Is a secondhand a must for a pretty watch? What's your take?

Like you, I believe a watch a necessary component of my daily life. It tells time, hugs the wrist like a little hitchhiker, is a tiny machine powered by tension or electrons, and most often...an aesthetic object to admire. 

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Aside from the obvious, what makes our watch so desirable? Is it the shape of the case, the make of the crystal...the geometry of the indices? 

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I declare the feature that influences a watch's appeal most is the secondhand. Whether a sword or a lollipop, a rectangle or a skeleton...the watch doesn't seem complete without one. 

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The secondhand seems to make the watch alive...taking a breath each time it ticks...while showing steadfastness in its willingness to stay its course round and round the chapter ring.

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The secondhand makes the watch-wearing experience more mesmerizing. Don't we all need something like a watch to yank us away from the mundaneness we face daily when the sun reappears at our east facing door?

What is your take on the secondhand? Is it necessary and integral, or a feature of less consequence? 

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I love seconds hands. 

Current favorite thing to do is start a Chronograph when the seconds hand is at 12 o'clock and watch the chrono & seconds hand go around in perfect synchronicity

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Unless one is taking pulses or timing stoplights or whatever else one would use the silly things for, the second hand's primary purpose is to verify that the watch is running. Honestly, if there was just a little window that went black when reserve or battery died, I'd be fine with that.

The second hand's only other purpose, beyond telling children to be quiet for a literal minute, is to induce precision OCD, providing one has hacking ability. I am blind to the second hand's existence in daily time telling. I don't see it. It's not what I'm looking for. It is irrelevant and, if the watch is designed tastefully, it is almost invisible.

Were they all removed from my watches, I'd only notice when winding depleted mechanical ones.

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UnholiestJedi

I love seconds hands. 

Current favorite thing to do is start a Chronograph when the seconds hand is at 12 o'clock and watch the chrono & seconds hand go around in perfect synchronicity

I need to try that!

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OscarKlosoff

Unless one is taking pulses or timing stoplights or whatever else one would use the silly things for, the second hand's primary purpose is to verify that the watch is running. Honestly, if there was just a little window that went black when reserve or battery died, I'd be fine with that.

The second hand's only other purpose, beyond telling children to be quiet for a literal minute, is to induce precision OCD, providing one has hacking ability. I am blind to the second hand's existence in daily time telling. I don't see it. It's not what I'm looking for. It is irrelevant and, if the watch is designed tastefully, it is almost invisible.

Were they all removed from my watches, I'd only notice when winding depleted mechanical ones.

But I like telling kids to be quiet...as well as to keep off my lawn 😂

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DariusII

But I like telling kids to be quiet...as well as to keep off my lawn 😂

I in no way discount this fine usage of the feature, but sans the third hand, one can round down and gain up to an extra 30 seconds or so of "the quiet game." See, seconds hands really ruin everything.

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I agree that it’s not necessarily important other than to show the watch is alive and to  exactly set the time. Can’t help but stare at it sometimes though. 
 

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Generally, the only time I noticed the secondhand is when an eco-drive is alerting me that it needs to be charged

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When I have just been informed that my last martini was poisoned and I have sixty seconds to take the antidote or die, the second hand is important.  In most other situations it is not important and the decision needs to be made if it detracts from the looks of the watch.  

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While I get @OscarKlosoff's point and suffer from ridiculous Precision-OCD-induced catastrophic thought patterns myself ("OMG, watch X is loosing 10 seconds a day, I'm going to miss everything, my life will be ruined within days!!"), I do very much share the "It's ALIIIIVE!!" feeling - especially on mechanical watches.

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Absolutely i love the look of it and if there is nothing going on while i look at it it’s not for me.

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I time stuff a lot. The seconds hand is important to me. 🤷

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UnholiestJedi

I love seconds hands. 

Current favorite thing to do is start a Chronograph when the seconds hand is at 12 o'clock and watch the chrono & seconds hand go around in perfect synchronicity

I do that! And if it’s off by even a little bit, start over and get it right.

Whichever one of us lands in the looney bin first, save a chair for the other one.

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MissingMilo

I do that! And if it’s off by even a little bit, start over and get it right.

Whichever one of us lands in the looney bin first, save a chair for the other one.

We aren't the crazy ones though

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Second hands is a must for me. It tells a lot about a watch just looking at the movement and hearing it.

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I both love a watch with the second hand for the “proof of life” and love a watch without for the “magic” of looking at something that doesn’t appear to move and then seeing it in a different position at a later moment.