Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?
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  1. #1
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    Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    Hi my friends,
    I have a question for the private pilots and the airliners pilots :
    What will be for you THE perfect watch? What are for you the essential functions (chronograph, etc...)?

    Jet pilots I knox that for you the perfect pilot watch is a G-Shock. ;)

  2. #2
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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    Here's an amusing article I remember running across... Aviator Buffs Yearn for Watches, but Few Pilots Actually Use Them - WSJ

    I dated an airline pilot around 10 years ago, and don't recall her ever wearing a watch. Though that was before I entered the hobby.

    As much as I enjoy the pilot/aviator watch style, I think they're now throwbacks rather than actual aviation tools. Much like the serious divers I know use dive computers, rather than unidirectional bezels.

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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    I fly long haul these days. My perfect watch would have the following features;
    1. User replaceable battery/solar power
    2. Large digital display with back light. Easy to read day/date data, etc.
    3. World time with easy day light/standard time adjustment
    4. 24 hour countdown timer with loud alarm.
    5. Thin case with multiple strap options. Titanium case material.
    6. Chronograph
    7. Dedicated UTC/ZULU time display
    "Some people work for a living, me, I'd rather fly!"

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    Member Deputy Dave's Avatar
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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by StrayDog View Post

    As much as I enjoy the pilot/aviator watch style, I think they're now throwbacks rather than actual aviation tools. Much like the serious divers I know use dive computers, rather than unidirectional bezels.
    My guess is you are correct. I used to go to church with a guy (one of the deacons actually) who is a pilot and I asked him about this once. He said that most pilots don't care about them, any more than anyone else. He said that there was a rule that they had to wear one (I don't recall if it was a company rule or something wider) but there was no specifications as to make/model/features/etc.

    And I did wear a classic Aqualand diving for the depth alarm and as a BACKUP to the gauges and computer (later) but a lot of divers don't have fixations about watches. I could say the same about law enforcement officers in my experience also.
    Last edited by Deputy Dave; June 25th, 2015 at 20:03.

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    Member dmjonez's Avatar
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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    I used to be a fighter pilot, retired from that, and am now an airline pilot. Most professional pilots wear cheap quartz watches. Occasionally you'll see a Breitling or a Rolex, usually given to them as a gift, or purchased as a celebration of a milestone (got the license, etc). I wear different watches, not particularly because I need them in the cockpit, but just because I like watches. I usually notice my First Officer's watches due to my own hobby. I'd say I see far more Casio, Seiko, Timex, and Citizen than anything else.

    The time in a modern cockpit is derived from the GPS, and is displayed in several places. There are chronometers in the instrument panel, so most don't use the one on their wrist. Regarding the few who do like watches, preferences vary, just as they do with the "general public."
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    Off Topic post Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    Not flying anymore these days cuz 35 years was probably enough but even though the past decade or so has obviated the true "need" for a watch in the cockpit or on the flight deck, I still can't let go of the nostalgia...

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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    As a private pilot wearing a watch is a backup to a backup. If I had to use my watch it would be due to a full electrical failure at night.

    That being said I just wear my daily watch, but being a watch person I wear my Breitling 806 or my Hamilton GG-W-113 if I want a pilot watch on.

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    Member DokDoom's Avatar
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    I have several friends who fly for a major airline.

    All of them wear G-Shock, Citizen Nighthawk, Seiko etc on the job.

    Some of them have Rolex, Breitling, Omega etc but only for off-duty wear.

    The aviator watch as you mean it is just not essential to them for flying.

    Just like pro divers often have dive computers with a relatively cheap dive watch as back up rather than just a posh dive watch to do their job.

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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    Quote Originally Posted by dmjonez View Post
    I used to be a fighter pilot, retired from that, and am now an airline pilot. Most professional pilots wear cheap quartz watches. Occasionally you'll see a Breitling or a Rolex, usually given to them as a gift, or purchased as a celebration of a milestone (got the license, etc). I wear different watches, not particularly because I need them in the cockpit, but just because I like watches. I usually notice my First Officer's watches due to my own hobby. I'd say I see far more Casio, Seiko, Timex, and Citizen than anything else.

    The time in a modern cockpit is derived from the GPS, and is displayed in several places. There are chronometers in the instrument panel, so most don't use the one on their wrist. Regarding the few who do like watches, preferences vary, just as they do with the "general public."
    I would agree with this 100%. No actual need for a watch in airline cockpits anymore, but they certainly come in handy while on the job. I feel I have already found my perfect watch, but here are the features I like and actually use...

    -solar atomic for no hassle accuracy(gotta be on time)!
    -stopwatch- Various uses
    -loud alarm-I use the snooze alarm as my primary wake up in hotels
    -world time-very nice to be able to easily scroll through timezones and reset quickly
    -easy to read dial/screen with day date and Zulu is a bonus. Lots of maintenance checks and paperwork require referring to the date. Comes in handy.
    -easy to find backlight.-use this all the time.

    I really like not worrying about my watch either. Banging it up in the cockpit, losing it in security, drawing attention to yourself while in foreign countries, etc. If I didn't worry about wrecking or losing an expensive watch I would probably wear an Omega X33. Ive had a few Breitling aerospaces and unfortunately found the functions to be too cumbersome with a single crown and scrolling. The humble Gshock has fit the bill perfectly for me. Specifically the GW-5000 and the GW-6900. They are on the smaller side for Gshocks and look decent with a uniform too.





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    Last edited by scooby; June 29th, 2015 at 13:47.
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    Re: Private pilots, airliners pilots : what will be for you THE perfect pilot watch?

    Helicopter pilot here. The watch I prefer has changed throughout the years depending on the mission and/or aircraft I'm flying. In the field, something with a day display as well as date. International work, Rolex GMT Master II. EMS work, Early Bird or Glycine Airman. Currently in little Hughes 500D's (utility, fire, rescue...door always off, so needs to be waterproof) which do not have a clock (only a digal chrono that we use for flight times and timing cool downs), so a very legible watch is ideal, and I've been wearing my diver's watches lately (Resco Hooper, Modded Seiko Shogun).
    Last edited by Dennis Smith; June 29th, 2015 at 02:04.
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