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I have always been fascinated by the "eco drive" and Citizen Eco Drive models.

Some info on it:

Citizen’s new Eco-Drive technology has transformed the quartz watch industry. With a solar cell under the dial, Citizen Eco-Drive watches never need a battery change. The watch is charged by any light, sunlight or artificial light.

 

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How does eco drive work:

The secret of citizen eco drive watches is the way that light is absorbed, stored and then released by the citizen eco drive to power the watch.

Dials - The dial on eco drive watches is made from ceramic or a special plastic. This allows the light sensitive panel that is hidden in eco drive watches to absorb enough light to power the watch.

Light sensitive panel - In eco drive watches there is a light sensitive photo electric cell hidden right underneath the dial. This panel converts light into electrical energy even in low light. A few minutes of winters dayligh provides enough energy to run a eco drive watch for a day.

Secondary Battery - The energy that is produced is stored in a lithium battery and then released as necessary to run the eco drive watch. This battery will allow the eco drive watch to run for up to 6 months in complete darkness before it will stop working.
 

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How does Eco-Drive work? Citizen Eco-Drive watches use the simplest, yet most technically advanced power generating and storage system in the Watch Manufacturing Industry. A Solar conversion panel and energy cell are the power provider for these Quartz Watches. Eco-Drive's ability to use light from any source to generate electrical power means that the supply is limitless and free. The absence of any added complex power generating machinery that would require additional upkeep is another big advantage.


•What is a Solar Panel? The Eco-Drive watch uses a microns thin disc of amorphous Silicon under the dial to convert light energy into electrical energy through the photovoltaic process. The electrical energy is then stored in a special energy storage cell . The charging is done in a more efficient manner than was ever before thought possible. Because of this newly developed technology, it is now practical to use a wide variety of attractive dials.

•How is Energy stored in the watch? A special Eco-Drive energy storage cell is used to store the electricity from the converted light energy. The high quality of the cell precludes it from being affected from the regular charge/discharge cycle as with an ordinary battery. With normal care and exposure to light, the owner can be assured of a lifetime of reliable and trouble free power. As an added benefit to the environment, the energy cell contains none of the chemicals used in ordinary watch batteries.

•How long will the energy storage cell last? With normal care the Eco-Drive Energy Cell will last a lifetime of use.

•Why does the second hand jump in 2 second increments? This is a low power warning function and indicates that the reserve power is getting low and the energy cell needs to be fully recharged by exposing it to light for a period of time outlined in your owner's manual. This may also occur after fully recharging your watch after a complete discharge of the energy cell. If you have fully charged your watch and the second hand continues to move in two second intervals, you need to do an all reset of the watch. For simple analog models, pull the crown out to the time setting position for 30 seconds, then return the crown to the closed position next to the case, then set the time. For multi-function models, please refer to your owners manual.


From - http://www.citizen-watch.co.uk/technology.html#how

 

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i like many of the citizen models also. but i also find many of them extremely hard to read with the 300 words, numbers, dials, and multiple hands on them.
what has always kept me from purchasing one of them was the reality that i would not use 90% of the features the watch has....ever.
but still very nice watches imo.
 

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I have a skyhawk JY0000-53E and just love it. Still learning all the functions. I like the slide-rule on the bezel. Trying to go back 30 years and remember all the slide-rule tricks of the past. Would NOT recommend this model for the computer challenged geeks. A lot of this and that just to get it up and running in you local city.

CARL
 

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TheWatchGeek wrote:
I have a skyhawk JY0000-53E and just love it. Still learning all the functions. I like the slide-rule on the bezel. Trying to go back 30 years and remember all the slide-rule tricks of the past. Would NOT recommend this model for the computer challenged geeks. A lot of this and that just to get it up and running in you local city.

CARL
Pictures? Would love to see it...
 

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mikeizzy wrote:
Do citizen watches all use this meathod?
Hi Mike, If memory serves,:?, I think Citizen also makes a quartz watch. There is also a new Signature line of Eco drives and a high end Camponella(? spelling) line of Eco drives. I have a few regular Eco drives and they are accurate and keep working. My favorites are the perpetual calender and the chronograph models. You never have to be concerned about changing the date and orusing up a battery when using the chrono feature! Also, I have heard that Citizen has purchased Bulova and now has access to the Swiss movements used in the Acutron models. Citizen seems to be turning into a major player in the timepiece industry. ....Bob
 

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Bob wrote:
mikeizzy wrote:
Do citizen watches all use this meathod?
Hi Mike, If memory serves,:?, I think Citizen also makes a quartz watch. There is also a new Signature line of Eco drives and a high end Camponella(? spelling) line of Eco drives. I have a few regular Eco drives and they are accurate and keep working. My favorites are the perpetual calender and the chronograph models. You never have to be concerned about changing the date and orusing up a battery when using the chrono feature! Also, I have heard that Citizen has purchased Bulova and now has access to the Swiss movements used in the Acutron models. Citizen seems to be turning into a major player in the timepiece industry. ....Bob
Thanks for all the information. I really like the idea for the watch.
 

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mikeizzy wrote:
Do citizen watches all use this meathod?
To answer very simply, No.

Citizen has lines of Eco-Drives, standard Quartz, Automatics and Manual watches.
 

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I just picked up the Citizen Perpetual Calendar last night that is listed in the Deals section. This is a Time Bomb special from World of Watches (WOW). If anybody is interested in seeing how fantastic this watch is I would suggest purchasing this one. I love all my Citizen watches and I have never had any problems with them. If they do need to be serviced it is very easy b/c almost every jewelry store sales/services them.
 

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tillertruck wrote:
I have 2 Eco Dive and I never had a problem with them.
would love to see some pictures of them!

AND - welcome to Watch Freeks. Great to meet you. Make sure to start an Introduction thread so everyone can say hello!

welcome again!
 

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I have four Eco-Drives and all of them have proven to be trouble free and accurate. I will post pictures of all four under the "Show your collection" forum.
 

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TheWatchGeek wrote:
James, found a picture of my JY0000-53e Citizen Skyhawk do all watch.
That is a hot watch and the one my father wants. Very cool watch with SOOOOOOO MANY FEATURES. Just packed with ... stuff.

Thanks for posting the pic.
 

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Yes - I have the Sky Hawk watch and it is very cool. I have never used all of the functions but, what the heck, it looks cool !!
 

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Not all Citizen Eco-drives have busy dials. I have this one:
 
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