Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

Thread: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

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  1. #1
    Member swimdoc's Avatar
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    Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    You are either over 53 or your dad has/had one. This bracelet was "the bracelet" for frogs, SF types and those loveable Marines. Available from various sources outside of Subic Bay in the P.I. Mine was worn on my issued Tudor. Now I see a guy has brought them back. They look really nice, but I haven't purchased one from him....yet.

    If you have a Submariner, Heuer 844, Benrus or Bill Yao, or other dive watch, you might consider this for a change of pace. If nothing else, it is a cool conversation starter and if you were in Vietnam, you will likely remember them. I would love to hear from anyone else who had one or see your pics.

    Hope its ok to post the site.

    http://www.harbuckswatchbands.com/



    Best:

    Swimdoc


  2. #2
    Member Guido Muldoon's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Hey Swimdoc,
    Thanks for the link. I was in the PI in the '70s and always wished I'd sacrificed a couple pitchers at the Mojo Palace down near Magsaysay and Rizal to buy one of these beauties. Some may find them gaudy, ugly or tasteless but the photos at Harbucks nearly brought a tear to me eye.

    EDIT: I forgot to mention, I'll be 54 in July.
    Last edited by Guido Muldoon; January 17th, 2008 at 06:39.
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  3. #3
    Member swimdoc's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Gaudy, indeed. But then, you have to love a place where even the taxi's are gaudy...and they have places with names like .... river....glad you like the link. If I can find a Benrus, I am gonna have me another Olongopo with the appropriate USN logos. Otherwise, its going on my Heuer 844.

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  5. #4
    Member Guido Muldoon's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Quote Originally Posted by swimdoc View Post
    Gaudy, indeed. But then, you have to love a place where even the taxi's are gaudy...and they have places with names like .... river....glad you like the link. If I can find a Benrus, I am gonna have me another Olongopo with the appropriate USN logos. Otherwise, its going on my Heuer 844.
    How about 5 cent San Miguel beer, monkey on a stick and buying Marlboro Reds 2 cigarettes at a time at the sari sari store? Oh yeah, " I no marry you. Me butterfly boy." (For those who don't know that's a guy who "floats like a butterfly" from girl to girl.) I can smell it like it was yesterday. I loved that place.
    Current favorites:
    Squale Y1545 20 ATMOS Militaire (Original) Ser. No. 0001; Sturmanskie Open Space 24Hr Ser. No. 199/250; Glycine Airman 17; Seiko Prospex PADI SRPA21;
    AirNautic Early Bird 24hr #20; Bathys Black Aquaculture; Citizen Eco-Zilla SS; Corvus Bradley #44; Hamilton Field Mechanical 44mm;
    Luminox 8202; OCEAN7 LM-1LE 41/150; LM-3V2B #26; LM-7 #7; Seiko SKX007K2; Squale 50 ATMOS; + about 25 more
    Incoming: NADA

    I've been trying for some time to develop a lifestyle that doesn't require my presence.- Garry Trudeau
    Time has little to do with infinity and jelly donuts. - Lt. "Mac" McReynolds

  6. #5
    Member swimdoc's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    You, my friend, are making me wish I could re-up. The best line I remember went something like: (snapping sound with their fingers, followed by a hisss, "hey marine (we were all marines if you wore BDUs, even us sailors), you want bro-job? I do for pibe dorrlar and one pack virginia shrims..."....

  7. #6
    Member Guido Muldoon's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Quote Originally Posted by swimdoc View Post
    You, my friend, are making me wish I could re-up.
    There was no place better to do your hitch than the Pacific Fleet. Too bad we can never go back. Marcos is gone. Clark and Subic.... what was left after Pinatubo we rolled up and took home or gave to the Philippines. I was there long enough to shack up on the beach. I had a maid, a houseboy and a girlfriend. I paid rent, salaries, bought food and my girlfriend squealed with delight if I brought her a new deck of Bicycle cards from the base exchange, all this for about $150/mo.

