Since I bought my Speedy, I’ve mostly been wearing it on a TF Rally strap which I think perfectly suits the original intentions Omega had for the watch, not of course that there’s anything wrong with the NASA associations, far from it. But having seen recent shots of vintage 1171 bracelets, I had a hankering to try my watch out on the 1998/849 bracelet, given that funds are not currently available for a 1171 – not yet anyway.
Moving from a leather strap to a weighty and solid metal bracelet was something of a change – not helped by my wrist being precisely the “wrong” size. I say that because with seven links on the six o’clock side, eight links on the twelve and using the tightest of the two adjustment holes on the clasp, the bracelet was too loose with the watch head flopping around all over the place. Perhaps you can guess what’s coming next. I passed through the pain barrier of dealing with all that pin and collar nonsense to remove a link, only to find the bracelet was now too tight, even on the loosest clasp hole. Great. The reason why Omega moved from seven adjustment holes on previous clasps to the current two, eludes me.
However, Google, as ever is your friend.
I read that the half links for the Seamaster 1610 bracelet are a perfect match for the 1998/849 cosmetically and fit with the same sized pins and collars. So a quick visit to one of our favourite on-line retailers later and this little beauty arrived.
Here’s the Speedy taped up ready for the bracelet work to commence. This is the 6 o’clock side with its seven links.
After a bit of swearing and one bent pin later, here it is with 6 and a half links.
As you can see I elected to fit the half-link one link up from the clasp rather than adjacent to it. This was because I’d previously loosened the link it replaced and I actually quite like looking at the little tinker when it’s on the wrist.
With the half link in position, the tightest clasp hole gives me a perfect fit, as you can see from this other wrist shot, there’s easily enough slack to shove a finger in there, which I’ve always taken to be the sign of a comfy fit. I also have the option to go to the looser clasp hole should I need. It’s a pleasure to have a correctly sized bracelet, at last.