Introducing the Sinn 717 Chronograph

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In addition to the 144 S St limited edition that Sinn announced last week, they’ve introduced another chronograph that could easily be characterized as a hardcore pilot’s watch. Sinn refers to their new 717 as “the cockpit wristwatch” as it’s modeled after cockpit clocks designed by Sinn in the 1970s for use by the German air force. These clocks are still in use today, and are distinguished by a feature that’s highly sought after among chronograph aficionados: a central minute counter. Let’s take a closer look at Sinn’s latest aviation inspired chrono.

With the 717, Sinn has aimed to get as close as possible to the design of the Nabo 17 ZM cockpit clock, but in a form factor appropriate for the wrist. Some concessions, of course, would have to be made right off the bat. The cockpit clock features a single pusher at the base of the clock, below 6:00. This has been replaced on the 717 with traditional chronograph pushers on the 3:00 side, but one can see how a pusher near 6:00 would be advantageous to a pilot, enabling him or her to start and stop the chronograph directly without obscuring their view of the dial. Virtually every other key design element of the clock is shared with the 717, however. We still have large Arabic numerals (at 12 and 6 on the watch, 9 and 3 on the clock), a subsidiary dial for running seconds (moved from 12 to 9 for the 717, an accommodation for the SZ01 caliber), and bright orange hands counting off the chronograph hours and seconds, centrally mounted. 

The 717 is made of stainless steel and has been given Sinn’s “Black Hard Coating” and TEGIMENT treatment. The watch is appropriately chunky at 45mm in diameter, and features an interior timing bezel that’s actuated by hand from the outside of the case’s perimeter. Like most modern Sinn tool watches, the 717 is water resistant to 200 meters, low pressure resistant, and makes use of Sinn’s Ar-Dehumidifying Technology to keep the crystal from fogging. 

A central minutes chronograph with similarities to much loved Lemania 5100 based watches is always going to get a second look from us, and while this watch is very specific in its inspiration and aesthetic (and thus might not have a mass appeal), we admire Sinn’s fidelity to the design of the original cockpit clock on which this watch is based. The 717 is available to reserve now through WatchBuys in the United States. The retail price is $4,960. Sinn

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Zach is a native of New Hampshire, and he has been interested in watches since the age of 13, when he walked into Macy’s and bought a gaudy, quartz, two-tone Citizen chronograph with his hard earned Bar Mitzvah money. It was lost in a move years ago, but he continues to hunt for a similar piece on eBay. Zach loves a wide variety of watches, but leans toward classic designs and proportions that have stood the test of time. He is currently obsessed with Grand Seiko.
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