As the very first company to create integrated rubber straps for Rolex sport watches in 2010, Rubber B modestly, but courageously introduced vulcanized rubber straps that featured blocked case integration and Oyster clasp compatibility for a few select Rolex watch models, including the Daytona, Submariner, and GMT Master. Initial reception by the Rolex community was vehemently mixed, and a gentle path to mainstream acceptance was paved with a long-term focus on promoting quality craftsmanship. Seven years later, Rubber B has become a mainstay, having grown exponentially to include over 175 different strap options that accommodate passionate watch owners of many various luxury brands.
Even Rolex, SA has joined in on the rubber strap phenomenon, most recently introducing their new “Oyster–Flex” straps for the 2015 Yachtmaster and the brand new 2017 Daytona. In the past, Rolex had only produced a limited number of gem-set Datejust watches that came with their own fashionable rubber strap with inlaid diamonds, but this new foray into rubber straps for sport models certainly has broadened the field of strap options available to Rolex enthusiasts.
Most notably, Rubber B is the only integrated watchband company whose rubber straps are earnestly produced in Switzerland, and always feature the mold marking “Swiss Made” in their rubber body, as such markings are strictly guarded by international trade law. Each integrated Rubber B strap contains a solid insert that has been micro-calibrated for a specific watch model, maintaining a tight, rotation-free mount to the watch case (“Blocked Integration”). The original purpose of Rubber B was to provide discerning Rolex watch owners with a viable alternative to their original Rolex bracelet, while they enjoyed comfort, individuality, and customization. However, in the case of the beautiful Sky-Dweller that comes originally from Rolex on a crocodile band, such owners can now have the added benefit of bathing, swimming, and perspiring without worry, all while wearing their exclusive Rolex watch.
Recently released, this uniquely integrated Rubber B watchband for the Rolex Sky-Dweller represents the latest and most high-tech evolution in rubber strap manufacturing. Although Rubber B straps are created exclusively in an industry-leading Swiss factory, the Sky-Dweller strap presented quite a challenge during development. This new design is significantly more structured than previous Rubber B models. The incorporation of a patented dual-color technology, termed VulChromatic® combined with this delicate, yet complex undertaking, required more machine re-engineering than usual. The target objective finally became a successful execution, as you may notice, represented in the surface color’s extremely finite margins (photo below).
It is an overly-used phrase these days, but Rolex owners truly do understand and appreciate the value of Swiss quality engineering. Every aspect of a Rubber B strap must maintain an integral respect to its intended watch. For example, the bezel-influenced fluted grooves and subtle color patterns of this particular strap are intended to compliment the various Sky-Dweller models and dials currently available from Rolex. Beyond such design elements, the customer’s best interest must be profoundly considered. For, it is only upon the wearer’s long-term endearment of their strap, that the reputation of the strap-maker can be organically built. Rubber B believes you must value the customer, striving to provide them with a product that they will truly find impressive, then enjoy, and greatly appreciate. The VulChromatic® Series with dual-color chemistry was created by Rubber B’s Swiss factory with this exact purpose in mind.
This patented process takes place during the injection-mold stage, producing a wonderfully fused, dual-colored strap with limitless flexibility and conformity of two rubber masses, while they function as one permanent, seamless unit. This allows for full range of motion, twisting, and torsion without the need for superficial agents such as paints, glues, or bonding. For a very long time in the industry, multi-color straps could only be achieved with lesser-acclaimed or sub-par materials such as silicone. Vulcanized rubber has always (and still does) carried some limitations with regards to achieving the full color/tone spectrum, and it might never be possible to create as many color tones as can be realized with plastics and silicone. But, it is very exciting to now have the capability of producing luxurious, natural vulcanized rubber straps within the multi-color realm while opening the door to an array of possibilities.
Priced at $280 and available in four VulChromatic® color options (including double black), the current Rubber B for Sky-Dweller featured in this article is only compatible with models that come on a crocodile band. The strap is, of course designed to mount the customer’s own Rolex Oyster clasp (another Rubber B original concept from its 2010 launch).
For those of you who may have a Sky-Dweller on a stainless steel, gold, or two-tone Oyster bracelet, no need to worry - there is a new Rubber B strap for your model currently in production at the Swiss factory, and scheduled for release in Spring 2018. You can sign up here to be notified upon its arrival.
RubberB.com is the official brand website for e-commerce retail purchasing in the USA and abroad. The Sky-Dweller strap and all other models can be purchased directly online. Various photos of color combinations can be found on independent social media posts under #rubberb and at @RubberB_Official on Instagram. Most importantly, Rubber B wishes to thank their loyal customers for being a big part of a steady journey to bring exciting, innovative Swiss-made products to fruition. rubberb.com
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