Croton Chronograph Aviator Sea Diver
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Croton Chronograph Aviator Sea Diver

Sometimes the name of a vintage watch says it all. A name tells a story, conveys an image that the brand wants to project, or evokes a particular time, place, or quality.

Take for example the Chronograph Aviator Sea Diver. It was Nivada’s foray into the exciting world of chrono-divers—those intriguing hybrids of chronographs and dive watches that were very popular in the 1960s and 1970s—that promised the wearers unparalleled functionality.

Nivada should be a familiar name to vintage watch collectors, as one of the first brands to manufacture automatic watches. The brand embraced other innovations as well, producing waterproof and “rustless” watches that would, or so advertisements boasted, stand up to the rigors of extensive outdoor use.

In producing the Chronograph Aviator Sea Diver, Nivada was merely following fashion, and adding its own spin. After all, an expedition to the South Pole led by Admiral Richard Byrd was outfitted with Nivada Grenchen Antarctics. This was an age of exploration, where no region of the world was left untouched: Everest had been conquered, as had the South Pole, and men were delving to the deepest reaches of the ocean while others set forth for the stars.

And each expedition, each step into the unknown, was accompanied by a watch—ticking steadily, sonorously, reliably. To meet the needs of these explorers, watch brands began rolling out specialized watches to suit every need, from driving, to flying, to diving, and everything in between. The Chronograph Aviator Sea Diver, introduced in 1963, was a watch that Nivada intended to do… well, all of these things.

Throughout its fifteen-year run, the Chronograph Aviator Sea Diver would come in many different iterations, and would be known by various names, including the boastful Chronomaster later in its run. This is one of the earliest, with the trademark broad arrow hands (reminiscent of early Omega Speedmasters) that it would carry until a redesign in the 1970s. The presence of the Croton name on the dial suggests that this was designated for the American market, since a copyright dispute with Movado led to Nivada using the clunky triple-barrel name (Croton Nivada Grenchen) for its products sold in the States.

Despite the name, there's nothing clunky about this particular Croton. It has weathered the storms of decades of daily wear with style and panache, the patina to the luminescent elements of the dial the only testaments to the years its seen. If you want a watch that will be a steadfast companion through every adventure in life, this Croton is it. 

Details

SKU: AS02321

Stainless steel case is approximately 38mm (excluding crown and pushers). Venus Calibre 210 Manually-Wound Chronograph Movement. Circa 1970s.

Overall Condition: Case is in very good condition overall with moderate signs of use and wear in keeping with age. Bezel is in very good condition with some signs of use and wear. Dial is in very good condition, with signs of patina to the luminescent elements. Unsigned crown.

Includes one 20mm black leather strap.

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