How to change a watch strap?
Not many people know this, but the beauty of watches is that you can do very little to make an old watch look new. For example, changing the watches original strap. And that is today’s topic of this discussion as you can see from the title.
Today, we will take a look at the process of changing the original black Milanese strap to this NATO strap from DAISO. Take note that this is my first time changing a watch strap by myself, therefore DAISO strap is enough for now. Once the experiment is successful, then I can try other brands of better quality NATO strap in the future. If you ready, then let’s get started.
STEP 1: REMOVING ORIGINAL MILANESE STRAP
Firstly, use a small screwdriver or any small pick that you can find. Then, locate where the spring bar of the watch straps are. Next, use the small pick to press down or inwards, removing it from its position in the lugs. Finally, remove the spring bar and strap, careful not to lose the spring bar. (*You will need this spring bar later)
STEP 2: REPEAT STEP 1 FOR THE OTHER SIDE
Also, repeat the same steps for the other side as well, carefully removing the spring bar and strap together. This does take a while because the spring bar is really small, with only a width of 20mm and less. (*Key is to patiently remove the spring bar and strap)
STEP 3: INSERT THE SPRING BAR
Now at this point, you already have two spring bars, one for each side of the strap. Therefore, depending on the strap you want to change, step 3 may look different. As this is a NATO strap and it is a continuous strap, insert back the spring bar to the lugs. With your fingers, press both sides of the spring bar.
Then, insert the spring bar on one end. Then, use the other hand and take the small pick and press down on the end with your other hand. Once both sides of the spring bar sit nicely in between the holes of the lugs, then repeat for the other side.
STEP 4: INSERT THE NATO STRAP
For this step, it is really simple. First of all, remove the short side of the strap with the keeper away from the longer side of the strap. Next, insert firstly the long end under the first lug and over the second lug. Finally, slide the short side of the strap through to the long end and tighten accordingly.
That is all for the steps to change the watch strap from Milanese to NATO strap. The beauty of NATO is that you do not need extra spring bars like changing another leather, rubber or Milanese and etc. Here is the final result of the comparison between the two straps, before and after.
I also changed the original leather strap of this watch with another leather embossed strap which was surprisingly very easy to do as well. This is the result before and after.