(Manton @ April 07 2005,09:39) I have an old automatic watch, given to me by my father, which I hardly ever wear. I let it sit in a nice hiding place. But dad is always on my case to get one of those automatic winder boxes. He says that just letting the watch sit is somehow "bad" for the movement. Should I feel guilty about this, or is he ... off base?
I don't know, I have a couple of automatic watches I hardly ever wear, and I have heard that it is bad for them to sit, but I can't figure out why, and when I do put them on and fire them up, they are just fine.
From an engineering standpoint, it's always considered bad to let moving parts of any machine to sit still for a long time after it has been used in the past. The general theory, I think, is that no matter how self-contained these mechanical parts may be, there's always a buildup of debris, dust, and other undesired particles that could potentially interfere with moving parts. While when parts are constantly moving, these miniscule particles don't present trouble, once they are stopped, they tend to settle in the areas that would block the re-starting of these same parts, sort of like putting a door stop on the moving parts. Obviously, this is not worrysome on the scale of moths in the closet, but when possible, it is preferred to keep the moving parts moving on a regular basis. This not only applies to watches, but to all other mechanical parts. Being a computer geek, I know that it is generally considered a superbly bad idea to not use hard drives for a long time, as the same logic applies.