When you want to replace new strap for your watch, the first thing to do is to purchase proper spring bar tool. There is a lot of different types and quality levels in watch tools. Cheapest and poorest ones are commonly made in China. It is commonly known that Swiss made high quality tools are more expensive, but they will last longer and working process is much easier with well-made tools. If you are just beginner watch hobbiest, you can start working with chinese tools if you keep mind that they will break easily and it will take more time and effort to do anything with those kind of tools.
Changing strap for your watch is pretty easy job. Strap change can be completed in less than 10 minutes for a beginner and 2-3 minutes for someone with more experience. Choose your work area carefully so there is enough space for watch and protect glass side for example with towel. You should work from the back side of your watch. This ensure that if your tool accidentally slips, it will not scratch visible side of your precious watch.
In this post we will use famous swiss made manufacturer Bergeon´s watch tools.
Changing strap process:
From the back side of your watch, insert the forked end of Bergeon spring bar tool in between the strap and the watch lug. The spring bar has a ridge that the tool will grab, allowing it to compress.
Gently apply pressure inwards and towards the strap (away from the watch) to depress the spring bar. At the same time, apply some downward pressure so the bar will popout. If you press to hard/fast, the tool may slip and damage your strap or scratch your watch.
Repeat on the other side, and you are all done! Remove the spring bars from the old strap. It is recommended to replace old spring bars with new ones.
There are different types of spring bars available. The differences can be found in end styles of bar and thicknesses. Most common types are double flange and single flange. Old watches might have some other types also. Normally spring bar diameter is 1,5mm, but if watch is heavy, it is recommended to use diameter of 1,8mm. Thicker spring bar is more durable and longlasting.
Adjusting metal strap length:
When you need to adjust the length of your metal watch band by removing links, you should first measure diameter of your wrist to ensure how many links you need to remove. Once you know how many links you need to remove, you need to decide how many links you are removing from each side of the band. Remember that anytime you are removing more than one link, you should split the total to be removed between both sides of the clasp so you can keep it center of your wrist.
Next you will have to check and be sure which side of the watch band you want to start removing links. When you have decided where you want to remove link, examine the back of the watch strap. You should see several small arrows that show which way the pins need to be pushed out of the band. Sometimes there are not arrows showing push direction as here our bracelet in following pictures.
Now, when you know which link(s) has to be removed, use your bracelet pin remover tool to push pin away located in link you are removing. Every link is attached with two pins, which have to removed when shorten bracelet. We are using in this post swiss made Bergeon 7230 tool, which can be found in our webstore.
Now when you have removed whole link from metal strap and strap is now seperated for two parts, you need to install strap (joint) back together with pin by reverse method. Now you have removed link and assembled strap back to one piece and strap is shortened. Well done!
See step by step instruction from the photos below the see how work is done. If you liked the tools shown in this post, you can find them and many more items in our webstore: www.timemachine.fi/en