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Breitling Chronospace Military
Breitling Chronospace Military
R 57,838
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
124
DE
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
R 86,967
Seller
Badel Watch
6
BE
Anonimo militare automatico
Anonimo militare automatico
R 45,068
Seller
wiquel s.r.l.
9
IT
Anonimo Militare Opera Meccana Crono  Referenz 2007 Revision...
Anonimo Militare Opera Meccana Crono Referenz 2007 Revision...
R 45,053
Seller
Uhren - Borgardts
 
DE
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar IW5019-02 Watch with Textile...
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar IW5019-02 Watch with Textile...
R 104,351
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar inkl. 19% Mwst.
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar inkl. 19% Mwst.
R 142,717
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
7
DE
Breitling Chronospace Military Special Edition 48mm  PVD Black
Breitling Chronospace Military Special Edition 48mm PVD Black
R 43,925
Seller
Alux Watches
 
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT...
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT...
R 128,150
Free shipping
Seller
de Boulle Diamond & Jewelry
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
TOP
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
R 127,679
Seller
Private Seller
 
DE
Panerai Special Editions
Panerai Special Editions
R 99,000
Seller
Topwatch SA Pty Ltd
ZA
Panerai Watch Luminor Marina PAM00217
Panerai Watch Luminor Marina PAM00217
R 184,338
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
Panerai Radiomir Ceramics Dark Brown Manual Wind PAM00339
Panerai Radiomir Ceramics Dark Brown Manual Wind PAM00339
R 151,522
Seller
VIP WATCH & JEWELLERY
36
HK
Jaeger-LeCoultre MASTER COMPRESSOR NAVY SEALS LIMITED
Jaeger-LeCoultre MASTER COMPRESSOR NAVY SEALS LIMITED
R 90,122
Free shipping
Seller
exclusive-chrono.com
148
NL
IWC Pilot's Chronograph IW3890-02 Watch with Leather, Nylon...
IWC Pilot's Chronograph IW3890-02 Watch with Leather, Nylon...
R 88,484
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
IWC Fliegeruhr Miramar 46 Chronograph Keramik/Titan
IWC Fliegeruhr Miramar 46 Chronograph Keramik/Titan
R 123,938
Seller
LUXUHRIA Uhren&Schmuck
29
DE
Bell & Ross WW1 NEW
Bell & Ross WW1 NEW
R 34,552
Seller
RARIST
 
PL
IWC Pilot Mark XI British Military 1951
IWC Pilot Mark XI British Military 1951
R 98,399
Free shipping
Seller
Edle Zeitmesser Worldtime KG
46
AT
Orfina Porsche Design Military PVD 7177 Lemania 5100
Orfina Porsche Design Military PVD 7177 Lemania 5100
R 30,046
Seller
Private Seller
IT
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
R 69,856
Seller
Guardian Of Time
466
UK
IWC Watch Mark XVIII IW324702
IWC Watch Mark XVIII IW324702
R 67,391
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
IWC Pilots Titanium Dark Grey Automatic IW501902
IWC Pilots Titanium Dark Grey Automatic IW501902
R 147,011
Seller
VIP WATCH & JEWELLERY
36
HK
Heuer Bundeswehr Chronograph
Heuer Bundeswehr Chronograph
R 68,354
Seller
Chronometrie Pietzner GmbH
95
DE
IWC Pilot's Chronograph Edition Top Gun Miramar IW3880-02...
IWC Pilot's Chronograph Edition Top Gun Miramar IW3880-02...
R 88,484
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare B&P PAM00339
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare B&P PAM00339
R 187,768
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
144
UK
Longines Heritage Military
Longines Heritage Military
R 21,783
Seller
online pfand
DE
IWC Grosse Fliegeruhr Big-Pilot Top Gun Miramar Keramik 48 mm
IWC Grosse Fliegeruhr Big-Pilot Top Gun Miramar Keramik 48 mm
R 164,500
Seller
LUXUHRIA Uhren&Schmuck
29
DE
Orfina Porsche Design
Orfina Porsche Design
R 30,009
Seller
Private Seller
UK
Zenith Pilot Type 20
Zenith Pilot Type 20
R 60,091
Seller
Guardian Of Time
466
UK
Panerai Watch Radiomir Manual PAM00339
Panerai Watch Radiomir Manual PAM00339
R 132,895
Seller
Watchfinder.co.uk Ltd
UK
Orfina Porsche Design Military Chronograph Automatic
Orfina Porsche Design Military Chronograph Automatic
R 30,046
Seller
La Clessidra Orologi S.r.l.
48
IT
Breitling Avenger Hurricane Limited Edition
Breitling Avenger Hurricane Limited Edition
R 107,174
Seller
Watch Philosophy
21
UK
IWC Pilot's Chronograph TOP GUN Miramar IW3880-02 Watch with...
IWC Pilot's Chronograph TOP GUN Miramar IW3880-02 Watch with...
R 88,484
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
R 135,205
Seller
orpailleur
21
BE
Orfina U.A.E. Air Force Military Chronograph - 7177
Orfina U.A.E. Air Force Military Chronograph - 7177
R 73,612
Free shipping
Seller
Watches.de - Mercurius Trading Ltd.
106
CH
IWC Pilot Mark
IWC Pilot Mark
R 54,311
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
32
US
Alpina AL-372GR4FBS6
Alpina AL-372GR4FBS6
R 10,040
Seller
SWART Basel
6
CH
Breitling Avenger Hurricane Military
Breitling Avenger Hurricane Military
R 90,888
Seller
Guardian Of Time
466
UK
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare B&P PAM00339
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare B&P PAM00339
R 175,765
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
144
UK
IWC Fliegeruhr Mark 11
IWC Fliegeruhr Mark 11
R 87,883
Seller
Private Seller
 
