The FF Mil Spec, A Quick View and Thoughts

Aug 08, 2008,06:23 AM

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Here's one of the 2 or 3 most beautiful Blancpain Fifty Fathoms, IMO, the Mil Spec.

1/ The Story:

As you all know, the Story of the Fifty Fathoms began in 1953, when 2 French Military Men, Captain Bob Maloubier and Lieutenant Claude Riffaud met the Blancpain CEO of the Era, Mr Jean Jacques Fiechter, and asked him to make a Diving Tool Watch.

Mr Fiechter, convinced by this project, accepted ,and then the FF was born!

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Here, side by side with the Re Edition for the 50th Annniversary...

From 1953 to 1960, we had different versions of the FF, sometimes in collaboration with LIP.

In 1960, the Mil Spec was born, Mil Spec as for " Military Specifications ".

The watch, following these Specs, had to be of course water resistant ( FF=91, 45 meters ), Anti Magnetic, Shock Protected, and legible in any circumstances, by using Tritium indexes and hands, and was used by the US Navy.

2/ The Watch:

The Mil Spec was a big watch, for the Era, with a diamater of 41mm.

Big, but not that thick, as the case back, the case and the bezel are quite thin.

What is big is the plexy, very domed, giving to the watch a look of a Flying saucer...

Look at these pics, it's quite impressive!

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On these pics you will appreciate the shape of the case, lugs, and will notice that the case is " microbillé ", to give a matt and very nice aspect to the watch.

The blend of thin, slim lugs, the generous and sensual curves of the case, the big crown ( which is not screwed ), a very pure plastic bezel with just the minimum of informations, and the laquered dial, all these details contribute to make an awesome, icon watch.

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Under every angle, this FF Mil Spec is 0 default, sublime!

Sublime, and strong, very strong!

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I'm completely mad about this combo of colors, deep black dial, enhanced by the contrast of the nicely patined index and hands, a bit like pearls of gold, and this stunning witness of humidity.

As we speak of the dial, let's now have a closer look at it.

The dial is laquered, which gives a lot of depht to it...

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What is indeed very impressive with these FF, and here with this Mil Spec is that you can see that it is a toolwatch ( look at the quite roughly finished hands ), but a gorgeous one, due to the perfectly finish dial.

A paticularity of the Mil Spec is the writing.." Mil Spec 1 " just under the applied " Blancpain Fifty Fathoms ".

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And the indicator of humidity, used to warn the owner of the watch of some failure of the water resistance...and adds some specificity to this particular watch, esthetically speaking.

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Even the Case Back is psecific, with its own writing..reminding the Military Specifications, and the 4 digit number of this family of watches:

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In the middle if the case back , the writing Blancpain Mil Spec...

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And under, the Heart of the watch, the famous movement AS, reliable, accurate, 0 problems!

On my watch, it looses 1 sec per day, another Military Specification, for sure.

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Credit Pic: Strong Jeff.

Please note that the Mil Spec came with different hands, indexes, crowns and bezels...

Here are some pics to demonstrate it, pics which are not exhaustive, BTW.

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And here, beside another Military Fifty Fathoms, for the German Army ( 1970 ), with a symbol of " No Radiation " instead of the indicator of Humidity, this last one not being a Mil Spec, to be completely clear..And a less large bezel, but graduated to each minute.

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Nice pair, isn't it?

To end with this topic, the mandatory Wrist Shot, to prove that this watch has an unbelievable presence on the wrist.

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A great catch, really, as this watch is without any doubt an icon watch, like the Rolex Submariner, the omega SM 300, or the JLC Polaris, a bit later...

Best to all.

Nicolas This message has been edited by amanico on 2008-08-08 06:24:30 This message has been edited by AnthonyTsai on 2008-08-18 13:37:36

More posts: Fifty FathomsMilspecSeamasterSeamaster 300

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Comments: view entire thread


Very nice report Nicolas !!!

 By: bimbeano : August 8th, 2008-10:23
Think i'm falling in love with this one too ..... Filip

Great review !

 By: DrStrong : August 8th, 2008-11:03
and amazing pictures as usual. Here's the original ad :...  

Nice post

 By: gazoz : August 8th, 2008-19:26
Nicolas great pics too but seriously this watch is too old get your self a new one i will help you pick it and i will also dispose of the old one for you best wishes Garry

Than ks for your help, Garry, BUT

 By: amanico : August 9th, 2008-23:46
I wouldn't dare to disturb you, I'll find a solution to this complex problem by myself...LOL Thanks for the comments, my friend. Nicolas


 By: gazoz : August 9th, 2008-23:48

Great review

 By: Pur1st : August 8th, 2008-20:12
Nic, Superb review. Keep on the passion! ben

Thanks, Ben!

 By: amanico : August 9th, 2008-23:48
It's more difficult for me to loose the passion than to keep it...LOL I think that now I closed my hunting on Blancpain Diving...Not sure, but I think ...LOL Best. Nicolas

Keep it on

 By: Pur1st : August 10th, 2008-08:02


 By: Marv : August 9th, 2008-01:52
Very nice review of a iconic watch for which you have waited a long time ! And congratulations for your photos, in particular the wristshop that is amazing! You have compiled here several beautiful watches. And among them, I really like the one below...  

Another beauty...

 By: DrStrong : August 9th, 2008-04:31
from the réserve du patron ! LOl

WOW Nicolas !!!

 By: p@trice : August 9th, 2008-02:23
Big congrats for the new Mil spec and thanks for the great review.