Bathyscaphe Grey dial



Iconeek is proud to introduce here a very fine, rare and collectible Blancpain’s diver wristwatch: The Bathyscaphe. The model is a very fine and attractive large automatic stainless steel diver’s wristwatch with revolving bezel, date and sweep center second. The Blancpain Bathyscape is a historically important example of a dive watch which belongs to an lineage of iconic watches.

In the early 1950’s, the French Combat Diving School needed a wristwatch for the divers to coordinate time on missions.  Captain Robert Maloubier and Lieutenant Claude Riffaud set the specifications:  a large black dial with bold numerals and clear markings for legibility,  an outer rotating bezel with decompression time for security. Introduced in 1953, the Blancpain « Fifty Fathoms » was the manufacturer’s famed dive watch. The model quickly became a model of functionality and reliability for the professional’s diver and gain a cult status among watch’s collectors. With its  large luminous bakelite bezel, gloss dial with large luminous hour markers , large 41 mm. case, two-piece screw down caseback for enhanced waterproof capabilities, the model has showed the road to an entire generation if dive watches.  In 1956, Blancpain introduced the Bathyscaphe model, with a diameter of 34.5mm, a professional watch more in line with a daily wear and daily use. This was followed by a 37mm model, such as the present watch. The word “bathyscaphe” comes from the ancient Greek word “bathys” for deep and  “scaphe” a light bowl-shaped boat. A bathyscaphe is a self-propelled vehicle used for deep-sea dives, capable to diving deeper than a person in gear and even able to go deeper than submarines.

The present model comes with a three-body construction: a water-resistant stainless steel tonneau-shaped case with downturned lugs, screwed crown and case back, revolving black bi-directionnal steel bezel with decompression time. The case back is engraved outside with the case number « 206392 ».  The inside back back is stamped with initials « F.K ». The winding crown has a 6 mm. diameter.Under the hesalite crystal, we find a sand-blasting finish light grey dial with applied steel Baton indexes, outer minute and second division, painted 5-minute luminous dots, aperture for the date at 3, luminous steel Baton hands, sweep center second. The watch is powered by a caliber Rayville R337 (FD), based AS1902 movement, mechanical, self-winding, with gilt finish movement, with shock absorbers, self-compensating flat balance spring, self-compensating flat balance spring, monometallic balance, engraved « FD » next to the balance, The rotor is engraved « Blancpain, Rayville SA » . The present watch comes with a leather strap, the size between the lugs is 18 mm.

Condition: 7.5/10, good overall condition, luminous in the hands redone, case with light scuffing, all consistent with age and wear, thick proportions

Brand: Blancpain

Model: Bathyscaphe Automatic Incabloc

Reference: –

Year: 1960s

Material: stainless steel

Movement no: –

Case no.: 206392

Dial: sand-blasted grey, luminous hands, sweep center second

Movement: cal. R337, gilt finish, mechanical

Bracelet: leather strap

Functions: self-winding, date, sweep center seconds

Water-resistant: no more

Dimensions: 37.30 mm diam. Thickness 10.80 mm.

Accessories: –

Ref. ICO: 99-19-038E