Review Of The Beco Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder
What Is A Watch Winder?
Automatic (or self-winding) watches operate by winding themselves using the natural movement of the wearer which in turn rotates or swings a weight inside the watch and this turns the winding mechanism of the watch. If the watch is not worn for an extended period of time, the watch no longer receives the movement it needs to wind itself and will eventually run down.
For this reason watch winders were developed to keep automatic watches running and wound when not worn. Typically watch winders can hold one or more watches and rotates the watches it holds to emulate the natural motion of being worn which is needed to operate the self-winding mechanism.
Orbita is currently the only company to produce watch winders for hand wound watches which are typically wound using the crown of the watch.
A watch winder cannot over wind an automatic watch as automatic watches are protected by a mechanism that disengages the winding process when the mainspring is fully wound. However, using a timer-based winder is still very important to prevent excessive wear on the winding mechanism by allowing the watch to run down a bit and so preventing the mainspring from being permanently fully wound.
Who Would Need A Watch Winder?
Many watch collectors or enthusiasts quickly realise that they have the problem of owning several pieces which they wear frequently, but not continuously. For these people (like myself) a winder is a great solution for keeping all the watches ready to wear when needed.
Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder
As an automatic watch enthusiast who travels a lot for work, I often find myself in need of a quality watch winder which is both affordable and practical.
Beco offers exactly this with its Boxy range of watch winder products and I had the opportunity to test some of their products during my last expedition which is centred around the Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder .
The Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder option I chose comes in a neatly packaged box containing the winder, a wall charger (with dome cover and a single watch pillow), cleaning cloth and manual.
The unit weighs just over 0.56kg and measures at 98mm x 110mm x 130mm which makes it relatively small and light for travel purposes.
Assembling a single winder is very straight forward and is as simple as plugging the unit into a power outlet using the supplied AC/DC adapter. Something to keep in mind is that every automatic watch movement has different requirements in terms of its turn direction and required turns per day, which if set incorrectly, will result in your watch running down inside the watch winder or being excessively wound. In order to find out the correct turns/direction for your watch movement, visit your brand website or a database as found here.
With this information you can now set the turns per day for the Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder by simple sliding the direction switch as well as the 4 toggle switches found underneath the winder into the correct sequence as outlined in the included manual. If however you are uncertain how many turns per day (TPD) your watch requires, begin with the most popular setting which is the bidirectional setting at 1150 TPD.
The Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder looks great and the solid colours feature a high gloss finish which although prone to finger prints, is very easily cleaned with the supplied cloth. As mentioned, each unit comes with a dome shaped closure for the winder which can optionally be used to enclose your automatic watch while it is housed in the watch winder.
Having set the Boxy Fancy Brick Winders to my required setting of 1150 turns a day, it translated into a single turn (bi-directional) every 75 seconds. At the time of wiritng this review, I’ve had two of the watch winders running almost continuously on both battery (more on this soon) and adapter power for over a month and have been very impressed with how it runs.
One of the main issues many users have with watch winders is its noise level when turning. During the last month I’ve often had the two Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winders positioned on nightstands next to the bed and the soft whirring noise of the turns was barely noticeable (although not non-existent), even when both were turning simultaneously.
The motor in this unit also runs very smoothly, so the turns as well as the starts and stops seem very fluid and comparable to very high end watch winders. Anyone who has seen a watch winder in action will probably know how easily one becomes mesmerized by the seemingly simple function it performs. Given the great looks of the Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder, it really is a pleasure to see your treasured watches spinning away under the domed windows.
Another key feature to the Boxy series of products is its modular design as it can be expanded as your collection grows. An example of this is the power extension capability of the Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder which allows power sharing of up to 3 watch winders on one adapter. Each watch winder has four concave connectors (covered by four plastic insulation covers when not In use) at the corners on top of the unit and four raised connectors at the bottom resembling four little feet. This allows the units to be slotted into each other by stacking them one on top the other which in turn conducts the current through all the connected winders.
Beco Technic Boxy Basis Small
In addition to the two winders, I also received the Beco Boxy Basis , which is a small power station containing eight concave connectors which can power up to six units by using the approach explained above (two towers of three each).
The Boxy Basis is powered by the same adapter which powers the individual units and in my case I was testing it using only two Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winders in a side by side configuration.
The unit worked as expected and its design matches the quality of the winders using the same high gloss finish as well as a felt covered base. In terms of dimensions and weight it weighs roughly 300 gramms and has quite a small size at 202mm x 110mm x 24mm making its overall profile a decent size which wont take up to much size on a desk, nightstand or even inside a safe.
Beco Technic Battery Care Pack
The Beco Technic Battery Care Pack is a great addition to the Boxy series and proved to be a great extra during my travels.
The battery pack runs on four D type alkaline batteries which are relatively inexpensive and easily obtainable in most supermarkets and the pack weighs a mere 150 grams when empty.
So why do I love the Beco Technic Battery Care Pack so much?
In this last trip alone it proved to be indispensable in the hotels and on the boats I was stating. I could actually put the winders in a locked safe or locked hard case and still have it running without having to give its (and my prized watches) presence away with tell-tale wires protruding from these locations and running up to a plugged in adapter.
Battery life is dependent on the quality of the D type batteries you choose to use and with a major brand *cough*energizer*cough*, after a total of roughly 10 continuous days on battery powering two units, it was still running.
Generally speaking, watch winders can be divided into three broad categories – functional, elegant and extravagant.
The Boxy range falls into the functional category while still delivering the performance equivalent to those found in higher cost units. At 120 EUR for the Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder, it is definitely a viable option for someone investing in their first one or two watch winders with the possibility of expanding later. The extras also do not cost that much with the Beco Technic Boxy Basis options varying between 24 EUR for the six watch base and 29 EUR for the 12 watch base.
An added bonus is that Beco offers a whole range of extras made specifically for their products which makes the longterm prospect of investing in their range very appealing as well.
Given its size, cost and quality I feel that the Boxy Fancy Brick Watch Winder is a great option for both home use and travel. At home it looks good enough to display your treasured automatic watches in and even more so in the optional extra storage and house
cases (all powered) for this and other Beco units. For travel I found that a maximum of two units worked well as more could potentially be a bit bulky in your bags.
After several weeks of use I can definitely recommend the Beco Boxy range of Fancy Brick Watch Winders and accessories. In fact, I am already looking at getting another two to add to the current set I’m using…
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