The Triangle on the Pilot Watch :
Believed to have first shown up in the
B-Uhr was manufactured by five watchmakers, including A. Lange & Söhne, IWC (Swiss), Laco, Stowa, and Wempe, and was supplied to the bomber navigators of the German Air Force. This watches are recognized as being the first modern pilot watches.
These watches were believed to be the first to utilize a triangle at the 12 o’clock position. It is a design element that is now commonly found in pilot’s watches. This upward facing triangle surrounded by two dots at the twelve o’clock position has multiple functions.
Originally, it was only the indices of a watch, not the numerals, that were luminescent. When in darkness and trying to determine the exact time, it was easy to be off by an hour or so. It was important for the twelve o’clock indicator to be marked differently so that it was clearly identified. The two dots next to the upward facing triangular index not only help pilots in determining the upward orientation of the dial, it also helped them quickly and easily determine the twelve o’clock position in relation to the rest of the indices on the dial of the watch.
Historical Timeline of the Pilot Watch:
First Pilot Watch:
1903- Wright Brothers first successful heavier than air aircraft.
1904- Cartier Santos
1906- Brazilian aviation pioneer Alberto Santos-Dumont is credited with first powered flight in Europe.
1909- Zenith crossed the english change with french aviator Louis Charles Joseph Bleriot
1927- Longines Crossed the Atlantic with Charles Lindbergh.
Modern Pilot’s Watches Begin to Evolve
1936- IWC big pilot was created for the Luftwaffe
The Post-War Aviation Boom
1952- Breitling introduces Navitimer
1955- Rolex introduces GMT MASTER in collaboration with PAN AM Airways.
Kurek, A. (2018, March 30). History of Pilot Watches. Retrieved March 24, 2019, from https://jvwatchmakers.com/history-pilots-watches/
As a Service connected veteran myself, I want to give back to my less fortunate veterans. I am starting a project called the last piece. After the last piece of each run of watches is sold, I plan to donate no less than half the price of the watch to a Veteran related organization.