A couple of months ago, I wrote an article on rubber as a watch strap material. In it, I talked about the pros and cons of rubber straps, what makes a good rubber strap, and shared some examples. Today, we’re going to take a close look at the recently released Everest Universal Rubber Strap. As a sports watch type-of-guy, owning a good rubber strap is crucial for when I find myself not typing articles on watches on my keyboard. In other words, when doing work around the house, traveling, in the summer, and doing all sorts of nature-related activities such as hiking and camping. Rubber straps just work for all of these times.
As in all things in life, good stuff comes with a higher price tag. While Everest sells high-quality nylon straps for $30, rubber is another story. A good rubber strap will—more often than not— will set you back $120-$200. To get the price of the Everest rubber strap out of the way, they retail for a little over $180. Perhaps more than you would want to spend on such a strap, however you are in for a treat well worth every penny. Comparing it to my hands on experience with OEM straps from other watch brands at $350-$800, Everest blows them out of the water both in design and price.
The Everest Rubber Strap Design
The way a rubber strap is designed will influence its wearing comfort. Because how long it is, where the keepers are placed, and the taper all play a major role in making a strap comfortable—or not. In the case of the Everest rubber strap, we’re looking at a gentle taper from the lugs to the buckle, following the natural contour of the wrist. This helps balance the weight of the watch head by spreading it more evenly. From a visual standpoint, the taper is accented by the fact that the center portion of the strap is raised, which makes the strap look more interesting than if it was simply flat.
The taper also guarantees that the watch sits closer to the skin and that the strap itself shoots straight down from the lugs. This lessens the appearance of bulk that rubber straps are generally a victim of. (The strap in itself is rather thin.) Furthermore, the strap looks good on any watch thanks to having curved ends instead of straight ones. Since most watches have circular cases, having curved hands makes the strap look more natural and better fitted. (I don’t like gaps that straight-end straps create.) This might seem like a small detail but it makes a whole world of difference when wearing the strap.
While most brands that make rubber straps stamp their logo on the buckle, Everest opted for an unsigned buckle. This is nice because it shows that it’s about the strap, not the brand, and it guarantees that the strap can be paired with any watch regardless of this brand name and price tag. (Everest did stamp its name on the underneath of the strap.) The Everest Rubber Strap does fly under the radar, as it should, so that the wearer can focus on the wearing experience. Lastly, I like that Everest gave the buckle a full-brushed finish which reinforces its universal quality.
Note: for an extra $10 you can choose a black or gold buckle.
The Everest Rubber Strap Specifications
As noted in my article on rubber straps, this material has several important properties. Not only is it water and sweat proof, but it also resists stains, smudges, and, basically, all sorts of stuff that would make any other type of strap look shaggy. Furthermore, Everest uses what is known as vulcanized rubber which indicates that its fabrication process makes it sturdier than a regular rubber strap. Rubber is also hypo-allergenic which means that your wrist will not have an allergic reaction to the material. Believe it or not, I’ve worn certain fabric straps that caused an allergic reaction.
As the expression goes, the devil is in the details. There are two key aspects of the Everest Rubber Strap fabrication and design that are particularly unique. First, one of the two keepers (the one closest to the buckle) is secured in place by being lodged in-between two crown-guard looking elements on either side of the strap. While the keeper can be moved if needed, it won’t move when wearing the strap. (Makes sense, right?) Second, the underside of the strap has been carved in to help the skin breath by reducing how much rubber is in direct contact with the skin.
While $180 can seem like a lot of money to spend on a rubber strap, I honestly think it’s absolutely worth it. More often than not, spending less means getting a lesser quality product. And I don’t like to skimp on the quality of straps I pair with my favorite watches because I want the combo to look good and for me to enjoy wearing the strap all day and in all situations. Therefore, it must be well-built, comfortable to wear, as well as being cleverly designed and engineered. The Everest Rubber Strap offers all of the above.
On last note, the Everest Universal Rubber Strap only comes with a 20mm lug width. Learn more about this magnificent strap here.