When you see a triple calendar chronograph replica watch today, it’s usually an actual vintage example from the 1940s or ’50s. Even as everything vintage is fresh again, most modern watchmakers don’t bother with the cost and complexity of this elegant combination of features.
Collectors still love them, however — and copy Breitling’s latest resurrected model is a primo example. Honestly, we didn’t think we’d get such a cool 1940s-styled Premier when we wished for it just yesterday in predicting what the Watches & Wonders trade show might bring. (This is how you know you’ve had your head in the watch world too long.) In fact, the new-again 42 mm copy Breitling Premier B25 Datora is even cooler than we’d hoped for, and it joins a range of several models based on 1940s chronographs. The layout is as classic as it gets: two windows at 12 o’clock for the month and day of the week, and a 6 o’clock subdial for the moon phase indicator and date. (The rest of the functions are typical time and chronograph features.) The chronograph and annual calendar features each require complicated mechanics, and together they display a good deal of information. It’s testament to great engineering and design that it can all come together so elegantly. The best quality copy watch is available in two versions. A steel model steals the show with a copper dial (some might call it “salmon”), but a red gold-cased version has a very classical feel, thanks to its cream-colored dial. Both are 42mm wide (a bit smaller would’ve been nice) and run on the brand’s own in-house B25 automatic movement. The new movement is based on the Breitling B01 and was developed in collaboration with the Swiss company Concepto.
It shouldn’t be surprising that complicated mechanical Breitling replica watches are expensive; the steel version runs into five figures and the one in red gold is more than double that. Considering its complexity and in-house movement, however, a price difference of a couple grand between these and simpler chronographs in the collection doesn’t seem unreasonable. Both are available directly from the brand or from the Hodinkee Shop, at a price of $10,250 in steel or $22,850 in red gold.
We like to talk about vintage copy watches a lot within the Fratello team. While the daily routine is largely focused on the most recent developments in the world of watches, the most fun for many of us lies in the world of yesteryear. It’s a world full of history, remarkable watches, incredible stories, and quirky details. It inspired us to come up with a series of articles focusing on the best watches per decade from a select group of brands. Some of them priceless; some of them still affordable. But all of them are remarkable watches. In this third installment, we will take a look at the best quality fake Breitling watches from the 1950s.
The cheap copy Breitling watches from the 1950s? What does that actually mean? Every week we try to come up with a small selection of special watches for several reasons. Maybe they are the icons, maybe they are the affordable options, maybe they are technically brilliant, or maybe they look amazing. It can be anything really as long as they stand out. We’ll try and mix up things as much as possible. And I will define an entry-point watch, my preferred choice, and we’ll close out with the icons where money is no object. The great importance of Breitling in the fifties Breitling was one of the most prolific watch brands in the 1950s. But I have to be honest here, while we decided to start this series in the 1950s, Breitling released some of its most iconic models starting in the 1940s. Mike wrote a great article about vintage black leather strap fake Breitling in conversation with two vintage clone Breitling experts @watchfred and @rene_jk. When you read it, you’ll quickly find out that the brand has shaped the way we look at watch design today heavily. And it started doing so in the 1940s with the Premier and the Chronomat. Especially when it comes to chronographs, Breitling is the brand that shaped what they look like today. And over these last couple of years, Swiss movement copy Breitling has been picking up on that by releasing some great vintage re-issues. It has to be said that Breitling CEO Georges Kern and his team have been working with Fred Mandelbaum (watchfred) to make sure the re-issues are historically spot-on. It’s why they are praised by both vintage collectors and the wider watch buying audience. And you have to give the brand great credit for that. It has created a renewed relevance for the brand and its incredible history. And it won’t come as a surprise that you will find some of these icons in our list of five remarkable Breitling watches from the 1950s.
Breitling debuts a reinvented Chronomat timepiece that was designed for women
Capitalizing on its signature 1980s design, Breitling’s iconic perfect replica Chronomat timepiece has been redesigned with a modern update this year and reintroduced as the first-ever Chronomat for women. “It is sporty yet elegant and, while its roots are in the 1980s, this timepiece is dedicated to innovative women of today,” says Breitling CEO Georges Kern. “The Chronomat influenced the industry for many years, and its name and some of the design elements are absolutely iconic.”
Offered in a variety of steel and 18-karat red gold cases with diamond-set bezels and indexes and special lacquered dials, the watches are available in two sizes: 32mm and 36mm. Swiss made fake Breitling has reinvented a symbol of style with the Chronomat, executing the perfect blend of masculine and feminine design with traditional luxury. “For today’s woman, a watch needs to be comfortable, durable and versatile,” says Kern. “They are looking for a watch that accompanies their active lifestyle, a watch they can wear for any occasion, from business meetings to the beach.”
“Black is black, I want my baby back”, goes the 1960s pop song. And for those wanting full black watches, PVD and carbon have been the best way for watchmakers to ensure black is indeed black. Keeping full black watches readable can be a challenge, but their contemporary look has been all the rage for the past 20 years.
Render unto Caesar that which is… Chanel’s: the full black J12 was one of the first all-black watches, in ceramic, with three hands or chronograph – and intentionally unisex. However, the sheen of the material in question, a real innovation in the year 2000, did not meet with widespread acceptance, and matt black prevailed.
Swiss made Breitling replica, a pioneer in this area, produced black PVD versions of most of its standard collections, including its Avenger, Super Avenger, Avenger Hurricane, and Avenger Blackbird.
In 2006, Hublot took the same direction with its ‘All Black’ Big Bang models. The collection is still in production, and regularly celebrates its anniversary dates with new models in response to a demand that shows no signs of waning.