1965 Breitling SuperOcean Chronograph (Ref. 2005) "Minute Creeper"
Breitling, as you may already know, is a watch company that is better known for its aviation-based chronographs and not dive watches. However, Breitling did produce a limited offering of dive watches starting in the 1950s. Tool watches and more specifically, dive watches, need to be highly visible and practical. Breitling wanted to build a reliable diving chronograph, and in 1965 the result of this ambition was the SuperOcean reference 2005. Don't let the lack of the stereotypical chronograph subdials and hands fool you. This is a chronograph through and through and one of the most interesting watches to have ever come from Breitling. The nickname "minute creeper" or more commonly known as a “slow counter” chronograph is in direct reference to the ref. 2005’s unusual form of operating. The chronograph hand advances by the minute, instead of by the second, resulting in a much slower revolution of the center chronograph hand. That being said, this chronograph tracks time in an extremely legible way. Indicated by a large, luminous, diamond-shaped hand.
The SuperOcean Ref. 2005 is powered by a Breitling modified high-grade Venus cal. 188 manual winding chronograph movement. Even more interestingly, due to the lack of constant motion in measuring minutes and not seconds, Breitling added another unusual feature. A chronograph function indicator, located in a circular window above the six o’clock marker. This function indicator acts as a visual complication that allows the wearer to tell whether the chronograph function is activated and in what mode of operation. When the chronograph is activated, the window shows a full luminous circular indication, and when the chronograph is paused, there is a smaller circular indication. Once the chronograph hand is reset, the indicator is entirely black again.
The oversized 42mm case wears nicely while on the wrist. Since Breitling's main focus wasn't diving watches, the SuperOcen Ref. 2005's were produced in minimal numbers, making them extremely rare and hard to find. Additionally, finding one in good condition is an even harder task making them highly desirable. The black and white contrasting color of the dial paired with the unique hands really sets off the look of this unique and interesting chronograph!
|2pc Leather Strap
The case shows the original factory finishing and case chamfering believed to be unpolished. The pushers and crown are early, and original to the watch as most examples from 1965 possess a non-signed crown. The bezel remains black and shows a very light patina from light use. The Breitling SuperOcean engraved caseback, and reference numbers are deep and highly visible, further confirming the case's unpolished condition. The watch will come supplied on a handmade two-piece leather strap.
The highly visible "panda" like dial remains in wonderful vintage condition showing no scratches or blemishes. The matte black center portion of the dial paired with the bright white outer minute track is downright stunning. The chronograph function indicator located above the 6 o'clock marker remains in wonderful condition showing no lume degradation or discoloration when inspected under UV light. The lume plots on the dial remain fully intact and have achieved a warm patina. The hands appear to have been relumed on the surface in the past with tritium. We chose to leave the hands as finding replacements is nearly impossible, and it also adds to the watches' story and visual history.
None. The watch is in perfect working order; previous service history is unknown.