What Is A Bezel On A Watch

What is a bezel and what does it do? In the simplest or terms, a bezel is a circular surround that frames the outer circumference of your watch which will generally have numbers or markings on it. Not all bezels are the same though, some rotate one way or both ways, and some do not rotate at all, so what’s it all about?

Bezels’ Purpose.

The purpose of the bezel it to align with the minute hand allowing the user to know quickly at a glance how much time has the past since the last time check. This would normally be something a Diver might require in order to time a dive to the closest safe time without needing to make any calculations. So, bezels are generally found on diver watches, but they can be found on none dive watches and some fashion watches, but ma not rotate.


Fixed Bezel

The fixed bezel will usually be found on cheap watches or a fashion watch where the functionality is not required but the fixed bezel may add to the esthetics of the piece

Rotating Bezel

Uni-directional bezel



Uni-Directional bezels are seen as safer that Bi-Directional because if the bezel moves it can only adjust the set time to a shorter time not longer. This means a Diver can never stay under for too long due to a bezel malfunction.

Bi-directional bezel



Using A Bezel

The use of the bezel is really very simple but sometimes these things can be difficult to grasp, so if you don’t understand something you can just head offer to the video courtesy of Synthspike who explain amongst other things, how to use the bezel.

Let’s say you want to dive for 20 minutes and you look at your watch and it’s 14:30. Okay, so you simply rotate the bezel until the 12:00 marker is aligned with your minute hand at 6 o’clock. Now the bezel is reading zero at 6 o’clock and by the time the minute hand has reach 14:50 the marker on the bezel reads 20 minutes. It’s that simple.

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carl scutt
carl scutt
Carl's the founder and editor of discountwatchstores.com. His background's in Technology and Internet Marketing. He currently lives in southern Spain. Learn more about him here, and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.