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This rare, Breitling 1765 ‘Unitime’ was introduced in the 1960’s, as a tool watch expressly designed for pilots, with this example dating to circa 1967, based on its outer-caseback serial number and '765 CP' case.
The earliest ‘AVI’ references (or ‘765s’), were used by civilian aviators and military Air Forces in the late 1930s. These wristwatches were the first to be launched by the ‘Breitling EIGHT’ Military aviation division; bearing many of the classic hallmarks typically associated with military pilot’s wristwatches. The ‘Breitling EIGHT Air Force’ utilized the latest technical advancements to manufacture highly-specialised equipment, using only materials of the best quality, such as cockpit clocks, oscillographs as well as complicated wristwatches. Post-AVI designation, fewer than 1000 ‘Unitime’ examples are estimated to have been produced.
The reference 765 ‘AVI’ predates Breguet’s famous type ‘XX’, introduced in 1954 and issued to the ‘Armée de l’Air, Aeronavale’ and ‘C.E.V’ (Centre d’Essais en Vol – Flight Test Center). The French military used watches by Breguet, Auricoste and Vixa. The Breitling 765 ‘AVI’, produced in 1953, was seemingly the influential benchmark used throughout the design process of these later examples, emphasizing legibility, waterproofness, and enhanced reliability.
This example, the Breitling 1765 ‘Unitime’, with serial number (127,6XXX) has a round, stainless steel case with large chronograph pushers and an original Breitling, fluted crown. The case measures 41 mm in diameter, denoting it is an earlier example based upon a ‘765 CP’ case, rather than the slightly-larger ‘7650’ case. It has thick straight-line lugs with sharp bevels, retaining exceptional definition. Like all ‘765’ examples, the case-back is screw-down, and features sharply preserved engraving; “1765 Unitime”, along with ‘WATERPROOF - SHOCK PROTECTED - ANTIMAGNETIC - STAINLESS-STEEL’ and the manufacturer's signature.
It features a white Breitling logo, while 'Breitling Geneve Unitime' is referenced on the dial at twelve o'clock. Visible at six o’clock, below the twelve-hour register, a 'SWISS' marking is replaced on the reference 1765 by the letter ’T’, denoting the Tritium luminescent material on the dial. The case features a, bi-directional, rotating bezel with twenty four-hour graduation.
The chronograph, minute and hour hands are white, giving the dial a nice monochromatic look. The sub-registers at three, six and nine o'clock are the thirty-minute, twelve-hour and the sub-second dials, respectively. The minute-recording sub-register features a luminescent ‘arrow’ hand, ensuring optimal legibility.
The watch carries a manual-winding Venus calibre 178, considered by many as one of the most famous column wheel operated chronograph calibres of all time. The movement features 17 jewels and a modified 24-hour time, beating at 18,000 A/h, with a power reserve of 45-hours. This 'standard' column wheel movement for Breitling Chronographs has a twist; instead of the usual twelve-hour dial, this modified movement has twenty-four hour dial in which the hour hand takes twenty four hours to make a full rotation. The request for the 24-hour modification was first made by US Navy test pilot and astronaut Lt Cmdr Scott Carpenter, who wore a Breitling Navitimer (12-hour version) during the 1950’s.
Viewings can be arranged in Central London by appointment only.
This Breitling Unitime 1765 is in excellent overall condition. The matte black dial is very well preserved, and has evenly patinated luminous minute markers and hours. The tritium lume on the chronograph, minute and hour hands has aged to a deepening yellow, complementing the patina on the 24-hour markers. The watch comes with a two-year mechanical warranty from A Collected Man.
We stand by the quality of all of our pre-owned watches and mechanical objects. If something goes wrong, we’ll always strive to remedy the situation in a timely manner and to the best of our ability. The satisfaction and trust of our clients is of the highest importance, to everyone at A Collected Man.
All of our pre-owned watches have undergone thorough, non-invasive mechanical inspections and have been serviced, if appropriate, to ensure that they meet our highest standards of timekeeping and functionality.
Our pre-owned watches, unless stated otherwise, are covered by either a full or a limited twenty-four month warranty. This excludes any damage sustained due to improper use or accident. Due to their age, some pre-owned watches should not be subjected to the same conditions as when new.
Any of our pre-owned watches which have been serviced by their respective manufacturer, will carry the manufacturer’s servicing guarantee. This is separate and supersedes, the standard warranty offered by A Collected Man. Please see our Terms & Conditions for further information. You can write to us directly at email@example.com, for further clarification.
A Collected Man is also an authorised retailer for a number of watchmaking brands. These watches are covered by the warranty from the original manufacturer.
We offer complimentary worldwide delivery on our watches. If ordering from overseas, delivery will depend on the value of the timepiece and the destination. All import taxes and duties are the responsibility of the buyer.
If ordering from the UK before 1 PM, your watch will be sent the same working day. The courier will depend on the value of the watch, with all watches delivered the next working day.
Please note that pre-owned goods (in the United Kingdom) are subject to a marginal rate of VAT, which can not be reclaimed. For further information, please seehere.