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Longines Heritage L2.811.4.53.0 New Steel 44mm Automatic
TOP
Longines L2.811.4.53.0 HERITAGE MILITARY 1918
NZ$ 2,801
Verified Dealer
19
HK
IWC IW3880-02 Very good 46mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Pilot Top Gun IW3880-02 Watch with Canvas Bracelet and...
NZ$ 13,092
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
593
US
Sinn U1 1010.0101 New Steel 44mm Automatic
TOP
Sinn U1 Camouflage
NZ$ 3,661
Verified Dealer
91
DE
A. Lange & Söhne FL23883 Very good Steel 56mm Manual winding
A. Lange & Söhne WWII Aviator FL23883
NZ$ 12,670
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
504
UK
Bell & Ross BR V1 BRV192-MIL-ST/SCA Good Steel 38.5mm Automatic
Bell & Ross 【エントリーでポイント5倍×最大3万円OFFクーポン!4/1~】ベル&ロス  BRV1-92...
NZ$ 2,265
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
66
JP
A. Lange & Söhne FL 23883 Good Steel 55mm Manual winding
A. Lange & Söhne Beobachtungsuhr Fliegeruhr WWII
NZ$ 22,152
Verified Dealer
25
DE
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good Ceramic 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare Composite PAM 339 Special...
NZ$ 14,925
Verified Dealer
26
AT
Heuer 1550 SG Very good Steel 43mm Manual winding
Heuer BUNDESWEHR 1550 SG
NZ$ 8,072
Verified Dealer
118
IT
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR0392-DESERT-CE New Ceramic 42mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 03
NZ$ 4,764
Verified Dealer
7
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar Full set, 2018
NZ$ 15,488
Verified Dealer
804
NL
Panerai Special Editions PAM 339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Marina Militare 8 Giorni PAM339
NZ$ 15,142
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
15
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 03.1930.681/21.C723 New Steel 40mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Aeroneuf 40mm 03.1930.681/21.C723
NZ$ 9,311
Verified Dealer
7
DE
Panerai Special Editions PAM00339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare PAM00339
NZ$ 18,900
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
504
UK
Heuer 1550SG Very good Steel 43mm Manual winding
Heuer Bundeswehr Chrono
NZ$ 7,791
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
879
DE
Heuer 1550 SG Good Steel 43mm Manual winding
Heuer Flyback Bundeswehr Chronograph
NZ$ 10,325
Verified Dealer
25
DE
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Very good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar
NZ$ 13,873
Verified Dealer
21
DE
Zenith Pilot Type 20 03.1930.681/21.C723 New Steel 40mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20
NZ$ 8,429
Verified Dealer
103
FR
Longines Heritage L28114530 Unworn Steel 44mm Automatic
Longines Heritage Military
NZ$ 2,478
Verified Dealer
191
CZ
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
NZ$ 19,736
Verified Dealer
44
US
Breitling Avenger Hurricane xb12101a/bf46/283s.x New 50mm Automatic
Breitling Avenger Hurricane
NZ$ 12,760
Verified Dealer
308
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross Horizon Limited Edition
NZ$ 4,036
Verified Dealer
1399
NL
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
NZ$ 19,712
Verified Dealer
201
DE
Heuer 1550 SG Very good Steel 43mm Manual winding
TOP
Heuer Bundeswehr 1550 SG
NZ$ 9,608
Private Seller
 
UK
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Ceramic BR0392-MIL-CE Unworn Ceramic 42mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Ceramic
NZ$ 4,435
Verified Dealer
173
UK
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 Very good Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith "Pilot" Type 20 EXTRA SPECIAL in Bronze
NZ$ 9,574
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
879
DE
Panerai Special Editions PAM 217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Ed 47 mm
NZ$ 23,811
Verified Dealer
111
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW389002 New Ceramic 44mm Automatic
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar
NZ$ 17,799
Verified Dealer
453
IT
Panerai Special Editions PAM339 Very good
Panerai PAM339
NZ$ 23,394
Verified Dealer
44
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
TOP
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Edition
NZ$ 23,542
Private Seller
 
