Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

This guide to the best rubber Watch Straps starts with looking at all the different options that Rubber B has developed since they basically invented the Rubber Watch Band for exclusive timepieces such as Tudor, Rolex, AP, Patek Philippe and so many more idyllic brands.

History of Rubber B Swiss-made Watch Straps

The founders of Rubber B combine the unique backgrounds of both high fashion and jewelry and gemology design. The eye for fashion helped them notice that although the fine watchmaking industry had spectacular timepieces, the ability to adorn them with bands that both fit precisely and were as luxurious as the timepieces they were attached to was greatly lacking.

Take for instance the early James Bond movies with Sean Connery. The band that he wore on his Rolex Submariner was not only an eyesore, but it did not fit the timepiece at all. The band probably had 6 mm of wiggle space making the expensive timepiece dangerously loose.

Having gemology experience certainly made one thing clear. There needed to be a band that would be custom made to fit each specific timepiece tightly, just as a diamond would be snugly fitted into a ring. This is where the idea for “Blocked Integration” bands came from. These bands would fit the timepiece precisely and not wiggle at all. This would keep these timepieces snugly and comfortably on the wrist, while at the same time protect these watches from accidental loss when doing sports or diving.

They found that vulcanized rubber produced in a very special way would allow them to create custom bands that would fit a timepiece precisely, and with great strength. Yet, it was comfortable to wear and would be strong enough to attach the original closing clasps or deployant buckle of the watch manufacturer.

Rubber B also saw a need to add splashes of color to a watch palette. Just as high fashion can’t live with just Silver or Gold on the runway, watches should have the same color flexibility. Rubber B started making striking colors including white bands, red bands, and orange watch bands.

Adding color to the band is one way to completely change the timepiece’s look. The bright orange band for the Rolex Milgauss is a natural fit coordinating with the orange lightning bolt seconds hand.

If you have a Rolex Yachtmaster II, it makes perfect sense to have a blue band with red stripe or white stripe. See the below example, where Rubber B pulls in the blue from the bezel and red from large second hand and countdown arrow.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

Rubber B decided that in order to make the finest watch bands in the world, they had to manufacture them where the finest watches were made – in Switzerland. Switzerland is where the horological history is made. Most major watch designers reside there and this is where the most talented watchmaking artists and gemologists reside, collaborate and build their works of art.

Rubber B is the only alternative rubber strap brand that features the marking “Swiss Made” in their rubber. Each band is calibrated to fit precisely the model it is designed for, and is built for quality and lasting beauty.

Rubber B continues to push the envelope of what is possible in watch band technology. Recently they have come up with a unique way to make textures on the watch bands that emulate many different fabrics such as twill. However, because the bands are made with 100% vulcanized rubber, it has the strength and resiliency to look spectacular both at work and at play.

Horological Advances in Rubber Watch Straps

Rubber B has set the bar high with its watch strap designs. In fact, it is clear that brands such as Rolex took notice by copying several designs that Rubber B has put forth. Rolex always produced timepieces with either leather or metal bands.

However, the popularity of the Rubber B straps forced Rolex to start producing their “Oysterflex” line of bands. Although Oysterflex only comes in Black, it does emulate the Rubber B line in design. Imitation by Rolex, the world’s most noteworthy brand, is the highest form of flattery.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

Vulcanization

There are many types of rubber. Low cost rubbers like silicone costs less to make and sell, but it doesn’t have the strength to resist tearing, or the ability to resist abrasion which can warp, nick or cause wear to its surface.

Rubber B needed something better, stronger, more resilient to support the finest timepieces on the planet even when you take it in the sunlight or to the depths of the ocean when diving.

Vulcanized rubber was the answer. It involes a process of heating rubber with sulphur and accelerator and an activator at 140 to 160 degrees Celsius. The process creates cross-links between the long rubber molecules which creates improved elasticity, resilience, strength, hardness and most importantly – weather and water resistance.

Vulcanized rubber is the ultimate answer to making great bands for fine timepieces. These bands are highly durable and can be worn at the beach, during physical activities and even in the water. They don’t rust, and can be easily cleaned with soap and water.

Vulcanized Rubber is non-toxic and non-marking. It has superior resistance to oil and invasive elements. Vulcanized rubber bands are superior material in every way to other watch strap alternatives including silicone rubber bands, leather bands and NATO straps.

Vulcanized Rubber is very comfortable to wear and is naturally hypoallergenic. Rubber B immediately saw the potential of creating the best rubber watch straps with it.

Rubber B perfected the process of creating vulcanized rubber bands specifically designed for different Rolex, Tudor, Panerai, Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, IWC, Breitling, Apple and Roger Dubuis. The new line of universal straps can also fit many other watch brands.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Swimskin bands look like real leather but are 100% rubber

SwimSkin

SwimSkin® looks and feels identical to natural moisture-sensitive materials such as Alligator hide or Kevlar® fabric, yet SwimSkin® is 100% rubber. It is waterproof for all aquatic and active lifestyles.

