Top 4 Military Watches10:19 am
The mark of excellence in horology can be best judged by the watchmaker’s ability to create a military grade timepiece. Innovations in watchmaking history have often been linked to the task of meeting the rigorous demands of the armed forces. Depending on the mission, the watch was built to maintain accuracy of time and provide intelligence not otherwise readily available to the soldier. The first ever wristwatch was created for aeronautical use, as the pocket watch was too difficult to read during the flight. Dive watches were also first developed for use by military personnel in their underwater missions.
Military watches with their simple yet functional design and sturdy construction are fantastic examples of function over form. A rugged build, accurate movement, 100m water resistance, superb readability and durability are some of the basic qualities that are found in every military watch. The non-reflective case, super luminova, screw-in crown, chronometer accuracy, rotating bezel, rubber and/or NATO straps, are just a few examples of how innovation from military watches has influenced civilian watch design.
Broadly there are four categories of military watches depending on the mission and its requirements.
The Covert Mission Watch – Bell & Ross BR 01-92 Carbon
The most critical and sensitive missions of a military unit are the ones done clandestinely. Inspired by specialized covert operations teams, the Bell & Ross BR 01-92 Carbon is an instrument of ultimate precision and stealth. The matt black PVD finish steel case with anti-reflective sapphire crystal provides covertness and a rugged build to withstand the most demanding situations.
The 46mm dial with superior luminous Arabic numerals and large hands makes readability possible in the darkest places. Accuracy is ensured with the superior Bell & Ross automatic movement, while the rubber strap keeps the instrument secured to the wrist in all situations.
The Pilot’s Instrument – The Breitling Avenger II Chronograph
The success of military aviation is highly dependent on specialized and precise equipment. Owing to their high degree of precision and reliability, Breitling Chronographs have been an inseparable part of successful missions throughout the course of world aviation history.
Featured here, the Breitling Avenger II Chronograph with its accurate self winding Breitling 13 movement – a certified chronometer, provides the accuracy and precision needed in such high-speed, high-risk missions. The chronograph complication allows timing of the flight operations with accuracy to ¼th of a second.
The 43mm dial with luminous markers provides superior readability in the cockpit conditions of extreme vibration and changing light. A power reserve of 42 hours ensures timekeeping till completion of the flight. Housed in a stainless steel, shock-resistant case, the watch is ready for the most challenging demands of aviation.
The Naval Opertation Watch – Panerai Radiomir Black Seal Ceramica
Precision and reliability under the sea and in adverse weather conditions is the hallmark of a naval operations watch. Originally built for the Italian Navy, the Panerai Radiomir collection is a true symbol of supreme functionality. The 45mm matt black ceramic case and bezel is extremely resistant to corrosion and changes in temperature.
The screw down crown and caseback along with sapphire crystal ensure superior water resistance. Large luminous Arabic numerals on the black dial ensure readability in murky waters. The movement is hand-wound mechanical – the exclusive Panerai OP XI calibre, certified chronometer with a power reserve 56 hours.
The Field Officer’s Watch – Victorinox Maverick GS
Military watches issued to ground units were meant to be rugged, low maintenance and to provide accurate synchronized 24 hour time while coordinating military movements and actions from the front line to the command centre. Victorinox has been a standard equipment supplier to military units around the world. The Victorinox Maverick GS 241602 is the perfect field officer’s watch with minimalist features and extreme reliability.
The 43mm robust stainless steel case houses an extremely accurate and shock resistant Swiss Ronda 715 movement. The blue dial with a date window at the 6’o’clock position and a 24 hour track makes it easy to communicate in military time at a glance. A Rotating bezel facilitates as a timer during military manoeuvres. An extremely affordable military watch.
By Pranav Karol
Features Writer, The Watch Guide
A watch enthusiast who is very passionate about performance watches. A keen observer of the horological world and its latest developments.