So far this year I have not done a good job with my Christmas shopping – all I have done is buy some gifts for myself. This week I bought a “new” Hanhart stopwatch on eBay for myself. This stopwatch has some features that make it more useful for car rallying than a typical analogue stopwatch. The most noticeable difference is that one complete rotation of the second hand represents 30 seconds, not 60 seconds as with most stopwatches. The advantage of this is that the display on the face of each second is wider than a typical stopwatch, which makes it easier to read the second value to the 0.1 second.
My “New” Hanhart Stopwatch
The timing for the first circuit of the second hand around the stopwatch face can be read by reading the black numbers on the outside of the face. The second circuit of the second hand can be read by reading the red numbers on the inside of the face. Users don’t have to keep track of the number of rotations of the second-hand because of the small minute dial in the upper part of the face.
If you look carefully at the small minute dial you can see that each minute is divided into a white portion and a red portion. The white portion of each minute is the first 30 seconds of that minute, while the red portion of the minute is the last 30 seconds of that minute. Therefore by looking at the color of the minute dial where the minute hand is, you know how to read the second hand. For example, in the photo below it can be seen that the minute hand is in the red portion of the first minute. This means that the stopwatch is currently displaying 0 minutes 44.1 seconds.
The Stopwatch Is Reading 0 Minutes 44.1 Seconds
This stopwatch as another feature that is extremely useful for rallying. This other feature is known as “rattrapante”. A rattrapante stopwatch has two second hands and, unlike a standard analogue stopwatch, can therefore time multiple simultaneous events. One of the second hands, the so-called “rattrapante” hand, sits underneath the main second hand. In the photo above, you cannot see that there is a red second hand underneath the main black second hand. Both of these second hands are started by pushing down on the center button of the stopwatch.
The rattrapante second hand is controlled by pushing down on the button shown on the right side of the stopwatch. The results of pushing this button are shown below.
The Red “Rattrapante” Has Stopped At 0 Minutes 47.7 Seconds While The Black Second Hand Continues to Rotate
By being able to stop the red rattrapante second hand, I am able to note that time of a specific event without completely stopping the stopwatch. An example of this would be during a continuous speedometer calibration run during the Great Race. There are many other car rally uses as well.
After noting the time, pushing the right-side button again will cause the red second hand to catch up with the main black second hand again. This is shown on the photo below, taken at 1 minute 9.6 seconds showing the red second hand back under the main second hand. This action leads to the naming of this type of stopwatch. “Rattrapanter” is French for “to catch again” or “to take again.” All this activity with the red rattrapante second hand occurs without affecting the motion of the main stopwatch second hand. A rattrapante stopwatch is also sometimes called a “split-seconds chronograph”.
The Red Second Hand Is Now Back Under The Main Second Hand
The button on the left side of the crown is used to return the second hands back to zero when both hands are stopped by pushing the center crown button.
As you can imagine, this stopwatch is quite useful for car rallying. In addition, this is a high quality stopwatch as Hanhart is well-known for making great stopwatches and other timing products. I am pleased to add this piece of equipment to my rally navigator tool box.
If you have any comments or questions about this post or the Hanhart rattrapante stopwatch, then leave a comment below, or you can send me a private email message at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot net