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Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
TOP
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Black Steel/Leather 45mm - 29.2430.679/21...
C$ 6,163
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1717
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48.00mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Pilot's Watches Automatic Grey Dial Men's Watch - IW501902
C$ 15,162
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1717
US
IWC Pilot Mark IW324702 New Ceramic 41.00mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Pilot's Watches Automatic Grey Dial Unisex Watch - IW324702
C$ 8,412
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1717
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 New Ceramic 46.00mm Automatic
TOP
IWC Pilot's Watches Automatic Grey Dial Unisex Watch - IW388002
C$ 11,501
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1717
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Very good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar
C$ 8,454
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
169
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs Q1782470 Very good
Jaeger-LeCoultre Navy Seals GMT
C$ 25,694
Verified Dealer
35
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic Canada, Montreal
IWC Big Pilots Top Gun 7 Days Miramar Ceramic 48MM Ref.IW501902
C$ 13,900
Verified Dealer
27
CA
Bell & Ross BR V1 BRV192-MIL-ST/SCA New Steel 38.5mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR V1-92 MILITARY
C$ 2,291
Verified Dealer
258
IT
Panerai Special Editions PAM 217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
TOP
Panerai Luminor Marina PAM 217 Watch with Leather Bracelet and...
C$ 13,313
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
521
US
Breitling Avenger Hurricane xb12101a/bf46/283s.x New 50mm Automatic
Breitling Avenger Hurricane
C$ 9,985
Verified Dealer
265
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic Canada, Vancouver
Bell & Ross Stainless Steel BR01 Burning Skull BR01-92
C$ 8,150
Verified Dealer
59
CA
IWC Pilot Mark IW324702 Unworn Ceramic 41mm Automatic
IWC Top Gun Miramar Mark XVIII Ceramic Anthracite Dial
C$ 6,117
Verified Dealer
94
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Special Editions Luminor 1950 Marina Militare
C$ 23,298
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
20
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Titanium 48mm Automatic
IWC IW501902 Big Pilot TOP GUN Miramar 7 Day Ceramic (33115)
C$ 10,451
Verified Dealer
422
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM339 Very good
Panerai PAM339
C$ 18,039
Verified Dealer
35
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Q1852670 Very good Rose gold 46.3mm Automatic Canada, Montreal
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Geographic Navy Seals 46MM...
Price on request
Verified Dealer
27
CA
Panerai Special Editions PAM 339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Composite Marina Militare 8 Giorni PAM 339
C$ 9,386
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
718
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar 87.2430.4054/21.C721 Very good Titanium 48mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Montre d'Aeronef Type 20 Annual Calendar Gold &...
C$ 11,315
Verified Dealer
82
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.c753
C$ 6,069
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
401
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
C$ 14,910
Verified Dealer
 
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR0192 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 Factory Diamonds SUPER RARE Aviation Box...
C$ 7,981
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
31
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir Marina Militare PAM 339 M Special Editions
C$ 17,174
Verified Dealer
79
US
Longines Heritage L2.811.4.53.0 Good Steel 44mm Automatic
Longines Heritage Military 44mm Stainless Steel L2.811.4.53.0
C$ 2,097
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
115
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar
C$ 15,310
Verified Dealer
35
US
Tutima Military 760-01 Very good Steel 38mm Automatic
Tutima FX UTC Germany Chronograph GMT
C$ 3,262
Verified Dealer
363
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Marina/ Militare
C$ 13,047
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
19
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Q2018670 Very good Steel 42mm Automatic
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Navy Seals Limited Edition...
C$ 9,918
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR 01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-92
C$ 2,896
Verified Dealer
33
US
Alpina Startimer Pilot AL-372BGR4S6 Very good Steel 44mm Quartz
Alpina Startimer Pilot
C$ 799
Private Seller
 
US
Bell & Ross BR V1 BRV192-MIL-ST/SCA New Steel 38.5mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR V1-92 MILITARY
C$ 2,211
Verified Dealer
5911
DE
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic 48mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902
C$ 15,643
Verified Dealer
79
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR01-94 Good Gold/Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 ROSE GOLD & CARBON OFFICER
C$ 9,652
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
115
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Special Editions
C$ 14,578
Verified Dealer
34
US
Anonimo Militare 2010 Unworn Steel 43mm Automatic
Anonimo Militare Automatico Stainless Steel 43mm Black Dial...
C$ 3,228
Verified Dealer
363
US
Bell & Ross BR V1 BRV192-MIL-ST/SCA New 38.5mm Automatic
Bell & Ross Vintage BR V1-92 Military Men's Watch - BRV192-MIL...
C$ 1,916
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
1717
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Ed 47 mm
C$ 18,631
Verified Dealer
100
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR01-94 Very good Gold/Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronograph PVD Case Rose Gold Alligator...
C$ 7,655
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
 
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar 87.2430.4054/21.C721 Unworn Rose gold 48mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar
C$ 11,316
Private Seller
 
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 Very good Steel 48.5mm Automatic
IWC Grosse Fliegeruhr Top Gun Miramar - Ref. IW501902 - AS NEW...
C$ 15,014
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
22
CH
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00217 Very good Steel 47mm Manual winding
Panerai PAM 217 Destro Marina Militare Special Edition
C$ 24,629
Verified Dealer
79
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW5019-02 Good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Big Pilot's Top Gun Miramar ref: IW5019-02
C$ 14,311
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
115
US
Breitling Chronospace Military M7836622/BD39 Very good Steel 46mm Quartz
Breitling Chronospace Military
C$ 3,327
Private Seller
 
US
Anonimo Militare 2010 Unworn Steel 43mm Automatic
Anonimo Militare Automatico Stainless Steel 43mm White Dial...
C$ 3,228
Verified Dealer
363
US
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Ceramic BR0392-MIL-CE Good Ceramic 42mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Ceramic
C$ 3,246
Private Seller
 
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Very good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar
C$ 8,254
Private Seller
 
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross Aviation BR01-92 Stainless steel & ceramic Black...
C$ 5,292
Verified Dealer
14
US
IWC Big Pilot Top Gun Miramar IW501902 New Ceramic Automatic
IWC Pilot Big Pilots Watch Top Gun Miramar IW501902
C$ 20,602
Verified Dealer
803
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR01-94 Unworn Carbon 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe 46mm Phantom Carbon Limited...
C$ 6,923
Private Seller
 
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Unworn Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar
C$ 11,576
Private Seller
 
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Very good Ceramic 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar
C$ 8,247
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
313
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs Q178T470 Very good Titanium 46mm Automatic
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy...
C$ 12,647
Private Seller
 
US
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs Q1782470 Very good Rose gold 46.3mm Automatic
Jaeger-LeCoultre Compressor US Navy Seals Diving Chrono GMT in...
C$ 27,824
Private Seller
 
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Annual Calendar 03.2430.4054/21.C721 New Steel 48mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Montre d’Aeronef Type 20 Annual Calendar Men’s Watch
C$ 10,517
Verified Dealer
28
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW389002 Very good Ceramic 44.5mm Automatic
IWC Top Gun Miramar Chronograph Full Set circa 2016
C$ 11,316
Verified Dealer
68
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 03.1930.681-21.C723 New Steel Automatic
Zenith Pilot Montre d Aeronef Zenith Type 20 40mm 03.1930.681-...
C$ 6,414
Verified Dealer
803
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Chronographe BR 01-94 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross BR 01-94 Pilots Chronograph Watch Stainless Steel...
C$ 4,260
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
56
US
IWC Pilot Chronograph Top Gun Miramar IW388002 Very good Titanium 46mm Automatic
IWC Pilots Chronograph Automatic IW388002 Very Good Condition...
C$ 8,054
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
488
US
Bell & Ross BR 01-92 BR 01-92 Very good Steel 46mm Automatic
Bell & Ross Aviation Ceramic
C$ 3,588
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
313
US
Panerai Special Editions PAM 00339 Very good Ceramic 47mm Manual winding
Panerai Radiomir 8 Giorni Brevettato Composite Manual Wind...
C$ 17,106
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
103
US
Alpina Startimer Pilot AL-372GR4FBS6 New Steel 44mm Quartz
Alpina Men's Startimer Pilot Chrono Green Dial Watch AL-372GR4...
C$ 844
Free shipping
Verified Dealer
15
US
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 29.2430.679/21.C753 New Bronze 45mm Automatic
Zenith Pilot Type 20 Extra Special 45mm Bronze Men’s Watch
C$ 6,190
Verified Dealer
28
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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