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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I guess I figured this out from experience over the years, so I shouldn't fault anyone for not knowing, but I get annoyed these days when people say things like, "I don't want to get a 21mm lug width watch because it is so hard to find 21mm straps for it." I even read a post from several years ago from a guy who seems to pass himself off as some kind of expert claiming that Omega deliberately made watches with 19mm lugs so that you would be forced to buy straps from them, "pure greed" he said. Funny that my three Omegas all have either 20mm or 18mm lug widths. I guess they decide not to be greedy from time to time. No, companies design band width based on what they thing is appropriate/proportional to the watch, whether we agree with their decisions or not.

So, let me now inform all those who do not know- YOU CAN PUT A 20mm STRAP ON A 19mm LUG WATCH! No problem, and no special modification or expertise needed. Just put it on like you would any other strap. You can do this with NATO straps, leather straps, and rubber straps. It's not going to work on metal bracelets unless you file them down a bit, which counts as a modification, so I won't mention that here. Take a look at one mm on a ruler. It's tiny. Then divide that in half for each side- tiny!

Here is a Grand Seiko with 19mm width lugs. It came on a bracelet, but I decided to put a NATO strap on it for a change of pace. No special order or special effort here- simply put a 20mm NATO on it.

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Here is a Nomos watch with 19mm lugs. Again, I simply put a 20mm leather strap on it. It really wasn't any harder than putting a 20mm strap on a 20mm lug watch. I've got another Nomos Orion with 19mm lugs on a 20mm alligator strap. Looks great.

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Now here is a 20mm lug watch with a 22mm strap that I took off another watch. In fairness, the strap is probably closer to 21mm. Maybe 21.5mm. No problem at all putting it on this watch. The biggest issue with putting any strap on this watch (even a 20mm strap) is that he spring bars fit so close to the case that it will no accept any strap (other than the metal bracelet it came on) without using curved spring bars.

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Here are a couple of watches, one with 17.5mm lug width and the other with 18mm lug with, with a 20mm NATO strap. As you can see there is some bunching up on the side here which doesn't look so good, but it still went on, and it could be notched to fix it, but we are talking about 2 to 2.5mm bigger NATO strap here. A strap that was only 1mm larger would not be a problem.

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So let there be no more talk of not wanting to get a watch because the 19 or 21mm lug width would make it difficult to find optional straps to put on it. Just put on a strap that's the next size up and be done with it. Easy to do and it looks good.
 

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I did try putting a 22 mm on a 20mm lug, wouldn't fit between.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I did try putting a 22 mm on a 20mm lug, wouldn't fit between.
2mm difference is pushing it. I don't recommend that, but just showed those examples to make the point that 1mm difference is no problem.
 
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2mm difference is pushing it. I don't recommend that, but just showed those examples to make the point that 1mm difference is no problem.

Yeah I figured the 1mm was the difference. I rather just buy the right size, I use inexpensive straps on my watches.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
you can stuff it in, but it doesn't look good
When dealing with a 20mm strap on a 19mm watch, you really don't even need to "stuff it in", and it looks just fine. I could show you a 19mm watch with a 20mm strap on it in person, and you wouldn't even know. Now when going 2mm up, then it starts to show.
 

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When dealing with a 20mm strap on a 19mm watch, you really don't even need to "stuff it in", and it looks just fine. I could show you a 19mm watch with a 20mm strap on it in person, and you wouldn't even know. Now when going 2mm up, then it starts to show.
if they look pinched, they're stuffed in. you could show them to me and I would tell you they don't look good
 

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You can do it probably 95% of the time but some 20mm straps just don’t want to play with 19mm lugs (and some 22mm straps don’t want to know 21mm lugs)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
if they look pinched, they're stuffed in. you could show them to me and I would tell you they don't look good
But the point is that they don't look pinched. The only ones pictured above that look pinched at the ones that are 2-3mm up. Look at what quartersawn just posted. It doesn't look pinched at all. Half a mm on each side is a negligible amount when dealing with a soft material like leather or nylon fabric.
 

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Not sure about 95%, but I agree it depends. I avoid it and buy straps the right size, unless there’s something really unique that doesn’t exist in the right size.

You can do it probably 95% of the time but some 20mm straps just don’t want to play with 19mm lugs (and some 22mm straps don’t want to know 21mm lugs)
 

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But the point is that they don't look pinched. The only ones pictured above that look pinched at the ones that are 2-3mm up. Look at what quartersawn just posted. It doesn't look pinched at all. Half a mm on each side is a negligible amount when dealing with a soft material like leather or nylon fabric.
with a tapered strap, it tends to look more kinked rather than pinched since it doesn't flare back out
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
You can do it probably 95% of the time but some 20mm straps just don’t want to play with 19mm lugs (and some 22mm straps don’t want to know 21mm lugs)
I've done it many times and never failed. Never even had to put any special effort into it. My guess is if one didn't work there was something inside, like a tube, that keeps it from having any flexibility, or the strap is in reality a little bigger than it is supposed to be. If for some reason it would not go on, a tiny bit of filing down on each side of the strap would fix the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Not sure about 95%, but I agree it depends. I avoid it and buy straps the right size, unless there’s something really unique that doesn’t exist in the right size.
Well, yeah, if it is available in the specific size, I just buy that. And the reality is on higher end watches, people are more likely to get custom made straps anyway that you can get any size you want. However, often times companies only offer even sizes on less expensive, non-custom straps. No need to feel limited by strap options in that regard.
 

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22mm strap on 21mm lugs here, just put this on today in replacement of a 20mm alligator Hirsch that you could only spot was slim at about 20cm away from ypur face.


Sent from my VKY-L09 using Tapatalk
 
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