invention are obvious. At first it has to be noted how easy it is to produce a fully waterproof watch. Moreover, watches constructed according to the invention are very cheap to manufacture, since all parts of a conventional watch serving for the time setting, the winding and the setting of additional hands are superfluous. In fact the single hand of the watch according to the invention can be fixed directly on an axle of a mobile of the gear train, in a manner similar to that in which the seconds hand or the minutes hand is fixed in a conventional watch.
Another advantage of the present invention is that the same watch movement can be placed in different bezels permitting modification of the aesthetics or appearance of the watch.
Further, it is possible to facilitate the lecture of the time by providing a hand whose width is such that the graduation lines on the bezel 9 indicating the five minutes are superfluous. This again gives the possibility of changing the aesthetics of the watch. The same advantage can be taken of the invention, if the single hand shows on its free end a graduation permitting, by the principle of the vemier, the determination of the minute. Another embodiment substitutes a disc with a lair instead of the hand.
To facilitate the time setting of the watch, the rim 5/6 can be designed as a toothing which meshes with a pinion afixed to a stem with a conventional crown traversing only the bezel 9. In this embodiment the time setting is executed by rotating the crown, and not as shown in FIG. 3.
1. A watch comprising:
a watch case including a watch crystal;
a hand means mounted within said case and visible through said crystal for indicating time;
a watch movement means mounted within said case for moving said hand means;
a bezel for supporting said case, said bezel including a mounting means for engaging said case but for allowing said case to be rotated relative to said bezel and an indicia means for displaying graduated indicia around said case and thereby indicating time by its positional relationship to said hand means.
2. A watch as claimed in claim 1 wherein said bezel mounting means has the further function of frictionally engaging said case to permit relative movement of said case in said bezel, and to permit removal of said case from said bezel.
3. A watch as claimed in claim 1 wherein said movement rotates said hand in a predetermined number of hours. I
4. A watch as claimed in claim 3 wherein said predetermined number of hours is three.
5. A watch as claimed in claim 1 wherein said bezel comprises a ring and a disc.
6. A watch as claimed in claim 5 wherein said ring and said disc are rotatable relative to each other and to said case.
7. A watch as claimed in claim 5 wherein said disc carries numerical indicia.