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Crocodile watch band

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Law stud, Dec 16, 2003.

  1. Law stud

    Law stud New Member

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    I've decided to buy a new croc band for my watch and found some on e-bay...anybody have had any experience with it? Where would you buy it?
     
  2. VMan

    VMan Senior member

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    You talking about experiences with ebay, or experiences with watch bands?


    If you're talking about ebay, just make sure that its real croc, and that the seller has a good feedback rating.

    About the watch bands, crocodile is great, I don't care for plain leather straps, but I love Crocodile/Alligator/Ostrich/Lizard skin bands, just something about the texture. If you buy a quality band it will be durable and last you a while.
     
  3. The_Foxx

    The_Foxx Senior member

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    hmm...suggest you buy a glossy alligator band from a jewelry store, such as Betteridge's (CT) or similar fine jeweler. It really elevates a watch. I did the same thing with mine, by putting a fine black alligator band on it-- which made it look much more elegant and expensive.
     
  4. Law stud

    Law stud New Member

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    I am not sure whether real croc band can go through Canadian custom...and the bands I saw in stores are kinda crappy...look like pressed calf rather than real croc.
     
  5. jcusey

    jcusey Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    If the band is really crocodile or alligator, it will say so.

    I know that getting any exotic leather (meaning anything other than calfskin) through US customs is not the easiest thing in the world. The US Fish and Wildlife service (not the Customs service; I don't know why) requires documentary proof that the leathers come from legal sources. It wouldn't surprise me at all if Canadian customs were as difficult or more so.

    The thing of it is that almost all crocodile and alligator leather is produced from farm-raised animals. Its use does not threaten alligator or crocodile survival in the wild. In fact, the popularity of alligator leather is at least partially responsible for that animal's spectacular rebound over the last thirty or so years.
     
  6. haganah

    haganah Senior member

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    I'm trying to decide between 4 bands and hope some of you who are more knowledgeable on watches/straps/exotic skins can help. Any thoughts on these? Bamboo Patterned Genuine Crocodile (3mm padded) [​IMG] BLACK GENUINE CROCODILE band (3.5mm padded) [​IMG] BLACK GENUINE CROCODILE band (3mm padded) [​IMG] Hadley Roma Selected Crocodile (padded) [​IMG]
     
  7. haganah

    haganah Senior member

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    someone...anyone...hello?
     
  8. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    The wild and the pure.
    I prefer something not too shiny. I have mine made from Milennium Croc which is half matte.
     
  9. haganah

    haganah Senior member

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    I prefer something not too shiny. I have mine made from Milennium Croc which is half matte.
    My shiny brown one because matte after about 4 months of wear. I just figured the glaze goes away on any crocodile if it's used. Neglecting the shine aspect, is one pattern better than the others? And is there a way to determine quality? Note that I didn't go to your friend Bea or ABP in France so I'm not expecting top notch quality here.
     
  10. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I don't know. Whichever you like better, I guess. I prefer the smaller pattern.
     
  11. RFX45

    RFX45 Senior member

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    Go to Fredawatchstraps.com. They have plenty to choose from. From Hirsch to Hadley Roma to Di-Modell, which all make great quality croc strap for a different price ranges. I have dealt with them before with no complaints. Worth a look if you are looking for a watch strap.
     
  12. Jumbie

    Jumbie Senior member

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    Go to Fredawatchstraps.com. They have plenty to choose from. From Hirsch to Hadley Roma to Di-Modell, which all make great quality croc strap for a different price ranges. I have dealt with them before with no complaints. Worth a look if you are looking for a watch strap.

    I'm po' at the moment so I just bought a calf skin alligator grain/pattern strap from these guys and I have to say that their service was excellent. Very quick shipping and they even included free spring bars and a mini spring bar tool.
     
  13. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Senior member

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    I recently bought an Alligator strap from 'the watch boys' on ebay. I'm very happy with it. I think they offer a fantastic product, especially considering they only cost about $100.

    I went for a matte finish, since its for a Panerai.
     
  14. JohnD356

    JohnD356 Senior member

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    For really nice watch bands, check out http://stores.ebay.com/Rustwatch

    I've bought a number of alligator bands from him over the past few years. The Hirsch Artisanal bands are some of the best to be had at any price. Really fine quality.
     
  15. jc138

    jc138 Senior member

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    I picked up one from Banda, which I love. matte finish.

