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Discussion Starter #1
Just went to change out a fairly new two-piece Zulu and this happened.

I would have thought that all springbars are pretty much the same. Not true?


IMG_9843.JPG
 

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Looks like the tube ends weren't crimped enough.

Yes, like everything else mechanical, there are good ones and cheap ones, as well as thicker ones. Common diameters are 1.5, 1.8, and 2.0mm.

I keep an assortment of widths in double flanged pins, in both 1.5 and 1.8mm diameters. Otto Frei has several nice assortments, as do Cas-Ker and Esslinger.
 

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I've always used the Omega OEM ones from Ofrei (I use these on every watch I own). If you buy em by the dozen they're pretty cheap and you gotta think... the entire value of your watch hinges on the strength of the springbars, the cost difference between good ones and crappy ones is about $3
 

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I've had some experience with the crappy ones.
Rusted solid, pia to get them out.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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There's definitely a difference, the same way there's a difference between cheap and expensive tools.
 

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I've always used the Omega OEM ones from Ofrei (I use these on every watch I own). If you buy em by the dozen they're pretty cheap and you gotta think... the entire value of your watch hinges on the strength of the springbars, the cost difference between good ones and crappy ones is about $3
Omega makes the very best spring bars, bar none. Pun intended.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Another argument for NATO/Zulu straps. At least you have backup if one springbar fails.
 

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Is there any advantage with just going with the thicker (1.8 vs 1.5) springbars assuming they fit through the strap/bracelet, or should you always replace like for like. This question is based on my (naive?) assumption the diameter is that of the tube and that the diameters of the pins are the same.
 

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Is there any advantage with just going with the thicker (1.8 vs 1.5) springbars assuming they fit through the strap/bracelet, or should you always replace like for like. This question is based on my (naive?) assumption the diameter is that of the tube and that the diameters of the pins are the same.
Click on the page indicated, the "Highest Quality Swiss...." page. It's the Otto Frei spring bars page. Seriously blown up pics will show you the differences.

The concern is the loop size in the strap. Some are pretty skinny. If a spring bar is too thick...PITA. If it's a little thin, it's loose...but that's not really a big deal since it's locked in place by the lugs anyway. I use, I think, 1.5, with all mine. I could see 1.8 and even 2.0 for larger, heavier watches, or any where you want to us a single-pass variant, and you have enough gap to handle a heavier strap.
 

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Click on the page indicated, the "Highest Quality Swiss...." page. It's the Otto Frei spring bars page. Seriously blown up pics will show you the differences.

The concern is the loop size in the strap. Some are pretty skinny. If a spring bar is too thick...PITA. If it's a little thin, it's loose...but that's not really a big deal since it's locked in place by the lugs anyway. I use, I think, 1.5, with all mine. I could see 1.8 and even 2.0 for larger, heavier watches, or any where you want to us a single-pass variant, and you have enough gap to handle a heavier strap.
Thanks. Those are the spring bars I am looking at. My thought was if they fit, the 1.8mm spring bars would provide extra strength over the 1.5 ones and I could cut back on the different sizes I need to keep. My plan was to keep a set of spring bars with every strap I have.
 

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In my experience Seiko makes really good bring bars too. they feel more solid than my (admittedly older) Omega ones.

I do not know where to get them, but the ones with my Alpinist are really good.
Wonder if Seiya Japan would have them...
 

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Thanks. Those are the spring bars I am looking at. My thought was if they fit, the 1.8mm spring bars would provide extra strength over the 1.5 ones and I could cut back on the different sizes I need to keep. My plan was to keep a set of spring bars with every strap I have.
Sadly, all spring bars are not equal and it doesn't quite work out like that (surprise, surprise). A lot depends who makes 'em. For some queer reason, the 1.5mm stainless ones I use have a slightly fatter end than the stock 1.8.mm from the same supplier and are more of a snug fit in the lugs.

I have never seen a spring bar failure test for different diameters, but I reckon the 0.3mm difference (if indeed the diameter is 1.8mm and not 1.7xmm) would be inconsequential in the real world. So I'd go with 1.5mm. You're usually guaranteed to have fewer problems with fitting to straps where the spring bar hole would mean a very tight fit with 1.8mm.
 
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