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Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic United States of America, California, San Mateo
TOP
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Black Steel/Leather 45mm - 29.2430.679/21...
$4,629
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
2570
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 New Ceramic 46.00mm Automatic United States of America, California, San Mateo
TOP
IWC Pilot's Watches Automatic Grey Dial Unisex Watch - IW388002
$8,689
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
2570
US
IWC Pilot Mark IW324702 New Ceramic 41.00mm Automatic United States of America, California, San Mateo
TOP
IWC Pilot's Watches Automatic Grey Dial Unisex Watch - IW324702
$5,989
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
2570
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48.00mm Automatic United States of America, California, San Mateo
TOP
IWC Pilot's Watches Automatic Grey Dial Men's Watch - IW501902
$11,469
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
2570
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, California, Newport Beach
Panerai Special Editions Luminor 1950 Marina Militare
$16,999
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
27
US
Breitling Avenger Hurricane xb12101a/bf46/283s.x New 50mm Automatic United States of America, Florida, Aventura
Breitling Avenger Hurricane
$7,500
Verified Dealer
372
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Good Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Georgia, ATLANTA
Panerai Marina/ Militare
$9,800
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
36
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Massachusetts, Andover
Panerai Special Editions
$10,950
Verified Dealer
50
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs Q1782470 Good Rose gold 46.3mm Automatic United States of America, Ohio, Mason
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph 18k Gold...
$11,999
Verified Dealer
995
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm United States of America, California, Huntington Beach
IWC Big Pilot "top Gun Miramar" Iw501902 Ceramic
$7,899
Verified Dealer
250
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Unworn Ceramic 46mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
IWC Pilot's Chronograph "Top Gun" Miramar - Ceramic
$10,800
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
69
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 217 Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Missouri, Chesterfield
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Ed 47mm NOS
$12,750
Verified Dealer
129
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.c753
$4,559
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
556
US
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR03-92-S New Steel 42mm Automatic United States of America, Texas, Richardson
Bell & Ross BR 03-92
$2,602
Verified Dealer
 
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic United States of America, Texas, Laredo
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
$6,900
Verified Dealer
23
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic United States of America, Georgia, ATLANTA
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar 48mm 2013
$9,600
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
36
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00587 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, New York, New York
Panerai Special Editions
$6,950
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
583
US
Breitling Avenger Hurricane XB12101A-BF46-283S New Plastic 50mm Automatic United States of America, California, Moorpark
Breitling Avenger Hurricane Military Limited Edition Men's...
$6,875
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
350
US
Anonimo Militare 2010 Unworn Steel 43mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Anonimo Militare Automatico Stainless Steel 43mm Black Dial...
$2,425
Verified Dealer
433
US
Breitling Chronospace Military M78366 Very good Steel 46mm Quartz United States of America, Georgia, Atlanta
Breitling Chronospace Military GMT Alarm Blacksteel Mens Watch...
$3,990
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
610
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM00339 Unworn Aluminum 47mm Manual winding United States of America, New York, New York
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marine Militare 8 Giorni Limited
Price on request
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
69
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Unworn Ceramic 47mm Manual winding United States of America, New York, New York
Panerai Radiomir Marina 8 Giorni Black Composite/Ceramic PAM 339
$13,500
Verified Dealer
8
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Manual winding United States of America, New York, New York
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Men's Watch in ...
$8,800
Verified Dealer
169
US
Panerai PAM00587 Very good Steel Manual winding United States of America, Florida, Miami
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare 3 Days Steel 47mm Manual...
$5,900
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
647
US
Breitling Chronospace Military M7836622 Good Steel 46mm Quartz United States of America, Nevada, Las Vegas
Breitling Chronospace Military M7836622
$3,799
Verified Dealer
13
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR01-94 Good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, Florida, Hallandale Beach
Bell & Ross BR01-94 Blue Chronograph Limited Edition
$2,699
Verified Dealer
121
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good Ceramic 47mm Manual winding United States of America, New York, New York
Panerai Marina Militare 8 Giorni Brevettato Brown Composite...
$7,250
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
583
US
Tutima Military 760-01 Very good Steel 38mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Tutima FX UTC Germany Chronograph GMT
$2,450
Verified Dealer
433
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Unworn Ceramic 48mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar, Anthracite Dial - Ceramic
$14,850
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
69
US
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR0392-DESERT-CE New Ceramic 42mm Automatic United States of America, Texas, Houston
Bell & Ross BR 03 - DESERT
$2,660
Verified Dealer
30
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR0192 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, Texas, Plano
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 Factory Diamonds $13K MSRP SUPER RARE Box...
$5,995
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
61
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM00339 Very good Ceramic 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Florida, Miami
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare 8 Giorni 47 mm Composite...
$5,490
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
647
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM00339 Ceramic United States of America, New York, New York
Auction
Panerai | Radiomir Composite Marina Militare 8 Days, Reference...
$6,317
Estimated price
Sotheby's
 
