Zenith Cairelli Press Release
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  1. #1
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    Zenith Cairelli Press Release


    TRIBUTE TO A LEGENDARY WATCH
    HERITAGE CRONOMETRO TIPO CP-2
    TRIBUTE TO A LEGENDARY WATCH


    In recent years, the 2,500 units produced by Zenith in the 1960s for the
    Italian armed forces have been fetching sky-high prices on the vintage
    market. The iconic TIPO CP-2 is one of the historical treasures of the
    Manufacture in Le Locle. To celebrate this legendary timepiece, Zenith is
    launching a modern version entirely in tune with the spirit and design of
    the original: introducing the Heritage Cronometro TIPO CP-2, the latest
    addition to the Heritage collection.


    The history of the Manufacture Zenith harbours priceless treasures composed
    of fabled models that have shaped the history of watchmaking. From the
    early 1960s onwards, the Italian military chose Zenith to equip the pilots
    of its Navy and Air Force. The Rome-based distributor “A. Cairelli” handled
    delivery of the 2,500 chronographs that were still being worn by pilots of
    the U.S. Lockheed F104 Starfighter aircraft in the late 1970s to the Marina
    Militare and the Aeronautica Militare Italiana.

    The military chronograph code-named TIPO CP-2 featured two counters in
    its initial version and its 43 mm diameter ensured a degree of legibility that
    was essential for pilots. The Zenith Calibre DP 146 powering this top-flight
    instrument was a token of reliability that proved a determining factor in the
    precision of the missions on which it served. An eminently useful piece of
    back-up equipment complementing the onboard instruments installed in
    the cockpit, the Zenith chronograph rarely left pilots’ wrists, even when they
    were not on missions, thus exemplifying the powerful ties between each
    wearer and his timepiece.

    The Heritage Cronometro TIPO CP-2 was universally appreciated by its
    users and once again demonstrated Zenith’s expertise in mastering time
    measurement. From the early 20th century onwards, a number of different
    armed forces entrusted Zenith with equipping their military with models
    meeting their demanding technical specifications in terms of reliability,
    indications, readability, as well as their robustness in every situation.

    In light of aficionados’ tireless enthusiasm for this exceptional timepiece, the
    Manufacture Zenith is issuing a new 1,000-piece limited series of its historic
    chronograph. This time around it has the most iconic movement of them all:
    the famous Zenith El Primero, another history-maker beating to the rhythm
    of 36,000 vibrations per hour. Entirely respectful of its predecessor’s spirit
    and characteristics, this new version of the chronograph also brings the
    convenience of automatic winding with a 50-hour power reserve.

    Its presence on the wrist confirms its military DNA and its perfect subtlety
    makes this a model that defies fleeting fashions and time itself. Nothing is
    missing from its impressive range of assets. Its hands designed to ensure
    perfect readability even in tough conditions; its bezel enabling reliable and
    accurate handling; along with its easily accessible and responsive pushers, all
    testify to impeccable compliance with the drastic set of technical specifications
    imposed by the military.

    Few modern chronographs so fully respect the form and spirit of the models
    that inspired them. The Manufacture Zenith once again asserts itself by rising
    to a challenge on a par with its ambitions: transcending time!

    Background

    In the late 1950s, the Italian armed forces wished to renew the Tipo CP1
    chronographs that were standard equipment for pilots of the Aeronautica
    Militare Italiana and the Marina Militare. The technical specifications called
    for a model delivering perfect legibility; a 43 mm case that could be worn over
    pilots’ flight suits; immediate and secure access to the pushers and bezel; and
    of course a reliability worthy of the most accurate chronometers.

    Hand-wound Zenith Calibre 146 DP was one of the most renowned and most
    reliable movements available at the time. The chronograph christened TIPO
    CP-2 by the Italian Air Force was delivered by A. Cairelli, the Manufacture’s
    Rome-based distributor. Worn by the pilots of the famous American Lockheed
    F104 Starfighter, these timepieces became an important extension of the
    onboard instruments installed in the cockpit. Pilots became attached to them to
    the point of wearing them at all times, even when not on official duty.

    The Manufacture delivered 2,500 units to its Italian distributor, some of which
    were kept in reserve and never actually used. That explains the fact that some of
    these watches do not bear the letters MM (Marina Militare) or AMI (Aeronautica
    Militare Italiana) engraved alongside a serial number and the TIPO CP-2
    reference on the back of the timepieces that were taken aboard planes.

