BACKGROUND Based in the Swiss Jura between Geneva and Basel, Davosa are a Swiss brand that can trace their roots back more than 130 years to 1883 when Paul Hasler one of six sons of a silver watchcase maker, Abel Frédéric, set up his own watchmaking company, Paul Hasler Terminages d'Horlogerie specializing in watch assembly for well-known watch brands.
More than 100 years on, the company created a small collection under the name of DAVOSA, which features chronographs with Valjoux 7750 and 7751 movements as well as other specialities like power reserve and regulators.
DAVOSA is predominantly a retail brand with a substantial collection of divers watches of which the Argonautic Automatic gunmetal PVD belongs. - on top of this they are also involved in the world of freediving with 'Nik' Linder, who is their brand ambassador.
DIAL The Argonautic Automatic has a matte black dial with large white baton shaped markers and an oversized triangular mark at 12 o’clock. The dial is clean and simple with only a few lines of white text the name Argonautic in red. There's a date window at 3 - yes, it's white - not such a fan of that but it has also been double framed in white in case it didn't already stand out.
HANDS If you look at pretty much any of DAVOSA’s divers models, they are distinguished by original handset designs that follow typical design codes for dive watches in that the minute and hour hands are clearly distinguishable from each other.
In the case of the Argonautic’s hands we have a long prominent sword for minutes and a large arrow-head for hours. Like the dial they are of a clean and modern style. A long thin white lumed line takes care of seconds.
CASE The Argonautic is quite a sober looking thing. You can see that great care has been taken to insure that it sits comfortably on the wrist as the lugs have been carefully angled off. There's a manually operated Helium Release Valve at 10 o’clock and more angles on the other side of the case where the crown guard is.
PVD The case has lovely gunmetal gray PVD coating that not only gives the watch a pretty cool look but helps to keep the case protected from scratches and reflection free.
BEZEL While the bezel has some nice grip to it - I'd prefer it to have just a tad more height. On the plus side, the bezel’s action is super smooth with a lovely springy sound to it. The inlay is in a high-tech ceramic with engraved and lume filled markets. At 12 o’clock is lume filled capsule.
CROWN The Argonautic Automatic is fitted with a screw-down crown. This has been signed with the Davosa brand logo. Open it up to discover a solid crown stem and tube with multiple gaskets.
CASEBACK This is super simple with a high-polish and some laser-engraved spec., serial numbers etc. The caseback is a screw-down type.
WR The Argonautic Automatic had a water-resistance of 300 meters. No complaints. ;)
LUME The hands, dial, markers and dive time scale on the bezel have been applied or filled with Swiss C3 SuperLumiNova which glows green. The lume is bright and long lasting. I’d rate at Very Good - Excellent.
MOVEMENT The Argonautic automatic is powered by the DAV2824 - no prizes for guessing what that's based on! It as a custom Davosa rotor. I'm not sure if it was regulated by Davosa but it has been keeping excellent time.
BRACELET The Argonautic Automatic is fitted with a gunmetal PVD treated Stainless steel bracelet with: solid end-links and a divers clasp with trip-lock and diver extension. The bracelet is a simple five link style with a slight taper.
FIT ’n’ FINISH This is really where the Argonautic excels. From the PVD that coats the case and it's components to the beautiful crisply printed dial markings, the precisely engraved dive time scale on the bezel, the carefully filled lume capsule or even the lovely sound that it makes when operated - the solid over build quality - this is a very well put together dive watch.
On The WRIST At 42mm the case of the Argonautic is of optimum size. It sits low and comfortably on the wrist.
PRICE sub-800USD. This is a pretty reasonable price from an established Swiss brand.
OVERALL The Davosa Argonautic Automatic with it's understated styling probably won't grab the kind attention that some Swiss divers do but it exudes quality. Yes, it is by no means an exciting looking diver but it's probably the one you'd be most glad of when it really counts - 25 meters below the surface of the ocean, where you'll be able to count its dependability.