Show off your home-made watch winder
Like Tree25Likes

Thread: Show off your home-made watch winder

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 22
  1. #1
    Member Ticonderoga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    2,209

    Lightbulb Show off your home-made watch winder

    In this thread, I invite you to post your home-made watch winder if you've built one. Or, if you're planning to build one, please share your plans and photos as you make your way through construction.

    I'll post mine in a separate post.
    Wife: Don't you have enough watches?
    Me: Don't you have enough earrings?
    Wife: So, you're saying that watches are jewelry for Men?
    Me: That's exactly what I'm saying.
    Wife: Let's go shopping.

    And that's how I got my last watch...

  2. #2
    Member Ticonderoga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    2,209

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    The goal: a reliable and good looking watch winder for under $10

    Is it just me or are watch winders expensive? I really don't understand why it costs a hundred bucks to put a $5 motor and a timer into a particle board laminate box.

    The problem with mechanical watches is that it is hard to stop at one, or two, or ten. And, if you don't have quick change dates, it can be a pain to set them.

    I've been thinking over the past few years that there has got to be a way to make a cheap, reliable and good looking watch winder.

    With this in mind, I've had my eyes open for anything that could be used to fit this role. I was looking around on the Bay and I saw that there are dozens of vendors selling these little crystal figurine display platforms. I guess, for those who collect crystal figurines, you put one on top of this thing and the LED lights shine up into it making a pretty rainbow effect

    Go Grandma and Aunt Polly!

    And, for extra effect, they rotate!

    Coming out of China, I saw that you can buy one of these, shipping included for $5 to $10.

    Name:  s-l225.jpg
Views: 444
Size:  11.0 KB

    Hmmm.... this is interesting.

    I decided to buy one to try out as a possible base for a watch winder.

    http://thumbs.ebaystatic.com/images/...r3Z/s-l225.jpg

    They all seem to come with slots for AA batteries. Some have power adapters, some don't. I decided to get one with a power adapter. It is nice for the battery slots; if you don't have power in a safe, you can still run this on battery power.

    Name:  s-l225.jpg
Views: 448
Size:  7.4 KB

    I first saw this one for under $5, shipping and power adapter included. But it sold out and I ended up paying $6.04 for another. I see that the price has gone up on this listing since my purchase:

    3.5'' 4.5V Rotating Crystal Display Base Stand 4 LED Colored Light + DC Adapter | eBay

    If you look around at eBay and other import sites (Ali xpress maybe?) you can find them pretty cheap - just be sure to get one with a power adapter if you plan to plug it in: many of these have great prices but no plug.

    Now, all I needed was something to hold the watch.

    The rotating platform is 85mm wide. At my local grocery store I found a microwave 2 tray dish that was 85 or 90mm wide ( about the size of a large drinking glass) and I picked it up for a few bucks.

    Just today I got all the parts out to put together and shortly, I'll post some pics as I put it together.
    mascherani and avusblue like this.
    Wife: Don't you have enough watches?
    Me: Don't you have enough earrings?
    Wife: So, you're saying that watches are jewelry for Men?
    Me: That's exactly what I'm saying.
    Wife: Let's go shopping.

    And that's how I got my last watch...

  3. #3
    Member mascherani's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Posts
    26

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    nice thread. curious to see how it goes.
    Ticonderoga likes this.

  4. #4
    Member Ticonderoga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    2,209

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    Here it is. I remembered that I bought a little crystal mosque when I was travelling in the Middle East (Oman?). Yeah, those colored lights are pretty much Auntie Polly:

    Name:  image1.jpeg
Views: 419
Size:  1.31 MB

    4 LEDs that brighten and dim so that the little "magical castle" (as my daughter calls it) changes from red, to blue, purple, pink & every color of the rainbow. In a dark room it throws a rainbow of colors on the ceiling.

    It is virtually silent. My Wife who complains about a ticking Timex watch from across the room can't hear it.

    The motor seems to be quite strong. I tried holding it still with a finger and it pulled pretty hard and didn't stop.

    I fished the Seiko 6309 (Turtle) out of the watch box after a multi-month break and I've been wearing it all week. The accuracy was better than I remembered and I am curious to keep it running. But, I have other watches to wear and it needs to be put down. As I didn't want to have to come and shake wind it every day, I decided it that today was time to start on this project.

    Here is the plastic microwave container I mentioned in my earlier post:

    Name:  image2.jpeg
Views: 410
Size:  1.43 MB

    As you can see, it has a top tray to separate one dish from the other. I suppose you could put salad on top, rice on the bottom, remove the top tray, microwave the bottom and have a hot meal and cold salad:

    Name:  image3.jpeg
Views: 410
Size:  1.50 MB

    I like this container because it fixes a couple of problems that I anticipated early on.