    The Lockheed F104 Starfighter planes were known to be dangerous, and
    pilots were doubtless glad to keep these reassuring chronographs with them.
    All models were delivered with chronometer-worthy precision timing as
    specified by the Italian Air Force. Zenith’s TIPO CP-2 chronographs remained
    on the wrists of Italian pilots until the late 1970s and even into the early 1980s.
    Having now become some of the world’s most sought-after collector’s items,
    TIPO CP-2 chronographs – often identified by collectors under the name of the
    distributor “A. Cairelli” – are universally acknowledged as being among the most
    iconic timepieces in military history.

    The Manufacture Zenith has a longstanding tradition of supplying watches to
    armed forces around the world. From 1916 onwards, the U.S., British, German,
    Polish and Italian armed forces were among those who benefited from the
    expertise of the Zenith engineers and watchmakers. The TIPO CP-2 chronograph
    belongs to the exclusive circle of legendary chronographs that have earned the
    status of exceptional timepieces in both military and watchmaking history.

    HERITAGE
    CRONOMETRO TIPO CP 2
    MOVEMENT

    El Primero 4069, Automatic
    Calibre 13¼``` (Diameter: 30 mm)
    Movement thickness : 6.60 mm
    Components : 254
    Jewels: 35
    Frequency: 36,000 VpH (5 Hz)
    Power-reserve: Min. 50 hours
    Finishes: Oscillating weight with
    “Côtes de Genève” motif
    Functions
    Hours and minutes in the centre
    Small seconds at 9 o’clock
    Chronograph:
    - Central chronograph hand
    - 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock
    CASE, DIAL & HANDS
    Material: Stainless steel
    Diameter: 43 mm
    Diameter opening: 32.5 mm
    Thickness: 12.85 mm
    Crystal: Domed sapphire crystal with
    anti-reflective treatment on both sides
    Case-back: Domed sapphire crystal with
    anti-reflective treatment on both sides
    Water-resistance: 10 ATM
    Dial: Black
    Hour-markers: Arabic numerals in SuperLuminova SLN C1
    Hands: Rhodium-plated, faceted and coated with
    SuperLuminova SLN C1
    STRAPS & BUCKLES
    Black calfskin leather strap with protective rubber lining
    Bracelet: 27.00.2218.774
    Stainless steel triple folding clasp
    Limited Edition of 1000 units
    Reference: 03.2240.4069/21.C774
    I Revival of the famous Cairelli model
    from the 1960s
    I Automatic El Primero column -wheel
    chronograph
    ZENITH | Swiss Watch Manufacture Since 1865




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  2. #2
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    Re: Zenith Cairelli Press Release

    Holy Uni compax Batman, that is one fantastic looking watch.

    Good movement, restraint in not using a near ubiquitous display back and in not using faux patina lume, a beautifully understated strap complimenting the watch - what's not to love?

    Well done Zenith!

  3. #3
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    Re: Zenith Cairelli Press Release

    A real looker, Zenith are known for their under stated promotion, Zenith movements are chronometer grade but they seldom tell you this. This is a great review, perhaps you could put in a bid for their advertising account.

    off topic: In the 1970s I used to work 3miles. from where Starfighters were serviced ; telephone conversations had to be suspended when they took off. We called them "Widow Makers" but to the best of my knowledge not one crashed on the Scottish mainland.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Zenith Cairelli Press Release

    Quote Originally Posted by molarface View Post
    Holy Uni compax Batman, that is one fantastic looking watch.

    Good movement, restraint in not using a near ubiquitous display back and in not using faux patina lume, a beautifully understated strap complimenting the watch - what's not to love?

    Well done Zenith!
    It's really delivering on every level. It looks great, it's well made, and it's got an El Primero in it, there's not a lot of ways to go wrong with this one.


    Quote Originally Posted by Longjean View Post
    A real looker, Zenith are known for their under stated promotion, Zenith movements are chronometer grade but they seldom tell you this. This is a great review, perhaps you could put in a bid for their advertising account.
    I was actually talking to Zenith about that the other day. They said they didn't bother certifying most of their movements because their internal specs were significantly tighter anyway, but they do certify their "Open" models (open heart) this year (2016) just as a value add. But even then they don't put Chronometer on the dial, it's just on the rotor. Very subtle.

  6. #5
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    Re: Zenith Cairelli Press Release

    Gorgeous.


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