To wind, or not to wind, that is the question. For years, automatic watch enthusiast and others who share our passion have asked themselves whether a watch winder is a much needed support tool for their collection, or can they simply continue to manually wind each piece from scratch when their time in the rotation comes up. For others, the tipping point becomes a matter of this or that: Should I spend the money on a winder or on a second, third or ninth watch? If I do decide to purchase a winder, should I go the cheapest route possible or blow thousands of dollars on a watch accessory that I may or may not use?
Barrington Watch Winders, a UK based company, aims to provide high-quality automatic watch winders at affordable prices, which seems like a common sense approach. To me, it’s deeper than that, as their product appeals to the emerging micro-brand category with their Swiss ETA movements, Japanese Miyota movements, and the like. But most importantly, affordable winders appeal to micro-brand buyers who are searching for sensible winding options that do not surpass the cost of the watches they buy by thousands of dollars.
- Display Case Length: 9.5”
- Display Case Width: 7.1”
- Display Case Height: 10.3”
- Remote Control: Yes
- Two Individual Programmable Rotors
- Multi Directional Winders (CW, CCW or both)
- Variable Turns Per Day (650, 750. 850, 1000, or 1950)
- LED Lighting Strip
- Digital Display (white on blue)
- AC Main Powered (British 3 pin plug supplied as standard; European available upon request)
- Retail Price: $537.00 USD
My well-packaged Barrington Double Watch Winder, with its black lacquered piano finish, arrived safely and instantly, and it felt to be a well-constructed piece. Its size and heft was noticeable yet manageable. With something that doubles as a sophisticated piece of moveable furniture, it needed to be light enough to carry into a newly desired position every few months or tucked away in a closet when your college kid’s friends come around. After all, the easiest way to remedy a case of “sticky fingers” is to not leave the candy lying around.
The actual double winder box, which measures approximately 9.5”×7.1”×10.3”, houses two watches in its main rotational chamber and two additional watches at-rest in the bottom slide out drawer. A smaller, deeper space, adjacent to the watches, was provided as well, which is perfect for strap changing tools or a safe place for storing your included remote when not in use.
The model I’m reviewing has the newly recessed drawer pull versus the traditional stainless steel knob of years past. Barrington made a few other improvements to the double watch winder as well, which include:
- Shaved corners to make them appear less angular;
- As mentioned above, the drawer no longer has a knob, but rather a recessed pull (also with carbon fiber effect backing);
- The backboard and inside of the drawer now have a carbon fiber effect finish; and
- The BARRINGTON logo has been moved to the center of the unit.
The Barrington Double Watch Winder has two front-facing rotating pods that rotate your watch clockwise, counter-clockwise or both. Additionally, you’re able to select the turns per day, commonly known in the biz as TPD. With this model, Barrington allows you to select between 650 TPD to 1950 TPD to maximize just how ‘wound’ your watch becomes. It’s important to note that most modern watch movements cannot be over wound, but you should make an effort to know what your watch’s brand’s designers recommend, if only for peace of mind. At the time of writing this review, Barrington’s website did not offer information regarding individual movement types, direction of spin or recommended TPD, but many of their competitors do. If I were Barrington, I would want to keep all perspective buyers ‘in-house,” as opposed to having them veer away from my site. Having researched said information for this project, I understand that it can be a daunting task.
As they rotate, your watches are held in place by two soft cushion-like pillows that can be best described as luxurious stress balls. Oddly enough, I found myself squeezing them repeatedly between watch changes within my rotation and had to force myself to put them back into place often. Once watches were wrapped around the provided pillows, I found them easy to insert no matter the size of the watch. Once in, watches were held securely in place as they rotated, and I found little to no shifting of the watch head as the watch pods themselves are slightly over 2” deep. A large noise dampening glass door, that knows when it’s open or closed, keeps dust out, which helps to keep your watches looking great as they wait for their turn on your wrist. An LED strip that runs the entire length of the interior cabin lights up your watches on demand, or it can be left on to give the Double Barrington Watch Winder more of a display case assignment.
After both watches are securely in place, it’s time to set the program cycle your watches will run on, which is a breeze using the provided instructions. In the age of high-tech gadgetry, Barrington hit a home run with both their white on blue digital display and their touchscreen selection strip that responds to the slightest touch of your fingers. Feeling lazy or just happen to be halfway across the room? That’s not an issue since Barrington chose to include a small, easy-to-use remote that allows you to operate the winder’s functions from afar, including an On/Off LED switch.
As a police officer who works unpredictable shifts, their ultra-quiet motor claim was the most important feature of all, and I put it to the test during my own sleep cycles. While the unit is set to rotate in 12 hours shifts (12 hours on/12 hours off), much like me, I set the unit to run while I slept to see if its noise, if any, would interrupt my much needed beauty rest. Happily, not only could I not hear the motors turning as they began their own tour of duty, but I awakened fully rested and ready for mine.
In the backside of the unit, you’ll find three additional buttons that add yet another level of functionality and user control over your Barrington Double Watch Winder. As explained in the provided instruction, the switch closest to the power input is the Power On/Off. The switch furthest away, when in the On position, will automatically turn the LED strip lighting on when you close the door. The red button in the middle turns the LED light On and Off manually.
In the end, I was able to answer many of those questions I set off to discover for myself and like-minded individuals everywhere. Barrington’s Double Watch Winder, a perfect blend of quality, functionality and cost effectiveness, delivered flawlessly and far exceeded my expectations. Could I continue to live without a watch winder? The answer is both simple yet complicated at best. Yes, I could continue to collect aimlessly and manually wind each piece, but after having experienced the Barrington Double Watch Winder, I just would not want to!