This week, we take a look at the Wolf watch winder – a high-end watch winder that promises to keep your automatic watches ready for action.
Wolf Watch Winder Review
This particular watch winder is co-branded with Watches of Switzerland (the parent company of Goldsmiths jewellers, amongst others) and is functionally identical to the Wolf Cub winder which retails for £239. It’s not a cheap winding option, but how does it compare to my watch winders of choice, the Barrington watch winder – of which I own two?
Are Wolf Watch Winders Worth The Money?
The Wolf watch winder costs £50 more than the Barrington watch winder and has a canvas-and “vegan leather” finish, rather than the piano gloss of its competitor. It has only a single winding option (versus the Barrington’s five) and also lacks the useful daisy-chaining feature that makes the Barrington stand out. Personally, I think the build quality is comparable between the two watch winders – notwithstanding the obvious differences in construction. I am not sure if “vegan leather” is just a euphemism for the standard plastic leather, but it feels good and looks good so no issues there.
The Wolf watch winder is quiet in operation, turning 900 times per day over two directions. I am not sure whether there is really any value in being able to change the frequency of rotation, but I missed the feature from my Barringtons. A light indicates when the winder is working – this is useful as it does not constantly rotate so it is not always obvious that it is powered on.
Will a watch winder damage my watch?
Unless you have a very accurate watch, all automatics will lose or gain time, and so a watch winder is not a grab and go solution comparable to just having a decent quartz in your watch box. However, there are some use cases where a winder makes absolute sense: moon phases or annual calendars are a pain to set up, and having them at more or less the right time is an easier adjustment than setting them up from a standing start. Some say a winder will cause excessive wear to your watch, but there would be little difference if you wore it every day. Others say not using a winder will make the watch eventually risk seizure as the oils dry. Neither of these arguments seems particularly compelling to me: you can decide for yourself.
Are Wolf Watch Winders better than Barrington?
I’ve got two Barrington watch winders, and I believe they are worth the price difference from cheap Amazon watch winders. £169 is a lot to spend on a single watch winder, but the Wolf winder costs even more and has fewer features. The higher-end Wolf watch winder models offer a better specification, but are even more costly. As a freebie thrown in with a luxury watch purchase the Wolf Watch Winder is pretty good, but I would not pay full price for the basic model.