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CHRONOMASTER ONLY

Chronomaster Aviator Sea Diver: this singular name belongs to one of the most original professional watches of the 1960s, combining an unparalleled number of functions with a timeless design.

Created in 1961, this chronograph was produced for around ten years under several brand names, through a partnership between the Swiss company NIVADA SA and the American firm CROTON WATCH CO. This led to some of its dials bearing probably the most complicated name in watchmaking history: CROTON NIVADA GRENCHEN Chronomaster Aviator Sea Diver.

Thanks to the authors’ trademark rigorous methodology, the signature of the “ONLY” reference works, this book reveals the incredible diversity of the Chronomaster models. It is intended both as an initiation for connoisseurs of exceptional watches and as a reference guide for collectors. This legendary watch will doubtless thus regain the place it deserves among the most desirable 1960s chronographs.

“A FANTASTIC WORK BASED ON INTENSE RESEARCH AND WHICH REVIVES A STILL UNDER-ESTIMATED MODEL.”

Aurel Bacs, Consultant, Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo

AT FIRST SIGHT, IT SEEMS A STRANGE NAME FOR A CHRONOGRAPH

Stranger still, the name changes over the years, especially on the dials, with different logos. What is the story behind this mysterious identity? This is what this book aims to reveal.
This composite name is in fact the result of a business deal between two companies: NIVADA SA, a Swiss company, and the American CROTON WATCH CO. INC. The first signs of cooperation between the NIVADA and CROTON companies date from the end of the 1930s, or more exactly in 1939. It seems that it was not easy to do business together, not because of any disagreement between the two parties, but because of American competition from one brand in particular: Movado.

AFTER WORLD WAR II, A PERIOD OF RECONSTRUCTION, PROSPERITY AND INNOVATION TOOK OVER FROM THE DISASTER OF THE PREVIOUS YEARS

Driven by natural curiosity and propelled by accelerating technology, people started exploring and conquering new horizons: the ocean depths, mountain peaks, the sky and space. Accordingly, people started to travel farther, faster and more often. NIVADA, which had been already exposed to this type of initiative in the 1950s, came up with a suitable response.

It cannot be denied that its new Super-Chronograph is rather interesting, and even quite revolutionary compared to the other offerings of the time. In fact, it comes as somewhat of a surprise that this Chronomaster model manages to combine a chronograph, water resistance to 200m, a tachymeter scale, a rotating bezel for diving, a second time zone (on the bezel), and a sailing regatta countdown.

THE SUPER-CHRONOGRAPH THAT FIRST CAME TO LIGHT IN 1961

The Chronomaster model wasn’t just a chronograph. It was more like the Super-Chronograph, as mentioned in the contemporary brochures. It, in fact, had an astonishing number of functions. Such a purpose is accurately reflected in the model’s name: CHRONOMASTER AVIATOR SEA DIVER, which suggests a clientele of professional diver, racing drivers, and pilots, as well as the multiple functions evoked in its advertising of the 1960s: THE WORLD’S BUSIEST WATCH – HAS MORE USES THAN EVER COUNTED.

“THIS GUIDE WILL ENABLE YOU TO RELIVE AND UNDERSTAND THE VARIOUS MILESTONES IN THE LIFE OF THE CHRONOMASTER LINE, BETWEEN SWITZERLAND AND THE UNITED STATES.”

Virginie Liatard Roessli, Specialist, Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo

CONTENTS

Foreword by Aurel Bacs & Virginie Liatard Roessli, Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo

Part 1 – Introduction
Part 2 – Main Components
Part 3 – Models
Part 4 – Buyer’s Guide

ISBN 978-2-940506-25-5 (English Edition)
ISBN 978-2-940506-26-2 (French Edition)

288 Pages • over 650 ill. • Format: 25 x 30.7 cm.
Price: USD 125.00 • CHF 110.00 • € 99.00

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