Jensen heritage for the next generation


Item description: To those in the know, the name Aquastar is synonymous with diving watches, a brand made famous by the French diver, Jacques Cousteau. This silver dial Aquastar Seatime dates from 1970. Typical large stainless steel case with single central crown. The dial in silver, and with the Aquastar brand name and logo. Applied battons. Calender at the 3.0 position. To the edge of the dial, a rotational black  0-60 bezel, which is turned by means of the winding crown. The crown is pulled out one stop for hand-setting.Crown with Aquastar logo. Screw on case-back with relief Aquastar name and logo. Additionally stamped, the reference number ‘1000’, and the serial number. To the inside, a fine Aquastar automatic movement. The watch completed with a new old stock Tropic style strap from the 1960s, and with a stainless steel buckle.


Case size: 45mm x 38mm


Condition report: Close to new old stock condition. Storage age, or very light use only. Close to perfect case. Beautiful original dial with light aging to the luminous hour battons. Close to perfect bakelite bezel ring.  Case-back with satined and polished finish, free from any major scratches. Tropic style strap of new old stock dating to the 1960s. Working condition (no warranty implied). The timepiece may have been opened, so it should not be used near moisture or water without being checked by a qualified watchmaker.


Background to Aquastar: Daniel Jeanrichard (1665-1741) remains a legendary figure in Swiss watchmaking, now considered the “founder of the watchmaking industry in the canton of Neuchâtel” in the late 17th century. Jeanrichard was born in the hamlet of Les Bressels, between the villages of La Chaux-de-Fonds and Le Locle in the Swiss Jura. In 1681 Jeanrichard made his first watch (the first known watch made in the region) , and not long after established his own watchmaking workshop. The JEANRICHARD Museum in La Chaux-de-Fonds houses several of his most outstanding watches, including the so-called ‘Daniel’ watch made in 1710, a technical and aesthetic masterpiece with a calendar aperture.


By 1958 the Jeanrichard brand had been acquired by Frédéric Robert, an experienced scuba diver with a passion for creating watches for divers. Initial watches were branded ‘Jeanrichard Aquastar’, however, by 1962, he dropped the name Jean Richard, and simply named the company Aquastar. Although specialising in diver’s watches, the company expanded their range to include regatta watches for sailing, along with ranges for general water sports such as swimming and sailing. Aquastar were the first company to design and use a so-called lollipop seconds hand, and also invented the bidiagonal bezel, patenting a system where the bezel functioned inside the case, and operated from the winding crown.


An Aquastar was the first and only watch to be worn at the deepest dive ever made in history – the DeepSea Challenge, where divers descended to the Mariana Trench . The watch was worn by diver Don Walsh. However, Aquastars became particularly famous amongst the diving fraternity, when Jacques Cousteau and his team wore Aquastar diving watches, such as the Deepstar, and the Benthos 500, during their many filmed dives in the 1960s. Today, Aquastar watches are gaining recognition as important vintage diving watches, and values are rising.


Special notes: n/a


Provenance: n/a


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