A used Orient STI limited edition watch

I often get to see watches in used condition and this time round, I saw a used Orient STI limited edition which I wrote about here.

From the foggy crystal, it is obvious that water has entered the watch. The interesting thing is, the water vapour forms a ring under the crystal as you can see in the picture above.

Here’s how a brand new one looks like. The ring of water vapour appears to be right above the silver ring on the dial. I can’t explain this phenomenon. Can you?

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3 thoughts on “A used Orient STI limited edition watch

  1. Pingback: Orient STI (2010 model) – Foggy caseback « Yeoman's Weblog

  2. Brickbats

    OK, I’ve had 4 years of engineering (full disclosure -it took me 7 years) so I should be able to answer this puzzler. If you look at the dial you see that the shiny metal ring is surrounded by a black carbon fiber dial inside and out. Black bodies absorb heat and light and shiny ones reflect it. White shirts are cooler in the direct sunlight than black ones. So my guess is that the black parts of the dial absorb radiant heat and light and store it while the adjacent shiny ring is cooler. This would mean that if ou could measure the temperature of the carbon fiber it would be a few degrees hotter than the metal ring. That could lead to a cooler, ring-shaped area of the internal crystal surface directly above the metal ring with a hotter internal surface surrounding it and inside of it. The ambient water vapor would tend to condense on the cooler area, in the same way that a half full glass of ice water will have condensation only halfway up the outside of a glass if left to sit for a while. That’s my explanation. By the way, if you leave this watch in a dark room for a long enough time the ring of condensation should disappear, replaced with a uniform condensate pattern, no visible condensation or perhaps a pattern of large droplets. Also, I’ve found that watches with water inside tend to leak it out through the same paths it came in on if left in a hot car for a few days.

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