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Vintage Watch Wednesday: 1970s Breitling chronograph

by Michael Weare
30 January, 2013
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About the author

Michael Weare has been a professional writer for 30 years, writing about Japanese technology, German and Italian cars, British tailoring and Swiss watches. Michael manages the editorial content of Click Tempus and will be keeping the magazine fresh and informative with regular features, as well as bringing great writers to the magazine. Email: michael@clicktempus.com

1970s Breitling

Vintage Breitlings can often be even cooler than contemporary Breitlings, and if you search around you can find several gems from decades ago still in excellent working condition.

70s Breitling with black leather strap

70s Breitling crown and pushers

The 1970s Breitling chronograph featured here was found on a site called Black Bough. I love the orange chronograph seconds hand, and the dial is crisp, clean and uncluttered, unlike some of the more modern Breitling models around. It runs on a 17 jewels Valjoux 7734 movement with lever escapement. The 37.5mm x 43.5mm wide tonneau shaped case is in stainless steel with hooded lugs and it’s said to be in excellent condition. The asking price is £1,200.

David Beckham

Breitling recently paid David Beckham a small fortune (actually make that a large one) to stand on an airport runway wearing a Breitling watch and a leather jacket. If you were so inclined you could economically re-create this look with this watch and with a vintage Breitling leather jacket.

Alpha Industries

Breitling leather jacket

Breitling leather jackets show up on Ebay from time to time and are made with the same level of quality and care as the watches. That’s because the jackets are made for Breitling by US based Alpha Industries, who supply the US government with flying jackets and are famous for the legendary MA-1 flight jacket.

Steve McQueen MA-1 Flight Jacket

The MA-1 is the most famous flight jacket in aviation history, immortalised by icon of cool Steve McQueen, who frequently wore one, and is seen wearing it in what sadly proved to be his last movie, The Hunter in 1980. Above is a clip from the movie in which he teams the jacket with a Rolex Submariner date.

If you don’t want a ‘Breitling’ logo plastered all over your jacket you could opt for the MA-1 to go with this rather splendid 70’s Breitling, after all, the inner lining of the MA-1 is bright orange just like the seconds hand on the chronograph. Made for each other.

A classically cool look, and all for less than 5 minutes of David Beckham’s time.

Michael Weare | Website

Michael Weare has been a professional writer for 30 years, writing about Japanese technology, German and Italian cars, British tailoring and Swiss watches. Michael manages the editorial content of Click Tempus and will be keeping the magazine fresh and informative with regular features, as well as bringing great writers to the magazine. Email: michael@clicktempus.com

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