    First, I am (was) worried about magnetic shielding. I've read up a bit on this and it seems that most modern automatic watches have some resistance to magnetism, most modern motors give off very little magnetism, and that many watch boxes use good old distance to shield from magnetism. I suppose, this is the reason why watch boxes are so damned big. I never could understand why they are not more compact. This two stage plastic tray keeps the watch a sufficient distance from the turning motor. I held a compass above the turning platform - the same distance as the top plastic tray - and I saw no movement. When I lowered the magnet down to an inch or so (2 or 3 cm) I saw the needle turn every so slightly.

    Name:  image4.jpeg
Views: 444
Size:  1.45 MB

    I plan to get the iPhone gauss meter and check this "winder" and if it is good as is, I won't change anything. If I see some magnetism, I can worry about shielding the motor later.

    The second "fix" of this plastic case is that it provides a space that is just perfect in size for a watch and pillow. When the top is closed, the pillow flares out filling most of the space.

    And the third thing this container does is that it provides a "porthole" style lid: I can pop the lid on and off and change watches without upsetting the rest of the winder. And, as the lid is transparent, I can see which watch is getting wound and whether or not it is ticking.

    Name:  image5.jpeg
Views: 436
Size:  1.44 MB

    Name:  image6.jpeg
Views: 434
Size:  1.69 MB

    Name:  image7.jpeg
Views: 432
Size:  1.30 MB

    As this is a prototype, I will try going down some different assembly paths. For now, I just want to keep the Turtle wound so 3 spots on the platform with the hot glue gun and the container is temporarily fixed.

    Name:  IMG_9635.JPG
Views: 426
Size:  1.59 MB

    I took a box I had laying around and cut a groove and just taped the new "winder" at a ~ 45 degree angle.

    I turned it on and it seems to be working just fine!

    Name:  IMG_9636.JPG
Views: 430
Size:  1.62 MB

    Other good news, when you turn it off and then turn it back on, it changes directions. It makes exactly one revolution per minute. And so, at 60 revs per hour, with a standard timer that has 30 minute on/off segments, you can set this to rotate between 30 and 2400 revolutions per day.

    The difference in the photo above and below is 6 seconds:

    Name:  IMG_9637.JPG
Views: 424
Size:  1.66 MB

    I plan to run it for 10 hours each day, to get 600 revolutions. When I have a chance to check the exact # of turns for each watch, I can set the timer to any number that I desire.

    At first, I had planned to build a wood box and have only the top of the lid facing an opening. But, as I look at it now, I could take a piece of wood, a piece of acrylic or aluminum base, simply cut a groove in it and then fix it with some cement and it wouldn't look 1/2 bad. After the stickers are removed from the plastic and it is mounted in a semi-professional way, I think it might work as is. I don't know yet, I'll play around with it. I would invite anyone else who's interested in this project to order some components and give it a try. Maybe, with many minds, we'll come up with a stellar winder.

    I came back after an hour (it was off) and after two hours and it was just running along, the Seiko ticking away.

    Name:  image8.jpeg
Views: 427
Size:  1.32 MB

    The disco lights are starting to grow on me: it is easy to tell from across the room if it is running or not. If I want to obscure them, a piece of cloth or a black sock in the bottom tray will hide them just fine.

    I found some similar plastic containers on the net - 6 for $6 shipped. The base was $6, and I see electric plug timers on eBay for about $4. As it sits now, it is ~ $10. I have some old wood and paint and I can make a base and so far as I can tell, it will work just fine.

    I will post some more news and pics as this evolves.

    Hope this is helpful to some of you.
    Last edited by Ticonderoga; May 6th, 2017 at 17:30.
    LEWIS57, avusblue, Medusa and 9 others like this.
    Wife: Don't you have enough watches?
    Me: Don't you have enough earrings?
    Wife: So, you're saying that watches are jewelry for Men?
    Me: That's exactly what I'm saying.
    Wife: Let's go shopping.

    And that's how I got my last watch...

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Posts
    30

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    Here is my DIY winder. The first version had the watches positioned at a 45 deg angle. It took 4 hours to wind my Seiko 5 to keep it running on a daily basis. I modified the winder so the watches are at 90 deg and now the Seiko only takes 1 hr, 15 min to wind.

    Details (including where I got the motor) are on this post

    Name:  90 WW.jpg
Views: 359
Size:  177.7 KBName:  Winder 3.jpg
Views: 352
Size:  231.4 KB
    jcombs1, Ticonderoga and Medusa like this.

  6. #6
    Member Ticonderoga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    2,209

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    I was looking through my eBay watch list and I saw these that I had added earlier.

    These are 6 for less than $6. If we find that there are no issues with magnetism, they should work as is. If not, a simple spacer between the rotating deck and the bottom of this container should work (or you could even glue one atop the other). They appear to be screw on and with the clear & untinted plastic, you can see the watch quite well.

