During our annual visits to Orbita at the various watch and jewelry trade shows, we always see an impressive collection of new and existing winders of all sizes, holding anywhere from a single watch to as many as 48. And of course, the vast majority of these Orbita watch winders — and most other watch winders — are equipped to supply power to automatic (that is, self-winding) watches by rotating them at regular intervals so the rotors in the watches’ movements can continually supply energy to their mainsprings. But what about watches that don’t have rotors… and whose mainspring can only be wound via the watch’s crown?
Fortunately, thanks to Orbita’s cleverly engineered Sempre model, owners of manual-wind timepieces have a winder made specifically for their needs. The Orbita Sempre is, according to the company, the only such winder on the market. It is intended to wind, without ever overwinding, virtually any manually wound mechanical watch. How this Orbita watch winder accomplishes this feat is with a system of precision collets (basically, mechanical fingers) that grasp the watch’s crown and replicate the action of finger winding. As it does so, an ingenious microprocessor control senses the increasing resistance as the mainspring is being wound and automatically stops winding when the watch approaches the fully wound state. The Orbita Sempre is in a single ($2,995) or double ($4,995) model, in either burl or black leather finish. Collectors with weary fingers from the daily ritual of keeping their watches running perpetually might wish to give these a look.
This article was originally published in 2012 and has been updated.
My Rolex Daytona Chronograph cost me $864 in 1983 brand new. The first time I sent it in for service (clean, pressure test, etc) it cost $600. Today it is going to cost nearly $1,000 (estimated by Rolex). I paid $3,500 for my Omega Speedmaster, “Moonwatch”. I love winding a watch manually, and I have since I was given a $9.99 Timex when I was 12 years old. However, arthritis is beginning to set in and I find it difficult to manipulate the winder. I could sure use something like this, but it appears I will have to search for a tool which will latch onto the winder knobs, which I can operate like a screwdriver or ratchet. Maybe one of my progeny will be able to afford this in some future era.
Are there any other winders that are cheaper than this. This product is out of my price range & I do not wear my manual watch every day but it would be nice for it to be ready when i need it.
While fascinating and I certainly do have two manual wind watches, the price would pay for nearly 1/3 of one of them. Unless its a perpetual I say let it wind down. But when it nears a more reasonable (5-700 single) who knows…
Defeats the fun daily ritual of winding them yourself!