Off the Cuff: Thacker Merali Original

The Thacker Merali Original is the brain child of Bob Thacker and Raheem Merali–two friends with newly-minted MBAs burning holes in their pockets, and…well, time on their hands. After some consideration, they agreed that launching their own watch brand would be the perfect use of those two elements. Two years later, they find themselves at the threshold of their first Kickstarter campaign.

Let me just say, that as far as brand names go, Thacker Merali is pretty good. It trips off the tongue like Vacheron Constantin or Audemars Piguet. These men were clearly blessed at birth and simply biding time until they collided like atoms. It’s an auspicious start. But what about the watch?

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
Thacker Merali Original @calibre321

The Original is a beefy 44mm in diameter with predominantly brushed surfaces and light bevelling along the outside of the lugs. The finish is nice and uniform. It also has an oversized crown with well-machined texture. The crystal is double-domed sapphire with AR coating, and beneath it there is a broad dial with stainless steel applied indices and numerals at 12 and 6. The model shown here is black, alternating between red in the twelve position and white at the six. The second hand is also red with a lumed pip. The Original uses sword hands filled with Super-LumiNova. There are matching lumed markers around the outside of the dial, as well. It has a day/date complication at 3.

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
Black Dial Colourway @calibre321

The screwed caseback has an exhibition window revealing the Swiss Sellita SW220-1 M which powers the watch. The movement is based on the ETA 2800 calibres and is, more or less, the equivalent of the ETA 2836-2. The Original offers a sporty 100m of water resistance.

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
Sellita SW220 Visible Through the Exhibition Caseback @calibre321

The stainless steel bracelet that comes with the watch has fully articulating links with a mix of brushed and polished surfaces. It also has a quick-release for easy strap changes, and employs a well-constructed deployant clasp.

Overall, it is a well-constructed sports watch with a distinctive dial.

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
Deployant Clasp @calibre321


CaseBrushed 316L Stainless Steel
44mm Diameter
51.7mm Lug to Lug
22mm Lug Width
Exhibition Caseback
MovementSellita SW220
26 Jewels
28 800bph
Day/Date Complication
38-Hour Power Reserve
Dial & CrystalDouble-domed Sapphire /w AR
Applied Indices /w numerals at 12 and 6
C3 Super-LumiNova on Hands and Markers
Strap316L Stainless Steel Bracelet /w Quick Release

Of Interest

Early bird specials on the Thacker Merali Kickstarter campaign will offer the option of up to three additional strap choices. Available for selection will be quick release silicon and sailcloth options in red, blue, and black. There will also be an Italian calf-skin option, with traditional spring bars, in black, tan, and grey.

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
Large, Textured Crown for Easy Winding and Setting @calibre321


While the curved lugs offset the size of this watch, it will wear a bit large for some. I would love to see the same watch and specs in a 41mm package and do away with the marker at 3.

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
Thacker Merali Original

Final Thoughts

The Thacker Merali Original reminds me of the Longines Conquest without the crown protectors. It has a rugged versatility about it that makes it a perfect blend of luxury and sport. Personally, I don’t have an issue with its size. I find that is has nice presence on the wrist. The use of the deployant clasp was a good design choice and provides visual continuity, not to mention practical ease of use. I also appreciate the quick release. But my favourite part of this watch is the dial. It’s simple without being simplistic. I like the use of opposing colours in the two numerals, and the red-tipped seconds hand is perfect. The Kickstarter price for this piece is only $395CAD ($315USD). That’s a 40% discount. For a stainless steel Swiss automatic, this is a great value proposition.

In the end, I suppose the brand name doesn’t matter. A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.

For more information visit their website, or Kickstarter page, for more information.

Thacker Merali Original Microbrand Watch Review
The Go Anywhere, Do Anything Sports Watch @calibre321

6 thoughts on “Off the Cuff: Thacker Merali Original

  1. Donna Sorfleet

    You are right- that is a great name for a watch brand…love the white dial with second hand and 12 in red….with red wrist band…would be beautiful watch. I think the refined, clean lines on this face is iconic. Rings all the bells….or chimes…or timers…you get the idea😉. Nice article too. Xo



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