Are all spring bars created equal? - Seiko & Citizen Watch Forum Japanese Watch Reviews, Discussion & Trading
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Old 03-02-2019, 04:42 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Are all spring bars created equal?

I recently bought one of those cheapo spring bar tool kit from Amazon and it came with a box of spring bars (see pic below - they couldn't even bother to spell "spring bar" correctly).

Are the spring bars that come in these cheap kits the same quality as regular AM spring bars? Or are they junk that will fail the first time on the wrist?
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Old 03-02-2019, 04:51 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Spring bars are always replaced on any new (vintage ) watches I receive as the ones in place are normally worn, I've no had an issue with these ex ebay/Amazon, fitted correctly. but im not putting them under much pressure. You can get fat spring bars
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Old 03-02-2019, 05:04 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Definitely not. If it's a Seiko dive watch then it's only original Seiko fat spring bars. Expensive watch then it's going to be Swiss made spring bars. For low use watches I'm happy to use a cheap kit springbars. I get mine from Cousins UK as their kits seem to be decent quality.
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Old 03-02-2019, 05:26 AM   #4 (permalink)
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In the past i've bought some spring bar packages from ebay and they have been real crap, I wouldent trust even a cheap watch on them.

Strange really we can have a 1000 watch on our wrist so why skimp and save a few pennies by buying cheap spring bars.

It is such a tiny cheap part of our watch wearing/collecting hobby why take the risk ? buy the best your able to if you can.

Fat spring bars are a must on divers IMO for securing the watch and preventing damage to the lug holes.
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Old 03-02-2019, 06:41 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I use those exact "spring bap" things, never had a problem. Mind you, I dont wear a watch worth thousands, I think the most expensive one I wear out of the house cost perhaps 25 quid.

If I were wearing a divers watch and exploring the mary rose or jumping out of a plane with a pogue on I would reconsider my choices.
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Old 03-02-2019, 07:51 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Any sources for quality spring bars or just go to Seiko? What about short pins for buckles?
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Old 03-02-2019, 09:17 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Make sure the spring bars ate at least stainless steel.

Swiss made ones are the best. I have held some before and even though spring bars are tiny things (it was size 1.8 x20) you could feel the weight difference. And if you had a few in your palm and they “clink together” even the sound is different. But they are very price. Cheap bars are like 3$ per 100. Cheap s/s bars are about $5-6 per 100. Those swiss ones where $4-5 per piece.
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Old 03-02-2019, 10:17 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kentronix View Post

If I were wearing a divers watch and exploring the mary rose or jumping out of a plane with a pogue on I would reconsider my choices.
You dont need a divers watch to explore the Mary Rose, its in a dry, heated museum
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Old 03-02-2019, 10:40 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ivorbiggin View Post
You dont need a divers watch to explore the Mary Rose, its in a dry, heated museum
I had tried to think of a different wreck but couldnt, I blame blue peter, it covered it for what felt like my entire childhood , I figured nobody would be that pedantic to mention it, wrong forum to assume that
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Old 03-02-2019, 11:10 AM   #10 (permalink)
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well to me...u get what u pay for...i would never trust a good watch with something like that...spend the money and get the right ones...God Bless,John
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Old 03-02-2019, 12:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ivorbiggin View Post
You dont need a divers watch to explore the Mary Rose, its in a dry, heated museum
I wasent sure what diving he was going to do with Mary Rose
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Old 03-02-2019, 02:14 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Spring bars

This is going to be a stupid question, I know it is but I've gotta ask it anyway.
When buying spring bars obviously you need to know the length required (I presume that's the width of the lugs), then you need to know the diameter required.
Now this is the bit I'm not so sure of, is that the diameter of the centre "tube" or the diameter of the pin end where it fits into the case?.

If based on the tube diameter, can the diameter of the pin end be different diameters for the same diameter tube, or are they just common end pin sizes that increase with the tube diameter?.
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Old 03-02-2019, 02:40 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ankrett View Post
This is going to be a stupid question, I know it is but I've gotta ask it anyway.
When buying spring bars obviously you need to know the length required (I presume that's the width of the lugs), then you need to know the diameter required.
Now this is the bit I'm not so sure of, is that the diameter of the centre "tube" or the diameter of the pin end where it fits into the case?.

If based on the tube diameter, can the diameter of the pin end be different diameters for the same diameter tube, or are they just common end pin sizes that increase with the tube diameter?.
Dosent seem stupid to me Lee.

The pin end can be different for the same tube dia, you can get them with smaller dia tubes but with bigger ends, ideal when you have a bracelet that won't take a fat spring bar which you want to use on a diver for instance.

ps: Check ebay seller twente(o) he has a good range.
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Old 03-02-2019, 04:48 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I used to use spring bars from these kits (and occasionally still do) and never had a problem but, over the last couple years try to use genuine Seiko spring bars exclusively. When you compare a genuine Seiko to one of these generic under magnification, you can clearly see differences in the finish (as I'm sure you can with quality Swiss). As others have said, no reason to skimp pennies on something so important to the watch.
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Old 03-02-2019, 09:22 PM   #15 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=mwadner;2731511]I used to use spring bars from these kits (and occasionally still do) and never had a problem







I use them and never had a problem with them or a complaint


Seiko divers go on repo fat s/bars if possible though.
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Old 03-03-2019, 04:33 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the responses.

I learned about diver spring bars the hard way... Bought an orange monster from ebay with an AM rubber strap. When it arrived, I noticed the strap was a little wobbly but, being the noob that I am, I didn't think much of it. The next day, I was wearing the watch while shoveling snow and... surprise, surprise, one of the spring bars popped out and my monster got a first-hand lesson in gravity. Luckily, it narrowly missed the concrete and landed on a patch of ice, leaving only a small scratch on the side of the case between the lugs. After that I learned that my diver has enlarged lug holes but the AM strap was mounted on regular spring bars.

Here are the diver spring bars I'm using now:
I like these bars because they have the same large 1.1mm tips as the OEM Seiko fat bars but a thinner barrel diameter (1.78mm or 2.0mm vs 2.5mm of Seiko fat bars) which makes them easier to fit on standard AM straps. I think the 2.5mm thickness of the Seiko fat bars is overkill for me because I don't dive and am not otherwise hard on my watches.

As for the "BAPs" in the OP, given the mixed responses in this thread, I think I'll keep these bars for use on my beaters and light-use watches.

Thanks again for all your input.
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Old 03-03-2019, 04:54 AM   #17 (permalink)
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In which bracket do we place Cousins springs.

I have purchased a number from them, at their not too expensive prices, and they look fairly good quality.
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Old 03-03-2019, 07:31 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonJ53 View Post
In which bracket do we place Cousins springs.

I have purchased a number from them, at their not too expensive prices, and they look fairly good quality.
I have found them ok, that said my sister did have one break on her kinetic,. I would just use them on low value. Also who to say that assortment I purchased from them 18 months ago are the same as what they sell now.
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Old 03-03-2019, 07:40 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Really we don't know where and who makes them.

The Seiko FAT 2.5mm that have come with new watches have had a good corner rad on the 1.1/1.2 pin end. This prevents much damage to the lug. Any 3rd party purchased elsewhere have not had this feature.

Last edited by DonJ53; 03-03-2019 at 07:46 AM.
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