DE
Breitling Chronospace Military
Breitling Chronospace Military
R 66,025
Seller
Prestige Luxusuhren GmbH
3198
DE
IWC Pilot's Watch Top Gun Miramar IW3880-02 Watch with Textile...
IWC Pilot's Watch Top Gun Miramar IW3880-02 Watch with Textile...
R 90,315
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
Heuer Bundeswehr
Heuer Bundeswehr
R 87,853
Seller
TheBeautifulWatch
6
CH
IWC Top Gun Mark XVIII Miramar Keramik Pilot´s watch IW324702...
IWC Top Gun Mark XVIII Miramar Keramik Pilot´s watch IW324702...
R 63,081
Seller
Dreamwatch Uhrenhandel
158
DE
Orfina Porsche Design Military PVD 7177
Orfina Porsche Design Military PVD 7177
R 30,046
Seller
Private Seller
IT
Longines Heritage L2.811.4.53.0
Longines Heritage L2.811.4.53.0
R 18,795
Free shipping
Seller
SLS TIME
32
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
R 149,477
Seller
Guardian Of Time
466
UK
Heuer Bundeswehr Chronograph 1550SG
Heuer Bundeswehr Chronograph 1550SG
R 66,852
Seller
Just In Time Watches di Claudio Tassinari
118
IT
Panerai PAM00587 Radiomir 1940 Marina Militare 3 Day (28031)
Panerai PAM00587 Radiomir 1940 Marina Militare 3 Day (28031)
R 100,689
Seller
European Watch Company
113
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar - 48 mm - NEU
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar - 48 mm - NEU
R 115,601
Seller
MyChronograph
457
DE
Breitling Chronospace Military M78366 Watch with Textile...
Breitling Chronospace Military M78366 Watch with Textile...
R 46,378
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar 7 Days
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar 7 Days
R 114,158
Seller
Watch Center London
610
UK
Panerai Special Editions Militare Marina 47 lefty
Panerai Special Editions Militare Marina 47 lefty
R 172,762
Seller
Private Seller
 
DE
Heuer 1550 SG Bundeswehr Chronograph
Heuer 1550 SG Bundeswehr Chronograph
R 69,105
Seller
Private Seller
 
FR
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy...
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy...
R 202,808
Seller
HAUTE HORLOGERIE LIDER
17
PL
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar
R 103,740
Seller
Private Seller
 
