Since I got into the Panerai aftermarket strap game, there is one strap that I have wanted to get but kept holding off for the right one to fall into my lap. That’s where John Glance of Dangerous9 Straps came into the picture and made sure that this strap was thrown like a 100mph fast ball from Germany into my groin. If you are not familiar with John an Dangerous9 Straps then you definitely want to check out the interview I did with him a few months back.
You worked hard for your money and invested in a beautiful timepiece from Panerai, and when the time comes to spend your money on a strap to make it individual to you then you want only the best the market has to offer. Sure you can go OEM and get a great quality strap but everyone has that in their arsenal Sometimes you want something that’s exotic and will bring a new dimension to an already beautiful timepiece such as the Panerai. You want to find the Gucci, Versace, and Hermes of straps, well look no further because John at Dangerous9 is in the cream of the crop.
After a few months of back and forth I finally opted for a Ocean Blue Stingray strap. Figuring if I am going to get a custom strap, lets makes ure it’s a bit ouf of the box from the normal stingrays you see on the market today. After selecting the color and exotic skin, I gave Carte Blanche for him to customize the strap, picking from the numerous options available to the end user.
I was surprised to receive the package so swiftly after he had put it in the post from Germany. I was acting like a child on Christmas ripping open the packaging to see the end result. Granted, John had sent me some pictures of the completed product, but they just do not do the strap any justice. To make my life even more stressful they had beautifully wrapped the strap in two layers of tissue paper seen in the photos. After busting through that like a Rhino through a wall, I was a bit speechless. I had a grin from ear to ear; the STINGRAY had arrived!
The first thing I did was run my hand over the top to take in the texture and quality of the strap, which I will speak more to later on in this review. It was just something else from one end to the other.
The ocean blue color just glistened like a chandelier in the light as you moved it around to take in all it’s beauty. There is such a depth of color that kind of entrances you to keep staring at it even thought you have a ton of other things to do. The pattern of the actual stingray strap starts from a nice medium size all the way down to a very compressed smaller size , which is also used on the single floating keeper on the buckle style of the strap. John has picked the perfect location to start and end this strap as far as I am concerned. The only thing that this strap is missing is a pearl which of course is something you can opt in for when ordering as I will break down as well.
The strap is padded on the lug end of both sides of the strap which form a trapezoid shape if looked at from either end. This padding gives the strap a different dimension all together. On the tail end of the strap the padding is stopped right before the last hole. The area that is padded measures roughly 11-12mm thick at it’s highest point, while the unpadded area runs about 3mm.
The strap is tapered from 24mm down to 22mm much like the OEM Croc straps that Panerai has to offer. I can honestly say that I am not the biggest fan of tappered straps, but I wasn’t aware this strap was tapered until John mentioned it to me later on. It might have to do with the length of the tail part of the strap being longer than OEM giving it a more gradual taper as compared to a short OEM that tapers pretty quickly. The buckle end of the strap is finished off with a signature brushed screw in Pre-V type buckle with D9 on the the edge of it.
When turning the strap over, I was amazed to see the lining he used to finish this strap off, EEL! That’s right he went ahead and put in the SuperExotia Upgrade which gives you a choice of another exotic skin for the inside of the strap. In this case John felt that the eel skin contrasted the strap so well that it was a pairing made for the ages. He was absolutely right, the off white eel skin does wonders for the strap. Not only is it silky smooth to the touch, the skins unique seam that runs down the middle just put it over the top. The attention to detail doesn’t end there, John used the eel skin on the inside of the keeper as well to ensure it slides effortlessly on the strap.
On the eel skin John puts his signature handwritten Dangerous9 Script on the tail and a serial number I believe on the buckle end of it adding to the handmade masterpiece.
Looking at the strap’s edges you will notice another detail that John has not forgotten. To bring everything together on this complex and elegant strap, John has used a custom hand blended edge paint to match the Ocean Blue Stingray strap. When looking at this feature from afar you can’t make out the edge. It is as if the stingray skin goes right to the very edge.
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When first handling the strap I noticed that the strap is a bit stiff on the padded side of the strap which is very typical of a strap made like this. I knew right off the bat that I will have to break this one in a bit to get it exactly where I wanted. The horror I felt when I realized I actually had to wear the strap! Right off the bat I noticed that eel skin felt really nice against the skin and didn’t even bother me on a hot day like some other leather straps I have. Over the course of the next two days the strap’s padding started to mold itself to my wrist and got more and more comfortable. I 100% certain it is only going to get better as wrist time this strap sees becomes more and more. The tail end of the strap is very flexible from the first wear making it very easy to fit through the keeper.
WIth the quality of craftsmanship that has gone into this strap I am absolutely certain this strap is in it for the long run. I know what your thinking, there are always exceptions, which I completely agree with you there. Just in case you are one of the very rare exceptions that happens to have something go wrong with your strap, Dangerous9 has an amazing policy that any high end strap makers should have. John stands behind his work with a 1 year warranty, where for any reason if the strap fails under normal use due to a defect of either materials or workmanship, he will reapir or replace the item.
To show you the level of dedication that he puts into his straps, he includes a custom sheet with your strap detailing the material, break in period, and care/cleaning instructions to make sure you are enjoying your Dangerous9straps for years to come.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, I am in love with this strap. If you don’t follow me on Instagram you should start now and check out the amazing wrist-shots with this custom strap from Dangerous9. Needless to say the end product is something out of this world. It might not be everyones cup of tea, but at the end of it all this is a strap I have gotten a ton of compliments on in the two times I have put it on my wrist. Giving John free reign to do as he saw fit when it came to making this strap was the best thing I could have possibly done. Right now the version of my strap is the only one in the world, of course for now, before everyone sees this beauty and wants it’s matching twin.
If you want the blend originality, quality, and customer service into an end product, then look no further then John at Dangerous9straps.
Please leave us a comment and tell us what you think about this amazing custom aftermarket strap!
- Remarkable build quality
- Top notch exotic skin used on both inside and out
- Completely customizable
- Comes with Buckle and Tubes
- Price is on the higher end
- Due to popularity and high standard of quality current turnaround time is 9 weeks.
- You might forget about all your other straps
You can order any custom strap via email or through the Dangerous9 website. Since everything is customized, you can create anything you desire. I highly recommend bouncing ideas and thoughts off of John because he has a knack of picking the right things to make the strap stand out. He has amazing communication with his US clients even though he is in Germany.
In case you are wondering the options of the strap I received you can see the list and pricing below.
- Polished Stingray – $200.00
- Tapering – $15.00
- Padding at the lugs – $25.00
- D9 Screw In Pre-V Buckle – $10.00
- SuperExotica Unstitched Upgrade – $45.00
- Worldwide Fedex Shipping with full tracking – $30.00
Note that customers in the European Union are subject to a required VAT of 19%