How To Shorten Watch Band
Do you want to learn how to shorten a watch band? There are generally two types of watch bands: straps and bracelets. Unless one has to add another hole, straps are pretty self-explanatory, so we will concentrate on bracelets. There are two procedures by which you can shorten your watch band; one is for when it needs to be shortened a lot and one for when it needs to be shortened a little. To shorten the bracelet a lot, you will have to remove a link; to micro adjust the bracelet, you will adjust the clasp. We will discuss both methods here.
Tools which may be needed to shorten your watch band:
- Watch makers screw drivers
- Pin punches
- Small hammer
- Spring bar tool
- Bracelet holder
- Polishing cloth
Method to remove a link:
- Determine how many links need removing. You can generally tell by putting on the watch how many links will need to be removed, if any. Pinch the bracelet together and count the inks that need to be removed. If it does not pinch a link or two, you may not need to remove a link. If that is the case, move on to micro adjustment. Remove one link at a time and remove multiple links from opposite sides of the case to help keep the watch balanced on the wrist.
- Determine tools needed. Here you need to find out if you need the screw drivers or pin punches and hammer. If there are little arrows on the underside of the links, you have pins and will use the punches; if there are not, check both ends of the link hole closely. If there are screw threads, then you should have screws and need the screw drivers. Some watches use two-piece screws and will have slots on both ends. These will need two screwdrivers, which fit perfectly to keep from wrecking screw ends.
- Place bracelet in holder. If you have pins, place the bracelet in the bracelet holder with the arrows pointed downward. This shows the correct way to remove the pin.
- Remove link. Use the screw driver to remove the screws if it has them. If not, use the pin puncher and hammer to gently tap out the pins on both sides of the link. Put the link and one pin aside or screw together and store for future use.
- Put bracelet back together. Using one of the screws or pins, put the bracelet back together. If it has pins, you will want to flip the bracelet in the bracelet holder so the arrows point upwards. Use the hammer to gently tap in pin.
- Check bracelet. Put on the bracelet and look closely at the fit. If it is close to fitting, you may move on to micro adjustments; if it needs another link removed, go back and repeat this procedure.
Procedure to micro adjust:
- Inspect the clasp. Lay the watch on its side and look closely at it. Along the edge of the clasp on both sides, there will be a series of holes. These will be where you adjust it. In two ends of the clasp are pins. They are spring loaded pins called spring bars and they hold the clasp to the bracelet.
- Move the first spring bar side. Using the spring bar tool press on the end of the pin which has the folding butterfly, not the bracelet end. Be careful here as the pin is spring loaded and will fly away without care. Push the pin end down and move it slowly to the next hole. Move it only one hole at a time so it does not pinch or bind when you try to move the other side.
- Move second side of pin. Turn the watch over and use the pin punch to compress the second side of the pin and move it to the hole that corresponds with the other side.
- Try on bracelet. Try on the bracelet and check for fit. If it needs more adjustment, repeat this procedure over.
- Polish off fingerprints. Use the polishing cloth and clean off any fingerprints or dust you got on the watch.
There, you have successfully shortened your watch band. Enjoy it.