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The Beta White Haveston IVA


Haveston IVA on an Omega Alaska Project II Speedmaster.

Haveston IVA on an Omega Alaska Project II Speedmaster.

Haveston IVA on an Omega Speedy Tuesday Speedmaster.

Haveston IVA on an Omega Speedy Tuesday Speedmaster.

In the days of the Gemini and Apollo missions, NASA equipped each of their astronauts with an Omega Speedmaster. Space and time were reunited once again, literally. In a time of technological advancement, the famous watch was strapped onto the outside of the space suit using a long black and velcro strap. That’s it! With their suits off, the astronauts simply wrapped it around their wrist twice. Nothing fancy here, just a straight up tool watch and a genius idea.

Fifty-some years later, we are introduced to the Haveston IVA (Intra-Vehicular Activity) strap. Offered in two colors, Lunar Grey and Beta White, we get an option for us earthbound space traveling dreamers.

Today we have the Beta White strap which is appropriately named after the material used for space suits (Beta cloth) and the distinguishable white coloration of NASA space suits.

The brilliant white nylon contrasts nicely with the black velcro. The hardware is a bead blasted metal loop and Haveston also included two rubber keepers to keep things nice and tidy. The strap differs slightly in build from the original design by having the nylon back the entire length of the velcro. This provides a soft touch against the skin compared to the scratchy feel of exposed velcro. The double layer of material also provides a more durable and rigid feel. The velcro is dense and has a strong grip and a nice good rip. This strap won’t come unfastened easily. The stitching throughout is superb with no loose ends.

Rubber keepers.

Rubber keepers.

Haveston’s take on the original NASA strap serial numbers.

Haveston’s take on the original NASA strap serial numbers.

On the hook end of the strap is printed with the part number and serial number:

P/N HAV12100030

S/N 1126

These are stylized to replicate the numerals on the NASA issued straps but adding their own personal touch (instead of SEB, Haveston replaced it with HAV).

While a very well built strap, there are some minor nitpicks. Unlike other straps they make, we don’t have an option of polished hardware here so finishing between the strap and watch might differ. I found no use for the rubber keepers as there was no excess strap that needed it; everything fastened without needing the extra security. The two layers of material might be thick for people. This becomes evident when you can’t easily slip the strap through the case and spring bars (I had to attach the spring bars after placing the strap against the case back).

Overall, I think this is another outstanding product by Haveston. By adding this strap to their collection, we get a diverse range of products for all genres of watches and preferences. This is done tastefully in the style of the original NASA Velcro strap while modernizing for comfort and fit. It's versatile enough to wear on any space watch and any tool watch that's up to the task!

All photos by: Shawn T

More on the Haveston IVA here.

Shawn T is an Exploring-Time.com contributor and lives in Eastern Pennsylvania. He enjoys reading about the relevance of watches in space and exploring his home town. You can follow him via @lustrousaurus and @AnOmegaOdyssey.


Haveston straps

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Have you ever placed your watch on a new strap and it immediately felt familiar? That’s how it felt when I first put on the Haveston Canvas strap. Alex, founder and creator of Haveston Straps, has combined unique design, innovation, and military color patterns with his fleet of straps. The straps currently come in 18mm, 20mm, and 22mm sizes and are priced very fairly at $28.55 USD for one and some straps are offered as a pairing for $51.55. After I fell in love with the colors and the unique floating keeper I contacted Alex for further insight into his inspiration for Haveston. Enjoy!


Haveston straps have a military theme throughout in both color and inspiration. Where does that come from?

The vintage military theme for me represents a refined utilitarianism and focused service driven character. A monotoned dialled military time piece from the early 20th century is sharply legible and supremely purposeful, and just happens to look incredible! The aspirations and aesthetics that these materials, designs and stories hold are very inspiring. I also personally studied Engineering, so the transition from vintage aviation to space travel starting in the 1950s is awe inspiring and a testament to how far we can dream.

One thing I really love about your designs is the floating keeper.  What was the journey like to finding your own unique approach to the hardware? 

The floating keeper like other design features is part of a continuous commitment to always refine and improve our products. Back when we first launched, this involved months of prototyping, right until the very end, even though its placement seems simple. The current single pass approach found in our A2 straps was actually a strong contender even then. Overall, potential designs must qualify the demands of: “I wish it existed” and “if it doesn’t, is it good and different enough to deserve making”.

What originally sparked your interest in developing straps…your “oh yea” moment of “I should really do this”? 

The focus on straps was actually quite unintended and came about from amateur watch making, starting with a few 6498 and 2824 movements like most enthusiasts. After assembling my first few pieces and watching the balance wheel swing into life, I wanted a strap which captured a similar design character and thought “I wish that existed”. There are definitely designs and ideas beyond straps on the Haveston drawing board, but before we get there, instances such as picking up a NOS 1945 dated 17mm canvas strap have inspired other designs along the way. At the end of the day, it always comes back to that service driven purpose, regardless of whether that is to your community, family, or the world. Having a little reminder of that on your wrist is quite special.


