One should always have two watches. Aside from style options, one needs two watches in case on of them stops.
As I head in on another Monday morning, I'm thinking about the minimum amount of work I will have today.
I will process at least 25 new repairs today. We have been averaging thirty transactions a day lately which is a lot of people considering our primary business is changing batteries.
That's thirty people a day. Every day.
We are the constant business that no one knows about. It's insane.
Wrist funk. It is the matter, created by sweat, dirt, lotion, self tanner, ointments of various names and anything else a person may put on their arms, that builds up on watches.
Everything we wear gets dirty. That's common knowledge. As a result we clean ourselves and our clothing regularly.
While we can't imagine wearing the same undergarment or socks every day without cleaning them, we wear the same watch every day without cleaning it. And neither steel nor leather breathes like cotton.
I'm no scientist. I can't tell you exact what the body's excretions to do leather and/or stainless steel bands. But I can tell you that the result of whatever happens is funk.
Particles of dirt build up on the under side of the watch to become patches of grime. The patches of grime layer up soon created a crush that lines the back of the watch, the corners of the lugs and the band. Eventually this grime begins to eat away at the watch.
Stainless steel is more durable but for parts like the buckle that are a alloy, the grime can cause the part to turn black or green.
For watches that are not stainless steel, this erosion can happen to the entire watch.
Wrist funk is real.
Fight wrist funk by keeping your watch clean. Get a toothbrush and brush your watch daily. This will eliminate the particles of dirt and stop the grime from building up.
NOTE: Make sure your watch is watch resistant. If it is not or it has been compromised, do not get any liquid near the back of the watch. It'll ruin your movement.
NOTE 2: Even if the watch is water resistant do not submerge the watch in the cleaner. Just dip the toothbrush and clean the watch.
If you have a leather or skin band, wipe it down daily and change it once the funk becomes resistant to cleaning.
Take your watch in at least once a year for a professional clean and polish.
If nothing else, make sure you get a clean and polish with every battery change.
Watch funk is real. If you are a watch wearer, there is a good chance you are wearing months and months of funk daily.
Don't be a funky watch wearer. Keep your watch and more importantly, your wrist clean.
"I need a new battery."
That is the statement that opens 80 percent of my exchanges at the counter. Most of the time the watch has stopped. And the owner of the watch has assumed it has stopped because of the battery. And in some cases, the customer is correct. But there are other reasons a watch can stop.
There is a part that sits under the battery that sends the energy to the movement. This is the circuit. If this part goes bad - meaning unable to send the charge from the cell to the movement - the watch will stop.
A watch movement is comprised of many parts. Well over 40 in an average quartz movement. Many more in an automatic. Many of these parts are moving parts. Most of these moving parts are metal gears which require oil. When these oils break down the debris builds up inside the watch since the watch has no exit for it. This debris buildup will slow the watch and eventually stop the watch. This buildup happens to every single watch at some point in time.
As I said there are many parts to a watch movement. As a result of extended use or trauma to the watch like a drop or heavy hit, parts can loosen. Because the watch movement is a system of parts working together, it only takes one loose part to disrupt the function of a watch.
These are just a few basic reason why a watch can stop moving.
If you ever want to know just how much sweat and dirt and grime can build up around your wrist get a watch with a white band. Whether leather, plastic, stainless wrapped in rubber or some other treat alloy, a white watch is guaranteed to make you feel gross.
Ideally, white watches are cool. They are a nice change from the gold and silver looking watches. White is fashionable. And a white watch can really tie an outfit together.
However, the white band begins to show signs of wear immediately. The first time it comes in contact with dirt or sweat, it'll show. It'll absorb color from your clothes. And because the white color is plated onto some other material, all bumps and dings mean immediate discoloration.
Stainless steel bands can be cleaned. White bands cannot. The band tends to absorb the color from the cleaning agents. While there really is no good way to clean any leather band, dark leather bands mask the wear. White bands do not. Like the white link bands, the white leather band shows all signs of wear almost immediately. It only looks great once and that's before you wear it.
Do yourself a solid and stay away from white watches.
Every one of us is bound by time. Our lives are measured by years; planned by days; appointments made by the minute. While the machine may differ almost all of us have some type of chronometer in our homes, offices, automobiles and on our person. For many, that chronometer is a watch. And when that watch fails to keep time, the owner comes to see me.
Outside of the need, for many, the watch serves as the primary accessory. Oddly enough, even the one fashion-over-function type like for their jewelry to work. So, when it doesn't, they come to see me.
There is an old saying, "8 to 80 blind, cripple and crazy" and literally, that is the watch repair customer base. From kids' watches to talking watches for the vision impaired, I have fixed them all. I believe the only people with a more diverse customer base than watch repair are selling toilet paper or food.
Oddly enough, the average customer thinks of our business as being absolutely small. Customers call about repairs without even identifying themselves.
We average about 30 transactions a day. These are transactions that involve money. The complimentary sizings done for the store average about 10 a day. So we see on average about 40 people a day. Does that number surprise you?
After six years, it still surprises me.