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The coolest watches with the most enduring designs, those that conjure up feats of heroism and courage in the face of innumerable odds, are invariably born as pragmatic tools. The fact that every aspect of their design was optimized for performance is what endows them with such evocative purposefulness.
Case in point the lever-locking mechanism of the Panerai Luminor Marina, used to prevent the intrusion of water as Italian frogmen piloted massive, unwieldy, human-guided torpedoes. In the days before GPS, that was not just a distinguishing design element, but a hard-used and tested innovation. The lyre-lugged, two-pusher iconography of the Omega Speedmaster, distinguished in particular by its tachymetric scale emblazoned boldly and audaciously on the bezel (Best Replica Watches) not only renders it the world's most famous chronograph, but conjures up the extraordinary bravery of the Apollo XIII astronauts using a Speedmaster to angle their crippled spacecraft for safe re-entry. A failing in either their calculations or the watch's performance would have been fatal. And so too, the A. Cairelli Type 2 Chronograph created for Zenith channels the period cool of Italian helicopter pilots during the mid-1960s.
If you've never heard of A. Cairelli, the story goes that it was not only a famous Roman watch retailer, but also a subcontractor for the Italian military. During the 1950s, the Italian air force - the Aeronautica Militare Italia (A.M.I) - ordered the predecessor to the CP2, the CP1, from a company called Leonidas. The CP1 was 39mm in diameter and was fitted with a Valjoux 22 hacking flyback chronograph movement. But by 1960 it was deemed too small to provide adequate visibility in the cockpit. The Italian military reached out to A. Cairelli for an enhanced pilot's watch and selected Zenith as the supplier for this prestigious project.
The idea was to create a watch with all visible indicators made significantly more substantial and with enhanced amounts of luminous material on the dial, as well as a luminous inverted triangle on the 60-minute bezel. Inside was a manually wound Calibre 146 DP movement based on a Martelebauche (Zenith had purchased Martel by this time) while the case of the watch grew in size from 39 to 43mm in diameter.
But it was the iconography of the watch - the form-follows-function pragmatism endowed with a healthy dose of Italian braggadocio - that created such a winning formula.Patek Philippe Replica Watches The case was tripartite, with a separate bezel, case and caseback. In deference to the enduring peace throughout Europe the case was high polished, clearly articulating that it was most likely not to be worn when engaging the enemy. The large Dauphine hands were fitted with multi-sectional pieces of luminous material, while the bevelled, almost Art Deco, luminous-tipped chronograph seconds hand is one of the most recognizable symbols in vintage watch lore. The matte black dial was bestowed with truly charming luminous Arabic markers that evinced a flourish of Latin font design elan. The total package was just so damnably good looking.