How to Adjust a Watch Band: 9 Steps (with Pictures)

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How to Adjust a Watch Band: 9 Steps (with Pictures)
How to Adjust a Watch Band: 9 Steps (with Pictures)

Many watches come with ready-made, adjustable straps, which are made of leather or plastic and have holes and a buckle for easy size adjustment. However, brand watches and watches with metal straps often have to remove metal links to reduce the size. This may seem like a difficult task, but in fact you can do it at home with some simple tools. Having the watch reduced at a jeweler is not necessary and will cost you money.


Part 1 of 2: Determining the size

Adjust a Watch Band Step 1

Step 1. Put on your watch without adjusting it

Note how big it is.

  • If the watch is very loose, you will have to remove a lot of links.
  • As long as the watch is just a little too loose and there's no danger of it slipping off your wrist, consider leaving it that way. Unless you find it annoying.
  • If your watch is too small, you can purchase additional links from the manufacturer to extend the strap.

Step 2. Find the buckle

Tighten the strap from the buckle so that it is the correct size.

  • Make sure you have an equal number of links to remove on both sides.
  • This will keep the watch itself in the middle of the wristband.
  • Note the number of links to be removed from each side of the buckle.
Adjust a Watch Band Step 3

Step 3. Gather your tools

You will need a number of things to adjust your watch strap.

  • You will need 1 or 2 thumbtacks. You will use these to push the pins holding the links together out of their holes.
  • Take a pair of needle nose pliers to help you remove the pins.
  • You will need a small jeweler's hammer.
  • Make sure you are working on a flat surface that is well lit. You have to collect the pins you remove.

Part 2 of 2: Removing links from the wristband

Step 1. Lay the watch on its side on your flat surface

Leave about 0.5 cm of space between the bottom of each link to be removed and the flat surface.

  • Count the number of links you need to remove.
  • Find the pin that holds the last link to be removed in place.
  • Here you will remove the links.

Step 2. Take your thumbtacks

Use one of the thumbtacks to push the pin holding the wristband link in place out of the hole.

  • Press the sharp end of the pushpin against the head of the shift pin.
  • If it won't yield, take your jeweler's hammer to force the tip of the pushpin into the link pin hole.
  • A small piece of the shift pin should then protrude on the other side of the link.
  • Use the hammer to drive the pushpin deeper into it to get more of the pin out.

Step 3. Remove the pin with the pliers

You will have to pull hard to remove the pin.

  • If there is a large enough part of the pin sticking out for the pliers to grip, you can pull the rest out with the pliers.
  • Grip the end of the pen firmly with the needle nose pliers.
  • Pull him out.
  • The required number of links to be removed on one side of the buckle should now be removed.
  • You should now repeat the process for the other side of the wristband.

Step 4. Remove the buckle from the removed links section

This is necessary to reattach the buckle to the wristband.

  • Loosen the buckle the same way you loosened the links.
  • There should be a pin attaching the buckle to the links. Remove these with the hammer, thumbtacks and pliers.
  • You are now going to attach the buckle to the wristband.

Step 5. Reattach the buckle to the wristband

Align the link on the buckle with the last link on one side of the strap.

  • You should see a clear hole for the pin that holds the buckle in place.
  • Take one of the pins you removed and place it in this hole.
  • It should go almost all the way in with no effort, just not the last bit.
  • Use the hammer to gently hammer the pin all the way into the hole.
  • Repeat this process for the other side of the buckle.
  • Your wristband is now adjusted and mounted.

Step 6. Adjust the watch

It should now fit snugly, without being too loose or too tight.

  • If you have shortened the watch strap too much, try adding 1 more link on each side of the buckle.
  • If you haven't removed enough links, recheck how many you still need to remove to make sure the strap fits comfortably.
  • Wear the watch for a few days to make sure it is comfortable.


  • Don't poke yourself with the thumbtacks.
  • Use a hard, flat surface for this procedure so that you minimize the movement of the watch as you adjust it.

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