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR01-92 Very good 46mm Automatic United States of America, Virginia, Vienna
Bell & Ross Aviation Automatic BR01-92, Stainless, Leather Band
$2,400
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
42
US
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR03-92-S Very good Steel 42mm Automatic United States of America, Arizona, Gilbert
Bell & Ross BR03-92 MILITARY TYPE GI Joe Edition
$2,200
Private Seller
 
US
Anonimo Militare 2010 Unworn Steel 43mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Anonimo Militare Automatico Stainless Steel 43mm White Dial...
$2,425
Verified Dealer
433
US
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR0392-DESERT-CE New Ceramic 42mm Automatic United States of America, Florida, Aventura
Bell & Ross BR 03
$2,800
Verified Dealer
9
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR 01-94 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, Texas, Houston
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Pilots Chronograph Watch Stainless Steel...
$2,750
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Florida, Boca Raton
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Edition
$18,500
Verified Dealer
96
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, California, Ukiah
Bell & Ross BR01-92 Airspeed
$2,850
Private Seller
 
US
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR03-92-S Very good Steel 42mm Automatic United States of America, Indiana, Ogden Dunes
Bell & Ross BR 03-92-S Limited Edition 250 Orange
$2,500
Private Seller
 
US
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Ceramic BR0392-MIL-CE Very good Ceramic 42mm Automatic United States of America, Illinois, Skokie
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Military Type
$2,199
Private Seller
 
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00587 Unworn Steel 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Massachusetts, Boston
Panerai Special Editions
$8,950
Private Seller
 
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR 01-94 Unworn Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Bell & Ross Aviation Carbon Chronograph Matte Black PVD FInish
$4,995
Verified Dealer
433
US
Bell & Ross BR 03 BR03-92-S Very good Ceramic 42mm Automatic United States of America, Pennsylvania, King of Prussia
Bell & Ross BR03-92
$2,600
Private Seller
 
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 Very good Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special Bronze Fullset LC100
$5,713
Verified Dealer
85
DE
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48mm Automatic United States of America, Florida, Boca Raton
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902
$11,750
Verified Dealer
96
US
Breitling Chronospace Military M78366 Good 46mm Quartz United States of America, Georgia, Atlanta
Breitling Chronospace Military M78366 Watch with Blacksteel...
$4,000
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
707
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze Automatic United States of America, Florida, North Miami Beach
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special Bronze Men's Watch 29.2430....
$5,040
Verified Dealer
246
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR01-94 Good Gold/Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, Illinois, BUFFALO GROVE
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 ROSE GOLD & CARBON OFFICER
$7,250
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
155
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs Q1782470 Very good Rose gold 46.3mm Automatic United States of America, New York, Greenvale
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy...
$13,999
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
154
US
Anonimo Militare 2007 Very good Steel 43mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Anonimo Militare Automatico Crono Stainless Steel Black Dial
$3,949
Verified Dealer
433
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR 01-92 Very good Bronze 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-92
$5,942
Verified Dealer
92
PL
Bell & Ross BR V1 BRV192-MIL-ST/SCA New Steel 38.5mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR V1-92 MILITARY
$1,706
Verified Dealer
250
DE
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR 01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, New York, New York
Bell & Ross Aviation Ceramic
$2,695
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
369
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good 47mm Manual winding United States of America, Florida, Boca Raton
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare PAM 339 M Special Editions
$12,900
Verified Dealer
96
US
IWC Pilot Mark IW3247-02 Very good 41mm Automatic United States of America, Georgia, Atlanta
IWC Pilot Mark XVIII IW3247-02 Watch with Textile Bracelet and...
$4,200
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
707
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00587 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Marina Militare Radiomir 1940
$9,044
Verified Dealer
65
IT
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR01-92 Good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, Illinois, BUFFALO GROVE
Bell & Ross BR01-92 Heritage 46mm Full Set
$2,500
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
155
US
Ulysse Nardin Diver Black Sea 263-92LE-3C/MIL Very good Steel 46mm Automatic United States of America, New York, Greenvale
Ulysse Nardin Maxi Marine Military Camouflage Dial Automatic
$6,999
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
154
US
Heuer 1550SG Very good Steel 43mm Manual winding United States of America, California, Beverly Hills
Heuer Bundeswehr Military Chronograph Watch Ref. 1550
$6,800
Verified Dealer
58
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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