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Packaging

I was excited to receive the package from Haveston right before the holidays. New watch gear always gives my heart a flutter and the supremely intentional packaging added to the joy.

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The Tins

Each Haveston strap comes in a signature tin which has the strap information and size listed. The tins are a great way to store your straps when they aren’t being used or a destination for excess spring bars, tools…etc. Packaging that can be repurposed is always a win in my book.

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The LEtter and Instructions

Inside I found a hand typed letter from Alex, information about each strap and the mission of Haveston. I took time to appreciate each detail all the way down to the card that the straps are wrapped around providing additional install information. The intentionality in design all tie into the vintage military look.

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canvas series

The Canvas Series gives your watch the look and feel of a 1940’s strap, but with modern durability and function. After much research the strap was based on the shade ref. OD No.7 which was found in the US field equipment of 1944. If you’ve ever found yourself looking for a WW2 era strap on eBay, the Haveston Canvas strap will meet that need, but far surpasses the vintage straps in material and hardware.

Size Info: Length: 270mm (not incl. buckle) Thickness is 1.5mm and fits wrists 6”- 8.5”.

Price: 28.55 USD with Complimentary Shipping Worldwide

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Impressions:

When you put on the Canvas strap by Haveston you’ll instantly know. This one is good. The cotton canvas material of the strap wears very comfortably on the wrist and contours easily. It holds it’s shape more than the average nato. The Canvas comes in slightly thicker at 1.5mm, but with it being a single pass design there’s no problem there. The floating keeper slides up and over the tail to keeping it tightly secured to the back end of the strap. On this version the hardware is very nicely polished which adds an interesting appeal to a strap that otherwise looks ready to hold it’s own in the field. The shape of the tail cut and the sewn eye holes are consistent with straps from the 1940s era. The Canvas add’s a great field look to any tool watch and it’s a real pleasure to wear.

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parade series

The Parade Series is Haveston’s approach to dressing up your tool watch with something a little more grand than the typical nato style strap. I have not found a nato style strap that is as soft and comfortable to wear as this one. The feel is smooth and very flexible on the wrist and the polished hardware and the slight sheen makes the strap feel even more like the right choice for a dressier role.

Size Info : Length: 270mm (not incl. buckle) Thickness is 1.2mm and fits wrists 6”- 8.5”.

Price: 28.55 USD with Complimentary Shipping Worldwide

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Impressions:

When I first put the parade strap on my SKX I immediately noticed how soft it was. The weave is very small with the edge pattern being slightly different giving it a subtle pin stripe. The other A2 versions were single pass and even though this is Haveston’s thinnest strap I decided to modify it to single pass as well by removing the under layer. Due to smoothness of the fabric if you have a heavier watch you might want to keep that loop so the watch doesn’t slide when you take it off. My SKX and Lorier stay in place though and I like the simplicity of the single pass. A quick modification if you want the thin strap to be as thin as possible. Even a old dive watch will get a nice upgrade with this strap. Currently this strap is offered in Insignia Blue and Black. I’ve really enjoyed the look of the polished hardware with this strap finish.

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Service series

The Service Series straps are Haveston’s signature collection and feature some incredible military inspired color options. The design is very focused on bringing vintage military color patters back to life for everyday use. Service Series straps are a very inspiring option to pair with your tool watch if you’re looking for something a bit different from the typical nato style and has a strong look.

Size Info : Length: 270mm (not incl. buckle) Thickness is 1.3mm and fits wrists 6”- 8.5”.

Price: 28.55 USD w/Complimentary Shipping Worldwide

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Impressions:

The M1936-B strap is based on lighter newly issued canvas tones found in transitional trimmed US military field equipment between 1943-45. This strap, along with the Canvas, instantly add that military inspired look. To me the M1936-B feels the slightest bit thinner and more flexible than the Carrier. Perhaps this is because there are less colors involved in the weave. This strap, like the Parade, features a pin stripe on the sides giving it a nice depth of color. The green is brighter than what you would normally refer to as army green, but encompasses the authentic old military equipment color.

The Carrier strap was my introduction to Haveston. I saw it on an Instagram post and was captured by the colors and unique design. The colors represent the 1943 US Navy Tri-Color camouflage scheme found on carrier based aircraft in the Pacific Theatre of WWII. I recently put this strap on and right in the dead of winter it was as if it was calling me to salt water. The strap does have a little heft to it, but it feels appropriate for a strap that is based on WWII carrier aircraft. Again, I found myself a fan of the polished hardware. Also worth mentioning is the tail cut on the Parade and the Service Series. This design is a departure from the typical rounded edge of a nato and because of the brilliant design of the floating keeper the unique tail can be seen.

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The M1936-B Strap A2

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The Carrier Strap A2

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