It all began when a jet-set member from an entrepreneurial family, Charles von Büren, started assembling his own watches in 1946. In the fifties, scuba diving quickly became popular, both as a leisure activity as well as professionally. Charles got into the hobby, diving close to his home in lake Neuchatel. In 1959 he decided to focus on creating dive watch cases under a new name: Squale, Italian for “shark”.
Back in those days, it was much more common for watchmakers to specialize and combine parts from different manufacturers. Von Büren found an eager clientele for his cases in a.o. Blancpain, Heuer and Doxa. Oftentimes, the client-brand would place its logo at the twelve ‘o clock position. Squale, as the case maker, would place its own logo at the six ‘o clock position. This is why in current Squale watches, there are two logos on the dial. The main logo at twelve, in which you can spot Von Büren’s initials, and the curved shark at six.
Besides making cases for others, Squale also sold their own complete watches, which became particularly popular among divers in the late sixties. They were involved in several free diving record attempts and often given away as prices at such events. Furthermore, the watches were adopted by several special forces, among which the Italian navy and the French “Berets verts”
When Von Büren retired, the business was handed over to the Maggi family, who still operate it today.
This 1545 is exclusively available in Europe through AWCo, so you will not see a lot of these on the streets. Aesthetically, this model is almost like a best-of album of dive watches. It has numerous features reminiscent of several legendary vintage dive watches. But above all, it is Squale through and through.
Technically, this watch brings a whole lot of bang for your buck. A 200-meter diver, automatic movement, sapphire crystal, sturdy oyster style bracelet with screwed links and a 40mm case, which is pretty much the sweet spot for any wrist size. And that orange minute hand just gives that summer feeling. Someone needs to take this watch to the sea or a swimming pool!
Water-resistant: 20ATM / 200 meters
Movement: Swiss made Automatic
Bezel: Unidirectional 120 clicks ceramic