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IWC Schaffhausen

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IWC Schaffhausen

IWC Schaffhausen

 

 

 

 

Birth of a legend - the IWC racing watches

High pressures. Low temperatures. Salt water. There is simply no activity that is harder on a watch than diving. And a diver’s safety depends on accurate timekeeping, ultimate legibility, and total reliability. When diving for sport gained popularity in the 1960s, few watch manufacturers were prepared to meet a diver’s needs. But IWC was there from the beginning, with the introduction of the Aquatimer in 1967.

A Swiss engineer watch for heroes

In 1955, Europe was in the midst of rebuilding after the devastation of World War II, and the engineers and scientists leading the effort were regarded as heroes. But as technology rapidly evolved, magnetic fields became pervasive, and suddenly the average wristwatch was no longer reliable. IWC stepped up with the Ingenieur Reference 666 racing watch, which featured the first instance of the famed Pellaton bi-directional, automatic winding system and a soft-iron inner case that protected the movement from magnetic fields up to 1000 gauss. It was as rugged as it was beautiful, and a legend was born. 

Icons of resistance

The Ingenieur SL Automatic, Reference 1832, is one of the best-known IWC’s racing watches. Designed by Gérald Genta in 1976, it featured his signature style, inspired by a traditional diving helmet. The SL was built around the IWC-manufactured 8541 ES calibre, which used antimagnetic materials in addition to a soft-iron inner case enabling it to resist magnetic fields of up to 80,000 A/m.

 

How far can engineer watches be pushed? IWC decided to find out in 1989 with the Ingenieur 500,000 A/m. The movement was built in part with niobium-zircon alloy, and withstood an incredible 3,700,000 A/m. It could actually have taken more, but it was a bit too far ahead of its time –instruments capable of measuring higher hadn’t been invented yet. 

 

In 2013, IWC set the watch world ablaze with the Ingenieur Constant-Force Tourbillon. Its ceramic and platinum case contained the patented Constant-Force Tourbillon, a breakthrough in precision timekeeping. The double moon display on the dial contains images of the moon so detailed that the craters on the surface are visible, and the moon phase runs with a deviation of just a single day every 577 years.

Luxury racing watches honoring legends

IWC Schaffhausen