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Vintage Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute Ref 809

$8,000

Vintage Breitling 40mm Navitimer Cosmonaute Black Dial Leather Strap, Ref 809

The Cosmonaute began life as a 24-hour version of the much-loved Navitimer pilot’s watch. Astronaut Scott Carpenter found his Navitimer so useful that he asked Breitling to modify the watch to use a 24-hour dial, which he then wore into space in 1962 aboard a Mercury capsule.  Based on the serial number and the dial, this watch is a 1965 Breitling Cosmonaute ref. 809 that is powered by a Venus 178 movement.  The unusual dial variation includes the twin planes, Breitling and Geneve, and Cosmonaute, but continues to include Navitimer, which was dropped by 1967.

The stainless steel case has sharp edges and brushing along the sides and caseback.  There are expected surface scratches on top of the lugs, but overall the case appears in excellent condition.  The bezel turns smoothly and is snug, as expected.  There is one nick visible near the edge of the bezel that is other wise in good condition.  Because the crown is unsigned, it appears to be a replacement.  Overall the dial black dial with the slide rule markings is clean and clear, with a notable mark near 8 o’clock that shows a clumsy repair of the dial.  While the dial originally contained tritium, the lume appears absent from the hour markers and the hour and minute hands to have been relumed.  The 12 hour and minute sub-register hands are not original to the watch.  Attached to the watch is a new black leather strap that showcases this iconic vintage chronograph.

Only 1 left in stock

Categories: , , , SKU: 210000004303

Additional information

Band Color

Black

Band Material

Leather

Bezel

Bi-directional, Stainless Steel

Box and Papers

No Box/Papers

Bracelet

Strap

Brand

Breitling

Caliber

178

Case Material

Stainless Steel

Case Size

40mm

Caseback

Solid

Clasp

Tang

Complication

Chronograph

Crystal Material

Acrylic

Dial Color

Black

Case Finish

Bright, Brushed

Movement

Manual Wind Mechanical

Warranty

1-Year Watchworks Guarantee

Item ID0004303
Model #809
Model NameNavitimer Cosmonaute
Year Producedca 1965
Serial Number102XXXX

Description

The modern chronograph watch would not function as it does today without Breitling’s influence. Leon Breitling founded the company in 1884 already manufacturing innovative chronographs. After his death in 1914, his son Gaston took control and produced one of the world’s first wrist chronographs with a separate pusher. Gaston’s son Willy introduced the two-pusher chronograph and the iconic Chronomat in 1942, which added a slide rule with a chronograph. In 1952 they produced the Navitimer with a built-in slide rule that became the official pilot’s watch for the AOPA pilot union. Astronaut Scott Carpenter found his Navitimer so useful that he asked Breitling to modify the watch to use a 24-hour dial, which he then wore into space in 1962 aboard a Mercury capsule. To celebrate his 25th anniversary as head of the company, Willy also introduced the SuperOcean diver’s watch with a water-resistance of 200 meters. Clearly, any admirer of chronographs should become familiar with Breitling. In recent years, Breitling is returning to its heritage of producing in-house movements and a design that pays tribute to its heritage but with a modern ascetic.