By T.C. WORLEY
Five miles into a 21-mile trek, I peeled back my sleeve to check the time. I was a little startled to see a sparkling, bold, black watch face staring back at me. I had forgotten I was wearing a new watch — the Battalion Diver Titanium from Wenger. As a member of the media crew, I was on the course looking for racers to photograph during the Wenger Patagonian Expedition Race in southern Chile last month. In the spirit of continuity, I had been given a Wenger watch to test during the event.
The Battalion was replacing my $45 digital Quicksilver that I’d limped along with for the last three years. Parts that had fallen off the Quicksilver were epoxied back on. The face appeared frosted from all the scratches and dings. The only thing it really did well anymore was keep time. I was getting what I’d paid for.
Like most Wenger watches, the Battalion Diver Titanium is a handsome timepiece. Classic dive-watch looks combined with sturdy, well made parts make it desirable. Like other diving watches I’ve worn in the past, this one has a rotating bezel that can be used as a simple timer. Unlike the others, however, this bezel does not easily rotate when bumped. It stays put and stays accurate.
Like most quality dive watches, the BDT is not cheap. It retails for $350. But a quick Internet search shows stores selling it just under $200. For your money, you get a rugged, good-looking watch but with little more than the basic functions. In addition to time and date, it offers the following: dive timer, a titanium case, Swiss movement, glowing hands for night use, and a waterproof guarantee to 200 meters (or 660 feet).
A rubber wrist band tells you the BDT is as much sport as it is fashion. The black face nested in the brushed titanium keeps it classy no matter what you are doing, from trekking in Patagonia to a business meeting in town.