Review of the Wilon WL938 Watch

Updated on March 20, 2017
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Walter Shillington is an avid collector of mechanical watches. His reviews focus on inexpensive but often intriguing Chinese timepieces.

Front view of Wilon
Front view of Wilon | Source

Description

I purchased the Wilon WL938 from Wish. Including shipping, this item was priced at eleven dollars in US funds.

The timepiece was delivered by the specified date. Unlike others I have purchased, it arrived pre-set to the correct time. I was quite enthusiastic about their personalized service until I realized the manufacturer was based exactly twelve time zones away.

This watch is quartz controlled. Metal rings rotate beneath the dial, presumably consuming greater power than required by a set of hands. After five months of use, however, it is still going strong. Battery life might not be a concern.

Wilon markets the WL938 as a unisex watch suitable for the 15 to 65 age group but I suspect women will consider it overly drab. On the other hand, some men will appreciate its stark, businesslike appearance.

This timepiece is styled in a manner reminiscent of the old jump watches. The retro-look is further enhanced by its narrow stainless steel band.

The Wilon WL938 can be purchased with either a black or a white dial. Mine is black. A small plate, bearing indications to mark the seconds, rotates within the center. You can’t actually keep track of the seconds but in my opinion, those that require this function are far too busy for their own good.

On the right side of the dial, cut-outs allow a view of two rotating rings which display the minutes and hours. I’m old and my eyesight isn’t what it used to be. I can read the hours easily enough but, in low light, I find it difficult to decipher the minute display. While a backlight would alleviate my problem, this timepiece’s price point does not allow such frivolities.

The movement is Japanese and manufactured by Miyota. The crown snaps in and out with a distinctive click and rotates without sloppiness. It has kept time accurately over the last five months.

The band is composed of stainless steel. It is shorter than normal so men with large wrists might not be able to adjust it to fit. My measurements indicate a width of 15.5mm which is also narrower than typical. The links are secured by nonstandard pins. When I resized the watch, I found the pins easy to remove. Reinsertion proved problematic due to the flimsiness of the individual links. While I don’t particularly like this band, it is superior to most wristbands coupled to watches in this price category.

If you are more interested in a conventionally designed timepiece, take a look at my review of the North N-6009 sports watch.

Wilon face
Wilon face | Source
Movement
Movement | Source
Stainless steel watchband
Stainless steel watchband | Source

Test Procedures

The Wilon was subjected to minimal testing. The timepiece was scrutinized for flaws, resized and worn for two weeks. Then it was stored away and checked periodically in an attempt to gauge battery life.

Accuracy and water resistance tests were omitted. The Wilon is quartz controlled, guaranteeing accuracy, and the company does not claim this watch to be waterproof.

I do not conduct shock tests. Twice I have dropped my expensive Seiko diver’s watch; once onto the metal deck of a destroyer and once onto the tiled floor inside Toronto Airport. In each case the second hand fell off, requiring servicing. If a relatively robust diver’s watch cannot survive a three foot fall onto a hard service, it is unlikely an inexpensive Chinese watch will fare better.

The Manufacturer

You might have noticed that the Wilon WL-938 and the Paidu Q0930 are essentially the same. This is not a case of two Master Watchmakers designing identical timepieces simultaneously.

Wilon is a brand name owned by a marketing company which, unfortunately, I have been unable to identify. One of their representatives browsed through catalogues of watches offered by various watch factories in China. He felt this particular timepiece to be a good fit and ordered a shipment, asking that the factory brand the watch as Wilon.

The purchasing agent from Paidu, also admiring this watch, followed the same procedure. It is worth noting that Paidu sells a wide variety of jump-style watches. You might be interested in checking out their alternate styles on either EBay or DHGate.

Specifications

Brand: Wilon (Paidu Q0930 is similar)

Condition: New, sealed in plastic bag. No box or tag.

Part/Model number: WL-938

Model year: 2010 to present

Place of origin: China

Movement: Miyota

Battery: SR6268W

Style: Fashion

Features: Rotating inner plate

Functions: Time of day but does not display seconds

Band material: Stainless steel

Band width: 15.5mm

Dial color: Black (White is available)

Dial window material type: Hardex

Case material: Stainless steel

Case diameter: 3.7cm

Case thickness: 9mm

Weight: 67 grams (2.37 Oz) with two links removed

Water resistance: 3 ATM (Basically this unit is splash resistant)

Visual Appeal

The main selling point of any watch is its dial. In this case the dial is painted black, its huge expanse broken only by the rotating center plate, the brand name, and two display windows. After five minutes of use, the coolness of its design faded into boredom. Wilon made use of a stainless steel case and band in an attempt to relieve the tedium but most men will quickly become jaded with this timepiece.

Side view of Wilon WL938
Side view of Wilon WL938 | Source

Durability

I am impressed by the quality of this watch’s movement which, along with the metal case and stainless steel band, insures a longer than normal lifespan for a timepiece in this price range.

Overall Impression

The Wilon WL-938 is a well built and distinctive—if not particularly attractive—watch. In limited light it is difficult to ascertain the time but, if you appreciate the design, this timepiece is worth consideration.

The type and style of a watchband often determines what timepiece a customer ultimately decides to purchase. I prefer leather, but can be distracted by shiny stainless steel or a metal band plated with gold. One of these days I might every try one of those newfangled ceramic watchbands.

When it comes to watches priced under fifteen dollars, the choices are stark. Normally you choose a band that looks good or one that is durable. Almost never can you find both. Please fill in the following survey. Its purpose is to identify the type of band that customers are most likely to avoid.

Watchband Preference

Which type of watchband is most likely to deter you from purchasing an inexpensive watch?

See results

Questions & Answers

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