BreitlingChronomat 808


Year of Production1960
Case Size37mm
Case MaterialYellow gold and stainless steel
Dial ColorPatina
Movement TypeManual
LocationUnited States


1960s Breitling Chronomat Gold-Plated Ref. 808 Why This Watch Matters The Breitling Chronomat was the first chronograph to feature a slide-rule function. The gold plating of this watch adds a touch of luxury and warmth to the gorgeous patina on the dial. The Full Story The integrated slide-rule function has been an iconic design of Breitling’s aviation watches since approximately 1942. Although best known as part of the Navitimer, it was actually the Chronomat that featured the first application of the calculating device. The name "Chronomat" comes from the combination of the two words: chronograph (chrono) and mathematics (mat). The slide rule, at its simplest, is basically a mini-calculator on the watch, allowing the wearer to quickly go through various calculations by simply turning the bezel. The slide rule can determine anything from simple multiplication and division to measuring the distance of a climb or descent, both of which are very useful for a pilot. As seen in this example, the Chronomat models from the 1960s and before had a caseback engraved with "CHRONOMAT + 217012," indicating the patent number for the slide-rule design. The case of this watch has gained an attractive patina, with some areas acquiring a hint of bronze, a tone that is common with vintage gold watches. However, with this watch, you get a similar effect for a lower price than what you'd find with a full 18k gold case. The dial has remained clean, aging beautifully over the decades with a light champagne sheen. The movement is a classic manual-wound Venus caliber 175, which was a go-to movement for Breitling and several other watch brands at the time. The U.S. import mark "WOG" is stamped on the movement, which is a nice nod to the watch's history. The Fine Print Maker: Breitling Model: Chronomat Reference: 808 Year: 1960s Case No: 1076233 Material: Gold plated with stainless steel caseback Dimensions: 37mm diameter; 12mm thickness Crystal: Plexiglass Lume: Yes, tritium Caliber: Manual winding Venus 175 Bracelet/Strap: HODINKEE Sedona Strap in Green Lug Width: 18mm Box/Papers: No What we Love and What You Should Know This Chronomat is in nice condition. The case is strong with most of the gold plating intact. The sides of the lugs on the case edge show signs of slight wear. The side of the case, behind the lugs, and on the case at six and 12 o’clock, show signs of oxidation on the plating. The dial and hands are in good condition. The dial has developed a light patina throughout. The hour markers and hands have developed patina. The lume on the hands and on the dial has darkened. The slide-rule bezel is a bit loose, which is not uncommon for these models and Navitimers in general.

Chronomat - 808