Breitling Chronomat 44 – The Ultimate Aviation Timepiece4:44 am
Considering the fact that every single watch manufactured by Breitling is chronometer certified, it isn’t very surprising that the brand’s timepieces are known for their precision and reliability – two factors that make all the difference when you’re flying a plane. The Chronomat 44 takes forward the legacy of Breitling and brings with it an array of features that will woo even the most critical aviator.
Breitling usually designs watches in three categories: diving, aviation and luxury. The family business is one of the few remaining independent watch brands in Switzerland. It is also one of the few watchmakers that manufacture their own mechanical chronograph movement. These movements are completely developed by Breitling at its workshops in Switzerland. In fact, the brand has such a pioneering spirit that in 1969, the watchmaker developed the first self winding chronograph movement.
The World War II propeller-driven fighter planes of the British Royal Air Force were equipped with Breitling chronographs.
The brand has been associated with aviation since the early twentieth century, when the watchmaker designed chronographs specifically to be used in aircraft cockpits. In the 1950s and 1960s, Breitling chronographs became a standard feature on almost all commercial airplanes. Needless to say, Breitling knows its way when it comes to designing watches for aviators.
The Chronomat 44 is chronometer certified – as are all Breitling watches since the year 2000.
With a self winding Breitling 01 movement at its heart, the Chronomat 44 is an instrument beyond excellence as far as accuracy is concerned. It beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour and includes 47 jewels. The timepiece has a healthy power reserve of 70 hours, which means that you can let it lie for three days and yet not need to adjust the time when you pick it up again. One thing that will interest any pilot is the chronograph movement, which allows you to measure readings up to 1/4th of a second, an extremely handy feature for timing actions in the air.
The stainless steel case has a diameter of 44 mm and is 16.95 mm thick. The caseback is screwed-in and the screw-locked crown has two gaskets. As in almost all Breitling watches, the cambered sapphire crystal is glare-proofed on both sides. The watch is water resistant to a depth of 500 metres, which makes it usable for not just first time divers, but even professional ones who usually go to greater depths. Keeping in mind the needs of professional divers, the rotating bezel is unidirectional and ratcheted to ensure that you never overestimate the time you have spent underwater.
The timepiece has a strikingly bold design. The highly polished stainless steel used throughout the watch makes it not only an instrument of extreme utility but also a timepiece of sophisticated styling. The dial is onyx black and includes three sub-dials for the 12 hour, 30 minute and 60 second chronographs. The indexes and hour hands of the timepiece are coated with Super-LumiNova for perfect visibility even in the dark. The outer rim of the dial is lined with a tachymeter and the highly polished stainless steel bezel shows minutes in Arabic numerals. The timepiece has large stainless steel rugs to which is attached a polished stainless steel bracelet.
The Breitling Chronomat 44 is the ultimate watch for both aviators and deep sea divers. And it’s not limited to just these two arenas. Though it is especially designed for use at extreme height or depth, I’m sure the timepiece won’t mind even if you wear it on the ground.
Features Writer, The Watch Guide
He is a watch aficionado with an obsessive compulsion for writing. He spends his days exploring the intricacies of modern watchmaking and his evenings reading literary classics.