Some examples what is incorrect in Benno Richter’s Breitling book

After a small discussion about some Military pieces , Mr Torsten Nagengast asked me what some of the errors and mistakes are in Mr Benno Richters book.

Please understand this is not a complete list of mistakes or errors (that would take me about a month to go through it with a fine tooth comb) but just browsing through the book for a few minutes taking the most obvious errors and mistakes . So here we go

page 8 ‘Introduction’


  1. Breitling did not sign their watches on the dial around 30-32, this started much later . Breitling has always used serial numbers which were quite logical , then in mid to late 1930ies started to add their references numbers and in approx 1940 they started to put the ‘Breitling’ logo on some of their watches. this ‘transition’ from ‘only serial number’ to ‘serial + ref + signed dial’ ended approx 1945
  2. There is absolutely no evidence that the Navitimer was developed and released in 1952. There is however overwhelming evidence (watches themselves, trademark registration and ‘first used’ date in the registration office) the Navitimer was developed and released in 1954. The watch was commissioned by the A.O.P.A in the USA and made by Breitling and available¬† to AOPA members only in the first year or 2 . Only in late 1955 the watch was made available to the general public.
  3. the Stylized ‘Double Airplanes’ was before on watches , The TransOcean and SuperOcean already had this marking


4. This is not a Co-Pilot but an AVI . full history here and here


5. these hour and minute hands are completely incorrect for this watch. These kind of ‘frankenwatches’ should have never been included in the book


6. this is a fake/reprinted dial . This puts a very large question mark on the whole watch . There are more watches with reprinted (fake) dials in the book


7. these hour and minute hands are completely incorrect colour for this watch. These kind of ‘frankenwatches’ should have never been included in the book. Also the 12hr totalizer and 30 minute totalizer hands have been switched around


8. this always makes me laugh out load and is very sad at the same time. Dial is a total fabrication and also the hands are completely incorrect.


9. again incorrect hands


10. these 6 watches are described as ‘Chronographs of the forties’ but they are actually re-issues from the early 1990ies. Not from ‘the original’ Breitling company at all


11. Incorrect handset on this 806 Navitimer and most likely incorrect dial as well. Only Gold Plated and Solid Gold Navitimers had Gilt dials, the Stainless Steel models had black dials with white printing. Also the sliderule ring is incorrect as it has red markings. These watches with the ‘beaded bezels’ should have ‘all black’ rings (no red markings)

Please understand that this is IN NO WAY critique on the wonderful work of Mr Benno Richter , we wouldn’t be were we are today if we (The wider collector community) didnt have this book with all the fantastic and mostly invaluable information. So I would like to thank Mr Richter for putting this together. We have however learned much more since the first release of this book and I would really love to see a corrected (and much more elaborate) version of the Breitling book