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      Swiss aviation watch Breitling masterpiece - Chronomat models

      As a specialist in functional watches, Breitling has made remarkable advances in the field of chronographs since introducing the first Chronomat in 1942, and has been a pioneer in the field since then.


       This time, we will take a closer look at the Chronomat, a famous historical masterpiece.



      Breitling, the watch of the sky


      The Breitling logo is an anchor shaped like the letter B with large wings extending from either side. These wings seem to tell the story of Breitling's history.


      Since opening his workshop in the town of Saint-Imier in the Swiss Jura region in 1884 , founder Leon Breitling has focused his skills on one area of ​​expertise: timers and chronographs, which determined the future direction of the workshop.


      This specialization has enabled me to excel in sports, science, and industry.


      And while the era was shifting focus to automobiles, Leon Breitling was one of the first to turn his attention to the aviation industry.


      Breitling's presidents have inherited Leon's vision, and Leon's DNA has been passed down to the Navitimer, another famous series that represents the company. Then, an event occurred that could be called the culmination of that vision.


      The Breitling watch went beyond its specialty of flying in the sky and flew into space.


      The invention of the modern chronograph


      In the mid-1900s, the aviation industry was booming around the world. Breitling did not miss this opportunity, and invented the world's first aviation chronograph equipped with a rotating slide rule for pilots.


      In 1984, they released a watch called the Chronomat Original.

      The classic chronograph face design, which is said to have been invented by Breitling, originated from this original.



      A phoenix rising from the odds


      Then in 1979, a major shock hit not only Breitling, but the entire watch industry.


      "Quartz Shock"


      With the rise of quartz watches, the demand for mechanical watches, which had been thriving in Switzerland, quickly fell into decline. After much trial and error and careful planning to somehow revive the struggling company, Ernest Schneider (then president) decided to make a comeback by winning a competition for the Italian Air Force's acrobatic team. The acrobatic team "Frecce Tricolori" does not just fly, but performs various performances in the air. In other words, to win the competition, the company had to perfectly meet all of their reckless requests. After winning the competition and once again making a name for itself as a famous watch maker, it revived the Chronomat, a watch that had once been loved as a masterpiece.


      However, this Chronomat was not a simple reissue. Schneider kept the name of the famous watch, but equipped it with the latest performance features.


      This reprint was released in 1984.



      DNA inherited by the modern Chronomat series


      The Chronomat series, which symbolizes the evolution of Breitling, has been improved over the years and has been released in various forms. 20 years after its birth, the Chronomat Evolution was created in 2004 , which was a major renewal of the previous four times.


      The most distinctive feature of this Chronomat is its size. The rugged form, which exudes the weight and strength of the watch's history, has actually expanded the case size from 39mm to 43.7mm. The shape of the rider tabs has also been changed. The dial is guilloched (a process in which a circular pattern is engraved in the center), further enhancing the brilliance of the face.

      Chronomat Series


      1984 <Chronomat Original>

      Breitling Chronomat Original 1984

      The Chronomat was developed as the official chronograph for the Italian Air Force's aerobatic flying team.

      This watch is packed with gimmicks that meet the needs of pilots who actually use it. The rotating bezel for measuring the time has rider tabs with the numbers 15 , 30 , and 45 to meet the needs of pilots. And for pilots who want to measure the countdown, the 15 and 45 numbers can be removed and replaced. This was a truly revolutionary idea, and pilots were very happy with it.


      The display is not the only ingenious feature. The lugs are straight so that the watch does not get caught on clothing. The glass is also specially coated to prevent reflections. Furthermore, a notch is carved into the crown so that pilots can easily touch the watch even when wearing gloves.


      1994 <Chronomat 10th Anniversary Renewal>

      Chronomat 10th Anniversary Renewal

      In 1994 , to mark its anniversary, Breitling significantly renewed the Chronomat. The biggest difference was that the design was revamped to make it easier to visually measure and recognize the time. Three years later, in 1997 , the Chronomat GT had an easier-to-read sub-dial.

      Breitling Chronomat 1997


      2000 : Chronomat 2000

      Image: Chronomat 2000

      In 2000 , Breitling announced its " 100 % Chronometer" initiative, declaring that all of its lineup would be chronometerized. This was an unprecedented event. The Chronomat 2000 was equipped with the B-13 movement, and the word " chronometer " was placed under the Breitling logo.


      2004 Chronomat Evolution

      Breitling 2004 Chronomat Evolution

      The Chronomat, which celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2004 , has continued to evolve.

      The Chronomat Evolution's case size has increased from 39mm to 43.7mm .

      It is also water resistant to 300m , and the lugs, which previously had a straight shape, are now curved to fit the wrist.

      In 2009 , the company developed its own movement, called Caliber 01 , and installed it in a new watch.

      This is the Chronomat 44.

      What are the features of Breitling's Cal.01, which was developed in-house?

      - Boasts a long power reserve of over 70 hours (approximately 3 days).
      (1.5 times that of the conventional ETA7750 Breitling Cal.13)
      - There are no times when date adjustments should be avoided, and they can be done at any time of the day.

      It is a wonderful movement with these characteristics.

      And the biggest difference is the change in design.

      The bezel is thick and the numbers are Arabic.
      Also, the rider tab that was used until the Evolution has been abolished. This is probably the biggest change.

      The end result is something that emphasizes style while retaining the solidity and dazzling atmosphere that is characteristic of Breitling.

      Breitling Chronomat 44

      Breitling Chronomat 44



      2014 Chronomat Airborne

      Breitling 2014 Chronomat Airborne

      To mark its 30th anniversary, Breitling released the Chronomat Airborne. Compared to the model released in 2009 , it seems to have a design that goes back to the older models. Fans say that the commemorative model was inspired by the first model.

      The big difference is that the rider tab is back.
      The rider tab, which was present until the Chronomat Evolution, was discontinued with the Chronomat 44.

      However, the Airborne, released after the 44, also has rider tabs.

      I think Breitling revived this because there are many users who want rider tabs.

      So the question is, why was the rider tab abolished once and for all?

      This was probably abolished after complaints that the rider tabs would get caught on clothing when taking off clothes.
      When you actually try wearing it, the rider tab is designed to catch on your fingers, even when you are wearing gloves, and it gets caught on your clothing.

      So, when purchasing, if you are concerned about the sleeves of your clothes getting caught, I recommend the Chronomat 44, and if you like the rider tab design, I recommend the Evolution, Airborne, or JSP, which will be introduced later.

      2017 Latest Chronomat JSP

      Breitling Chronomat JSP 2017

      Reference A001B70PA
      It is being sold for 900,000 yen.

      Breitling's latest Chronomat JSP, released in 2017, features rider tabs.

      What's more, this JSP is a special limited edition model available only in Japan.

      The reason why it is called a special model for Japan is probably because there are a lot of fans in Japan who are eager for the Rider Tab to be revived, so it is a model targeted at the Japanese market.

      The JSP rider tabs feature a unidirectional rotating bezel.
      The combination of the satin-finished bezel and polished case gives a stylish and sharp impression.

      The movement is Breitling's in-house developed automatic Cal.01.

      The water resistance is now up to 500m, making this a masterpiece that truly demonstrates the evolution of technology.