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How to Refinish a Brushed Watch Bracelet

Recently, my brother came to visit and I had a chance to handle his Seiko SARB033. He has been wearing the watch daily for a couple of years now. Since this is the only watch he owns, it has more wear and tear compared to people that have a multi-watch rotation.

When I picked up the watch, it quickly became apparent how beat up the bracelet was so I decided to refinish it. As I was about to start, I thought "why not write an article about it?" Although we don't sell metal bracelets, I feel that this could be useful for those who owns watches with one. Note that this process is for steel only, and not suitable for those with plating, titanium, or precious metal. So here is how to refinish a brushed watch bracelet.

Tools Required:

  • Scotch Brite Pad
  • Spring bar tool with small fork (for bracelet's small access)

1. This is a photo of the bracelet from years of wear and tear. First step is to inspect which part of the bracelet is brushed so you can avoid those that are polished or unfinished. For the SARB033 bracelet, the entire top is brushed.  

2. Take the bracelet off so it could be isolated from the watch case.

3. Split the bracelet into smaller sections so they can be worked on separately. 

4. Use the scotch brite pad to scrub the bracelet until the scratches are gone. The main purpose here is to scour away any surface scuffs. Don't focus too much on how straight the brushed marks are - we will cover how to create straight finishing in later steps.

5. Make sure to scrub the smaller pieces too!

6. After scrubbing, finish by dragging the bracelet in a long and straight singular motion. This helps ensure the finishing on the brushed surface is parallel with the rest of the bracelet. 

7. Another way to obtain straight brushed finish is to drag the scotch brite pad along the metal. For example, I dragged it along the links of the bracelet. This method is more suitable in areas that have bumps and creases.

8. After brushing, inspect all the pieces to ensure the brushed surfaces are parallel 

9. When you are satisfied with the result, rinse, dry, and put the bracelet back onto the watch

10. Volia!

That's it! This is a quick and easy way to bring your metal bracelet back to life. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to email us or leave a message below. 

-SMC Team

 


2 comments

  • Thanks for the kind words! We are glad you find it useful.

    SMC Team
  • Great how-to guide, thanks a lot guys! Your method was super affordable and quick to execute and the results were incredible. I restored a pair of 10+ years old beater watches into near new condition for my father-in-law and he is over the moon with the job.
    For a separate project – I’ve had a Seiko SNK809 on bracelet for a while now and the beadblasted finish of the steel has always given the watch a terribly cheap appearance, almost like a resinous plastic. Well, now the case is fully brushed in a circular pattern and the bracelet done according to your guide. It looks amazing! So much better than the original factory spec.
    Thank you immensely, I am indebted to you guys.

    Matthew A

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