One thing we all should be doing while practising self isolation and social distancing during these difficult times is more exercise, but had it occurred to you that your automatic watches also need exercising too? It was bad enough for automatic watches when just sitting at the office desk, but now we’re less likely to bother to even get out of our pyjamas let alone put on our cherished watches so they’re going to be seriously missing out on some arm moving to keep them wound up and working!A solution, now more than ever, is to use watch winder to do the work for you.Now before we make our recommendations on winders there’s always a lot of debate about the pluses and minuses of them on the various watch forums, and a lot of misinformation too, so we’d like to tell you what we know just to dispel some of these myths.Something we certainly don’t recommend is storing a watch on a winder for months and months on end without ever taking it out and wearing it, because it certainly isn’t ideal for the winding mechanism and specifically the oscillating rotor bearing (the oscillating rotor is the part that moves with your wrist movements and keeps the mainspring power topped up). Continually rotating through a single axis can potentially induce some unnecessary wear to the rotor bearing. This is especially true for older and vintage Rolex watches that don’t have a ball race type of bearing and are more susceptible to wear (the newest models have an improved rotor bearing which isn’t a problem!).As long as the watch is taken out of the winder and worn every so often, so has the chance to move through various different positions that would be the normal type of arm movements to distribute its lubrication, and the manufacturers recommended maintenance is being carried out (you are getting your watches serviced aren’t you? This is another subject we can discuss later!), then all is absolutely fine and your watches will not come to any harm.In fact automatic watches do require to be manually wound up if they’ve come to a complete stop (shaking them isn’t the right way to charge the mainspring), and one big counter argument to a winder causing wear is that a winder actually helps prevent wear to the components involved with manual winding such as the crown threads and seals and the keyless works (these are the parts under the dial that allow the manual winding, time and date setting), and as long as the winder you use is of a decent enough quality you can rest easy while your watches maintain their time and perhaps their date (especially those of you lucky enough to have a perpetual calendar)!So as you can see watch winders are not the enemy of your watches, on the contrary - purchased wisely and used properly they’re actually your friend!Ok, with that in mind what do we suggest? We represent a Hong Kong brand - Avante - that are beautifully made multiple unit winders, with very contemporary modern designs in various wood veneer or carbon fibre finishes, are properly magnetically shielded and all use high quality Japanese drive motors. They also come complete with a two year warranty.They range in size from simple “Duke” double and triple units all the way up to six and nine “Prince” units. The Prince models come with locking doors that are opened by RFID electronic key cards, have an additional storage drawer, and all their models are fully programmable through a very simple and intuitive touch pad to meet the specific needs of all your automatic watches.We can of course get them set up for you in advance, but the Avante website has a database of most watches settings for you to easily do it yourself, and seeing as how we all have so much more time on our hands then setting it up yourself is most likely what you’ll want to do anyway!
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