Imagine enjoying a classic watch with its alligator strap while swimming at the beach. Most alligator watches would be irreparably destroyed with a single visit to a pool or beach. This hampered owners of fine timepieces to have one “Dress Watch” for work and “Sport Watch” for play, and limited the sport watches to steel bands which might be uncomfortable or allergenic.

The SwimSkin line has the look and feel of true fabrics or hides such as snakeskin or alligator skin with the resiliency of vulcanized rubber. This allows the executive to take their favorite timepiece to the gym after work, or even to the pool or beach without having to worry about the effects from seawater or the sun.

Integrated versions are further designed and calibrated specifically for one watch model and contain Titanium Inserts housing the spring-bars and pins for strength and endurance. This helps it to support the original clasps or tang buckles of the manufacture.

Swimskin is offered in a variety of colors and textures across various series.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Blocked integration creates a tight fit to the case

Blocked Integration

Blocked Integration is one of Rubber B’s first inventions. Although watchmakers had been making metal bands precisely designed to fit their timepieces, this was not available in the aftermarket of watchbands.

Rubber B adapted the process to make a vulcanized rubber strap to attain a tight, motionless, rotationless, and gap-free mount to the intended watch head.

Blocked Integration gives the owner a watchband that fits its timepiece case like a glove. It creates a more perfect union with an abundance of strength and infinite beauty as if it were designed by the manufacturer from the outset.

This was groundbreaking because the only bands previously found on the market were “universal” straps to fit a lug space of 18, 20, or 22mm, but would always leave an unsightly gap between the lug and the watch case.

Blocked integration eliminates pinching of the skin, and creates a better feel for the watchband. Since there is no gap to collect sweat or dust, the timepiece also had a cleaner feel to it and would protect the skin from irritation.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Rolex Submariner with Velcro clasp and titanium loop.

Velcro and Titanium

Rubber B is one of the first companies to introduce Velcro as a fastener for a watchband. However, Rubber B was the first to promote Velcro Alfatex – the strongest and most reliable, undustrial strentht fastener as a secure watch closure.

Rubber B developed their Velcro series band with titanium-enforced loop. This ensures the ultimate dependability, strength and tortion endurance for the life of the strap.

Velcro is a very easy clasp to use. Unlike deployant buckles or tang buckles that have specific distances that can be adjusted, a velcro strap can fit your specific need. Micro adjustments can be made within seconds and is far easier than any other method.

Rubber B realized that a titanium loop was required to make a strong counterpart to the velcro mechanism. Although vulcanized rubber is strong, titanium reinforces the loop giving the owner confidence that the Rubber B band will have the strength to withstand both tight and loose adjustments with ease.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Carbon Fiber Support for Glidelock

Carbon Fiber Support for Glidelock

Rubber B is the original after market watchband designer to develop watches specifically to fit both the case head of a specific timepiece and the deployant buckle that would come on the original steel band. This way an owner can get both the look and color of the band they want and not give up the features and functionality that are built in to the original deployant buckle.

However, the Rolex Glidelock advancement in their Submariner line posed a challenge for Rubber B. The micro-adjustment technology created friction and weight on the vulcanized rubber band.

In order to enhance the strength of its Glidelock bands, Rubber B added carbon fiber molecules in the vulcanized rubber injection mould process. The result is an increase in vertical and lateral stress resistance, while maintaining the supple flexible comfortaround the wearer’s wrist.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

Understanding Different Band Closures

Rubber B is one of the pioneers in Band Closure support with its watch bands. Most after market watch band companies only offer a tang buckle. Although Rubber B does offer a tang buckle, its buckle is made with 316L Stainless Steel, and it can be replaced with the one from the manufacturer – for example you can take off the Rubber B Tang and replace it with a Panerai Tang.

Rubber B pioneered the Velcro series closures with titanium inserts. This is built with industrial strength Velcro thread and can be adjusted precisely for a perfect fit.

Probably more so than any other watch band company, Rubber B has worked diligently to be able to support the original watch deployant buckles from Rolex, Panerai, AP and Patek.

Many of these deployant buckles are made with fine substances such as gold and may show the Rolex crown or Panerai engraving on it. Rubber B wanted owners to have the ability to remove these priceless buckles and add them to their new, colorful and stylish Rubber B strap.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

Measuring the Lug Width

An important think to know when you have a fine timepiece is how big is the lug width. This is the distance between where the strap could be attached. Most timepieces have either an 18, 20 or 22 mm width. For this reason, Rubber B has focused on developing universal straps for these sizes.

If you have a 19 mm lug width on your timepiece, you can either go a size smaller and get an 18 mm band, or you could go up to a 20 mm band and possibly shave the edge off slightly to get it to fit perfectly.

Rubber B works hard to try and give clients the most perfect fit, and for this reason they make custom bands for the most popular timepieces. Each year, Rubber B focuses on new timepieces to add custom bands for. Recently they have added the Apple, Breitling, IWC, and Roger Dubuis bands.

