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Pil-Mil, Breitling Forum Moderator
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
BREITLING "Rolled Gold"

Prior to 1994 when the "D" model was introduced, Breitling used the "B" in the model number to indicate "bi-color" or "two-tone". An all stainless steel "Old Navitimer" was a model A13019 while the "two-tone" was model B13019. The subdials are solid "2n" 18k yellow gold but the bezel was actually 316L stainless steel with 20 micron "rolled" 18K gold surface. When the D13019 Old Navitimer was introduced, the bezel became solid 18K gold. On modern Breitling watches in other series lines (Windrider, Professional, Aeromarine}, the "B" prefix in the model number indicates two tone "accents" (rider tabs, pushers, crown) while the "D" prefix indicates solid 18K gold bezel, typically with stainless steel rider tabs. Although the bezels (and rider tabs when applicable) on Breitlings today are solid 18 K gold, the crowns, pushers and gold "link segments" of the two tone bracelets remain 20 micron rolled gold as always. "Rolled" gold is not the same as less expensive and less durable "plated" (electroplated) gold. "Rolled" gold is a laminate of solid 18K gold sheet fused to a base layer (usually brass) which is typically rolled out after lamination, hence the term "rolled". The gold layer is much thicker than the microscopically thin deposit laid down by electroplating, and much more resistant to wear, being alloy gold rather than soft 24K (recent improvements in electroplating have enabled much harder deposits, but they remain extremely thin). Often, the "rolled" gold layer is so thick it can be engraved without exposing the base layer. Needless to say, there is a big difference in appearance between the superficial flash of an electroplated surface and the rich depth of gold filled metal. That said, zealous overpolishing of a rolled gold surface can indeed expose the base metal underneath, and extremely frequent use of chrono pushers and crown can do the same thing. When you send a two tone watch to Breitlng for service and polishing, it is prudent to speak to your service representative and express a concern for the piece in terms of an overpolishing possibility. Sound like experience talking? Yes, it is, and Breitling can "fix" the problem by replacing the parts with new. I recently had my Breitling authorized service center in Houston replace both chrono pushers on my two tone Crosswind for this very problem. Breitling USA overpolished my B13019 Old Navitimer and ended up putting a brand new bezel and caseback on the watch for me a few years ago. Anyway, I hope all this makes sense to you and is helpful. :)
Cheers,
Ron
 

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oldie but goody thread. So the Chronomat D13352 has a Solid 18k bezel and the Bracelet center links are also 18K yg? The next question is how much 18k gold is in the entire watch (bezel and links)?
thats a good question..I recently purchase a D13322 Navitimer (gold bezel) and had acquired a two tone original Breitling bracelet for it I was excited at first but that quickly went away wen I realized that the bracelet gold links were not gold all the way through ...I just need to know if the gold is real lol
 

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thats a good question..I recently purchase a D13322 Navitimer (gold bezel) and had acquired a two tone original Breitling bracelet for it I was excited at first but that quickly went away wen I realized that the bracelet gold links were not gold all the way through ...I just need to know if the gold is real lol
The gold is real. The 18k gold is gold that is Pressed onto the steel that make up the links. The navitimer gold rim I would think is done in the same fashion.
 

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Pil-Mil, Breitling Forum Moderator
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
On all two tone Breitlng PIlot bracelets the gold link segments are 18K rolled gold as described in the original post. The crown and pushers are also rolled 18K gold. The bezel on the "D" Navitimer is solid 18K gold whereas on the "B" Navitimer the bezel is rolled 18K gold. Breitling does make a solid 18K gold Pilot bracelet (the entire bracelet. Clasp, end piece and all link segments) but the individual link segments are hollowed out in the back because of sheer weight. Even so, the bracelet with hollowed out links is remarkably heavy and even uncomfortable to wear IMO. If the links were NOT hollowed out, it would take a lot of muscle power to wear a solid 18K bracelet... :rolleyes: 😉
Regards,
Ron
 
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