This Benrus Type I Class A is a monster of a watch, and for good reason. In the ’70s, the American forces gave Benrus a specification (MIL-W-50717) outlining their needs for a diving watch and what you see here is the result.
Equipped with a large 43mm super-solid parkerised asymmetrical case, a highly legible dial and simple functionality, these pieces were issued to elite military divers, including the Navy SEALs. Furthermore, with a depth rating at the time of 365 meters and bi directional notched bezel, this is serious the ultimate utility watch that both looks and acts the part.
The caseback is stamped with all the associated military numbers, including the mil-spec number (MIL-W-50717), the manufacturer and model number, the NSN and manufacturer part number, it’s contract number alongside its production date and serial number.
Between the Type II (notable by its 24-hour markings on the dial) and the Type I, the latter tends to be more desirable due to its rarity with only 6000 pieces made. This example, in particular, is special as it is numbered 066 with an issue date of December 1972, making it a very early example.