Fratello Classics: 5 Watches That Deserve a Re-Edition


Rolex Oyster Chronograph “Jean Claude Killy” 6036Ever since the revival of mechanical wristwatches in the 1990s, brands are eager to re-launch some of their successful models from the past. This makes total sense, since some of the brands out there have an impressive and interesting history behind some of their watches. The most famous ones are, of course, the TAG Heuer Monaco and Carrera, the Omega Seamaster PloProf, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Deep Sea, more or less all Panerai’s models, and so on. But what about some of these historic watches that have not yet merited a re-edition?

Here are five watches that, in my opinion, would be perfect as the basis for a modern re-edition. They range from watches released half a century ago to watches that have been on the market for only two decades. (And of course, as always, please use the comment box below to let us know which old watches you would like to see a watch brand re-issue for modern times.)

1. Longines Chronograph Caliber 13ZN

Longines watches have an extremely interesting history. With its Heritage collection, the brand has managed to re-issue some of its most beautiful vintage watches. Although Longines already has launched the Heritage 1951 chronograph watch and a Telemeter Chronograph, a nice re-edition of its Chronograph Caliber 13ZN would be awesome. This would mean that Longines would have to source and use the old caliber, though. Even though I can imagine a re-edition like that would come with a high price tag, it might still be cheaper than a good-condition, vintage chronograph caliber 13ZN.

Longines Chronograph Caliber 13ZN

2. Ebel 1911 Chronograph Caliber 134/400

Remember Don Johnson in “Miami Vice?” Besides wearing a fake Rolex Day-Date, he also used to wear the Ebel 1911 chronograph in gold and steel. That particular model used an El Primero movement by Zenith. This movement was also known as Ebel caliber 134. As you probably know, Ebel’s focus has been more or less on ladies’ watches in recent times. I think Ebel could regain the respect they deserve from a lot of male watch collectors and watch enthusiasts if they would revamp and re-issue the Ebel 1911 Chronograph — but only if they would outfit it with the Zenith El Primero movement again.

Ebel 1911 Chronograph Caliber 134/400

3. Rolex Oyster Chronograph “Jean Claude Killy” 6036

Of the watches on this list, this is probably the one least likely to receive a re-edition. The Rolex Reference 6036, nicknamed the “Jean Claude Killy,” is an elegant chronograph timepiece with a beautiful triple-date calendar. Wouldn’t it become an instant competitor to a number of classic and elegant calendar watches? For those who love vintage Rolex and have an interest in some of the more classical-looking timepieces, a re-edition of Reference 6036 on a strap might make the perfect “dinner” watch.

Rolex Oyster Chronograph “Jean Claude Killy” 6036

4. Omega Constellation Pie-Pan

Yes, I know… today’s Omega Constellation is based on the total redesign that the brand did in 1982, which it called the Constellation “Manhattan” and, later, the Constellation ’95. However, long before then, in 1952, the Constellation was Omega’s flagship model. In any case, I realize that the Omega DeVille Co-Axial (introduced in 1999) got some of the characteristics of these old ‘pie-pan’-dial Constellation models from the 1950s and 1960s, but I would not mind seeing a modern re-edition of those vintage Constellations as a dress watch on a leather strap.

Omega Constellation Pie-Pan

5. Audemars Piguet Star Wheel

If you think Audemars Piguet, you probably think Royal Oak. Truth be told, that’s one of my favorite watches of all time. However, it seems that the Royal Oak is the only collection (including the Offshore models) that gets attention. Its new Millenary models are very interesting, but a bit snowed under by the force called Royal Oak. One of the non-Royal Oak watches that I would love to see back in the Audemars Piguet collection is the Star Wheel watch. There used to be a round version of the watch in the 1990s and another version in 2000, the brand’s 125th anniversary. In that year, Audemars Piguet (re-)introduced it as a limited edition of 125 pieces and called it the Millenary Star Wheel watch.  If AP would bring this version of the Star Wheel back — with a cool case design, preferably round – it might actually make a nice counterweight to the Royal Oak collection.

Audemars Piguet Star Wheel
2 Responses to “Fratello Classics: 5 Watches That Deserve a Re-Edition”

Show all responses
  1. Giorgio Osti

    With respect to Longines Chronos, I very much doubt that a reedition of the 13 ZN would be cheaper than buying an original, as, due to the present positioning of the brand, within the Swatch group, 13 ZN and theor successors, the 30 CH chronographs, are nowadays the most undervalued classic chronos on the market.
    The 13 ZN was abandoned in favour of the 30 CH which, apparently, was a little less complicated to manufacture. Nonetheless, thes calibers, opposed to the Pateks and Rolexes of tesrvtimes, were Longine’ s own developments and were not based on Vajoux or other based. If these Longines offer also the fly-back functionehich is the case on the watch I was, recently, fortunate enough to acquire, remakes would, by far, exceed the price frame, which the brand, now, is supposed to fill in, nelow Omega ( unfortunately, as I am an old fan of the beautyful watches, the brand would offer, in the fourties and fifties of last century.
    With respect to Ebel: I doubt that the el primero movement would still be available for a non- Zenith watch. Unless the Enel brand still belongs to LVM H.
    Best,
    Giorgio

    Reply
  2. I have to agree with the author’s choices, but it seems difficult to stop at five.

    In addition to the pie-pan Constellation, the C-type Constellation that followed it is a sporty yet elegant watch. Of course, I would also love to see a re-issue of the Omega dynamic!

    Reply
Leave a Reply