I think U-Boat started this idea of making XL watches based on WWII submariner military watches, that may or may not have actually existed. Looking like they belong on the wrist of someone wearing a copper diving helmet, these things have over-sized canisters that protect their crowns up to 500m under water or do for show at least. Anyway, this Tauchmeister T0118 arrived in the mail the other day, so I thought I would share some impressions.
It has a Miyota 8215 movement which is a bit stiff for my tastes, but it keeps time well enough. This is one of the smaller XL watches, measuring in at 40mm (excluding crown!!!). Its Panerai-style Arabics are bold and easy to read and the head is of solid construction. However, the second hand looks like cheap plastic, but maybe I'm being too picky on a sub-$300 watch. The watch comes with a nice thick supple leather strap, which Tauchmeister also sells separately. If you're looking to beef up one of your other watches these might not be a bad choice. As you can see, the crown canister is enormous and as a consequence the watch is quite uncomfortable to wear on the left wrist. Tauchmeister makes watches with crowns at 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock, but this particular model comes only as shown. The little safety chain on the canister is ...ummm kinda silly... like a chain on a toy keyring. So if you're really thinking about getting one of these consider the ones with the latch mechanisms on the side.