From the military Pilot watch point of view, the Type XX occupies an importance part of aviation history. There are a few manufacturers of Type XX and most Type XX watches share a lot of obvious similarities. They are black dialed chronographs, with luminous hands (most were using radioactive radium) and Arabic numbers. They house manual wind flyback movements, their diameter is in the 37 to 39 mm range, and they are equipped with a bi-directional rotating bezel.
From the internet, the specification of the type XX includes:
- a black dial, with two registers at 3 and 9 o'clock able to count up to 30 minutes;
- a diameter of approximately 38 mm;
- the flyback function;
- a watch accurate to at least 8 seconds per day
- a power reserve of at least 35 hours;
- the ability to operate satisfactorily at least 300 times.
Breguet was commissioned to produce 2,000 “Type 20” chronographs by government contract in 1954. On the visible face of the caseback is generally engraved BREGUET / TYPE 20 / 5101/54, where the last 2 numbers are the contract number and the year (in 2-digit form).
I am not an expert in Chronograph watches as my focus were mainly the Rolex bubbleback, Princes at that time. I was fortunate to find a Breguet Type XX many years ago by swapping watches with another collector. The reason for my collection of Breguet was because I was working for the Swatch Group at that time and I was keen to collect some of Swatch group's brands (Breguet, Omega, Longines etc).
In addition, there is the second generation Breguet with three register. Although the very first military Breguet Type 20 did not have any brand on the dial, the later second generation civilian versions (with either 2 or 3 registers) did sport the Breguet logo. This is my second generation three registers chronograph with bekelite bezel.