If you don’t have a custom band for your timepiece, don’t worry. Our universal straps look great and will fit almost any timepiece.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Gore® Tenara® Sewing Thread

Gore Tenara Stitching

Rubber B is determined to create watch bands that will stand up to the elements so our clients can do activities such as swimming, diving, and sun bathing without worry. For this reason, Rubber B developed the Gore® Tenara® Sewing Thread.

It has remarkable and proven endurance against UV sunlight, cleaning agents, salt water, and extreme weather. The Rubber B Couture Series is hand stitched in France and knotted invisibly within the vulcanized rubber mass for uniformity and comfort.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Adding a hint of color with VulChromatic Process

VulChromatic Colors

Rubber B has been working with various color rubber for years. The designers wanted to push the envelope and do something different. They wanted to create a band with more than one color. Perhaps a touch of red or blue… almost like adding a racing stripe to the side of a car.

However, Rubber B didn’t want to use a dye and they didn’t want to use any glues that could create a sub-par band. Instead they created a patented and innovative process by which a window of vulcanized rubber is precision moulded as a layer within the mass.

With this process they were able to create 2 color bands, while providing one permanent seamless unit. The resulting band has the same strength, tension and torsion uniformity as a single color band. This is because theyre is no painting, bonding, glues, sealants or other superficial coloring methods used.

A VulChromatic strap will function and endure exactly like a single mass (color) strap. This dedication to perfection is what makes Rubber B the Ultimate Rubber Strap.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

How is Rubber B Different from Low Cost Rubber Straps?

From the above discussion you can see that Rubber B is quite a different company and their goal is to create the ultimate straps for their counterpart timepiece.

Low cost straps tend to be flimsy and generic. They often use dyes and paints and cheap silicone rubber. They aren’t built to maintain the strength and visual beauty that a vulcanized Rubber B strap demonstrates.

Rubber B designs their bands precisely for the watches that it is made for. No guesswork. The designs are painstakingly made to custom fit the case using the exacting methods that Swiss watchmakers have been using for hundreds of years.

Every band is made in Switzerland using the finest techniques and substances available. Therefore, Rubber B bands will last longer and retain their beauty.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Rubber B only uses Vulcanized Rubber

Why Vulcanized Rubber?

Vulcanized Rubber possesses the flexibility and strength that is unmatched by cheaper rubber products – such as silicone.

Since the colors are infused in the vulcanization process, rather than being painted on, the stunning colors last for the lifetime of the band.

The bands are made as a single product and are not glued together which could cause splitting or a weakened band.

The Vulcanized rubber can be made with unique textures that look like real leather or other designs. And it could be infused with carbon fiber or titanium to increase its already exceptional strength.

Once the mould has cooled, vulcanized rubber holds its shape expertly without feeling stiff. In fact, it feels great next to the skin and is supple and flexible like real leather. Yet, it can be submerged into water, resists the sun, sweat, sand, and other oils that could damage other substances.

Vulcanized rubber can be easily cleaned, and looks and smells like new. You can trust a vulcanized rubber band to protect your fine timepiece.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps

B2 Strap Basic

Rubber B customers have been asking for even more options. They want to find the exact color, texture, size and clasp that would fit their unique preferences.

Rubber B developed the B2Strap website to allow customers the ability to fully customize their strap experience. These straps can be used on nearly any watch.

At the B2Strap website you can pick from one of the many basic designs or head over to the configurator and choose between 4 lug sizes, 13 textures, 18 colors, a stitching thread color and even add personalization under the strap itself.

Each band is made with the beauty and luxury that Rubber B is recognized for.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
NATO Straps made from 100% Swiss Rubber

B2 NATO

The NATO strap has become increasingly popular in the past few years. However, regular NATO straps are made of canvass and cheap thread which can deteriorate over time. Rubber B developed its NATO strap series with B2Strap and now these straps are 100% Swiss Made Rubber.

It has the same look and feel of real NATO canvas-style watchbands. But it has the resiliency, flexibility and strength of rubber.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Rubberpaint lets your imagination explore new possibilities

B2 Xclusive Rubberpaint®

The Rubberpaint series is an exciting advancement in the Vulcanized Rubber design process.

These bands can have the most unique designs and color palates that you can imagine. Now you can have millions of different designs at your fingertips. This site is frequently updated with new designs.

Guide to the Best Rubber Watch Straps
Combining real leather with rubberized base

Structure Series™

Rubber B pioneered the idea of adding rubber to leather and creating a unique product that is more durable than traditional leather band products in the past.

Most leather bands have cardboard fillers that warp, tear, and bleed when it is made wet or after wear and tear. The vulcanized rubber is better. It protects the leather from developing odors and can be simply wiped clean with a damp cloth.

Other Notable Series

Rubber B - E-Boutique

About Rubber B - The Ultimate Rubber Strap

Swiss Made by leaders in the luxury watch industry. See How We Craft Vulcanized Rubber With Full Integration of Band to Watch. High-End Watch Straps.

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