TNT Navigator 1939: A tribute to the German B-Uhr

Torsten Nagengast Timeline (TNT) Navigator 1939
With the Navigator 1939 Torsten Nagengast Timeline (TNT) shows its love for authentic pilot’s watches.

The TNT Navigator 1939 is a real tribute to the antique B-Uhr (short for Beobachtungsuhr) watches manufactured by several brands during WWII for German pilots. The exclusive 47mm TNT Navigator is available in an extremely limited run of only 20 pieces and with its real-deal looks it’s likely to become a collector’s item.

With the Navigator 1939 Torsten Nagengast Timeline (TNT) shows its love for authentic pilot’s watches. The military oriented Navigator uses a handwound Phenix movement with blued screws manufactured in 1939 in Switzerland. The case back engraving shows the number of the exemplar within the limited edition of just 20 watches. And because the number of Phenix movements is strictly limited the watch is too.

B-Uhr = Big Uhr

The Beobachtungsuhr is a German military watch design originally specified and used in WWII. The name is literally translated as “observation watch” or “observer’s watch.” The design is often also referred to as a B-Uhr, a navigator’s watch, a pilot’s watch or a Flieger. The German Reichs-Luftfahrt-Ministerium (RLM) (Imperial Air Ministry) ordered the B-Uhrs for the Luftwaffe. There were two types: Type A from 1940 with hour numerals from 1 to 11; a triangle with two dots at the 12 o’clock position. Today this design is often referred to as a pilot’s watch. Type B from 1941 and onwards had larger minute numerals from 5 to 55 on the outer track; smaller hour numerals from 1 to 12 on an inner track; arrowhead at the top. This type is today often called the navigator’s watch. The case diameter in both cases (pun intended, ed.) was 55mm. B-Uhr might be short for Beobachtungsuhr it could also be short for ‘Big Uhr’. Everything is big on a B-Uhr. The movement, the crown, the hands, the numerals, and also the long leather strap that fits over a jacket sleeve. In the old days there were five manufacturers of Beobachtungsuhren, each listed with their respective watch movement. A. Lange & Söhne: cal. 48/1, IWC (International Watch Company): cal. 52 SC (central seconds), Laco (Lacher & Co): Durowe cal. D 5, Stowa (Walter Storz): Unitas cal. 2812, Wempe (Chronometerwerke Hamburg): Thommen cal. 31.

Historical highlights

It comes as no surprise that the TNT Navigator 1939 is also a big watch. The steel case might not measure 55mm, a size of 47mm in diameter and a thickness of 12.2mm thick is still very much oversized. Some highlights of the watch are the Pyrex glass (8 Mohs hardness that doesn’t show fingerprints), Luminova indexes and hands, a historical hand-engraved movement decorated with perlage with 40 hours power reserve, 5 ATM water resistance and 2 years warranty.

Go to the Torsten Nagengast Timeline website to find out that the pre-order price of the Navigator is 1.441,80 EUR (excl. 19% EU tax). When the project is released, the price will raise to 2.170,80 EUR (excl. 19% EU tax)

Tags : Pilot WatchesTorsten Nagengast Timeline (TNT)
Lex Stolk

The author Lex Stolk

Lex Stolk studied Journalism in Utrecht and it was during his time as a student he developed a passion for mechanical watches. He has spent his entire career in the publishing industry working for a wide range of publications before entering the watch world professionally seven years ago. His work for several watch publications made it possible for him to combine his love for both watches and magazines.