Doxa, the Swiss watch company that introduced the world to the first orange-dialed divers watch, is auctioning five limited-edition models of its Doxa Sub 1200T, each one personally worn by diving legend Jean-Michel Cousteau. Profits from the auctions, which began this week on eBay, will benefit Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society.
Each Doxa Sub 1200T watch, which is designed to echo the look of the original Doxa 300T Conquistador divers’ watch from 1967, will bear the logo of the Ocean Futures Society and Jean-Michel Cousteau’s name on the dial. The watches are from a special series made exclusively for Cousteau and his team, joining a long line of special edition divers’ watches that Doxa has made throughout the years, for organizations like Project Aware, NUMA, TUSA, the Seahunters, and the Royal Australian Navy. In the early 1970s, the Doxa Sub watch was used by U.S. Navy divers as well as by elite diving units in the Swiss, French, and Polish military. In literature, the Doxa Sub is the watch of choice for author Clive Cussler’s Dirk Pitt in a popular series of action-adventure novels.
Doxa’s relationship to the Cousteau family dates back to the 1960s. “My father [famed ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau] gave me my first Doxa 40 years ago,” Cousteau reveals, “and he wore one as well. Doxa has provided us with equipment, like their watches, to carry on our mission of research.”
The Sub 1200T is manufactured and hand-assembled in Switzerland. Its steel case is slightly larger than 42 mm in diameter and includes a 120-tooth unidirectional ratcheting bezel and an automatic helium-release valve. The case, which is milled from a single block of stainless steel, is water-resistant to 1,200 meters; the bezel has a patented no-decompression dive table, another divers-watch first from Doxa. The movement is a Swiss-made automatic, and the stainless steel bracelet, according to Doxa, is thicker and more substantial than previous versions, with solid-piece end links.
One limited-edition, mission-worn watch will be auctioned monthly, from July through September 2013, with Cousteau providing documentation on the time and location of each dive for which the timepiece has been worn.
Cousteau’s Ocean Futures Society, which receives support from the sales of the watches, was founded to raise awareness about environmental issues, particularly to bring attention to the large amounts of plastics traveling from the ocean to our shores and the amount of heavy metals being found in marine life. For a video of Jean-Michel Cousteau speaking about Doxa watches and the company’s support of Ocean Futures, click below.