We’ve covered a couple of Spinnaker watches so far and have been generally impressed by the quality they achieve for their asking price. One of the standout features in all of the watches has been their straps. Spinnaker straps are now available separately and they sent us some samples to try out.
Spinnaker Straps Review
The first thing that struck me about the Spinnaker straps was the quality of the packaging. Generally, whenever I have bought straps they arrive in a plastic bag with perhaps a bundled cleaning cloth. Spinnaker really have gone the extra mile here. Each strap comes in a little drawstring storage bag. Within that you have a protective paper bag and the strap itself comes with tissue paper wrapped around it for an extra layer of protection. Every strap has spring bars supplied (like Spinnaker watches, these are all 22mm wide) and some even have a little strap changing tool in the bag. Very impressive.
First up is a seatbelt NATO. I reviewed (and bought a couple of) Armilla NATO straps last year and this one is just as well made. Until you’ve tried a seatbelt NATO it is hard to explain how much better it is than a regular NATO strap. My usual concerns about thickness notwithstanding, this is a high-quality strap suitable for a quality watch.
Next up is an Italian-made leather strap. It proudly boasts that it is hand-made, and it certainly looks to be the case here. The vintage style stitching is lovely and the strap is made of a thick, unpadded leather. It feels like it might mark easily, so would be suitable for a beat-up watch like the Spinnaker Wreck as it will pick up patina from use.
The third Spinnaker strap is an unusual one. It’s a rubber-backed leather. That should combine the good looks of a leather strap with the durability and comfort of rubber. I am a recent convert to rubber straps, having shunned them for many years, and this one is the best of both worlds. As usual, the fit and finish is excellent and it is really comfortable to wear.
Rubber again for the next strap, but this one is embossed with a woven texture. I was not as impressed by this rubber as the others. It’s made of a good quality material, but I was not convinced by the textured look – it seemed to be the opposite of the rubber-backed strap, offering the least attractive elements of rubber!
Finally, a rubber NATO. Not a colour or style I would ever choose myself, but it is as well made as the others if you like that kind of thing!
Are Spinnaker Straps and Good? The WRUK Verdict
All of these straps are really well made. The hardware is top quality and the fit and finish is excellent throughout. Even the presentation is a step above what I am used to seeing. So that’s a wholehearted WRUK recommendation, then? Well, no. We’ve not covered the price yet. Those who have been collecting watches for a while will be aware that there are many strap vendors offering high-quality straps for a reasonable price. I tend to use Watchgecko here in the UK. These new Spinnaker straps start at $40 (£30) for the seatbelt NATO, up to $85 (£65) for the Italian-made leather variant. That’s about double the price of an equivalent quality strap from Watchgecko. The prices are in-line with other OEM strap offerings, but savvy buyers don’t buy OEM straps – at least not for low to mid-range watches.
So, if you have a Spinnaker watch and matching the branding is important to you then you will be impressed with what is on offer here. But it would be remiss of me to recommend you buy these at full retail price when there are equally good offerings available for less. If you see Spinnaker straps at a discount, they’re worth picking up.
Buy a Spinnaker Strap
Win a set of Spinnaker Straps
For the next month or so we’re running a competition on our Giveaway page, so enter now for your chance to win the set of straps reviewed here.