People have funny dreams. Some people have dreams of making watches with incredible water resistance. This Swiss Military 20,000 Feet Diver watch was a dream to do just that; create a mechanical watch that can survive just that, 20,000 feet under water. Not just any mechanical watch, but a chronograph, which is harder to keep as water resistant. The watch was made, it survived the pressure chamber, and it got awarded the word record. The 20,000 Feet Diver defeated the record Rolex set in 2008 with the new DeepSea Sea-Dweller watch by about 50%. It is rather cool that you can buy a Guinness world record holding watch.
The story started in 2005 with Swiss Military’s 12,000 Feet CX Diver, which was the deepest diving watch of its time. The 12,000 Feet watch was an automatic, but not a chronograph. Though impressive and record breaking, it just wasn’t enough! “We Must Go Deeper!” Swiss Military Watches by Charmex had the drive and skills to make it happen, so development began on something that went even deeper. The goal was 20,000 feet (about 6,000 meters).
You’ll notice from the profile picture of that this watch is a thick beast. The sapphire crystal alone is 10mm thick! Incredible. The whole watch is 28.5mm thick and 46mm wide. Although big, the watch is made out of titanium, so it is still pretty light at 265 grams. Official depth resistance rating standards require a 25% safety margin, which is why the watch is rated to 20,000 Feet, when it is actually tested to 25,000 feet (7,500 meters). You of course realize that this is all done in pressure chambers as there are no places where the ocean is this deep, or if it is, no reasonable way of testing the watch that deep.
What goes along with incredible depth resistance is durability. This means that the CX Swiss Military watch line, especially the 20,000 Feet Diver can take a serious beating. Accordingly, the 20,000 Feet watch has been but through an array of tests. This is actually very rare, as the vast majority of watches are never really put through these types of real world tests. The 20,000 Feet Diver watch was run over by a heavy truck, blasted at a close distance with powerful fire engine water hose, shot with a shotgun, and just generally abused. Report results are that the watch survived each test with no appreciable damage to the case and without any interruption in the accuracy and running of the movement.
Aside from the extreme case, the CX Swiss Military 20,000 Feet Diver is a pretty solid all-around watch. Inside, is a specially shock protected automatic Valjoux 7750 movement that has been certified as a Chronometer (COSC award watch). The case is of course highly anti-magnetic, and the dial is clear with hands that offer a very generous amount of SuperLuminova. The case features the necessary for diving rotating bezel — that is well designed to fit over the very thick sapphire crystal. The case also has a helium escape valve.
Creating the watch was really no easy task. There were a lot of hurdles and problems with the design, not to mention how to make the thing wearable. The use of curved surfaces helps significantly strengthen the structure of the watch making it extremely hardy – but was tough to make into something wearable. This very impressive watch is available for purchase soon. The watch comes complete in a collectors box with a titanium bracelet as well as a rubber strap (and changing tool). There are also a few dial colors available: black, white/silver, yellow, and blue. Each is pretty nice against the carbon fiber face (which is not too prominent). I like that the minute hand is particularly prominent that assists with legibility and that the face of the watch is overall very clear. Owning a watch like this gives you a lot of bragging rights and the assurance that you have not only a record setting timepiece, but the result of years of labor from a dedicated Swiss watch making team.
The CX Swiss Military 20,000 Feet Diver Watch will be available in a limited edition of only 1000 pieces. Prices are reasonable for what you get at about 3,000 Euros. For more information please contact Charmex Swiss Military watches here. See the dedicated site for the 20,000 Feet Diver here.See Swiss Military Watches on Amazon here. [phpbay]charmex | cx swiss military watch, num, “14324”, “”[/phpbay]