As we’ve mentioned before, the strap of a watch is one of the most important parts of a timepiece. And, due to the fact that it is the most exposed part, it can be easily damaged. So, what to do if you need a watch strap replacement? In this article we’ll try to answer that question for you.
How can I get a watch strap replacement?
Watch strap replacements can be easily found online through e-commerce retails such as Amazon or Ali-express. Some brick and mortar stores also sell watch straps so, with some luck, you won’t have to order one online. However, before purchasing a new strap, there are a few things you should look out for:
1. Does your watch allows for custom strap replacements?
Some watch companies – Swatch immediately comes to mind - have some particular ways to set up lugs and, in turn, make it impossible for any generic strap to fit in. They require proprietary straps, which can be a bit more difficult to find, as well as a bit more expensive. Nevertheless, if your strap is damaged, it might be worth considering finding a new one.
However, these are rather exceptions, and nowadays most watch makers employ a traditional style based on spring bars, which allows you to easily swap between straps using a spring bar tool.
In the case of a bracelet, it will always be best to check if you can find a manufacturer that makes a bracelet specifically for your watch model. This way, the fit will be much more precise, and you’ll end up enjoying more the overall experience.
You can also buy straps directly from a watch company. These will also make a good, almost perfect fit, whilst also keeping up the custom signature in the buckle, which you might prefer in some cases.
So, on to the next step!
2. Find out the width of your watch:
In order for your watch strap to fit, you’ll need to know what size better fits your watch. Check out the section of “band witdth” in the specs of your timepiece. For example, Pontvs watches like the Mictlan, Veneto use 22mm straps, while the Hydra uses 24mm.
Usually, straps and watches use even numbered mm width, although in some cases watches come in uneven sizes. For example, Seiko 5’s and some Orient Bambino models come in 19mm and 21mm band width respectively. Finding watch strap replacements for these is a bit more tricky, although with some patience you’ll eventually run into a retailer that makes straps for those sizes.
Obviously, you can use a smaller strap on a bigger watch and it will fit, although it will be a bit more loose. This might end up not being to your liking, so better try to match the width.
3. Picking up the style.
We’ve covered watch strap styles in depth in a different post. However, when shopping for a watch strap replacement, is always good to keep in mind what kind of style your timepiece has, and what situations you are expecting to carry your watch in. For example, you shouldn’t put a colorful NATO nylon strap on a classy dress watch, as it would look out of place. For dress pieces, keep it within leather and steel bracelet, but feel free to explore and try out new colors for a sports / casual wear watch.
General Advice when purchasing a Watch strap replacement
With these steps, you are ready to purchase! Remember this little recommendation:
Always read reviews! Due to the high number of companies making and selling straps online, and the fact that you can't see the actual product when purchasing online, it is best to always check what other consumers say about the product you are purchasing.
While you can buy a regular replacement to make your watch look the same, a new strap can completely change the look and feel of your timepiece, so feel free to try new colors and styles.