In this blog space, we normally look at interesting watches or take a deep dive at some of the intricacies of different watches.

This week, we’re going to keep it simple. We’re going to talk about the proper way to set wind and set a Rolex watch, with some helpful step-by-step instructions.

To start the process, first remove the watch from your wrist.

Do not wear your watch while you wind and set it. If you leave your watch on, you risk winding your watch at an awkward angle and you could damage the crown.

1. Unscrew the crown.

The first step in setting and winding a Rolex is to unscrew the crown. With the watch dial facing you, turn the crown counterclockwise, or towards you, to unscrew the crown.

When completely unscrewed, you will feel the crown pop into the winding position.

2. Wind the watch.

Once the crown is unscrewed, you are now ready to wind the watch. A Rolex is automatic and is designed to self-wind using the motions of the wearer.

If the watch has been sitting for a few days  it will eventually stop running.

Once the crown is unscrewed, you can begin winding the Rolex. Turn the crown clockwise, or forward, and you will feel a slight tension as the gears engage the mainspring.

Continue to turn the crown approximately 40 times to start the watch. 

3. Set the date.

Most newer Rolex watches have three positions for the crown, each designated for a different winding/setting function.

The first position is for manually winding your watch and is where the crown is just unscrewed. Pull the crown again to the second position to quick-set the date. Turn the crown clockwise until you reach the correct date.

Turn the crown counter clockwise to quick set the date

4. Set your watch at A.M. or P.M.

To set your watch’s time, simply pull the crown out to the furthest position from the watch base.

When the crown is in this last position, the second hand stops to help you accurately set the time.

To determine if the time is set to A.M. or P.M., turn the hands clockwise until you see the date starting to change. This signals that you are nearing midnight and your watch is set for P.M.

Gently turn the hands clockwise until you set the correct time.

If you overshoot your desired time, do not turn the hands backwards. Turning the hands back will force and damage the watch’s movement.

Instead, you will have to continue winding forward until you come back around to the correct time again.

Set the time by turning the hands clockwise

5. Push the crown back in and screw down tight.

Press the crown back into its “zero” position near the base of the watch. Then screw the crown down clockwise (away from you) to ensure it is snug and water-tight.

Push the crown back in and screw it down tight turning it clockwise

CHARLEY PHOTO OF THE WEEK: Sunday afternoons are for naps. Here, Charley catches up on some sleep and on some podcasts she missed throughout the week.