    But to stay on topic here, I had a Zodiac Sea Wolf I bought in Yokosuka, Japan that would have been great on an Olongapo bracelet. Wish I still had it but it met it's untimely end in an Oakland bar fight when I first got back to the States. I didn't handle civilization too well at first.
    Current favorites:
    Squale Y1545 20 ATMOS Militaire (Original) Ser. No. 0001; Sturmanskie Open Space 24Hr Ser. No. 199/250; Glycine Airman 17; Seiko Prospex PADI SRPA21;
    AirNautic Early Bird 24hr #20; Bathys Black Aquaculture; Citizen Eco-Zilla SS; Corvus Bradley #44; Hamilton Field Mechanical 44mm;
    Luminox 8202; OCEAN7 LM-1LE 41/150; LM-3V2B #26; LM-7 #7; Seiko SKX007K2; Squale 50 ATMOS; + about 25 more
    Incoming: NADA

    I've been trying for some time to develop a lifestyle that doesn't require my presence.- Garry Trudeau
    Time has little to do with infinity and jelly donuts. - Lt. "Mac" McReynolds

  8. #7
    Member swimdoc's Avatar
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Yeah. Well hey, if the cops showed up at it could have been me. My first job out of the Navy was with OPD in 1974-75.

  9. #8

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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Guido its nice to hear your good stories about the PI and "Gapo". These bands were popular specially with USN Seals during the Vietnam conflict (my other hobby is collecting militaria stuff). I was actually in Olongapo City a month ago hunting down these bracelets/bands for my dive watch. Unfortunately I could not find a single shop or street hawker selling these. It seems this trade naturally died down when the Subic Bay
    Naval Base shut down. I heard there are still a few surviving craftsmen somewhere making these though I could not find them! I was wondering if you or anyone on this forum could point me to who/where I could get one and have it customized. Thanks!

  10. #9
    Member Julian1066's Avatar
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    Off Topic post Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    God yes I remember it all, was there in 66 and 67 on the USS FDR (VF-14). Speaking of butterfly boy, I still have my old butterfly knife. All rusted now so I carry a Benchmade. We'd buy the dogmeat off the old guy with the rotisserie on wheels (4 sticks for 3 pesos if I remember right) and my main hangouts were New Pauline's with the crocagator pool and the Tri-V club. Ate more pancit and lumpia than you can believe, and even had a balut - kept it down for maybe 45 seconds, but I DID keep it down LOL.
    Loved the San Magoo! Finest beer outside of Germany, I thought at the time. What memories!!! "Pssst - hey Joe! You wanna girl?"


    Quote Originally Posted by Guido Muldoon View Post
    How about 5 cent San Miguel beer, monkey on a stick and buying Marlboro Reds 2 cigarettes at a time at the sari sari store? Oh yeah, " I no marry you. Me butterfly boy." (For those who don't know that's a guy who "floats like a butterfly" from girl to girl.) I can smell it like it was yesterday. I loved that place.
    Current collection:
    Wilson Watch Works navi Flieger Type B Dial
    Poljot Selena moon chrono
    Orient perpetual calendar
    Casio moon/tide
    Timex 'Nam era field watch

    Flieger sind Sieger!

  11. #10
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    Re: Anyone Remember The Olongopo Bracelet?

    Quote Originally Posted by timeflow View Post
    Guido its nice to hear your good stories about the PI and "Gapo". These bands were popular specially with USN Seals during the Vietnam conflict (my other hobby is collecting militaria stuff). I was actually in Olongapo City a month ago hunting down these bracelets/bands for my dive watch. Unfortunately I could not find a single shop or street hawker selling these. It seems this trade naturally died down when the Subic Bay
    Naval Base shut down. I heard there are still a few surviving craftsmen somewhere making these though I could not find them! I was wondering if you or anyone on this forum could point me to who/where I could get one and have it customized. Thanks!
    Hi, try [email protected] he's the best.

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