In 1915, one century ago, Breitling was one of the very first brands to offer a wrist chronograph. This Transocean with an exclusive new Breitling calibre and an unusual design is reinterpreting the famous 1915 timepiece.
Let us look back: In these days pocket chronographs had only one push piece integrated in the crown successively handling the start, stop and zero-reset functions.
In 1915 Breitling was one of the very first manufacturers to already offer a wrist-chronograph. By relocating it from the waistcoat pocket to the wrist Breitling later also introduced an innovation.
The founder’s son, Gaston Breitling, came up with the ingenious idea of ensuring a clearer separation of functions by creating a push piece independent of the crown to control the three chronograph operations start, stop and zero-reset. Keen to ensure smooth, ergonomic handling, he chose to place the push piece at 2 o’clock, where the thumb or forefinger naturally rests, whether the watch is on the wrist or held in the palm of the hand.
In 1923, Breitling perfected this system by separating the stop/start functions, governed by the push piece at 2 o’clock, from the crown-activated zero resetting.
This patented innovation would enable users to add up several successive times without needing to reset the hands to zero when e.g. timing a sports competition, a scientific process or a flight time.
Finally, in 1934, Breitling took the final step in shaping the modern face of the chronograph by creating the second independent push piece exclusively intended for zero resetting. This patented invention was soon thereafter adopted by almost all Breitling competitors.
To celebrate this milestone in the history of watchmaking Breitling created the Transocean Chronograph 1915.
The steel case, designed in the pure style of the Transocean collection, features the famous push piece at 2 o’clock. It is executed in a redesigned, elongated and smoothly integrated form that further enhances the start, stop and zero-reset functions. To ensure that this single push piece can successively handle the start, stop and zero-reset functions, Breitling developed the new hand-wound Manufacture Breitling Calibre B14. The sapphire case back enables the owner to admire the unusual construction of the mono-pusher-chronograph movement, along with the “100e anniversaire 1915-2015” engraving.
The officially chronometer-certified calibre by COSC is equipped with a clever two-tiered double column-wheel system activated by chronograph controls also arranged on two levels. A patent has been filed for this innovative construction.
The twin-zone silvered dial with small seconds and 30-minute counter is adorned with large Arabic numerals and baton-type hands accentuated by a luminescent coating in an appealing patinated shade.
The vintage touch is reinforced by the historical Breitling logo on the dial and the steel mesh bracelet.
Movement: Manufacture Breitling Caliber B14, officially chronometer-certified by the COSC, mechanical hand-wound, 28,800 A/h (= 4 Hz), 33 jewels; over 70-hour power reserve; 1/8th of a second chronograph and 30-minute totalizer; calendar.
Case: steel, limited series of 1915.
Water-resistant: 100 m (330 ft).
Convex sapphire crystal, glare proofed on both sides.
Transparent sapphire crystal case back.
Diameter: 43 mm.
Dial: Mercury Silver.
Straps/Bracelet: leather, crocodile leather/Ocean Classic (steel mesh).
This model is issued in a limited series of 1,915.