Help! Changing band/strap

Thread: Help! Changing band/strap

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  1. #1
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    Strap/Bracelet removal and reinstallation instructions!

    Okay, I feel like an idiot. I am trying for the first time to change the band on my Mad Cow, from the bracelet to the rubber. I am using the little screwdriver (why the heck is is so awkwardly designed--with the heavy round disk?) and when I turn the screws, nothing happens. In fact, I can't figure out why there would be a screwhead on both sides of the pin. No matter which side I unscrew, it just spins.

    What am I doing wrong?

    Thanks
    Last edited by obie; September 21st, 2007 at 16:12.

  2. #2
    Member roberev's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    Okay, here we go:

    Removal:

    - You should have 2 screwdrivers that came with the watch. You'll need them both. One is easy to find, you'll see it the moment you open the box (it has the fat round base). The other one you have to search for by pulling the watch holder of the box. You'll find it hidden underneath (it's a regular jeweler's screw driver).

    - Turning your attention to the lugs, what you'll see is a lug tube that appears to be slotted at each end. In reality, each screw tube is long, running the full width of the lug. Only one end of the tube is slotted. The other end of the tube is threaded (female). Into the threaded end of the tube is a tiny lug screw. The tiny screw is very similar to what you see on a watch bracelet with screw pins in the links.

    - Using both screwdrivers, loosen the screw tube from each end of each tube. I find that it works best when I use the round-bottomed screwdriver by sitting it on the table, putting one end of a screw-tube on top of the screwdiver, and then using the other screw driver to loosen the lug screw. (I figure that this is why Ball made one of the screwdrivers with a round base)

    - As you unscrew the tube, you will find that one end turns easier than the other. This is the tiny lug screw. The tube itself is harder to turn. I try not to turn the screw tube itself due to the resistance. Once you find out which end turns easier, you may have to switch screwdrivers around. You want to use the handheld screwdriver on the lug screw, not the screw tube. Remove the tiny lug screw. Be careful not to lose it (I've lost one before, they're so small).

    - Included with your Mad Cow should be a little paper envelope with a ziploc baggie inside. Inside the baggie is a little tube that is threaded on one end and solid (no slot) on the other end. (I'll call it a "Helper Tube"). You'll need this now.

    - Once you have removed the tiny lug screw from one end of the lugs, screw the Helper Tube into the same end. The Helper Tube will stick out of the lug a centimeter or so. CAREFULLY push on the Helper Tube to force the screw tube out of the lug. You may have to wiggle the end link. You may have to gently tap the Helper Tube with a wooden mallet. Just be careful not to bend the Helper Tube.

    - Do this for all four lug holes. The Bracelet will fall out. Don't lose the end links as they are not affixed to the bracelet.

    Installation:

    - Installing is the reverse. Use the Helper Tube to install each tube. This is important to ensure that the tube "seats" all the way in the hole. If the head of the screw tube doesn't nestle down into the lug hole, you have not fully installed it. Some tricks to get it to "seat" are: 1) wiggle the Helper Tube and strap/endlink, 2) turn the tube with a screwdriver, and 3) do both. Getting it to "seat" can be exasperating.

    - Once the screw tube is fully seated, unscrew the Helper Tube and carefully install the tiny lug screw.

    - Once you have reinstalled the lug screw, use both screwdrivers again to tighten both ends at the same time.

    - Be careful not to overtighten! It is possible to both strip the screw slots and to ruin the threads inside the screw tube.

    If my instructions do not help, please PM me. There's a reason why I've never written instruction manuals. I'm out of town right now, or I'd take and post pics. Maybe I'll do it next week.

    I am happy to call anyone to talk them through the process.

    I have become adept at this and it still takes me 15 to 20 minutes. This is not something to be done quickly since it's so easy to mess up the slots and threads, and to lose the tiny screws.

    Rob
    Last edited by roberev; October 26th, 2007 at 05:48.

  3. #3
    Member roberev's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    By the way, if you haven't found the second screwdriver, look in your box. Pull up the little base that the watch sits in. There's a screwdriver tucked up in the slot underneath.

    Rob

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  5. #4
    Member WatchFan1's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    Thank for writing this up Rob

    However, after reading these instructions I am not sure anymore that I
    want to do this myself. It seems more complicated than AP ROO.
    It took me about 1 hour the first time and about 20 minutes the second
    time on my ROO....(but a lot of nerves, cussing and sweat )

    Changing it on Hydrocarbon seems ever more complicated than ROO though.
    If you ever do it again, can you please take some pictures ?
    I hope that once I see them - I will lose my fear doing it on Mad Cow
    TIA.

    Milos

  6. #5
    Member CharlesN's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    Milos,

    Since when have you been scared of changing a band ?

    This has to be a first for you.
    Regards,
    Charles N.
    Member of the I.W.J.G.
    Rolex Moderator on TimeZone forums.

    ---------------------------------------------

    Me:
    Ball Moonphase
    Ball Fireman - 40mm - Orange

    Patek Philippe Rose Gold Calatrava 5127R-001
    Patek Philippe White Gold Annual Calender 5036/1G
    Rolex Platinum Day-Date 118206
    Rolex GMT-Master II (Coke) 16710
    Harwood
    JLC Reverso Shadow
    Vintage IWC
    Suunto D6
    and numerous other watches from numerous brands.

    My Wife:
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    and numerous other watches from numerous brands.

  7. #6
    Member WatchFan1's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    Quote Originally Posted by CharlesN View Post
    Milos,

    Since when have you been scared of changing a band ?

    This has to be a first for you.
    I was lucky....went to see BALL USA guys today and Jerry showed me the
    tricks. Piece of cake now

  8. #7
    Member CharlesN's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    That will be handy for me.

    You will be here in about 48 Hours ..

    Will you teach me a trick or two please.
    Regards,
    Charles N.
    Member of the I.W.J.G.
    Rolex Moderator on TimeZone forums.

    ---------------------------------------------

    Me:
    Ball Moonphase
    Ball Fireman - 40mm - Orange

    Patek Philippe Rose Gold Calatrava 5127R-001
    Patek Philippe White Gold Annual Calender 5036/1G
    Rolex Platinum Day-Date 118206
    Rolex GMT-Master II (Coke) 16710
    Harwood
    JLC Reverso Shadow
    Vintage IWC
    Suunto D6
    and numerous other watches from numerous brands.

    My Wife:
    Patek "24" 4910
    Rolex Lady-Date 7916
    and numerous other watches from numerous brands.

  9. #8
    Member roberev's Avatar
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    Quote Originally Posted by WatchFan1 View Post
    I was lucky....went to see BALL USA guys today and Jerry showed me the
    tricks. Piece of cake now
    When the Tour comes to town next week, I'm half-expecting the Ball guys to tell me that I got the strap-changing protocol all wrong. I'd feel alot less insecure if they'd post an "official" protocol w/pics.

    Rob

  10. #9
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    OK, I just bought a EM II diver. NOw how do I change the strap? this watch got no holes nor space to fit a screw driver?
    I plan to change into the SS strap

  11. #10
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    Re: Help! Changing band/strap

    I need help with the EM II Diver also.

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