The French watchmaker Cartier developed for the Brazilian aviation pioneer Alberto Santos Dumont in 1906 with the Cartier Santos, the first special Clock for pilots, which was worn on the wrist.
The idea was further developed by other manufacturers, so that were flying watches, which met the needs of the former pilot.
At this time, watches were already known. Naval and artillery officers were the first men wrist watches to measure time used. The advent of aviation watches contributed to the wider acceptance of watches for men.
Pilot Watches possessed accurate mechanical watch movements and were unadorned, robust and shockproof construction. Many models have extra long straps in order to be able to carry on the flight jacket. The dial was rich in contrast -
usually white on black background - estimates, often next to the hour ring a separate minute track was available. Often, instead of the number twelve is a marked triangle was printed on. Numerals, and hands were usually triangular
with self-luminous, radio-doped fluorescent colors coated to allow for visibility at night. The crown was specially designed great and good grip, so that the clock could be adjusted and raised, even with gloves. The clocks
often have a tachometer, which facilitates the calculation of the velocity.
Further developments were equipped with rotary dials for the celestial navigation - in this development was Charles Lindbergh involved. For use in military aviation were features such as anti-magnetism and the
Resistance to extreme climatic and kinetic stress is essential. This proved to be purely mechanical watch movements to the rise of quartz watches for a long time as superior.
took over after the First World War in the aircraft installed on-board clocks the tasks of the pilot's watches, the only system or as a substitute for the unique challenges of individual members of the most multi-member crew in the then imported
more modern aircraft types were needed.