It is near impossible to not fall in love with the Breitling Navitimer and we certainly go weak at the knees every time we see this stunning watch! The slightly later variation of the Navitimer (the very first examples came with an all-black dial), the white subsidiary dials and white, outer ring, tachymeter scale make for a more visible and easy read. Full chronograph functions and chronograph flyback are controlled by the pushers at 2 and 4 o'clock.
Breitling was established in 1884 by Leon Breitling in the Swiss Jura Mountains. In 1915 Gaston Breitling introduced a pusher at 2 o’clock to start, stop and reset the chronograph. Leon later moved the reset to a pusher at 4 o’clock. During 1939 Breitling shipped a huge quantity of chronographs to the Royal Air Force.
During the war with Germany surrounding Switzerland Leon and some friends created a makeshift runway near their factory. Planes would use the car's headlights as a guide to land. Once on the ground, they were quickly loaded, taking off before the Germans knew what's going on.
In the early 1950s, Breitling collaborated with the AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association) in order to make the slide rule of its Chronomat even more relevant to pilots. The end result, the Navitimer, was a well-known watch and is now highly collectable. Sean Connery wore this watch in Thunderball only a year after the watch had started being produced! The Navitimer was also in direct competition with the Omega Speedmaster Moon Watch and NASA actually tested them both for the moon landing. The Navitimer is like a wrist computer and it can be used for various calculations including flight plan, miles per hour and fuel consumption, which made it the perfect watch for pilots.
In 1969 Breitling collaborated with Heuer, Burne, and Dubois-Depraz on a top-secret project called Project 99. Together they developed one of the first self-winding chronograph movements. Breitling stands for high precision, outstanding performance, and functionality. During the early days of space exploration, Lt. Commander Scott Carpenter went around the earth three times whilst wearing a modified Navitimer. In 2017 they were sold to CVC Capital Partners, Europe's largest private equity firm.
The pictured watch has undergone a full service in our onsite workshop and comes with our personal 12 months non waterproof service cover.
What we think
One of our favourites of vintage chronographs. A real mathematical instrument where multiple calculations can be performed, as well as all the usual time and chronograph functions. The Navitimer is still in production today, but it simply does not have the charm of this original vintage example!
Age : 1961/1970
Specific Age : Circa 1966
Case Size : 41mm
Case Thickness : 13mm
Lug to Lug :
Lugs : 22mm
Condition : Pre-Owned
Box & Papers : Box Only
Case Material : Stainless Steel
Service History : 12-Months NON-Waterproof Warranty