Paradise By The Dashboard Light: The Stauer "Dashtronic" Watch

The Stauer Dashtronic

Many traditional wet shavers seem to be interested in watches too, given that there are a fair amount of watch posts on a sub-forum at B&B and a shaving thread in a watch forum.  With that in mind I thought I would “show off” a recent holiday gift: a Stauer 1930 Dashtronic Watch.

A Little Background

I have been wanting a nice dress watch for a while now.  I wear an inexpensive Casio multi-function digital watch most of the time (two time zones, calculator, stopwatch, etc.) but it is not really appropriate for a dress-up occasion.  I wanted something that was the antithesis of the Casio for dress–something a little unusual and that just tells time (not even a date).  I had been looking around for some time, even going so far as to consider a Rolex, but nothing appealed to me (well, a few things did, but they didn’t appeal to my wallet).  Then I happened to come across a Stauer catalog.  I was just browsing through it when I saw the Dashtronic.

A Reproduction–Kind Of

According to the description, the Dashtronic has the look of a 1930’s “jumping mechanism” watch but with a modern “automatic” movement (e.g. a self-winding watch where the movements of the wearer’s wrist keep the watch active).  The front of the watch has a window where the hour and minute is read from a rotating dial.  The back of the watch also has a window to view the mechanism.

The Back

It is a bit larger and thicker than many other men’s dress watches, but not in an annoying way, at least for me.  If the watch is not worn for more than a day or so it will wind down and stop but I do not find that to be a problem, as resetting the watch is exceptionally easy.  I wish the hour and minute digits where a tiny bit larger but that is a quibble.  It is simply what I want in a dress watch: a clean but unique look that can be elegant and under-stated at the same time.

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  1. Chris Pedersen says

    Good article, Mantic.
    Also, am I losing my mind, or was the song by Meatloaf called
    “HEAVEN By The Dashboard Lights” ?
    In any event, congratulations on a very interesting item.

  2. Al F says

    …I’m praying for the end of time, to hurry up and arrive, cause if i gotta spend another minute with you, i don’t think I could barely survive

  3. Matt S says

    I have purchased several automatic watched from Stauer. They all look great, but i have had trouble with the quality of the watched – they seem to break a little too easily. What is nice if that you can pay $35 and they will “repair” your watch which really means that they throw away your watch and send you a new one.

    • says

      We do apologize if you have had troubles with your watches. We would like to assist your if we can. Please contact Dawn at the e-mail address above or call me at 1-888-333-2012 and ask for myself Dawn J.

    • mantic59 says

      JB I *seriously* considered a Rolex Explorer on several occasions over the past couple of years! But every time I was about to pull the trigger on one, something would happen in my life that made me put it off again. I took it as an “omen” and decided that will be the watch I buy when I retire. :)

  4. Wayne Johnson says

    Mantic try going on Ebay, and find a Tudor watch that corresponds to your desired Rolex. I have 3 Tudors and they are just beautiful. The last time I had some work done on one that I paid $345.00 for, a guy told the watchmaker that he would give me $2000.00 for it…No sale here !

  5. David says

    I bought one of these a few years ago after seeing it in SkyMall magazine. When I got it, I was really disappointed that it was so huge and heavy, plus the band was really wide (22mm), extra-long, and a cheap-looking black faux-alligator (the photo in the ad is shot warmly, making it look brownish). I put the watch aside and forgot about it, having played at wearing it for longer than the return window.

    Well, a few days ago I pulled it out because it reminded me of some cool Steampunk watches I’ve seen. I bought a $12 brown leather & nylon 22mm watchband on Amazon, and to my surprise it’s made a huge difference…the band (marked as regular size) is shorter, lighter, and suggests the Steampunk look but in a subtle way, and now the watch doesn’t feel as uncomfortable or look so huge on my medium-size wrist. I’m giving it another try, forcing myself to wear it for a few days to try getting used to it.

    I liked the gimmicky look right away in the ad, and now the watch looks like I imagined it to be (even though the band in the ad is all leather). My only concern that its large, flat metal face will get scratched easily, spoiling its look. All I can do is try it…

  6. DKH says

    Love this watch! It’s big but I always go for the bigger watch anyway. Part of that is the style (very cool retro) the other is because of the automatic movement.

    My Stauer Dashtronic has held up great for going on 3 years now. Only wear is with the leather band – that’s because I wear it so much.
    I get compliments all the time on this watch because of the uniqueness of the design. I almost wish I could get a commission from Stauer on all the watches I’ve “sold” just from telling friends and strangers about the Dashtronic. I, myself, have 2 of these watches one in silver and the other in gold.

  7. josie says

    I think this watch is too pricy for a “china mvmnt” it tells me its cheaply made and probably won’t last too long. It is strange and cool looking, but i would not pay 100.00 or more for it. I think I’d pay from 6.00 to maybe 15.00 tops for one.

  8. says

    I know this watch for a couple of years and really like its looks.
    Of course that one cannot demand a top mechanism for this price.
    I’ve never seen it in person and the reason why I didn’t buy it, is because it may be too big for my wrist.

  9. Christopher says

    I got a Dashtronic in Dec 2012, and it worked till June 2013. I wore it 5 times till it shot craps, so buying one? Again, it’s a crap shoot, so caveat emperator……..

      • DrDro says

        I am considering buying one for $99+s&h I saw the ad in this months MotorTrend magazine and before in the past. So far I’ve seen this piece go for $120 on ebay + shipping and up to $149 on other sites.

        DKH if your time piece has held up for +3 years, then I’m really considering joining the club.

        Christopher, are you serious this piece malfunctioned via normal ware? Can you send it back for repairs? Your comment is what’s holding me back….but I really want this unique time piece!


  10. John Wolfe says

    I own five different models of Stauer automatic watches. They are all worn in rotation, and I have never had a warranty issue. I have worn out a few straps as these watches are not coddled. They are dropped, banged and left unwound for weeks at a time, but none have let me down. For a collector of fine watches on a budget, look no further than Stauer.

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