OceanicTime Archives


U-BOAT U-1942 2ndLook

U-1942 The BIGGEST Watch in the World Ø65 mm.

LUCCA 1942 Ilvo Fontana, crafter of precision engineering instruments, received a prestigious commission from the Italian Navy: to design and build a new model of watch for their pilots. This challenge meant satisfying the high quality standards of the Navy and respecting very precise technical specifications, but above all guaranteeing maximum visibility and reliability in any light or weather condition. However circumstance at that time did not allow the project to materialize.

In 2000 Italo Fontana, Ilvo's grandson, discovered these precious designs, which were to become his source of inspiration for the creation of the first U-Boat watch and, his new dimension in time. U-Boat watches are characterized by their strong identity, large size, and perfect legibility in all light and weather conditions, along with its bold and distinctive design: the left crown protected by a specially designed safety cover.

LIMITED EDITION 29 UNITS This astonishing and exceptionally rare 65mm piece was designed with a reinvented hand-winder made from the same Grade-5 Titanium that was used for the back case, body case and bezel. The U-1942's winding crown was built in two parts: one is attached to the movement stem whilst the other is hinged to it with a pivot.

This gives a flexible-joint configuration which allows the crown to protrude considerably from the watch itself for winding and setting, yet returning it to a protected, hidden position - diminishing the side clutter when in action. This type of crown is imperative under certain conditions as it is absolutely necessary for activities during which gloves are required such as underwater operations and environmental practice at Arctic temperatures.

The water-tight crown protection attached to the stem is assured by a clipping gasket in energized Polytetrafluoroethylene and by an O-RING twin-arrangement. This allows water-resistance to 400m.

All engravings on the watch are carried out with mechanical pantograph. Every single U-Boat timepiece is individually handcrafted in Italy by master craftsmen, dedicated to the highest level of precision engineering and finishing, where care and attention to detail span the entire process.

Strong identity, boundless use of the best materials. U-Boat straps are hand-stitched with the best and most defined calf-leather emboldening our collection with luxury and rare beauty. All straps are hand-made and hand-finished by Tuscan master artisans. This is where Made in Italy means something grand.

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