Do you own a watch with a band that is too loose for you? If it is a link band, you might still be able to remove some of the links to shorten the band and get a better fit. There are different types of links in watches today, but we will help you figure out how to remove the links in these types of links.
In This Guide
Measure Your Desired Watch Band Diameter
Before anything else, you should measure the watch band first. Wear the watch and make sure the clasps are firmly closed. Turn your hands so that your wrists are facing upward. Gather the loose area and then hold the gathered area using your thumb and forefinger to simulate how you will remove the excess links.
Make sure the adjustment is just right and that it isn’t too loose or too tight. You don’t want the band to be too constricting. That means you would want to avoid taking away too many links. Keep in mind that is much easier to remove some of the links than put them back together again if the links are too tight for you.
Be sure to remove an even number of links, so that the links are the same on either side of the watch. You would want to remove the same amount of link on both sides of the band.
Once you have figured out how many links to remove, it is time to prepare all the tools necessary for the removal of the links. You will need to get a pointy material, preferably something thin such as a pin pusher. If you have a spring bar tool, all the better. You will also need a small hammer and a pair of long-nosed pliers. A small screwdriver might also be needed. Get a tray as well so you can set all the parts that you take out here and avoid losing important screws. Find a stable work area with good lighting, so you will be able to see better.
If You Have Watch Flat or Round Links Pin
Check the sides of the watch band. What do you see? If you can see rounded and flattened out pins, the next few steps should be followed.
In this type of watch band, you will need to completely separate the band in order to remove the links. Find the spring bar from the clasp of the watch band. Usually, it is found at the left side of the clasp. Pry the spring bar loose with the help of a spring bar tool. Just use enough force to take it out and to avoid damaging it or send it flying across the room. Just be careful not to lose it as you will still need to put it back.
Look for the vertical links hinging the band together. Find the link you want to remove and use the pin to push it downwards. You can use a small hammer to help the link loosen up. There are some designs of watch bands that includes a metal ferrule. These are small metal links that could potentially fall out if you remove the links. This is why you should work on a tray to prevent these parts from falling off.
If there is a second pin, take that out using the pliers. Now set all these parts aside.
Use the same process to remove the next link and the links on the other side of the clasp. Once you have taken out the number of links you want, reassemble the band. Start with the ferrules if the watch included them. It is placed in the middle of the link. When you join that link to the other one, it should click and engage. Next is to place the two links back. Use your hammer to put it back in their places. Reconnect the spring bar of the clasp.
If Your Watch Has Screwed Pins
This is easier as you don’t need to completely remove the clasp. You just need to identify which links you want to take out. Use a small screwdriver to remove the pins. Use a pair of tweezers or your hands to grab the pins and place it aside. Once you have removed the pins, the link should come off on its own. Now do the same to the other side and the rest of the links you want to remove. Reconnect the links where the gaps are and use the pins you took out earlier to hinge them together again.
If Your Watch Snap Links
The links for these watches are horizontal ones and not the vertical ones from the previous types of pins. They are usually pinned like a puzzle. Use your pin pusher to take out the pin from the link that you want to get rid of. Disengage the connection of the link by folding it halfway and then pull the link near the case upwards and use a downward pulling motion on the side that is closer to the clasp. That will disengage the link.
Just keep on gently applying pressure and then rocking the mechanism to loosen up the link. Only after you have disengaged the link will you be able to see more of its parts. Now set them aside and work to remove more links as needed. Once you have removed the links, re-assemble the parts together and then secure them with their original pins.
What Will You Do With the Excess Links?
Some watches come with extra links, so if you have those, you can add the links you have taken out with them. You don’t know when you might need those in the future. You might give the watch to someone as a gift and that person might need a looser fit. In that case, the extra links will come handy.
A perfect-fitting watch is important, especially when doing a lot of physical activities. Loose watch bands can snag. You can also easily lose them, especially when underwater.