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The family of “pilots” from Schaffhausen

The family of "pilots" from Schaffhausen

Let’s start with the fact that the collection of pilots from IWC is Rolex submariner replica currently quite extensive. It is created, among others,

by Models Pilot’s Watch Chronograph, the slightly smaller and less complicated Pilot’s Watch “Mark” (currently numbered XVIII), and – most of all – Big Pilot’s. There is also a division into lines, among others Spitfire, Top Gun, or Le Petit Prince. And although each of these families has certain characteristics, for example, in Top Gun, the IWC company uses ceramics,

and blue dials are used to distinguish the models dedicated to the Little Prince,

the average fan of watches when asked about IWC and models for pilots will indicate only one – Big Pilot.

Unfortunately, for many of them, it was a dream come true, not only because of the price but also because of the size. However, 46 mm is a “piece” of a watch,

which on average wrists may look a bit like a scaled pan, so rather not very favorable. The launch of the 43 mm size will certainly allow it to reach a new group of customers and significantly expand the number of owners of this watch icon. In addition, it will fill the gap between the relatively small 41 mm Mark XVIII and the full-size 46 mm Big Pilot.

Shield – there is strength in simplicity

But there is strength in this simplicity. So far, I have not seen a watch in which the time could be read so quickly. It takes literally a fraction of a second and we already know the current time. This is due to the almost ascetic, but extremely well-thought-out shield and attention to the smallest details. The black matte dial (there is also a sunburst blue option)

is surrounded by a white minute scale and eleven luma-printed hour indices and accompanying Arabic numerals.

At 12 o’clock there is a hallmark of pilot models – an inverted triangle with two dots. In addition, the name of the company hit the dial, the inscription “automatic” and … that’s all. The power reserve indicator and the date display, known from the 46 mm version of the BP,

have been abandoned, which makes the design “cleaner”. Personally, I replica watches the UK wouldn’t mind the date window at the bottom of the dial, and I think it’s just a matter of IWC’s release of such a 43mm Big Pilot version.

There are three centrally mounted pointers to read the time. Two of them,

hour and minute, are in the shape of a sword (the so-called sword shape) and are abundantly filled with luminous substance. In addition,

the edges of the hands are polished, reflecting the light and improving the legibility of the design (see help in reading time faster). The third to the set is the second hand, thanks to which we can be sure that the watch is still working.


It is true that the BP “shrunk”, but the envelope did not lose its recognizable shape. It is made of steel and almost completely brushed. At the same time, this type of decoration is really visible here and gives the whole a very harsh climate. The exception is the narrow bezel and the edges of the ears,

which have been polished to a high gloss. The large, characteristic diamond-shaped crown is also polished,

which in the past made it easier for pilots to change settings during the flight when they were wearing leather gloves due to the low temperatures in the cockpit. The element was embossed with the seal “IWC – Probus Scafusia”.

For those who think that 43 mm is a small size, I would like to inform you that the lug-to-lug, i.e. the distance from the end of one ear to the end of the other,

exceeds 52 mm and the thickness is around 13.6 mm. If you wanted to measure the width of the envelope, it is 43 mm wide, but if you add lace to it, you get more or less 48 mm. This is still a few millimeters smaller than the 46 mm Big Pilot ref. IW501015 (46.2mm x 15.6mm x 57mm) but still a lot.

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