Good news for manufacturers of pocket watch movements ‚Äì the big watch craze is still alive and kicking, as evidenced by the Davosa Outback Automatic. Running a 2824-2 ETA movement with Glucydur balance and Incabloc schock absorber, this 48mm beast seems big enough to replace a hubcap on a Hummer.
The Outback, sold in the US by David McCready of d.freemont watches, has a standard date at 3 o‚Äôclock, large non-illuminated numerals at 6, 9, and 12 and brightly lumed hands. Initial impressions are good and upon close inspection this sapphire be-crystaled diver stands up to scrutiny.
This watch is rated to 100M, a claim we wouldn‚Äôt suggest testing with the standard black leather band. Clearly Davosa is trying to keep costs, and price, down on these pieces, so we‚Äôll give them the benefit of the doubt. However, a metal band or nylon band option would be nice, which I‚Äôm sure Mr. McCready could supply in a pinch. One nice, if odd feature ‚Äì a screw down bezel lock. Upon taking this thing out of the box, I figured the roughly knurled knob at 9 o‚Äôclock was designed to all for helium escape or some such nonsense. After turning the bezel a bit, I discovered it was a bit tight. Finally, I realized that the knob acted as a bezel parking break and I was essentially burning out the pads thanks to my effusive turning. Mea culpa.
The movement is nothing spectacular, although the second hand, the tip dipped in blaze orange paint, moves smoothly and the watch lost only 5-10 seconds per day. The styling is extremely sparse, with Davosa‚Äôs starburst logo below the twelve and AUTOMATIC at 6 o‚Äôclock. The watch, which is assembled in Switzerland, is sourced from a number of places, including Germany, but the high gloss inner seconds ring and attractive hour pips points to a careful hand and a unique stylist.
The Outback is no beater. It is large, it is clunky, and it is heavy. The crowns are carefully protected by two sloped case lugs and the unsigned band is attractive in an Indiana Jones sort of way.
One slight issue with the minute hand lume appeared after careful examination. There was a slight unevenness to the lume, leading to a marbled effect in the middle of the second hand. Was this a limited error? No telling. However, that was the only point of contention.
This watch, made for mens‚Äô men, or ladies‚Äô ladies, for that matter, who don‚Äôt want to rock a Panerai. For a starter piece to a big and tall collection, this 14mm thick monster with the almost 50mm width is a great choice.