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Hourglass

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Rabbi David Sperling

Tishrei 12, 5781
Question
The Rabbi stated you should not use an hourglass to measure time on Shabbat. Can I use a watch or clock with a second hand or a digital clock or watch that has the seconds to time something. Lets say the hourglass times 3 minutes. I can not use it on Shabbat but isnt using a watch or clock also measuring on Shabbat?
Answer
Shalom, Thank you for your question. You are correct in thinking that timing with a watch is also a question of measuring on Shabbat. When using a sand timer would be forbidden, so too would timing by a watch. As we wrote, there are cases when using a timer is not measuring, but rather appointing out a turn in a game etc. Also, measuring for a mitzvah is allowed. I hope this is of some help, blessings.
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