How To Make The Metal Links For A Wristwatch Shorter
How to make the metal links for a watch band shorter? Well, technically you cannot make the links shorter, they are the size they are. What you can do however, is make a metal link watch band shorter, by removing links, if they can be removed. It is not a hard task to perform, it just takes a few tools and patience. There are three methods which most watch companies use to hold the metal links together. They can be screwed, these will have either one screw head or two depending if the maker used one piece or two piece screws. They can be pinned, which will be distinguished by little arrows on the back of the removable links. This arrow is the direction in which the pin is removed. Or, they can be held together with a sleeve or captured clip retaining system. This article will address all three.
The tools needed make a metal links watch band shorter.
- Bracelet holder
- Pin punch
- Screw drivers
- Plastic pusher
- Determine the attachment type. Carefully examine the band to determine how it is held together. With screws you will see screw heads, or threads in the holes in the end of the links. You will see one screw head for one piece screws, and two screw heads for two piece screws. With pins you will usually see small arrows on the back of the links. The sleeve system will usually take a bit of looking, but you will see how a sleeve or clasp type piece of metal is holding the two links together, they will usually have a small lip to use the pusher against.
- Select correct tools. Select the correct tools to take apart the links. For screws you will need the screw driver which fits the head perfectly. If they use two piece screws you will need two of them. For pins you will want a pin pusher which is smaller, or the same size as the smallest side of the pin, and a small hammer. For the sleeve system you will want a pusher. A thin long plastic pusher with a small lip to catch on the sleeve works well. Plastic works well because it will not scratch the link.
- Position watch in bracelet holder. If you are removing pins position the watch in the bracelet holder with the arrows on the back pointed downwards. This is the correct direction to remove the pins.
- Remove link. Using the correct tool remove the pins from both sides of the link to be removed. Take great care not to scratch or damage the link. Put one of the pins, screws, or clips back on the removed link, and put it in a safe place in case it is ever needed in the future.
- Reattach bracelet ends. Using the second screw, pin, or sleeve put the two free ends of the band back together. If using pins you will want to flip the bracelet in the bracelet holder so that the arrows now point upwards. Pins are inserted against the arrows. Push the pin in with your fingers and then tap with the hammer gently until it is flush. If using screws take great care not to cross thread the screws. If you feel unusual pressure, back it out and try again slowly.
- Try on watch. Try on the watch, see if it fits now. If not right, repeat the procedure. If you are removing multiple links try and pay close attention to how they should come off to keep the watch head centered on the wrist. This is why removing one at a time is best, because you will usually want to remove a second from the other side of the clasp.
You have successfully shortened a metal links watch band. Congratulations, do not forget to wipe it down with a soft cloth now to remove all the fingerprints from your fine watch. Wear and enjoy it now.