There are many different brands and types of watch winder, so they vary from one device to another when it comes to individual settings, features and built-in technology.
Most winder boxes, however, have much in common when it comes to their core method of operation and how they successfully keep automatic watches running efficiently.
When you become familiar with operating a watch winder you can set up a regular routine for using it, to ensure it is always primed for wearing.
The following is a general guide to using a watch winder - so it is essential that you read the manual or operating instructions that came with your particular winder unit, to ensure you get the best out of it and also avoid the risk of causing any damage to the device or your precious watch.
When you have purchased a watch winder there are a couple of simple intial steps you should take before you can start using the device. The following relates to using a single head winder box but the same principles of operation apply to double, triple, quad or multiple head winders.
First you need to manually wind your timepiece if it has stopped because a watch winder box is incapable of doing this for you. This entails winding the watch crown approximately 20 to 30 turns
Next you need to ensure you winder box is connected to a power supply - most are mains powered and some can also be operated via a rechargeable battery.
When you have done this it is time to place your automatic watch in the winding device. This involves attaching your watch securely to the cuff inside the device.
First you need to remove the cuff from the watch winder and gently wrap your watch around it after you have released its bracelet or unhooked it strap. Then you need to turn the cuff over to show the watch strap, not the watch face.
Then compress the cuff foam carefully with your fingers, just enough to enable you to fasten the strap securely onto the cuff. Next you should place the cuff carefully into the winder with the watch face to the fore.
Now you should set the options on the winder, normally by way of an LED screen - these options can vary from device to device but include the direction of winding - clockwise, counter-clockwise or a combination of both. Some boxes also allow you choose periods of rest between winding sessions.
It's also important to choose the correct TPD (turns per day) setting for you particular watch. The range of the TPD for your watch will normally be provided in the manual or instructions sheets which came with your watch.
Finally, with all the correct settings selected, it is time to start the unit and let the device do its thing. The motor in the winder will start to rotate your watch, keeping it ticking over efficiently, in preparation for the next time you choose to wear it.
It can take some time to get a watch winder to synchronise accurately with your automatic watch. You may need to experiment a bit with the TPD options on the winder to ensure your watch it maintaining accurate time.
You should select the lowest recommended TPD setting for your watch for the first couple of days and then check to see if it is keeping accurate time. If it is, then your TPD setting is correct - however, if you find the time on your watch is incorrect, you need to increase the TPD setting.
You may also need to alternate the direction of rotation between clockwise and counter-clockwise to achieve complete accuracy on your watch.
This initial 'testing' process can a bit laborious - but you can rest assured it will prove to be 'time' well spent!