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Military watches have a history

hey reflect intensive efforts in the quest for precision and authenticity. 


The watch actually had to compensate for onboard instrument failure by acting as a navigational instrument for the pilot. 

 



By official command from the French General Staff, the House of Dodane developed the Type 21 in the 1950’s. The “fly-back” function was the principal requirement in the stringent specifications then set out for the chronograph by the Ministry of Defence.


While conserving their precision, these chronographs already withstood extreme constraints in terms of acceleration, vibration, temperature variations and resistance to magnetic effects.


The demands of various silent partners, particularly the Navy and Air Force, obliged our master watchmakers to advance still further in precision and reliability, as well as in complexity.


First condition: owning the “fly-back “function i-e the possibility to set to zero  and then to restart immediately the chronometer function.

First condition: owning the “fly-back “function i-e the possibility to set to zero  and then to restart immediately the chronometer function.



The high officials o in the Air Force have imposed this condition as it was vital for pilots when they would fly over a beacon or when they had to land relying on the time given by the control tower.



Such a demand may sound odd if one thinks about the evolution and sophistication of the present electronic outfits. Nonetheless, at that time, the reliability of the clock and watch making industry was a matter of life or death, the watch had become a flying instrument capable of replacing a failing on-board device.

 



Ministry of Defence Requirement  1956



Among other requirements from the French National Defence’s specifications: an autonomy of over 35 hours, a maximum time difference of 8 seconds per any 24 hours. The difference was reduced to 0.2 seconds per minute and 0.5 seconds per half hour for chronometers. 

 

.2 seconds per minute and 0.5 seconds per half hour for chronometers. 

 

Besides the chronometer was supposed to operate at least 300 starts, stops and zero-setting in a row. 

 

Already used by the Air Force and other corps, the Type 21 was supplied to NATO forces involved in sensitive missions. 

aviation.

 

 


In the 2015’s, Dodane TYPE 21 chronographs continued to wield their talent in Army light aviation



Around 5000 Type 20 or 21 were manufactured by manufacture Dodane SA from 1954 to 1994 and this under various brands (dodane, airin, airain dod, chronofixe etc )and even without brand.

You will be able to find more information concerning the history of watch on the site


  


During 40 years, the Type 21/20 were equipped with:


 

--Valjoux  GH 222, 17 rubies, 18000 alternation/hour, column-wheel and Spiral of Breguet

--Valjoux VZ 231, 21600 alternation/hour, column-wheel and Spiral of Breguet

--Valjoux VZ 234 ou 235

--Valjoux 72 ou 725 (3 totalisators)





The spare parts ebauches of caliber GH 22, VZ 23 et VZ 72 were supply by Valjoux (Switzerland) and were entirely assembled and regulated in the Montres DODANE factory (Besancon, France).

 




Unfortunately, the few registered files which we have don¹t permit us to identify the first owners of the Type 21. Indeed, it seems that the chronographs were provided by set to the Air Force. Thus we don¹t have information on the final aim of these products because it was impossible to publish a specific register.


  

  

The spare parts ebauches of caliber GH 22, VZ 23 et VZ 72 were supply by Valjoux (Switzerland) and were entirely assembled and regulated in the Montres DODANE factory (Besancon, France).

 

Unfortunately, the few registered files which we have don¹t permit us to identify the first owners of the Type 21. Indeed, it seems that the chronographs were provided by set to the Air Force. Thus we don¹t have information on the final aim of these products because it was impossible to publish a specific register.




On the other hand, we can identify information with the references:

the inscription  "FG" is for  Fin de Garantie (End of Guarantee the 01/02/1983). Thus, the watch would have been produced during the year 1982 ( the watches was guaranty 1 or 2 years, it's depends on the serial),

2. On the bottom of the box, the reference 226463 corresponds for the first 3 figures to the reference of the watch and for the 3 following, the number of the watch. So 226 is the reference of the watch and 463 is the serial number.




Chronographe Type 21 plombé après révision