How to regulate the watchstrap

What a pleasure having a watch of great value and wearing it!

Let secure it to our wrist with its leather strap or metal bracelet. Do not tighten it too much, to avoid circulatory problems, but, at the same time, do not loosen it too much, to avoid damages. The looser the watch is the higher the risk of unexpected knocks, and moreover, every jolt is a stress for the correct harmonic motion of the balance wheel, with a negative influence on precision.


Furthermore, in case of metal bracelet, the excessive movement causes continuous twisting and pulls, which loosen the links and wear the spring bars out, reducing significantly even the life of the best bracelet.


As for the leather straps, we would like to highlight the value of the folding clasps, which can be easily applied also to normal straps and have the quality of reducing the typical wear of the normal  buckle, increasing safety and ease of use. The high initial cost of the folding clasp is easily sunk thanks to the lesser wear of this type of strap, because remind that two little rectangles of leather, even if valuable, cost like an excellent pair of shoes…

How to regulate the watchstrap
Rolex Oyster Datejust

How to regulate

When buying a watch, make sure that you have choose the correct size, but sometimes the wacth can be wider or narrower, or that it simply was not possible to choose the adjustment. So let’s see how to adjust the metal strap.

  • Wide strap: test the watch and count the links of the strap to be removed. Remember that the links must be removed from both sides, in order to avoid imbalances.

Make sure you have a plastic-headed pin and pliers: they will be used to extract the bars that hold the links together.

  1.  Take out the bar that holds the last link and the closing buckle together, also helping you with the needle. With the pliers you can extract it from the opposite side. Perform the same procedure on the other side.
  2.  Remove the bars of the links you wish to remove, both from one side and the other: once finished, you can reassemble the closing buckle by performing the same procedure in reverse.
  3.  Try the watch: in case it is still wide or too narrow, you can proceed with the removal or addition of the excess links.


  • Narrow strap: although it’is very rare, in this case it is advisable to go directly to your trusted watchmaker to add steel links. Alternatively, you can buy the links directly from the watchmaking house and choose whether to proceed “do it yourself” or with the help of a professional.


Adjusting the strap of your watch is a seemingly simple process, but it’s important not to improvise watchmakers and use unsuitable tools: it’s also essential to evaluate the value of your watch before you get there.

In the case of a low-value watch, you could make the change directly at home, while if you have a very expensive model, our advice is to contact a professional or our service center.


Alternatively, if you need to change the width of your watch often, you could opt for an adjustable strap timepiece, such as the Rolex Air-King: its Oystersteel steel solid link Oyster bracelet has the Easylink quick extension link, tool that allows you to easily adjust the length of the bracelet by about 5 mm, for greater comfort in all circumstances.

How to regulate the watchstrap
Rolex Oyster AirKing
Tags: Watch Care