HK
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar / 48mm
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar / 48mm
R 127,679
Free shipping
Seller
exclusive-chrono.com
148
NL
Jaeger-LeCoultre Q1852670 Master Compressor Diving Pro...
Jaeger-LeCoultre Q1852670 Master Compressor Diving Pro...
R 262,402
Seller
European Watch Company
113
US
IWC Fliegeruhr Mark XXIII Top Gun Miramar
IWC Fliegeruhr Mark XXIII Top Gun Miramar
R 68,354
Seller
Michael Haban Uhren e.U.
8
AT
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar IW5019-02 Watch with Textile...
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar IW5019-02 Watch with Textile...
R 106,181
Free shipping
Seller
Crown & Caliber
10
US
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar Ceramic Men's IW501902 - COM1232
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar Ceramic Men's IW501902 - COM1232
R 169,677
Seller
Xupes.com
98
UK
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Military Watches: Beloved Amongst Military and Civilians Alike

Whether on water, land, or in the air, military watches are useful everywhere. They're robust, functional, and relatively affordable even when new. An older military watch with a documented history, however, can reach astronomical prices.

Everything to Know About Military Watches

  • Robust and legible
  • Famous watches like the Rolex Submariner or IWC Mark 11
  • Extensive vintage selection
  • Rare and expensive collector's pieces are good investments
  • Large selection of affordable everyday watches

From a Service Watch to a Cult Watch

Military watches should, above all, be reliable and fulfill their purpose - no more, no less. Failure while the watch is in use can result in grave consequences. Military watches have no superfluous extras. Stainless steel and plastic are the main case materials used, as gold watches for regular military equipment do not fit most budgets. A military watch can't be too expensive, seeing as they're distributed en masse to the troops.
In any case, there is no clear cut definition for a military watch. This is why some watches are labeled as military watches even though they were originally meant for civilian use. Usually, they have common military watch characteristics, but have been sold on the regular market like any other watch. Thus, a soldier may indeed be a customer, but these still aren't "real" military watches.

IWC Mark 11: Serving the Royal Air Force for Over 30 Years

Watches that exist solely because the air force, marines, or army requested them are rare. Most are only introduced later as part of the brand's regular selection of watches available to everyone. One example of a watch like this is the most well-known pilot's watch, the Mark 11 from IWC. Created in 1948 to fulfill the wishes of the British Ministry of Defense, it was first the service watch for the Royal Air Force. Both IWC and Jaeger-LeCoultre delivered Mark 11s to pilots. The RAF gradually phased the watch out at the beginning of the 1980s. IWC continued developing the series, staying close to the original and also changing the numbers in the name to Roman numerals. The 2016 model is called the Mark XVIII. Clear and legible dials are no longer just for military pilots and their crews; they're a standard characteristic of IWC watches.
The same applies to some legendary diving watches. Blancpain developed the Fifty Fathoms for the French combat diving unit, Les Naguers de combat. The Fifty Fathoms featured a unidirectional bezel and has been competing with the Rolex Submariner for the title of the first diving watch in the world since its premiere in 1953. Blancpain offers the Fifty Fathoms in versions that are based on the one from 1953. There are also models in gold or white gold with special features such as diamonds or a tourbillon. These special watches are similar to the military watches in name only.

Watches for Combat Divers

The Panerai Radiomir has a similar history. The Italian Marines turned to Panerai in 1938, as they needed a reliable and legible diving watch. Panerai created a watch that was named Radiomir after the luminous, radioactive material used. The Marina Militare gave the elite combat unit Gamma the Radiomir. Initially, the timepiece was shroud in secrecy. After Panerai replaced the harmful radioactive material with a harmless one, the diving watch was renamed the Luminor in 1950. The Radiomir is available today once again, but the luminous hands and indices are not radioactive.
Two additional famous diving watches from the 1950s were also used by the military: the Rolex Submariner and the Omega Seamaster 300. However, the Submariner and Seamaster weren't originally conceived for the military. The Submariner had already been in production for four years when the British Ministry of Defense began searching for a good diving watch. They chose the Rolex, but not the regular, civilian version; rather, they asked for some changes. The metal bars for the strap were integrated into the case, and the strap became a continuous textile strap (NATO strap) so the watch couldn't be lost. The larger bezel is made of silver, a relatively soft metal which doesn't suffer cracks or break on impact. Rolex used tritium as the luminous material. These models have an encircled T on the dial above the depth indicator. Rolex produced these military Submariners until the late 1970s.

