Men's Belt Buckles Guide
Directory and Information Regarding Men's Belt Buckles presented by Apparel Search
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Belts have a very important function. But the buckles do also. Sure they can make a fashion statement, but the function is critical as well. Just as you want to make sure that your pants don't fall, you also want a proper buckle that adequately secures both ends of the belt.
A belt buckle is a buckle, a clasp for fastening two ends, such as of straps or a belt, in which a device attached to one of the ends is fitted or coupled to the other.
Below are a few of the different types of buckles used for belts:
Frame-style buckles are the oldest design. In a frame-and-prong buckle the prong attaches to one end of the frame and extends "away" from the wearer through a hole in the belt, where it anchors against the opposite side of the frame. The oldest styles have a simple loop or "D" shaped frame (see: D-ring), but "double-loop" or "center post" buckles whose prongs attach to a fixed center section appear in the 8th century. Very small buckles with removable center pins and chapes were introduced and used on shoes, beginning in the 17th century, but not often for waist-belts. A "chape" is the fixed cover or plate which attaches buckle to belt while the "mordant" or "bite" is the adjustable portion.
Plate-style buckles are common on western military belts of the mid-19th century, which often feature a three-hook clasp: two hooks fitting into one end of the belt and a third into the other. Officers might have a similar but more intricate clasp-style closure that featured two interlocking metal parts. In practice, the term "belt plate" refers to any flat, decorated surface on such a clasp. These precede development of modern "western-style" buckles, which feature a hinged frame affixed to one end of the belt and a simple hook clasp which enters the belt hole toward the wearer but leaves most of the buckle on the "outside" of the belt, providing an ample surface for decoration. The distance between the fixed frame or chape of a plate buckle and its adjustment prong is called the "throw."
Box-out buckles make the traditional belt seen today. Usually made with an enduring leather or other synthetic material as the band, these belt buckles are less functional but more fashionable. These belts became popular after Hollywood began using them in movies for their "fresh and new look." Now they dominate belt production, and are viewed as a more attractive belt.
Box-frame buckles are another, 20th-century style of military friction buckle, common on web belts. The box-frame buckle consists of three parts (front, back and post). An adjustable captive post sits perpendicular to the belt to press it against the outer "box," which completely surround the webbing and minimize accidental adjustments should part of the belt snag on something. There may or may not be a metal tip on the opposite "tongue" end of the belt for easier insertion.
Friction Buckles are old military-style buckles often use friction and are designed for use with cloth belts or straps. Simple friction buckles are one-piece frames with no prong whatsoever, the strap or belt winding through a series of slots, and may more technically be called "belt slides" or "belt trims."
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What ever you are wearing to keep you pants from falling is alright with us. If you don't have an expensive luxurious belt, it is OK to use a piece of rope or string.
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