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  • Writer's picturePhilip Dashiell

Pilot & Military Watches, The Most Versitile Watch Genre

This past week, going through my Military / Pilot watch theme tribute, got me thinking about which watch category, or genre, exhibits the most variety? And by genre, I mean a timepiece purpose built for a specific functionality, rather than a broad category like "dress".

Admittedly, I've always been partial to dive watches, the genre comprising the majority of watches within my collection. But while dive or nautical watches win the popularity contest for most collectors, divers don't hold a candle to pilot / military watches when it comes to variety and versatility. Even if you were to split-off the nautical timepieces into the sub-categories of Yacht-Timers, deck watches, and dive watches, those still wouldn't match the vast array of Aviators, Fliegers, Officers, Field Watches, and Aero-Marine mash-ups comprising the pilot / military genre. Not to mention, the Flieger styles alone, involve numerous dial variances within that category alone; Type A, Type B, and Type 20, just to name a few. And the aforementioned dials can also have variations ranging from Sterile to busy, and a full spectrum of movement options from mechanical, mechanical automatic, to quartz, in both 3-hand and Chronograph offerings. My selections from this past week speak truth to this last observation, as my selected watches had dial designs ranging from classic, to modern, to replicating gauges and instruments within the cockpit; conservative to in your face!

Racing chronographs could perhaps be a genre to give the military category a run for the money as most versatile; that may require a future, deeper-dive into that specific genre of timepiece? But until that time, the pilot / military genre will keep flying aces, and flying high!

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