In 1884 the Swiss technician Louis Breitling established a factory which was specialized in making chronometers and stopwatches. These were not for personal use but for scientific aims. At that moment of time the company still did not produce watches. Now we do know the brand for its famous logo. The logo with the prominent letter B and the wings. The wings indicate the strong relationship for the brand with aviation. But Breitling also has a strong relationship with automotive. The luxury and power of the Bentley car have inspired Breitling to create a fin wristwatch in which the classic style an Britisch class are combined.
History of the Breitling Brand
The creation of the Breitling watch
It was the first Cartier wristwatch that attracted the attention of Breitling. This was back in 1904. This inspired Breitling for the idea to create a wrist-stopwatch on its own. This wrist stopwatch showed to be an ideal device for pilots. It was during this period of time that the first powered aircraft flights were made. From that moment on the Breitling Brand was connected to aviation.
After the death of his son Louis Breitling it was Gaston Breitling who took over the factory. It was back in 1923 that Gaston did an important invention. He found out how to fit a watch and a stopwatch in one single watchcase watch. For the first time in history, these two functions were combined in one box. Not long thereafter Breitling did a new invention. A clock that was triggered by the movement of the wrist. Breitling was not the first watch with this feature. Rolex was just a little bit earlier with the invention. But this invention was very important, now that the pilots could rely on their watches, even on their long distance flights. This watch was always on time.
Breitling watches supplies Royal Airforce
Mid-thirties Breitling became the main supplier for the Royal Airforce. The organization designed a special watch for the Royal Air force. But in the second world war, the Germans also wanted a Breitling watch. Fortunately Breitling was a Swiss company that was neutral during this war. By being Neutral the organization was able to supply the Britisch, Americans and even the Germans with their watches.
The Breitling Navitimer
In 1956 the flagship for Breitling arrived at the market, the Navitimer. This watch is seen as the most popular pilot watch.
Breitling for Bentley
That the Breitling watch was in the market seen as a very exclusive item was also noticed by the manufacturer Bentley Motors. They approached the Breitling factory to design a watch that they could do as a gift to the buyers of a Bentley. Especially for Bently the designers from Breitling designed an exclusive watch. This Breitling Bentley watch watch is equipped with the motorsports related functions. Eventually, this was the heaviest, thickest and most complete model of Breitling. Because the heavy demand for this special watch, the model is no longer exclusively associated with the purchase of a Bentley car.
The Breitling Factories
The plants off Breitling are mostly still located in the Jura, where the plant originally began. In the village of La Chaux de Fonds, the place of the business of Louis Breitling. The headoffice stands now in Grenchen.
Examples from the Breitling watches Collection
Breitling Aeromarine Series
These Breitling watches were previously part of the Professional Series. But after forming a series on its own, this series of Breitling watches has a specific series of Breitling watches for divers and other functional watches that are less affected by aviation. In this series we see also the somewhat simpler and inexpensive Breitling models. For many Breitling owners, the first selected Breitling model will be an “opt-in” model from this series. The watches are operated by a Quartz clock and a large number of watches out of this series have both a digital and analog indication of the time.
Breitling Bentley Series
In cooperation with the Bentley car a special series of Breitling watches was developed. In the early nineties, this watch by Bentley was a free gift to the new owners of a Bentley car. The watch carried the logo of Bentley and was a very popular item. Especially among collectors these Breitling watches were popular.
Breitling Navitimer Series
The watches from the Breitling Navitimer series are symbolic of the brand Breitling. It’s become the official watch of the AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Associations), the world’s largest association of pilots and pilots. Since 1952 the Navitimer is a unique tool that can be worn the wrist, very popular amongst pilots. This series of Breitling watches chronograph is the oldest continuously produced model. All models have a stopwatch and a rotating ring around the dial numbers. The best-known model from this series is the Breitling Blackbird. This special model has a second small box with its own watch dial. The second box is on the side of the watch band. This allows the pilot to read the time without taking the hands from the steering wheel or flying stick.
Breitling Professional Series
This is the series of Breitling watches with the most expensive and most advanced models. In this group we see much more complicated watches that are used by scientists. These watches are bought and worn by people who have high demands on a wristwatch: Astronauts, sailors and professional pilots. These models are only made to order and are therefore also very exclusive and rare. The most exclusive model in this series is the Breitling Emergency. A shock-and radiation-resistant watch with a titanium watch case of 80mm thickness. The watch has a safety spin. When it is pulled out a transmitter will be activated. This is the carrier to locate by rescue workers. The watch was very effective in a rescue operation in Antarctica. Actually, this model was intended only for professional pilots. Individuals who want to buy the watch need to sign a document indicating that they will be charged the cost for a rescue in case of abuse for the rescue transmitter.
Breitling Windrider Series
This series of Breitling models consisted originally from Chronopost Liner and the Night Flight series. Typical of these watches is the shaping of the crown (dome shape crown) and the Bezel with tabs. The best selling Breitling watch the Chronomat Evolution is also part of this series of Breitling models. This group includes very different Breitling models. Ranging from auto race watches to diver watches. The latter is more exclusive in terms of design but often has less technical ingenuity. Even though the Wind Rider models are technically inferior to other models they become exclusively by implementation for gold and/or platinum in the designs.
More on Breitling
Below an overview for more resources on Breitling Watches:
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(Page last modified on: march 27 , 2015)