Hand Alignment on a Tag Heuer Link Calibre S

A bit of a specialist subject, I know, but it’s one of those things that is buried in the manual, and that you can never quite remember on the rare occasions that you really need to.

The Problem

The hands on the Link Calibre S are controlled by the five precision stepper motors that are part of the 230-component electro-mechanical movement. It’s possible, if the watch comes into contact with a strong magnetic field, that the hands (especially the second hand, in my experience) can be dragged out of alignment.

You’re most likely to notice this in chrono mode, but it’s also noticeable in time mode. Specifically, the minute hand makes its one third tick forward movement at times other than 0, 20, and 40 seconds.

If the minute hand is misaligned, you’ll see the hour hand move forward half a tick at times other than 0, 6, 12, 18, 24, 30, 36, 42, 48, and 54 minutes. It’s much harder to notice a misaligned hour hand except when it should be lined up on the hour.

In time mode, the tenth and hundredth hands will appear to be showing the wrong date, but this is much more obvious in chrono mode where they just won’t be zeroed.

In chrono mode, it’s immediately obvious when any of the hands isn’t aligned correctly as the watch just doesn’t appear to be zeroed.

The Solution

The first time that you notice this, there’s likely to be a moment of panic, followed by thoughts of:

“How much will the dealer charge for this fix?”

Fear not; resetting the alignment is a simple, if non-obvious, procedure.

Before continuing, the following definitions will ensure that we’re all on the same page:

Crown: The large button in the 3 o’clock position. It has the Tag logo on it.

A: The start / stop button in the 2 o’clock position.

B: The lap / reset button in the 4 o’clock position.

The following steps are to be carried out with the watch in its regular time mode:

  1. Hold A and B simultaneously for at least 2 seconds. The hands will move to their zero positions.
  2. Use A to advance a hand until it aligns with its zero position (12 o’clock for the hour, minute, and second hands or 0 for the tenth and hundredth hands).
  3. Use B to move to the next hand, and repeat step 2. The hour hand is first up when entering this alignment mode. Pressing B cycles through minute, second, tenth, hundredth, and back to hour.
  4. Press Crown to return to normal time mode.

And that’s it. No need for a trip to the dealer so go buy yourself something nice with the money you just saved :-)

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