BOUND TO COME IN HANDY - The paracord watch band is an essential item in any survival kit

The robust paracord wristwatch makes an excellent social or business style accessory and offers the wearer various functional options. So much more than a fashion addition, watch bands can come in a variety of materials, and each of them has benefits and disadvantages. While bright, sparkling pieces might be more suitable for elegant events, you might need a more practical solution for day-to-day and outdoor life.

Paracord bands are considered an indispensable survival tool as it is exceptionally strong, reliable and can be used for many functions, making it an essential instrument for many nature and survival enthusiasts. It is waterproof, lightweight and a general-purpose utility nylon cord which was initially used in parachutes during World War II. It is also referred to as the 550 cord because of the weight it is able to hold, which is 550 pounds (or 250 kg) and is more than enough when it comes to the usual requirements of watch bands. These parachute soldiers also used the cord for a variety of outdoor uses including strapping items to their kit, making shelter and unraveling it to make string for sewing, but the strength of the cord is its most impressive feature. As durable as the cord is it can be used over and over, making it a dependable watch band like no other!

The original requirements of the paracord rested heavily on this strength feature, as it had to be able to not only handle the weight of the soldier but also all his equipment and weapons that were deployed with him. The tenacity of the cord is set by means of the nylon construction which also gives it resilience and flexibility.

The reason the paracord is still held to such high regard is because of the countless uses and applications it offers when other materials might fail, especially in survival situations. Below we list some of these important uses:

• As a watchband, it can be unraveled and provides about 3 meters of line for fixing or building tents or tying broken or loose gear together.

• It can be used as a washing line or lifeline by tying members of your group together to make sure no-one falls behind or gets lost in the dark.

• The inside cord can be used as fishing line. Because it is waterproof it will dry fast and will not catch mildew.

• The cord can be used to make a bow or snare to hunt and feed yourself until you are saved.

• You can use it to make a fire or tie a knot.

• It can be made into a makeshift shoelace, belt or bra (can simply be tied in order to replace a damaged strap). It can also be used for other portable equipment like bag straps.

In cases of emergencies or where survival and health are an issue and you are not able to contact emergency services, paracord straps can be crucial while you get back to civilization or nursing a serious injury. You can also use it with a strong piece of wood to construct a splint. Keeping in mind that the cord can also be cut open to access the finer strands inside, these can be used in additional ways. It can be used as suturing material when a person has been injured or wounded and needs to be sewn up. This does however require a needle or similar object, so it is advised to keep a needle in your emergency supply kit.

Although paracord is made to carry heavy loads, it is still very important to be careful when used for a particularly heavy load or human being. In most cases it is better to use a few cords braided together or use with additional means of support.

Déonne le Roux Jewellers stock a great collection of Victorinox watches featuring the practical and stylish paracord watch band. Make sure to visit one of our branches, or visit our website to see more in our Victorinox range at


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