FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?
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  1. #1
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    Picture FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Hello

    I'd like to post up my straps, to see what you guys think. These are just the initial few that I've made to a standard I feel is suitable for wearing.

    A wee bit of background - I tried to start my own watch brand through Watchuseek and it failed, mostly because of funding - it was launched at the height of the recession, and that I was getting them made out-of-house, meaning prices for manufacture was orbital. Anyway, since then I've gone on to do many things, but I always kept coming back to watches. In a bid to keep in the watch world and scratch that product designer itch, I decided to make my own straps, but go that one step further and make my own buckles too. This also meant I could do it all in-house and keep the costs lower. As a result I've managed to make what I think are decent straps which offer a bit of an alternative to the norm. Perhaps.

    Anyway, I make everything from scratch using veg-tan full grain leather, which I then dye, stamp, stitch and finish. The only process I outsource are the 316L Stainless Steel end-plates and prongs, which I get the profiles cut on waterjet. I then mill, tap and finish them by hand using a variety of methods to achieve a matte finish, cut down the 316 Steel bars, face, drill and tap each side by hand and blend them all together to create a nice smooth finish. I customise some tiny torx bolts to fit in my drilled end-plates, assemble all the parts and bobs your auntie.

    You can see more background and how I've went about making these from day dot on my blog, but here are some photos of the straps I'm semi-happy with.

    S001 - Pre-Weathered

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    S001 - Mid-Tan

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    S001 - Black Bronze (Or as I'm calling it, a John Player Special)

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    I'm still plugging away at more combos and I will be introducing more styles/shapes and new styles of buckles as I hopefully sell them.

    Thanks for looking and I look forward to (read: crapping my pants) receiving some feedback.

    G

  2. #2
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    So here I am working on getting a buckle produced and you beat me to it! LOL! Well done!! Needless to say, I really like your product....

    Looked at the Etsy page, did not see the buckles for sale - will you be offering them as stand alone items, would love to have one in brushed SS, 22mm.....

  3. #3
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Very nice. Really good workmanship and I really like the black with bronze buckle.
    "Either he's dead or my watch has stopped"
    Groucho Marx

    "The only reason for time is so that everything does not happen at once..."
    Albert Einstein

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  5. #4
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Quote Originally Posted by Teppo458 View Post
    So here I am working on getting a buckle produced and you beat me to it! LOL! Well done!! Needless to say, I really like your product....

    Looked at the Etsy page, did not see the buckles for sale - will you be offering them as stand alone items, would love to have one in brushed SS, 22mm.....
    Quote Originally Posted by Nokie View Post
    Very nice. Really good workmanship and I really like the black with bronze buckle.
    Thanks guys,

    Each buckle take around 6 hours from scratch to make, then tumbling for over a day before final assembly. It's for this reason that, at the minute I don't want to sell them individually. I'd have to sell them for £60 each to make it worthwhile and I doubt anyone will want to pay that for a buckle.

    Once I streamline my processes a bit more and find ways to cut down the time to fabricate I can maybe start selling them separately.

    Here's the process (you can read more about it all on the blog):

    I start off with the blank end plate which I punch out from the main sheet

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    Then I mill the holes bigger for both sides

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    After that I turn to the bridges which I cut from long lengths of Stainless 316

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    Each bridge (large and small) is then faced flat so that I can then center drill each end, before then drilling the pilot hole for tapping

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    After that it's time to tap each end of both bridges (4 tapped holes) by hand on the mill, turning the mill head back and forth until the hole is threaded

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    Now that the bridges are threaded I can then face them again to remove burrs and assemble the buckle for blending. This takes a wee while to get perfect

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    I then hand finish them a bit more to get the surface nice

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    I then tumble them until they are nice, some were sent to the PVD coaters to get tested (and the tests concluded everything was awesome)

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    Whilst they are tumbling I take the torx bolts and thin them down a tad to finish them, I then polish some faces for extra bling

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    Then it's prong time - again hand finishing them to take the burrs off and then tumbling them - I've left a bit of the toolmarks to give some texture

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    I also designed a wee notch in so that the prongs lock positively against the main bridge

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    Then it's final assembly, once the strap part is also made. Overall it takes around 10-12 hours per strap to complete including dying, stamping and stitching et al.

    Viola.

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  6. #5
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Great illustration of the process to make the buckles! As to the price you mentioned, try finding an Ennebi buckle for sale ;o) I found ONE and the asking price was well above your price - I think you might have a market, considering I haven't seen Ennebi buckles really offered in the last 3 years.

    So do keep us in mind when you decide to open the buckles for sale and keep up the good work.

    One last question - for the Torx screws, are you saying you turn down the OD of the head slightly? And what size screws are you using? M1.6?

    Good luck with the venture, I think you have a solid product that should garner a similarly solid clientele.

  7. #6
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Thank you for sharing the details of what goes into the buckles. I must say, I'm very impressed.

    Best wishes,
    Packleader

  8. #7
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Quote Originally Posted by Teppo458 View Post
    Great illustration of the process to make the buckles! As to the price you mentioned, try finding an Ennebi buckle for sale ;o) I found ONE and the asking price was well above your price - I think you might have a market, considering I haven't seen Ennebi buckles really offered in the last 3 years.

    So do keep us in mind when you decide to open the buckles for sale and keep up the good work.

    One last question - for the Torx screws, are you saying you turn down the OD of the head slightly? And what size screws are you using? M1.6?

    Good luck with the venture, I think you have a solid product that should garner a similarly solid clientele.
    Hmm,

    Maybe I'll rethink it. I'm investigating ways to reduce the time it takes to tap holes, as this would greatly reduce the time taken for each buckle. I've also got some polished ones with brushed end plates which take a further 2 hours of sanding/polishing to complete!

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    Thanks both for the feedback, much appreciated.

  9. #8
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Teppo

    Buckles are available in the Sales corner

    G

  10. #9
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    nice "steam punk" aesthetic I see there -- more combinations is a good idea

  11. #10
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    re: FraserMade StrapWorks straps and buckles?

    Quote Originally Posted by uptheorg View Post
    nice "steam punk" aesthetic I see there -- more combinations is a good idea
    Thanks for your feedback - never really considered Steam Punk but yeah I see it now! Need some more cogs and bronze happening!

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