Changing a Buckle or Clasp

Changing a buckle is relatively easy! It is attached using a spring bar, similar to the ones that connect the watch band to the watch case. Conceptualize the buckle change as a similar operation to changing a roll of toilet paper — the difference being that the buckle is a lot smaller and you need a small tool to compress the spring bar. If you do not have a spring bar tool, remember that others have used small screwdrivers, fingernail files, and other thin devices that can fit between the buckle and leather strap.

Installation of a deployant clasp is done in much the same way. One end of the clasp replaces the buckle utilizing a spring bar attachment; the other end attaches to the selected hole on the long section of your strap.

Watch our instructional video or follow the step-by-step instructions, below. When you're done with the lesson, be sure to check out our selection of replacement buckles and clasps.

Tools used to change a buckle/clasp:

Spring Bar Tool

Mini Spring Bar Tool

Polishing Cloth Cloth

Step-by-Step Guide to Changing a Buckle
Step 1 – remove the original buckle. Throughout this process, you will want to use a spring bar tool or other thin device to manage the spring bar. We also recommend laying a soft cloth down on your work surface to protect your watch.
Step 2 – check to see if the spring bar ends are exposed on the side of the buckle. If so, use the pointed end to push or compress the spring bar end.

If there are no pinholes on side of buckle, turn strap over and use forked end to reach between buckle and leather.
Step 3 – compress spring bar from end by pushing down through pinhole

If there are no pinholes on side of buckle, compress spring bar by catching its shoulder with forked end of spring bar tool. Push toward leather to let end of spring bar slip out of pinhole.

Step 4 – once spring bar releases from buckle pinhole, pull buckle away from the spring bar and downward to release opposite end.
Step 5 – Once buckle has been removed, begin to push spring bar out of strap.
Step 6 – continue pushing spring bar out of strap.
Step 7- sometimes spring bar will simply fall out as you push. Other times, you will need to grab hold of it and pull it the rest of the way out of strap.
Step 8 – if buckle post does not fall out of strap, simply pull it out.

Step 9 – install new replacement buckle or clasp. (If necessary, compress and remove the spring bar from replacement to prepare for installation as shown in step 2, above.)

Deployant clasp attaches as shown in illustration, left.

Step 10 – insert post from new buckle into the center notch of strap. (You will skip this step if you are installing a deployant clasp.)

Step 11 – insert spring bar through strap loop and eye of the post.

Some spring bars will be snug and may require that you push them through with the aid of a tool.

Step 12 – You now have the post and spring bar in place, ready to attach the buckle/clasp.
Step 13 – insert one end of the spring bar into a buckle/clasp pinhole.

While keeping one end of the spring bar securely in the  pinhole, position the opposite pinhole as close to the exposed spring bar as possible.


Step 14 – using the forked end of your spring bar tool, compress the spring bar so that it can slide underneath the buckle/clasp.
Step 15 – carefully slide the spring bar until it aligns with the pinhole. When it does, it will click into place.
Step 16 – your watch band now has the replacement buckle or deployant on and is ready to wear.