The Seamaster: Originally for Pilots, Now for Marines

The British military also used the Omega Seamaster. However, unlike its name would suggest, the Air Force were the first to use the timepiece. At its start in 1948, the Seamaster wasn't a diving watch. It only became a diving watch when the Seamaster 300 model was released in 1957. The Omega Seamaster 300 was soon part of the Royal Navy's Special Boat Service gear. Today's Seamaster 300's design is reminiscent of the version from 1957.
For years, the Vostok Amphibia enjoyed cult status in the West as well. This watch is an inexpensive, mechanical Russian diving watch. Its construction and design have barely changed since its introduction in the late 1960s. In order to fulfill the demands of the Soviet Ministry of Defense, designers Michail Novikov and Vera Belov came up with a revolutionary sealing concept. The deeper one dives, the more intensely the edge of the Plexiglas pushes against the o-ring, which creates a seal protecting the front side of the watch. The stronger the water pressure is, the better the waterproofness is. The case back is positioned on a large rubber ring and a steel ring is also screwed on to the case. This results in both the case back and o-ring pressing against the case. Unlike other well-known diving watches, the case back is not screwed down. The Amphibia's rubber ring is neither horizontally compressed or stretched, which can happen when a screw-down back is tightened or loosened. Thus, the o-ring must only be changed in exceptional cases, while in regular diving watches, the piece is considered expendable.
With the Chronospace Military, Breitling introduced a watch that proclaimed to be a military watch directly in its name. It's powered by a quartz movement and has an analog as well as a digital display. The Chronospace Military features an alarm function, a timer, and a second time zone display. It's waterproof to 50 m (5 bar), which isn't particularly impressive for a 4,000-euro watch that claims to be a military watch.
Countless watches in a less expensive price range carry the title Swiss Military. These watches fall into three different categories: Swiss Military from Bubendorf, Swiss Military Hanowa from Möhlin, and Swiss Military by Chrono from Solothurn. Less expensive quartz watches play an important role in the Swiss Military market.
In any case, the less expensive and reliable quartz watches have prevailed amongst the military and are still worn by troops today. Navy SEALS use Luminox watches. Soldiers often wear a Traser or a Casio. A Submariner or Fifty Fathoms is no longer a piece of military equipment, but rather a luxury item.

Buying Advice

Are you looking for a sporty watch that also functions perfectly in adverse conditions? Military watches are not only functional, but incredibly robust and legible as well. Some military watches have even reached cult status.
The Submariner is one of the most famous watches of all time. The incredibly rare, early version of the Submariner has the reference number A/6538. Other reference numbers to keep an eye out for are 5513, 5517, and 5513/5517. However, a search for the 5513 results in not only military Subs, but civilian Submariners as well. The 5517 is especially sought after; it can be identified partly by its sword hands. The price of a military Submariner heavily depends on its condition and availability. Even a non-military Rolex watch, reference number 6538 from the 1950s, costs around 40,000. The military version is much more expensive. Over the course of 30 years, there were only 1,200 - 1,300 military Submariners produced, making prices over 100,000 possible. A few 5517s have already been sold for almost 150,000 euros. Frequently, dealers only first reveal their desired price upon request.
As a buyer, you have to decide if you're more interested in a historical or modern military watch. The price is often the same. A German pilot's chronograph with one push-piece from Hanhart from the Second World War costs around 8,000 - 9,000 euros. A new automatic Blancpain Fifty Fathoms diving watch with a traditional design also costs around that amount. For the Fifty Fathoms versions with a red gold case, you should plan to pay around 23,000 euros.
However, these price ranges are not typical. Normally, modern military watches are good everyday watches with an excellent price-performance ratio. When new, you can usually buy them for less than 1,000 euros; this especially applies to quartz-powered watches. A mechanical Vostok Amphibia costs less than 100 euros and has an in-house automatic caliber, 2146 B.

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