Name: Aeromatic 1912 Automatic Half-Phase Regulateur
Movement: Aeromatic MDBH automatic hacking movement, 35 jewels, 21600 bph
Time display: main dial minutes, subdial 24 hour and sun/moon at 6 (24 on top), half-phase subdial minutes at 3, half-phase subdial seconds at 9
Date: big date two windows at 12, quick set hidden pusher at 2
Case: all stainless steel with screwed transparent case back
Size: 43,5 mm diameter without crown, 50 mm with crown, 54 mm lug to lug
Height: 12,5 mm
Face: white guilloche dial
Text on dial: [Aeromatic logo] Aeromatic 1912 Germany 35 JEWELS AUTOMATIC
Text on back: ALL STAINLESS STEEL A1126 GERMANY 5 ATM WATER RESITANT
Hands and markers: black main minutes hand, small black hands in subdials, the minute and seconds hands are half-phase with 2 different lengths (long side 0..30, short side 30..60)
Water-resistance: 5 ATM water resistant
Crown: unsigned main crown at 3
Crystal: flat mineral crystal
Lug: 22 mm
Bracelet: genuine leather strap with buckle
(This picture is taken from Aeromatic1912 )
This week I got this watch and decided to post it now as “affordable regulator vol. 2”. The easiest way to find it in shops is to use the model reference number A1126. In most online shops this model is sold out, but you can still buy brand new Aeromatic A1126 regulators for EUR 139. I got mine as pre-owned without box and papers for EUR 47, including shipping from Germany.
Let’s start with some words on Aeromatic 1912. This brand emerged in 2004 together with another one called Tauchmeister 1937. Both brands are owned by Rainer Bettner of Frankfurt, Germany. (Aeromatic 1912 and Tauchmeister 1937 - Chinese Watch Industry Wiki ). As you can guess Aeromatic is more for aviation watches and Tauchmeister (diving master) for divers. The actual producer of Aeromatic watches is most probably Million Smart Enterprises (www.millionsmart.com).
The first thing that got my attention was of course gorgeous guilloche dial. With this dial the watch is for sure attractive and nice to wear as decoration. But what about the basic function telling time? The dial with three subdials looks quite complicated. I found in the web even totally wrong descriptions of the functionality of A1126 dial. Let me tell you how it works.
The main central hand is for minutes, as it should be with most of the regulator-type dials.
The subdial at 6 has a day/night or sun/moon window combined with 24h hours hand. The subdial is small enough to make reading hours difficult. Especially between 20 and 4 when small hours hand is before sun/moon window reading time is very problematic. That was the simplest solution to add a hand to the day/night disc, but was not the best idea.
The subdial at 3 is for minutes. Actually this subdial is redundant and not needed at all. The small minutes hand just copies the big central hand. Strange, but there is some backlash between these two hands. When setting time they are aligned, but later there is usually a time difference about 2 min between these two hands. This is not nice.
I think that if the subdial at 3 would be a 24h hours dial and subdial at 6 only pure day/night window, then the overall legibility of the dial would me much better.
Seconds subdial is at 9. This (and the seconds subdial at 3 too) is a “half-phase” subdial as Aeromatic is calling them. I have had only few watches with this kind of subdials and was very skeptical. To my surprise reading subdial with two different length hand (long side 0..30, short side 30..60) works very well without any problems.
Setting time is very easy because of the hacking movement. Big (8 mm) onion shape crown is also nice and easy to operate.
I like the big date with a quick set feature too. To change the date you have to push with pin the hidden pusher located at 2.
The all stainless steel case leaves a solid impression. This is one of the standard cases seen on many Aeromatic models. Through the transparent case back you see a 35 jewel Chinese movement. In the catalog Aeromatic calls it “Aeromatic MDBH” movement. This seems to be a modification of the well-known Shanghai 35 jewel automatic movement (Shanghai B SB1ZZ 23 & 35 jewel question? ).
What I like:
- Guilloche dial
- Quick set big date
What I don’t like:
- Combined 24h and sun/moon subdial
- Redundant minutes subdial
Here you see both reviewed regulators next to each other (see also René Barton Regulateur – poor man’s 24h regulator (AWW 40) ).
Which one is the winner? For sure is René Barton more legible, but I would say that almost every Aeromatic’s component is better and the assembly is more solid too.