    Best yet, they're economical so if it comes to making 4 or 6 of these, at least they will all match

    6PCs Plastic Beads Display Storage Container Round Transparent 6cm Dia.(2 3/8"

    Name:  s-l1600.jpg
Views: 338
Size:  77.7 KB
    avusblue likes this.
    Wife: Don't you have enough watches?
    Me: Don't you have enough earrings?
    Wife: So, you're saying that watches are jewelry for Men?
    Me: That's exactly what I'm saying.
    Wife: Let's go shopping.

    And that's how I got my last watch...

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Posts
    23

    Show off your home-made watch winder

    Great work!
    How sturdy is the motorized base? And how strong is the motor?
    I've often thought of taking something like that and attaching a cheap watch box to it. Something like this.
    Zeeshy 6- slot Watch Box Black Pu Leather Diaplay Case Glass Top with Key Lock https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JIPGGYQ..._TcJdzb830BDBY
    As long as you get it well balanced, it shouldn't take much torque to turn the box. I've never really understood why you don't see watch winders sold like this. Why not just rotate the whole case instead of individual (or sometimes pairs of) watches?
    Ticonderoga likes this.

  8. #8
    Member Ticonderoga's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    Spain
    Posts
    2,209

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    Quote Originally Posted by TNmatt View Post
    Great work!
    How sturdy is the motorized base? And how strong is the motor?
    I've often thought of taking something like that and attaching a cheap watch box to it. Something like this.
    Zeeshy 6- slot Watch Box Black Pu Leather Diaplay Case Glass Top with Key Lock https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01JIPGGYQ..._TcJdzb830BDBY
    As long as you get it well balanced, it shouldn't take much torque to turn the box. I've never really understood why you don't see watch winders sold like this. Why not just rotate the whole case instead of individual (or sometimes pairs of) watches?
    The motor is quite strong, I tried to stop it with my finger and it moved my finger.

    The base seems quite sturdy - but everything comes down to leverage. With a Seiko Turtle at the top end of the holding container, it puts some torque on the rotating part of the platform. Not really sure what this will do to it over time but it seems to be cranking away. If it craps out in a year or three (something I see reported here about + $90 watch winders), big deal, buy another $6 crystal display platform LOL.

    Now, putting a whole jewelry box on this little thing isn't going to fly; perhaps on 3dog's steampunk winder.

    What I'm thinking to do, if this all works out, is to build a little 3 x 3 box with 9 of these in it. How cool would that be, rotating 9 auto watches for < $100.

    In time, I would like to do something with gears. I envision putting a round gear that sits on the top edge of the rotating platform and then having a vertical gear (90 degrees to the platform) attached to a shaft - on this shaft would be mounted one or more watch holders. In this way, the little platform sits flat on the table and the watches rotate above it, still connected but be somewhat disconnected. The huge upside to this would be that you could gear it to provide more speed or more torque. If you gear it for more torque, you could put a lot more watches on the horizontal shaft.

    I made a quick mock up using Powerpoint:

    Name:  Geared watch winder.jpg
Views: 340
Size:  37.2 KB

    I'll bet that in 2 or 3 years we will see all sorts of genius ideas for watch winders here...
    Last edited by Ticonderoga; May 6th, 2017 at 23:08.
    Wife: Don't you have enough watches?
    Me: Don't you have enough earrings?
    Wife: So, you're saying that watches are jewelry for Men?
    Me: That's exactly what I'm saying.
    Wife: Let's go shopping.

    And that's how I got my last watch...

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    OZ
    Posts
    191

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    If you get one with the usb style power adapter, you can use a spare phone plug to suit your native power points. Perhaps better than bending the pins or using a travel adapter.
    Name:  Capture.jpg
Views: 313
Size:  30.7 KB
    Ticonderoga and LEWIS57 like this.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    OZ
    Posts
    191

    Re: Show off your home-made watch winder

    I bought a base, and might get a diecast style display case like this:
    (ebay Australia link) Clear Acrylic/Plastic Display Box Case Dustproof Tray Protection Cube 2.8&#034;/7cm | eBay

    There are many sizes available.

    Name:  Capture.jpg
Views: 305
Size:  33.1 KB
    Ticonderoga likes this.

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3 LastLast

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

    Similar Threads

    1. Show off your home-made watch box
      By Ticonderoga in forum Books, Tools, Winders & other Watch Accessories
      Replies: 57
      Last Post: 1 Week Ago, 14:16
    2. Seiko/Citizen/Orient divers and home-made winder
      By dwat in forum Seiko & Citizen
      Replies: 8
      Last Post: October 19th, 2015, 14:20
    3. Home made winder; prototype 2
      By exomoons in forum Public Forum
      Replies: 4
      Last Post: July 10th, 2010, 15:41
    4. Home made winder; prototype 1
      By exomoons in forum Public Forum
      Replies: 22
      Last Post: July 9th, 2010, 12:56
    5. Which timer for home made watch winder?
      By SeikoAutomatic_01 in forum Affordable watches
      Replies: 4
      Last Post: December 24th, 2006, 16:04

    Tags for this Thread

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •