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Old 23 August 2014, 04:54 AM   #1
Tools
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Smartyjones End Links, A TRF Review

One topic that comes up regularly is that of an end-link filler for straps on Rolex watches. This look is typified on the strap Daytonas and Datejusts, but those have end links integrated into the case and are not available for any other models or references.

Smartyjones18 (George) was kind enough to send a pair of end-links that he makes in Singapore for our review so that you can decide for yourself if this is the way you want to go, or if you just want to have a pair around for those times when you decide to use a strap.

The end links arrived in a bubble wrap envelope and each in their own separate plastic bags to avoid contact and unnecessary scratching during transit. These pieces are deceptively small and so their manufacture is difficult at best and I'm sure that you can appreciate the fine detail necessary. Finish is good and fitment is pretty straightforward sliding directly between the lugs.

These links are floating, in-that they do not have any attachment mechanism except a capture fit between the end of the strap/spring-bar and the case. The link back contour matches a 40mm case and there are small lips machined at the base to locate them positively against the case back. The outer, visible, portion is machined to the same dimensions and look as an Oyster bracelet end link, the strap fits against the link and into a groove designed to allow the strap to move up and down. This groove also locks the link around the end of the strap. Close examination of the forward edge of the link shows that it is quite sharp and care must be taken to not bend the strap too far backward or it may dig into the leather. This could be alleviated by a quick de-burring of that edge with some fine grit sandpaper of very fine file. Worn on the wrist it shouldn't be an issue.

Here you can see the links as they arrived. The lips on the back and the strap groove are readily visible, as is the Oyster profile. They are a single machined item with nothing glued, welded, or added.

Smarty_005 by LarryDPhotography, on Flickr

These links are suitable for use on most 40mm cases including: Daytona, Sub, GMT, and Explorer II. I thought it would be nice to see how these pieces looked and fit on an older Explorer II. You can see that they fit easily between the lugs and the stainless steel brush finish matches nicely.

Smarty_001 by LarryDPhotography, on Flickr

Installation is pretty straight forward; you slide the link in against the case, put your springbar into the strap and install the strap as normal. I am using a padded Hirsch Croc strap and so I found it was a bit difficult to get the springbar to lock in without pressing between the strap and case with a bracelet tool. This strap is as large as you can use with these link. Perhaps if you want to use a thicker strap you could contact George to see if he makes links with a larger cut out for your strap.

Smarty_002 by LarryDPhotography, on Flickr

As mentioned, on the backside these links are held in place by lips o each side that press against the lug, similar to the early stamped end-links. That, along with the spring-bar and strap, capture the link, keeping it in place. If you were to lose your strap then the link would likely come out as well.

Smarty_003 by LarryDPhotography, on Flickr

Overall, these end links are well made, fit in place nicely, and fulfill a desire to use straps on our watches without the unsightly gap between the strap and case. I believe that these add a different dimension to this old Explorer II and will do the same for any Rolex watch. If you are interested please do not solicit here but send George a pm at Smartyjones18, I'm sure that he will be able to meet your needs.

I will be trying these out on a few other models in the near future, but right now I think that I'll be wearing this Explorer II and giving these links a few weeks to see how they wear, and, of course, to show of my Explorer II on a great looking Croc strap with matching endlinks.

Smarty_004 by LarryDPhotography, on Flickr
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Old 23 August 2014, 05:00 AM   #2
wantonebad
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nice, how much are they Larry?
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Old 23 August 2014, 05:01 AM   #3
Dan Pierce
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Excellent review and pics, Larry!
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Old 23 August 2014, 05:04 AM   #4
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Thanks for the review. What's a ball park figure for these?
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Old 23 August 2014, 05:08 AM   #5
Tools
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Don't ask me about prices or selling, that's not what TRF is about..

If you want to know such things, contact Smartyjones18
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Old 23 August 2014, 05:12 AM   #6
wantonebad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tools View Post
Don't ask me about prices or selling, that's not what TRF is about..

If you want to know such things, contact Smartyjones19
Smartyjones18 right? PM sent
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Old 23 August 2014, 05:15 AM   #7
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Quote:
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Smartyjones18 right? PM sent
Correct.
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Old 8 June 2024, 02:32 AM   #8
Wingman244
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So it's June 2024 and I am here to say you can still get endlinks from Smartyjones website. They work and look great. If you don't mind waiting for a month do standard shipping to the US. I would maybe ask for expedited shipping if they offer it.
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Old 15 June 2024, 01:40 AM   #9
powerfunk
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Love my smarty endlinks!
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