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As one of the first purpose-built dive watches, the importance of the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms cannot be overstated. Throughout its five decades of production, it has spawned countless competitors… and imitations. Although at first glance this particular watch might seem to be one of the many copycats released in the late 1950s and 1960s, the truth is that it’s anything but.
What we offer here is a scaled-down version called a Bathyscaphe, retailed by Moeris.
Originally produced by Blancpain, the Bathyscaphe was a smaller, simpler timepiece conceptualized alongside the Fifty Fathoms. It was conceived as an entry-level model for the brand, since many of its larger brethren were destined for lives spent underwater on the wrists of professional or military divers. With the same look and feel of the Fifty Fathoms, the Bathyscaphe was the perfect fit for the amateur diver.
Like the Fifty Fathoms, the Bathyscaphe was also licensed and sold under a few different brand names, including Waltham here in the United States. In 1954, Waltham opened a subsidiary in Lausanne, Switzerland, with the intention of producing parts that the brand couldn't readily make or import to the United States. Shortly thereafter, the Bathyscaphe hit the market, running from 1959 before being discontinued in 1967.
Around the same time, Blancpain entered into an agreement with Moeris to retail the Bathyscaphe.
Although Moeris is a less-familiar name than the others in our story, it’s no less steeped in tradition. It was established in 1883 in Saint-Imier, the same village where Heuer was founded. Early on its history, the brand concentrated on the production of high-grade anti-magnetic movements as well as chronographs.
During the Second World War, the brand produced watches for the British military. These contracts allowed Moeris to remain independent, sound in both finances and production, throughout its partnership with Blancpain. Although the brand would be bought by Tissot in 1970, the watches that it produced during its glory days—like this one here—remain.
This particular Bathyscaphe is, like its Waltham contemporary, a 35mm non-date model. With a sharply angled case, rotating Bakelite bezel, and glossy gilt dial with applied luminescent (Radium!) markers, there is little question that it shares the same DNA with the Blancpain Bathyscaphe. Less common than its Waltham and Blancpain-branded contemporaries, it’s the perfect choice for a vintage dive watch enthusiast.
Chrome plated case is approximately 35mm (excluding crown). A. Schild Calibre 1187/94. Circa 1950s.
Overall Condition: Case is in superb condition overall with only the slightest signs of use and wear. Bezel is in very good condition with crisp printing. Dial is in very good condition with some signs of age, including patina to the luminescent elements. Unsigned crown.
Includes one 18mm rubber Tropic style strap.
Analog/Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.
We back each Analog/Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.
All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states. We are happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.
Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options