Alain Delamuraz of Blancpain/white bread

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Alain Delamuraz of Blancpain/white bread

Postby koimaster » September 5th 2017, 11:16am

Revolution speak to Alain Delamuraz of Blancpain, who tells us that the brand’s determined efforts to save the oceans — which include being the main sponsor of the 2017 World Ocean Summit in Bali — are not just talk-shop but actions that have tangible results.

Tell me about the story of Blancpain’s relationship with the sea?

The story of Blancpain’s dive watches began more than 60 years ago in 1953. Our president then, Mr. Jean-Jacques Fiechter, who was a diver himself, was embarking on a new era of diving — where humans could dive without coming up to the surface for air for a long time.

During that period of time, one was not able to buy diving equipment as one can today at a regular diving shop. When you wanted to dive, you would have to be a member of a diving club. From there, you could borrow the equipment you needed: mask, dive‑suit, fins, and so on. Among the things you would receive as well, were three technical instruments upon which your life would depend: a depth gauge, an underwater compass, and a diving watch. The last was especially crucial because you would use it to gauge the amount of oxygen you’d consumed and had left.

Such dive watches then were not sold in boutiques, but instead, rented out in the diving clubs only. However, slowly, people started wearing them out of water and that was when we started to sell the watches commercially. Fundamentally, the DNA of the watches then and today are still the same. These are ultimately still dive watches and the basic elements are the same.

Firstly, you must be able to read the timespan of your dive without having to adjust the crown, for humidity is a concern; which is why we have a unidirectional bezel. Then, you will need a running seconds hand that is working all the time, to indicate that the watch is running. Also, it must be ensured that the watch is tightly sealed to keep water out. Your life is connected to your watch when you dive and therefore these critical features must work reliably.

At Baselworld 2017, we introduced a new watch with yet another life-saving safety indication on the dial, the Blancpain Tribute to Fifty Fathoms Mil-Spec. This is a reissue of the original Fifty Fathoms Mil-Spec 1 watch from 1957, which had a circular indicator on the dial at six o’clock that would change color should water seep into the mechanism. ... blancpain/


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