HK
Panerai Special Editions PAM00587 Very good Steel Manual winding
Panerai RADIOMIR 1940 PAM00587 Militaire Special Editions
NZ$ 11,604
Verified Dealer
231
UK
Heuer 1550 SG Good Steel 43mm Manual winding
TOP
Heuer Bundeswehr Pilot's watch ref. 1550 SG
NZ$ 9,762
Private Seller
 
HR
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Manual winding
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Men's Watch in ...
NZ$ 14,972
Verified Dealer
155
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special NOS
NZ$ 10,868
Verified Dealer
6
BE
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Edition
NZ$ 31,476
Verified Dealer
91
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
NZ$ 24,500
Verified Dealer
 
US
Breitling Avenger Hurricane XB12101A/BF46/283S/X20D.4 New 50mm Automatic
Breitling Avenger Hurricane
NZ$ 12,848
Verified Dealer
453
IT
Heuer 1550SG Very good Steel 43mm Manual winding
Heuer Bundeswehr Military Chronograph Watch Ref. 1550
NZ$ 11,569
Verified Dealer
52
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM00339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare PAM00339
NZ$ 18,900
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
UK
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00587 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Special Editions
NZ$ 11,825
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
508
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot extra SpecialMontre DÁeronef Type 20 Bronze
NZ$ 9,197
Verified Dealer
9
AT
Tutima Military 750-02 Very good Titanium 43,5mm Automatic
Tutima Military Chronograph TL 750-02
NZ$ 4,691
Verified Dealer
1383
DE
Panerai Special Editions PAM00339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare Limited Edition
NZ$ 15,806
Verified Dealer
114
CH
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare PAM 339 M Special Editions
NZ$ 21,948
Verified Dealer
91
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilot's Chronograph Top Gun Miramar Chronograph Ceramic...
NZ$ 13,724
Verified Dealer
315
UK
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith HERITAGE: PILOT TYPE 20 EXTRA SPECIAL
NZ$ 9,259
Verified Dealer
453
IT
Breitling Chronospace Military M7836622.BD39.159M Very good Steel 46mm Quartz
Breitling Chronospace Military with box mint
NZ$ 5,255
Verified Dealer
642
AT
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs Q1782470 Good Rose gold 46.3mm Automatic
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph 18k Gold...
NZ$ 22,116
Verified Dealer
799
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good Ceramic 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Marina Militare 8 Giorni Brevettato Brown Composite...
NZ$ 12,335
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
508
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
NZ$ 9,180
Verified Dealer
28
PL
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Tourbillon 87.2430.4035/21.C721 Unworn Titanium 48mm Automatic
Zenith PILOT AERONEF 48 MM TYPE XX TOURBILLON
NZ$ 75,693
Verified Dealer
108
MC
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR0392-DESERT-CE New Ceramic 42mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR0392 DESERT TYPE
NZ$ 6,383
Verified Dealer
57
MC
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902
NZ$ 19,991
Verified Dealer
91
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM00587 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir 1940 3 Days Marina Militare PAM00587
NZ$ 13,047
Verified Dealer
771
NL
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith NEW Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
NZ$ 9,856
Verified Dealer
7
BE
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR0192 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 Factory Diamonds SUPER RARE Aviation Box...
NZ$ 9,349
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
41
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot's Miramar Top Gun Black 48mm 7-Tage Werk...
NZ$ 15,768
Verified Dealer
613
DE
Anonimo Militare 2010 New Automatic
Anonimo Militare Automatico
NZ$ 3,745
Verified Dealer
67
PL
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Tup Gun Miramar Keramik IW501902
NZ$ 14,061
Verified Dealer
323
DE
Panerai Special Editions PAM00587 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai 3 Days Marina Militare Special Edition PAM 587
NZ$ 12,935
Verified Dealer
61
DE
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special
NZ$ 9,715
Verified Dealer
108
MC
Bell & Ross Vintage BRWW192-MIL/SCA Very good Steel 45mm Automatic
Bell & Ross Vintage
NZ$ 2,777
Verified Dealer
266
US
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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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