    One point, the band is shorter than many I have seen, which works well for my wrists.
     
  16. aleeboy

    aleeboy Senior member

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    Firstly, what watch are you trying to match it too?

    If it's a thinner strap, I prefer Bamboo patterned alligator/croc. The small grain croc is usually Caiman and is of lower quality and durability than alligator. I will wear alligator for work, and buffalo/nylon for casual.

    The watch you have should determine the strap. For a good place, try Camille Fournet. If you have a ballin watch, go to ABP - custom French strap maker.
     
  17. changejobs

    changejobs Well-Known Member

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    you should be able to pick up such a band from the AD for the watch. I purchased one for my vintage Patek directly from them in NYC. They brought out numerous croc bands in different colors to see which worked best with the watch.
     
  18. JohnD356

    JohnD356 Senior member

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    Ds will have OEM bands, but just be aware that they're often very expensive. You can get the same bands (minus 'JLC' ect. stamp on inside) for cheaper if you look around. You might even be able to find out where the watchmaker sources its bands.
     
  19. zjpj83

    zjpj83 Senior member

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    Got mine from the manufacturer of the watch when it goes in for service
     
  20. dport86

    dport86 Senior member

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    I always love the "why isn't anyone responding" pleas, like the magic SF fairy should be on duty 24/7 on the most obscure questions.

    Well, far from discouraging such pleas, I actually recognize several of the bands pictures by the OP. The top one is I believe from Foxbands, which make their own bands and sell them directly on ebay. Quality is decent, the same level or slightly lower than ZRC in Europe. Decent patterns and colors and wear OK but here's where the corners are cut: lower quality backing leather, slightly sloppy machine stitching, skins that are tanned with a thick layer of plastic/shellac/polish on top that does not age as well as the top quality skins, and flat finished rather than rolled edges (the edges of the leather are not folded under, they are simply glued on, cut off and edge dressed). Still, great value for money. The shoe equivalent would be, say, Cole Haan or Kenneth Cole or current Bass Weejuns.

    Up a level, equivalent say to Johnston & Murphy, Mezlan etc., would be the better offerings from the big aftermarket band makers like Hirsch. These bands have a better finish, not necessarily better leathers and better construction. Still not great and potentially very overpriced for what they are. The lower end product lines for these makers are garbage--run away. Only for suckers, the ill-informed and the desperate--for jeweller high-markup point of sale purchases. One level up, and equivalent to say Alden or Allen Edmonds are the high end lines of Hirsch (artisanal) and the straps these makers produce for particular brands (e.g. Tiffany, Tourneau, Gucci, Breitling). manufacturers charge a huge markup for "original mfr/spec" bands, and collectors happily pay it (for vintage, even higher); this is not always justified by the quality and some mfr's bands, like Sinn, can be purchased for half the price without the mfr's mark from the original maker DiModell. Finally, there are manufacturers that make their own bands or commission extremely high quality bands--for e.g. Patek Philippe, Audemars PIguet, Cartier (often made by Camille Fournet), Franck Muller, Jaeger Le Coultre. These bands are superb quality and rival the best artisan made bands but often come with $150+ price tags. Can you see the difference from the $24-30 fox bands--very obviously. From the $100 hirsch artisanal bands--in most cases yes. So looking out for these bands on ebay can be very rewarding. however, beware of fakes and old dried out bands that will fall apart on your wrist (sending your precious timepiece crashing to the floor and thereafter to your watchmaker). There are also some great quality vintage bands that are now commanding a premium over new because the quality of the work was better and the styles and colors are not being reproduced today (think vintage florsheim vs. new florsheim)

    For a range of quality from Hirsch, DiModell, Tiffany etc. at good discounts, try RUSTWATCH on ebay. great service too. There are great bargains from VACHERONNL but she is a wholesaler/jobber of jewellry business closures, so the quality variation is huge--some things are throw away some things are superb, with a few exceptions everything is a bargain--very cheap. I know one dealer who bought hundreds of Heuer-style racing bands from her at less than $10 a pop who is now selling them for $125 on ebay. Be warned, she is a very nice person with a small operation in her garage in the Netherlands. It can take several weeks for the bands to arrive and occasionally she gets the order wrong. She always fixes it--eventually--but it can be frustrating until you look at the bargain you're getting. For less expensive bands made in China but decent quality try International Watchman. RMnilsen sells these on Ebay at a substantial markup but offers excellent service
     

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