Blancpain Fifty Fathoms showcases 70 years of illustrious diving excellence
A name that can stand the true test of time is worthy of a fitting homage. That name today is the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms timepiece, the world’s first modern diver’s watch which debuted in 1953 to become an icon for its pioneering underwater exploits.
Like most humble beginnings, the very first Fifty Fathoms timepiece came from the mind of Jean-Jacques Fiechter, the CEO of Blancpain at the time, who also happened to be a passionate purveyor of scuba diving.
Fiechter was a visionary and innovator in a technical discipline that was still in its infancy. Nonetheless, the Fifty Fathoms designer quickly realised the crucial need to track time underwater. He would subsequently create the tool watch that would meet his own exacting demands in the Fifty Fathoms – a watch that would become so popular among the ocean community that it became an indispensable instrument amongst professional equipment for elite divers and explorers.
The Fifty Fathoms watch would go on to make diving safer while contributing to the expansion of the discipline by promoting accessibility to the underwater world and its exceptional mysteries. 70 years on, the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms returns from the deep in spectacular fashion.
Celebrating 70 years with exclusivity
The Fifty Fathoms name first arrived in 1953 before returning 50 years later in 2003 as a limited anniversary edition. The 2003 edition comprised of three series of 50 Fifty Fathoms watches as a bold statement to bring a forgotten timepiece into the modern age. Fast forward another 20 years to 2023 and the Fifty Fathoms name once again returns to mark 70 years with exclusivity.
In Act 1 of the Fifty Fathoms 70th anniversary, Blancpain has produced three series of 70 watches, each dedicated to a specific region of the world – EMEA, Asia-Pacific and The Americas. It also marks the start of a year of celebrations focusing on the most legendary of diving watches.
The Blancpain Fifty Fathoms 70th Anniversary timepiece features a 42mm polished stainless steel case which mirrors the diameter of the original Fifty Fathoms model from 1953 and is rated to a depth of 300 metres. Driving the watch is Blancpain’s calibre 1315 automatic movement which is crowned with a striking platinum oscillating weight featuring the Fifty Fathoms’ 70th anniversary logo that is viewable via the caseback. This movement affords the watch hours, minutes and seconds functions as well as a subtle date window tucked between the 4 o’clock and 5 o’clock markers. It affords wearers a power reserve of 120 hours.
A matte black dial acts as the perfect contrast for large lumed hour markers at the 12, 3, 6 and 9 positions to ensure maximum legibility under water. This is further complemented with lumed hands and an additional bright red tip on the seconds hand. The timepiece is finished off with a matching black NATO-style strap to exude a true diving aesthetic.