The Fortis Flieger F-43 Bicompax Fratello Capsule Edition is the publication’s latest collaborationZach Blass
- The new Fortis Flieger F-43 Bicompax Fratello Capsule Edition is livened up with an umber brown dial.
- The recycled stainless steel case is rather large, keeping in tradition with pilot’s watches – 43mm (D) x 15mm (T) x 55mm (LTL).
- It’s a non-limited special edition that will be available permanently from the Fratello Shop.
If you were to take a look at Fergus’ list of ten of the best flieger watches, 90% of them have black dials. This is not to say there are no colourful flieger watches, but, largely speaking, they are quite somber. This is because fliegers harken back to military pilot’s watches that prioritise function and legibility over fun -makes sense for wartime designs. Herein lies the benefit of collaboration watches. Teaming up with our friends over at Fratello Watches, Fortis have just debuted a flieger with a bit more flair – the Fratello x Fortis Flieger F-43 Bicompax Capsule Edition.
While a bit more fun in aesthetic, the watch remains a functional and robust flieger chronograph with a large recycled stainless steel case that is 43mm in diameter, 15mm thick, and 55mm lug-to-lug – certainly not the best dimensions for a smaller wrist. Its finish is very much in line with a tooltastic aesthetic, utilising a brushed finish throughout. Yes, the watch is rather large, but with it comes robustness, with 200 metres of water-resistance, and a larger and more legible dial. Fliegers are notorious for their larger dimensions – prioritising function over fashion. Speaking of function, the sloped conical bi-directional bezel, which rotates in 24 clicks, is engraved with a 12-hour scale that allows you to track a second time zone. Returning to the notion of fashion, the umber brown dial livens up the F-43 Bicompax in a handsome way.
The raised outer ring of the dial offers a white-on-black outer minutes track, with the central medallion executed with a vertically brushed finish. The result is a sort of wooden dashboard effect that I personally find quite dapper. The counters at 3 and 9 o’clock represent a 30-minute scale and running seconds, and match the outer minutes track in colour, but offer a contrasting concentric texture. A Dutch aesthetic quirk, if you will, is the fact that you have orange accents sprinkled across the dial. The tip of the central chronograph seconds hand and the border of the elapsed minutes counter are distinguished with orange accents – highlighting the complication. Finally, the Bi-Compax text and minute sync line at the top of the dial round off the orange touches.
Fortis and Fratello have aptly paired this watch with an aquatic-friendly hybrid FKM rubber and fabric strap that can take full advantage of the Flieger F-43 Bicompax Fratello Capsule Edition’s depth rating. For those who insist on playing around with the straps on their watches, be warned the lug width is 21mm – although that odd measurement is less problematic than it once was from an aftermarket standpoint.
Inside, you have the Fortis UW-51 Performance chronograph movement, based on the Sellita SW510, which offers 48 hours of power reserve. It is hidden beneath a solid caseback, comparatively engraved with the Fratello ‘F’ logo.
Fratello x Fortis Flieger F-43 Bicompax Capsule Edition pricing and availability
The Fratello × Fortis Flieger F-43 Bicompax Umber Brown Capsule Edition will be permanently available in the Fratello shop. There are 25 pieces of the Fratello × Fortis Flieger F-43 Bicompax Umber Brown Capsule Edition that are available to ship immediately, with another 25 further pieces available within 1 to 2 weeks. Further batches of 50 watches will take around 6 months to build and ship. Price: €2,980 (excl. VAT)
|Model||Flieger F-43 Bicompax Fratello Capsule Edition|
|Case Dimensions||43mm (D) x 15mm (T) x 55mm (LTL)|
|Case Material||Stainless steel|
|Water Resistance||200 metres, screw-down crown|
|Crystal(s)||Sapphire with double-sided AR coating|
|Dial||Umber brown, vertically brushed|
|Strap||Brown FKM rubber and fabric, steel pin buckle|
|Movement||Fortis UW-51 Performance, Sellita SW510 base, automatic|
|Power Reserve||48 hours|
|Functions||Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph|
|Availability||Non-limited special edition, batch production|
|Price||€2,980 (excl. VAT)|