Faraday Cage - The Shocking Truth!

Faraday Cage - The Shocking Truth!

I'm sure you've heard the sketicism surrounding one feature of the new Overseas, which pairs a display-back case with faraday cage.  How can one maintain antimagnetic protection without completely enclosing the movement within a soft-iron shell?

The picture above is snipped from a YouTube video found here.  Back in 2014, Netherlands clothing designer Anouk Wipprecht premiered this faraday cage dress in a most spectacular fashion; by passing 1 million volts while wearing it surprise.  Wipprecht herself wore the dress for this stunt as none of the models were willing.

The principle of a faraday cage is that electromagnetic fields are channelled over the exterior of a conductive metal structure, while the interior remains free of disturbances.  As you can see, complete enclosure is not required and, in fact, faraday cages for industrial and research purposes are most often mesh screens.


Yikes! Looks like straight out of
02/12/2016 - 10:24



Yikes! Looks like straight out of

She's hot!
02/12/2016 - 17:10

Hot as a tea pot, that is surprise.  A great image from a great movie!  Of course there is more to the label of "antimagnetism" than protection from electromagnetic radiation, although that must be the most prevalent threat in modern times.  I'm looking forward to the detailed description of the new calibers and how they addressed ferromagnetism from permanent magnets; an area that V&C historically pioneered and for which a faraday cage is inneffective.

A tidbit that I remembering hearing at SIHH
02/12/2016 - 21:41

One of the VC people (sorry, forgot who it was) mentioned that the majority of magnetization of a watch comes from fields in the direction of the case sides, not from the top or bottom of the watch.  This is also why a soft iron ring around the watch can provide the same magnetic resistance as a soft iron core that covers the top and bottom as well.

The magnetic resistance of the new OS is at the same level as Gen 2, but should not be mixed up with the amagnetic capabilities of watches that have all non-magnetic balance components.

BR, Dan

Dan, do you know
02/12/2016 - 22:07

the details of the new escapements, anything specific to magnetism?  The Geneva Seal doesn't include tests for magnetic resistance and their timing standards are only reflective of the watch's performance when new.  Low-intensity magnetism from exposure to permanent magnets can slowly alter a movement's accuracy and won't show up for months or years.

Nothing new in terms of materials used in the escapements
02/12/2016 - 22:22

Standard VC, tried and true.  No new composite or alloy materials as far as I know.  BR, Dan

I heard this too...
02/12/2016 - 22:10

from Dominque Bernaz.  He said they were quite surprised at the test results actually.

Sorry Dean, I don't have more specifics either.

Re: Faraday Cage - The Shocking Truth!
02/14/2016 - 13:26

Hi All

My watchmaker friend - who is the only person I trust with my vintage VC OS - told me Farraday cages don't work and they make de-magnetizing difficult.

I took in my VC OS because I'd been having issues with the watch gaining time. When I told him I'd been leaving it on my computer desk at night he just said, "Don't store your watch near a computer or any other electronic device...ever."

So, that's all I have to say about that...



I guess that was the point of my post
02/14/2016 - 18:13

As illustrated by the young lady in the metal suit, a faraday cage does protect from electromagnetic fields, but doesn't work for permanent magnets which are still encountered in everyday life.  I don't know how your watchmaker friend can distinguish which type of magnetism your OS fell victim to, so I suggest he's blaming the wrong source.  Avoid leaving your watch near stereo speakers, or in the vicinity of the magnetic clasp of your man-purse or briefcase cheeky.  It would be cool if VC could share images of their magnetism tests on the new watches!

Faraday Cage saves the world!
02/29/2016 - 23:08

I stumbled upon a movie last night that was so bad I couldn't stop watching it.  The Darkest Hour (2011) stars Emile Hirsch, who is apparently a bit of a heart-throb among pre-teens but I prefer to remember for his role in the very moving picture Into the Wild.  Anyway, the premise is an alien invasion of formless creatures intent on strip-mining the earth of resources, without regard for the native species.  The movie is located in Moscow for some reason and the protagonists are a bunch of American kids forced to fight the aliens while trying to find a way home.

Faraday Cage saves the world!

They stumble upon Sergei, a mad scientist who discovered that people were only safe from the invisible goblins while inside a Faraday Cage!  So he converts his Moscow apartment into a giant bird cage and, to allow it a chance to wander, even makes his pet cat a Faraday Suit.

Faraday Cage saves the world!

The movie ends with various survivor groups connecting and some limited successes fighting the aliens; a set-up for a sequel no doubt.