What sort of watches have become extremely popular over the past couple of years? Re-editions. I don’t mean, modern interpretations of the classics which try to blend the vintage designs with new designs, I mean actual remakes of the old watches to often the same dimensions as the original. This isn’t just good, it’s excellent in fact, because it means that those who wished to have a specific vintage watch but don’t want the connotations that come along with it such as parts sourcing or fragility, they can have the same watch but usually built to a higher standard.
The case of the Navitimer 806 Re-edition is precisely 40.9mm in diameter and 13.43mm thick. The bi-directional bezel which operates the slide rule, a feature still in use on the modern Navitimer, has the vintage bead grip which was first used on the Navitimer. However, the slide rule was just the start of it. The Navitimer also features a chronograph with three subdials, vintage style lume and the winged shield logo of AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association). On watches destined for America, the home of AOPA, the entire logo is present. But, on other models, it features the logo without the AOPA text, presumably because it means nothing in other countries. All of this is set under an acrylic crystal, much like the original.
As you can see, the basic layout of the Navitimer hasn’t changed since 1959. However, while the basic layout and functionality of the watch haven’t changed, the movement certainly has. Inside the watch sits the in-house designed and made Breitling calibre B09 which is based on the B01 movement. Like the B01 calibre, the B09 is COSC chronometer certified, however, unlike the B01 it’s a hand-wound movement which reflects the original. It also features a column wheel and a vertical clutch, two parts which are integral to a modern chronograph due to their precision and durability. The power reserve of this movement is 70 hours. Surprisingly, Breitling has also hinted to us that this B09 calibre will be used in other historical remakes in the future too.