The military past Of Zenith watches
Back in the 1800s, the military had begun to use watches, it has become necessary equipment for combat when WWI. Later, military forces began cooperating with specific watchmakers to design and manufacture watches with detailed specifications for their armies.
Zenith is one of the few brands that are associated with military groups, air force organizations in particular. The first was known for themselves as producers of pilot’s replica watches in the20th century. In 1909, French pilot Louis Bleriot did the first flight across the English Channel, and he did so wearing none other than a fake Zenith pilot’s watch.
By the Second World War, the evolution of trench warfare tactics demands the exponential increase of cheap watches. The need was so great that much of the watch industry had to halt providing watches for the consumer market and focus specifically on manufacturing replica watches for military forces. Zenith was one of these manufacturers.
In 1939, they began to produce the Type 20 Montre d’Aéronef for the French Air Force, the Armée de l’Air. These mechanical aircraft fake watches for cockpits fitted to the instrument panel and featured a distinct knurled bezel to wind and set the cheap watch. The design of these instruments gave great inspiration for one of Zenith’s most distinctive, modern pilot’s replica watches: the Pilot Montre d’Aéronef Type 20.
During WWII, Zenith didn’t pledge its loyalty to the Axis or Allied Powers. Except for the French Air Force, they also provided wristwatches to the German Army. The simple, middle-sized, mechanical inexpensive watches represented the typical military timepiece of the era. Since the two World Wars, Zenith had supplied military forces with replica watches. In the early 1960s, they start to create pilot’s chronograph watches for the Italian military. The A Cairelli Tipo CP-2 chronographs came with the brand’s own caliber 146 DP mechanical movement. This was part of the basis for the brand’s famous El Primero movement that debuted in 1969.
In more recent years, Zenith’s military past has been continuously influencing its present products. They debuted the Pilot Montre d’Aéronef Type 20 fake watch. It took inspiration from the aircraft clocks of the 1930s in 2012. And, in early 2018, they revived the iconic Cairelli Tipo CP-2 with a brand new case and the addition of a flyback function.