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Nubuck Shark strap

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Nubuck Shark strap

Strap Review

Mays-Berlin Straps from Germany

Mays & Anna are a couple from Berlin, Germany who started their strap boutique shop and since 2013 go by the name "Mays | Berlin"

Mays | Berlin only offers hand-made straps, something more and more customers are looking for.

I have been in contact with Mays & Anna and after the first strap have a great experience with them so far, especially their personal attention and communication makes it easy and pleasant.

Mays & Anna have a passion for mechanical watches themselves and especially Panerai, so understanding what a Paneristi is looking for in a strap is not hard at all for them.

Grey Nubuck Shark strap

Mays is known for their classic straps that are an excellent alternative for the OEM straps. After my first strap from Mays|Berlin, the Zaffiro, I was attracted to their classic straps again, discussed this with Mays & Anna and they were so kind to let me try one of them.

To make a best choice possible I shortlisted two straps, one brown nubuck croc and one grey nubuck shark. Finally decided on the nubuck shark, the images on their website showed an interesting colour mix on the leather and wanted to find this out myself.

Delivery & package

As I ordered the strap just like a customer would do, you can see the progress of your strap on their website when logging in and checking your order number, a cool feature. When it arrived, the strap was packed in a cotton pouch with the Mays | Berlin logo printed, a nice touch and big enough to store multiple straps.
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The strap

When opening the pouch I found a strap of a color combination I have not seen before, The shark leather leather hide is treated to turn into a nubuck version, the lining is of natural calf leather very light in color with the Mays | Berlin logo is embossed right in the middle of the short part of the strap. As this is a strap used as a classic strap, I use my OEM 26mm buckle
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The finish of the strap

The finish of the strap is perfect and comes with tubes already installed. The nubuck treatment has brought up a beige color effect on the gray top layer and gives it is an exclusive look and feel. The sides of the strap are painted like the OEM versions. The stitching is made with beige thread that matches a dial like my PAM00389, it's straight and sharp, the keepers are having no embossed lines because of the already heavy grained leather it is. As this is a handmade and hands-sewn strap, you can always discuss extra preferences with the strapmaker. In this case I requested the strap to be overall slightly thicker than an OEM version in order to make it look better on a Submersible Panerai. The holes punched are oval to fit the OEM buckle better. As this is a slightly thicker strap, Mays advised me to take a longer length than I had in mind, 130/80. The cut-out for the buckle is super-sharp and had no issue installing my OEM buckle.

Delivery tracked and received

As mentioned, when you order a strap from Mays | Berlin you can track your order from progress in production, strap sent and strap received, an extra comfort to know.
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Panerai OEM buckle

The strap does not come with a buckle and I use my 26mm Panerai OEM buckle. It fits perfectly nice and tight and at the same time very easy to install.
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On the watch

When putting this strap on my PAM00389 I was happily surprised the way it turned out. The beige shades through the grey blends in perfectly with the dial index colour, the grey with the titanium case and ceramic bezel. The strap is not as thin as the Panerai OEM versions and fits the lugs thereby much better without being a bulky strap.
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This strap fits on my PAM00389 better than an OEM strap

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On the wrist

When putting the strap on my wrist there was absolutely no need for any break-in period, this strap is soft and bendable from the very first day and feels like silk on your wrist. It has a nice presence, not too thick not too thin, and as this is a straight 26mm version it matches a PAM00389 very nice!
But this is not just an ok strap for a PAM00389, when going on a business trip I took the strap with me and used it with my PAM00372 (see images in the gallery below), visited the Officine Panerai Boutique in Ginza Tokyo, Japan and they kept on looking at this very strap!
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The buckle

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My conclusion

The Nubuck Shark strap is more than an interesting strap than a Panerai OEM strap, Panerai does not have shark leather in the first place, next this is a custom strap made just for you, that means you can create it into a bespoke version. The leather has a very interesting structure and with the nubuck treatment the extra colour dimension makes it even more special. The finish of the strap is as good if not better than the OEM in my opinion and will for sure last longer.

When you look at the price level of their straps, it's worth trying one at 2/3 of the price of a Panerai OEM strap with a quality like they make, you cannot go wrong in my opinion.

What I like about Mays | Berlin is their approach, the images on their website resembles the real product you get, the tracking of your order online keeps you excited about the strap that is about to come and most important they are very serious about their customer as when something is not to your liking they are very supportive, this is a great comfort and a confirmation that they are really passionate about what they do.

If you are looking for more info about Mays | Berlin Straps, you can find the strap maker at

I hope you like the review, feel free to post your comments here
If you interested in more details about the strapmaker of Mays | Berlin Straps, click here

The strap specifications:

Below you find summarized the specifications of the strap, the prices mentioned are only indicative just to give you an idea what you could expect if you order one.
Leather type: Shark leather hide with veg. tan calf leather lining.
Color: Grey
Special treatment: Nubuck treatment
Style: Padded classic design
Width: 26 mm
Length: 130/80 mm
Thickness strap: 4-7 mm
Type of buckle: Not included, Panerai OEM 26 mm buckle used here
Type of stitching: hand-stitch
Price range: 200 Euro (plus shipping)

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A few additional images of the strap. Enjoy!

Beautiful rounded tip
on the PAM00389
Sharp Mays | Berlin Logo
with the Panerai OEM buckle
Painted edges
As it comes
Also super-cool on a PAM00372
Wrist shot with a PAM00372