RCS Collections: Watch Straps (Just in time for Spring)

Yes, when I first saw all of these laid out, I thought I might have a problem. Oh well…at least this one isn’t expensive. Above is my collection of nylon watch straps. It has taken me about four years to accumulate all of these. They are mostly from Central Strap in NYC, but you never know where they will pop up. Some strap and watch details:

Swiss Army watch from the Marlboro collection – found this at a garage sale. $10. The strap is an old J. Crew model.

Old Timex self-wind. Got it on Ebay for about $10 shipped. Works like a champ. Central Strap.

Swiss Army Renegade. One of my favorites. I’ve had this since high school, and it used to be on the original rubber band. Works well on the new(er) J. Crew Nato straps.
Old Bulova Sea King. Ebay for about $20 shipped. It’s a self wind and could probably be cleaned, but I don’t know if it’s worth it – it seems fine like it is. The strap is from a bag of straps I found on Ebay. I’ll have more on that later. To the left is probably my favorite of the collection – got this Smart Turnout Nato down at Sid Mashburn’s a while back.
Timex Camper found at Goodwill. Replaced the battery and we’re in good shape. The crystal looks like someone chewed on it…but again, it works. The strap was from a vintage collection found on Ebay. Believe it – they are out there… To the left and right are some Brooks Brothers models – good, but only about 16MM, not the standard 18MM, so they usually give the Sea King a ride.
The Omega Seamaster – leader of the pack. The strap is from the same vintage collection I found on Ebay.
I have my eye on a few more, but I’m not pushing the issue. Smart Turnout has just about every flavor you’d ever need, and they are built like tanks. Central Strap has a nice collection as well – and are probably the best deal out there (5 for $30). J. Crew has jumped on the bandwagon with some good ones as well.
As for watches, I’m set. I would maybe pull the trigger on a Seiko SKX009, only because I like the Pepsi bezel. This paired with a navy/red Nato would look very 80’s Polo Ralph Lauren. Not too bad:

These straps are a great way to add a little character to your wrist. Most of them are pretty subtle, but the GTH ones do speak volumes. The best part about these straps – when it gets nasty, throw it out.


  1. Silk Regimental
    02/24/2011 / 1:41 PM

    The Omega Seamaster and strap — now that's some good lookin wrist gear!

    Nice collection!

  2. j.mosby
    02/24/2011 / 2:26 PM

    The NATO bands are a great design! Bought a bunch lately.

  3. Britt Sudduth
    02/24/2011 / 3:44 PM

    Very cool. I had straps in high school and just recently purchased my first to re-start the collection. Oddly, I own the same Timex. It was my first real watch back in about 1975. It's got a big crack in the bezel, but still works!

  4. JMW
    02/24/2011 / 3:48 PM

    Great collection of watches and straps – I love my grosgrain watch band. But, this makes me want to add to my collection now!

  5. The Glengarry Sporting Club
    02/27/2011 / 10:17 PM

    YES! Love this post.

  6. Britt Sudduth
    02/28/2011 / 3:21 PM


    I was putting together a watch strap post of my own when I read yours. I used a picture from your post (with full credit to you of course) and listed your blog address for more reading. Hope you don't mind! Please check it out – http://www.thehouseofriley.blogspot.com.


    Britt Sudduth

  7. Let The Tide Pull Your Dreams Ashore
    03/02/2011 / 2:56 PM

    What a great post…has anyone staged an intervention? haha

  8. Anonymous
    03/12/2011 / 4:07 PM

    How were you able to remove the strap on the timex camper? I just bought one and wanted to put a new strap on

  9. JRS
    03/12/2011 / 6:43 PM

    @Anon 11:07AM – I had to remove both pins to get the strap in place. As you know – there isn't any room for sliding…

  10. cammie
    03/14/2011 / 12:10 PM

    thanks God for this post! I've been spared an intervention as "the only person with this many watch bands and it needs to stop". You have more and I have a new goal.

  11. Matt
    02/22/2012 / 12:57 AM

    I’m somewhat new to the NATO/Nylon watch strap trend, and was very excited to find this post. I ordered 5 straps from Central Strap, and was very underwhelmed. The quality was very poor in my opinion, but maybe this should have been expected for the price. They also sent me two straps that I didn’t order and said it was because they were out of the ones I ordered. I also ordered a strap from Dubstraps, and was very pleased. Will probably stick to Dubstraps or Smart Turnout going forward.

  12. Scott
    07/18/2013 / 11:28 PM

    Where can I get the strap that is on the Old Bulova Sea King. Iv been trying to look for the strap for years but still can’t find it! Does anyone where it’s sold?

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