NATO strap options
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  1. #1
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    NATO strap options

    I recently purchased 3 NATO straps from Crown and Buckle's "premium" line. While the nylon is thick and robust, the hardware leaves something to be desired (feels thin and cheap - which makes sense for a 15 dollar strap). Furthermore, the buckle side of the strap is only 60 mm or so and only reaches the side of my wrist (I'm not sure if this is how a NATO is supposed to be).

    I'm looking for something with more robust hardware, and perhaps an option for longer "buckle" side straps. Any recommendations or thoughts would be hugely appreciated.

  2. #2
    duc
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    Re: NATO strap options

    The only NATO strap I have that fits properly is an Omega NATO. Given that they are too expensive, the Toxic Natos come the closest in length and hardware. They also have the best hardware you will find on a $20 strap, hands down.

    I bought a leather NATO from Christopher Ward. The hardware on it is even better than the Omega hardware. I got it on sale for about $50.

    If you can wait a little while, these will be worth the wait:

    https://forums.watchuseek.com/f222/ph...s-3166802.html
    Last edited by duc; August 12th, 2016 at 00:37.
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  3. #3
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    Re: NATO strap options

    Quote Originally Posted by duc View Post
    The only NATO strap I have that fits properly is an Omega NATO. Given that they are too expensive, the Toxic Natos come the closest in length and hardware. They also have the best hardware you will find on a $20 strap, hands down.

    I bought a leather NATO from Christopher Ward. The hardware on it is even better than the Omega hardware. I got it on sale for about $50.

    If you can wait a little while, these will be worth the wait:

    https://forums.watchuseek.com/f222/ph...s-3166802.html
    Thank you for your response! I looked at the Toxic Nato straps and the buckle end looks very similar to the crown and buckle ones I just bought (meaning it appears short). Is it possible to get longer buckle side natos anywhere? Or are nato straps not meant to be worn this way?

    Here is how the crown and buckle nato is fitting right now on my 7.5 inch wrist:

    Last edited by bigsom; August 12th, 2016 at 03:28.

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  5. #4
    Member GX9901's Avatar
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    Re: NATO strap options

    I have 6.5" wrist and most of the NATOs I have tried got the buckle to the short side like yours, except for Omega NATO, which is offset to the other side of the wrist. It never bothered me having the NATO buckles to either side of my wrist and I assumed that they are worn that way. I usually pay more attention to the hardware being about equal distance from the watch to either side of my wrist.

    As far as hardware goes, it seems like 99% of the hardware out there are similar to the Crown & Buckle one. Toxic NATO and Timefactors hardware is pretty good, but they are kind of sharp from the cutting/machining process. PhenomeNATO hardware looks very promising and I look forward to trying it.
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  6. #5
    duc
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    Re: NATO strap options

    Quote Originally Posted by bigsom View Post
    Thank you for your response! I looked at the Toxic Nato straps and the buckle end looks very similar to the crown and buckle ones I just bought (meaning it appears short). Is it possible to get longer buckle side natos anywhere? Or are nato straps not meant to be worn this way?

    Here is how the crown and buckle nato is fitting right now on my 7.5 inch wrist:

    It seems to me that all they have to do is make the secondary loop (the one the long part threads through) longer. This would enable you to position the watch towards the middle and that would place the buckle in the right place.

    I agree that they almost all fit similar to yours. Another option is to go with the Maratac (no secondary loop portion).

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    Re: NATO strap options

    Quote Originally Posted by duc View Post
    It seems to me that all they have to do is make the secondary loop (the one the long part threads through) longer. This would enable you to position the watch towards the middle and that would place the buckle in the right place.

    I agree that they almost all fit similar to yours. Another option is to go with the Maratac (no secondary loop portion).
    I agree, but searching around, can't seem to find a strap with the flap further down the strap. If anyone comes across a longer "short" side nato, please let us know.

  8. #7
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    Re: NATO strap options

    You might want to try a 3-ring Heavy Duty NATO/Zulu style strap without the second layer that captures the watch. That would allow you to position the buckle and hardware wherever you'd like. NATO straps are designed to have the hardware and buckle on the side of your wrist per the MoD specifications. The Heavy Duty straps also have thicker nylon and larger hardware that might fit your style better. All of our hardware is 304L stainless steel, one piece hardware that is sewn into the strap and is extremely strong (even the thinner NATO style hardware like on our Premium Llne). However, at least for aesthetics, some people prefer the large, more robust hardware on our Heavy Duty NATOs.

    You'll find a lot of nylon straps with spring bar buckles on the market. Not that there is anything wrong with spring bars, but why introduce another potential failure point on a strap meant to protect your watch from falling in the event of a spring bar breaking? We much prefer one-piece sewn in buckles and hardware on our NATO straps.

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    Re: NATO strap options

    Quote Originally Posted by CrownAndBuckle View Post
    You might want to try a 3-ring Heavy Duty NATO/Zulu style strap without the second layer that captures the watch. That would allow you to position the buckle and hardware wherever you'd like. NATO straps are designed to have the hardware and buckle on the side of your wrist per the MoD specifications. The Heavy Duty straps also have thicker nylon and larger hardware that might fit your style better. All of our hardware is 304L stainless steel, one piece hardware that is sewn into the strap and is extremely strong (even the thinner NATO style hardware like on our Premium Llne). However, at least for aesthetics, some people prefer the large, more robust hardware on our Heavy Duty NATOs.

    You'll find a lot of nylon straps with spring bar buckles on the market. Not that there is anything wrong with spring bars, but why introduce another potential failure point on a strap meant to protect your watch from falling in the event of a spring bar breaking? We much prefer one-piece sewn in buckles and hardware on our NATO straps.
    Thanks for chiming in. Perhaps I'm just not used to the buckle being on the side of my wrist. Do you know why the MoD specifications call for such a short buckle side of the strap?

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    Re: NATO strap options

    I've got a Hadley-Roma that I purchased from Holben's that seems to be what you're looking for. It's the only NATO I've seen where the buckle sits exactly in the center of my wrist and not off to the side. Here's a link. Even if this particular NATO isn't right for you, the dimensions of the page might be useful in your search.

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