I was attending an event at A. Lange & Sohne with the LAWatchGang down here in Orange County when I was introduced to Vinh, the owner operator of Artisan Strap Company. We got to talking and I found out that he didn’t have any straps for Panerai. I was a bit shocked but quickly mentioned that he has to get some of his work done in 24mm to appease all the rabid strap changing Paneristis in the world like myself. Vinh mentioned he would look into creating something and true to his word a few days later I recieved a package of the 2 new Panerai straps that have been added to his collection. I decided to do the first review on the strap which he calls the Java.
The Panerai Signature Java Strap is a medium brown tone of premium leather that is sourced in the United States. The leather itself is not a solid brown color, it has a very fine speckling of black that give it an aged look which is complimented nicely with hand texturing to enhance the distressed look. While most OEM panerai straps taper from 24mm to 22mm, the ASC (Artisan Strap Co) one tapers from 24mm down to a little over 18mm. The thickness is pretty much the same through out and measures in at around 2.5mm. With these measurements the ASC strap weighs in a bit thinner than most straps you see available for Panerai.
The stitching on the Java strap is done in a toned down red color that compliments the brown tones nicely. The strap is stitched entirely by hand and done tightly and very precise in terms of it being identical on both sides. The underside of the strap is finished with a grey leather that is made out of premium pig skin to give it the best comfort while on the wrist.
The Java is constructed using a two layered design which is slightly visible when you look at it on the side towards the lugs. ASC has finished off the rest of the edges cleanly leaving no real trace that it features multiple layers. The buckle end features two keepers, one fixed and one floating. The actual keepers themselves are definitely thinner than I am used to seeing but that again goes to the overall design choices of ASC. With the strap being thinner overall you can get away with having thinner keepers on this strap. It is finished off with a matte silver buckle that comes standard with his hand made creations.
I have to say that the overall comfort of this strap is top notch. The premium pig skin lining he uses on the bottom of the strap really is very comfortable on the wrist. The strap is very soft right out of the box so you don’t really need a break in period. It conformed to my wrist nicely and I was good to go.
If I’m being honest I would have to tell all of you that I am not normally a fan of thinner tapered straps. I have normally shied away from them when ordering straps becuase I felt it didn’t look good on a bigger watch, especially a Panerai. When I noticed that the taper on this particular strap was all the way down to 18mm I did have some reservations putting it on. My PAM312 is a 1950’s case that naturally rides high on the wrist and some straps that I have had in the past don’t hold that weight down well and I get a lot of play up there which is quite annoying. I was worried I would have the same problem with this strap as well being it is much thinner and tapered than my normal set of go to straps. After some time on my wrist I can say without a doubt I was wrong in the case of the ASC strap. It held up nicely and I didn’t have a flopping case on top of my wrist. The wrist time I got with the strap and my watch put my mind at ease and lets me recommend these hand made beauties to anyone with a Panerai. I have a feeling that they will look amazing on the Radiomir and thinner 1940’s cases.
All Artisan Strap Company straps are custom made to order so definitely reach out via their website. The wait times are only about 3-5 days which is very short in the world of custom hand made straps.
Website: Artisan Strap Co