Airain Debuts Type 20 Re-Edition Pilot Chronograph
Although dormant for decades, French brand Airain has a lengthy and dynamic history dating back to 1934 with links to both Lebois and Dodane, helping to create some of the best known French military timepieces of the 20th century. Airain has been revived for 2020, and as its first act the resurrected brand has reimagined one of the most famous pilot chronographs ever made – the Type 20. Produced under a variety of brand names including Breguet, Dodane, and Airain itself, the original ’50s Type 20 has become a staple among military watch collectors in the years since its discontinuation. The Airain Type 20 Re-Edition and Airain Type 20 Chocolate Brown Limited Edition are remarkably faithful interpretations of this pilot chronograph classic, with a dedication to quality movement work and finishing. Both models share the same 39.5mm stainless steel case, slightly upsized from the ’50s original for more modern tastes. The case design itself closely follows the lines of the original Type 20, with a narrow brushed stainless steel rotating bezel, domed hesalite crystal, wide piston pushers, and simple straight lugs. The dial of the Airain Type 20 Re-Edition is a clean no-nonsense midcentury military design, with a slim sword handset contrasted by outer railroad scales on the snailed chronograph subdials. The hint of rounded softness to the printed Arabic hour numerals gives the dial a touch of character, while a khaki Super-LumiNova fill throughout gives a warm vintage tone in initial images. The Airain Type 20 Chocolate Brown Limited Edition adds a rich faux tropical brown dial treatment to the mix, which may not be to every enthusiast’s taste but helps this limited variant to stand out. Airain powers both variants with the La Joux-Perret based Caliber AM1 handwound chronograph movement. Like the original Type 20, the Caliber AM1 is a flyback chronograph movement, also featuring a column wheel actuation system. Performance appears solid, with a 55 hour power reserve at a 28,800 bph beat rate. Airain pairs each version of this Type 20 revival with a suede strap in either black, cognac brown, or a lighter camel tan. With the Type 20 Re-Edition and Type 20 Chocolate Brown Limited Edition, Airain has revived both the brand itself and a handsomely finished take on a pilot chronograph classic. Only 134 examples of the Airain Type 20 Chocolate Brown Limited Edition will be made. Both the Airain Type 20 Re-Edition and the Airain Type 20 Chocolate Brown Limited Edition are available for pre-order now through the brand’s website, with early pricing standing at $2,920 and $2,980, respectively. For more details, please visit the brand’s website.
Edox Unveils SkyDiver Neptunian Watch
While extreme depth ratings for dive watches are nothing new, many divers designed specifically in pursuit of the highest possible water resistance rating tend to stand out visually with bulky cases, unorthodox shapes, and extreme thickness. Edox has taken a different approach to the ultra deep dive watch, aiming to create an extremely capable underwater timepiece without sacrificing wearability or aesthetics. The result is the Edox SkyDiver Neptunian, a 1,000 meter rated dive watch with a more classical dive watch appearance. There’s no denying the Edox SkyDiver Neptunian’s case is large at 44mm wide and 15.6mm thick, but the stainless steel form is less massive than some of its direct competitors with a far more traditional look. The case shape itself is pure classic dive watch with wide tapering lugs, a full minutes scale for the coin edged ceramic rotating bezel, and prominent squared off crown guards, but this classical look hides a 3mm thick sapphire crystal and an integrated helium escape valve. Edox finishes this 1,000 meter water resistance rated case with a complex caseback engraving of Neptune, Roman god of the sea. Like the case, the dial of the Edox SkyDiver Neptunian is clean and traditional, with rectangular applied lumed indices complemented by Edox’s distinctive arrow hour hand. The dial surface itself is available in both classic black and an eye-catching ocean blue dégradé pattern which looks in images to capture the feel of descending into the open sea. The largest giveaway of the SkyDiver Neptunian’s capability comes with the prominent rehaut, which announces the 1000 meter water resistance rating in oversized block text. Inside the Edox SkyDiver Neptunian beats the Sellita SW200 based Caliber 80 automatic movement. Like the standard SW200, the Caliber 80 provides a steady 42 hour power reserve at a 28,800 bph beat rate. Edox completes the SkyDiver Neptunian with its take on the classic three link oyster style bracelet, featuring bright contrasting polished central links. The Edox SkyDiver Neptunian stands as one of the most traditional and conservatively styled options in the 1,000 meter rated dive watch market, offering extreme capability while maintaining a solidly classical overall look. The Edox SkyDiver Neptunian is available now through authorized dealers at an MSRP of €1,250. For more information, please visit the brand’s website.