The Blancpain Fifty Fathoms that tells the story of the frogmen who used them

Editor’s note: The Blancpain Tribute to Fifty Fathoms MIL-SPEC, aside from being a damn good-looking dive watch, serves as a reminder that brands can reissue mid-century military watches without breaking the internet. We thought we’d take a look back at this Blancpain Fifty Fathoms tribute, which tells the story of when watches were specially designed tools that meant the difference between life and death. Blancpain has an excellent history in dive watches, and among the most coveted are the military-issued pieces. In this already hyper-specialised niche, the MIL-SPEC I and MIL-SPEC II watches stand head and shoulders above the rest. These watches were first created in 1957 to meet the very specific needs of the United States Navy. In fact, if you really want to nerd out, we’d highly recommend reading the actual military specification – MIL-W-22176A(SHIPS). The most distinctive feature of this watch is the hemispheric moisture indicator on the bottom half of the dial. It’s this feature that Blancpain has celebrated with the MIL-SPEC, and that lies at the heart of its charm. Before we dive into the current model, let’s first look back at the Tornek-Rayville. Created to meet MIL-SPEC II, this watch is a great example…

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