First off, I'm not really an accuracy junkie. Only race car drivers require up to 1/1000th of a second accuracy measurement of their performance, both for qualifying runs, and during the actual grand prix race.
The consistent and accurate measurement of their lap times during a race determines their strategy, when they will pit, how much time they have during their pit stop, and if ultimately, they have enough a gap to win the race. Accuracy usually spells victory or defeat.
The rest of us mere mortals, with the exclusion of perhaps a handful of other types of jobs, will really not require a per second accuracy from our watches.
But, just to have some fun with my 5 quartz watches, I decided to let them go head-to-head in a 90-day Accuracy Challenge. Why 3 months, or a quarter of a year? Because a daily check is just too tedious for me. And, a longer duration will clearly show which quartz movement is more consistently accurate.
When I began last October 1st, I simply calibrated each watch with an atomic clock. Today is Day 46, just past the halfway mark. Here are the rankings as of Day 30 measurements:
5) Timex Waterbury Traditional TW2R25400: -10.5 secs / 30 days
4) Timex Expedition Scout 36: -10 secs / 30 days
3) Axis Dual Time
- Big dial: -6 secs / 30 days; Small dial: -7 secs / 30 days
2) Citizen 1030-R11008: +5 secs / 30 days
1) Columbia CL-1312: 0 secs / 30 days
I will take the next measurement on Day 60, and at the Finish Line.
Am I surprised with the Top 2? Not anymore. Why? Because I did a similar 90-day test earlier this year for the CL-1312, comparing it with the vintage Citizen. For context, last Feb 2022, I replaced the broken 16-year old VJ-32 movement of my Columbia with a new one. So, after a year, I simply wanted to check its performance. Both clocked the same accuracy as noted above.
Am I pleased with this $19 VJ-32 movement?
It handily beats, and still does today, ALL mechanical watches, even so-called COSC-certified luxury watches, including 99% of GS models, based on comments I've seen shared by Crunchers in various posts about "Their Most Accurate Watch". ;)
Is the performance of the CL-1312 viz. my other quartz watches unfair? No. The Citizen is a 1980s vintage movement, an heirloom from my Dad.
It surely is outperforming both my newer Timex pieces. The Waterbury Traditional arrived in July 2022, and the Expedition Scout 36 just came in August 2023. So technically, they are newer.
How will they all perform at the 60-day mark, and at the Finish Line? We shall see.
How about your quartz watches? Have you done a similar 90-day Challenge?
If you do one, will they beat the $19.00 VJ-32 movement of my Columbia CL-1312? Or, my vintage Citizen 1030-R11008? It would be interesting to find out.