Creators of consummate timepieces for aviation professionals, Breitling has recently refreshed their Chronomat line with a bold new model in black satin-brushed steel with vivid yellow highlights. Here we take a look at the history of the Breitling Chronomat, in addition to the collection’s newest member. At Gray & Sons, we offer a wide range of used Breitling watches for sale including secondhand Breitling Chronomat, used Breitling Transocean, and pre-owned Breitling Bentley watches.
Brief History of the Breitling Chronomat
Born in 1941, the Breitling Chronomat made its mark on the history of watchmaking as the first watch to use the pioneering circular slide rule in combination with a wrist chronograph. Enabling wearers to rapidly calculate mathematical equations, this Chronomat was initially intended for mathematicians, engineers, and scientists. On the other hand, the Breitling Navitimer was the Chronomat’s successor and would be introduced a decade later and named one of the greatest aviation chronographs of all time.
Eventually, however, in 1962, the revamped Chronomat (Ref. 808) was marketed to pilots and by the end of the 1960s, it evolved into the Ref. 818 “Big Case” Chronomat. To develop the Chronomat further, Breitling introduced a quartz non-chronograph in the seventies, while in the eighties the model was overhauled to become an aviation watch without its once defining slide-rule.
One of Breitling’s best selling watches today, the Chronomat’s newest Special Edition iteration is a modern, bold take on a classic military pilot’s watch. Rugged and sporty, this current model certainly has its own look to set it apart from the manufacture’s still popular Navitimer series.
The New Breitling Chronomat: Chronomat 44 Special Edition
An unquestionably masculine piece, the Chronomat 44 Blacksteel Special Edition boasts a 44mm case. Made from satin-brushed steel, the case and bezel make an impact thanks to a black carbon-based treatment, which offers the chronograph high-resistance and resilience to scratches and the wear and tear of daily life. A solid sports watch, this is a timepiece suited to the outdoors, to precision timekeeping, and to those looking for a daring precision instrument.
Water-resistant to 200 meters
Water-resistant to 200 meters, the case features a screw-lock crown and safety pushpieces to form a defensive wall impervious to water. And to allow for easier handling, the watch incorporates a ratcheted, unidirectional rotating bezel inlaid with black rubber numerals with four polished rider tabs that serve to measure the progress of time.
Contrasting the stealth black of the case and bezel, the Breitling Chronomat 44 Blacksteel Special Edition’s dial offers Breitling’s signature vivid yellow with black sub-dials and red hands. The layout clearly recalls the instrument panels of a flight deck. Ensuring optimal legibility and protected by sapphire crystal, the dial houses large luminescent-coated hour-markers and hour and minute hands. A 10-minute indication track and the classic tachymeter scale detail the dial’s periphery.
Completing the robust look of the Breitling Chronomat 44 Blacksteel Special Edition is a TwinPro military rubber strap. Embossed with the brand’s name and cut to size, the bracelet is black on its outer side and yellow on the underside. Machined to exceptional standard, this strap is finished off with a black steel folding clasp with a pushbutton.
Manufacture Breitling Caliber 01
Guaranteeing maximum reliability and accuracy, the Manufacture Breitling Caliber 01 powers the Chronomat 44 Blacksteel Special Edition. A self-winding mechanical movement, this caliber is chronometer-certified by the COSC (Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute), as are all Breitling watches. Initially released in 2009 with its research and development actually beginning in 2004, the B01 follows a column-wheel arrangement with a vertical coupling system. This does away with the hand jumping once the chrono feature is activated. Visible via the watch’s sapphire crystal caseback, the weight—colored in black to complement the watchcase — oscillates to reveal the some of the movement’s 47 jewels, while the single barrel offers up a 70-hour power reserve. With a frequency of 4 Hz or 28,800 beats per hour, the Caliber B01 provides instant date change capabilities and chronograph precision within 1/4th of a second, 30 minutes, and 12 hours.
Representing only 3% of the Swiss watch production, chronometer-certified watches offer luxury watch collectors exemplary technical instruments with practical application. Using the highest quality components and master watchmaking technique, the Breitling Chronomat 44 Blacksteel Special Edition is a definitive aviator’s timepiece.
Pre-owned Breitling Watches
If you’re looking for a Breitling watch at a reasonable price, look no further than Gray & Sons’ collection of like-new used Breitling for sale. Browse our wide range of secondhand Breitling Chronomat, pre-owned Breitling Transocean, and used Breitling Bentley watches HERE.