Sinn 158 – Bicompax Chronograph
The Sinn 158 is a bicompax chronograph from the watch brand known for delivering innovation, readability and value for money. This latest model was inspired by a former military issue watch used by the Bundeswehr, the German armed forces, during the 1960s.
The German watch company, Sinn, is based in Frankfurt am Main, a city on the River Main and home to the European Central Bank. Sinn, founded in 1961 by Helmut Sinn, initially traded as ‘Helmut Sinn Spezialuhren’ and focussed on making navigation cockpit clocks and pilot chronographs.
In 1994, Lothar Schmidt acquired the company. A Certified Engineer, Schmidt began an aggressive research and development programme. Over the years, the company wholeheartedly embraced innovation, releasing watches in new materials, sometimes incorporating ‘dehumidfying technology’ or a lubrication-free Swiss-lever escapement. One of the most extraordinary ideas was ‘Hydro’, a reflection-free dial that uses a fluid-filled case to aid underwater readability. These are just a few examples of the numerous innovative ideas conceived at Sinn’s headquarters.
This year, the luxury marque has looked to the past and created a limited edition bicompax chronograph, the Sinn 158. This model is inspired by a former military issue watch used by the Bundeswehr, the German armed forces, during the 1960s. The Sinn 158, consistent with the brand’s navigation cockpit clocks, proves eminently legible. When Helmut Sinn established his watch company he believed that he could offer prospective purchasers better value for money. Throughout its history, the brand has always delivered keen prices, coupled with impressive quality; the Sinn 158 clearly upholds this approach.
The brand’s press release
The ‘wristwatch with double stopwatch’ (as it was originally known by the Bundeswehr – the German armed forces – during the 1960s), which was sold only in very limited quantities during the 1980s and early 1990s, is now one of the most sought-after collector’s watches in our company. Company founder Helmut Sinn purchased phased-out inventories of the Bundeswehr (Heuer-Leonidas SA 1550 SG, shortened to Heuer 1550 SG) and sold these after reconditioning with, inter alia, added SINN lettering on the dial under the label ‘Bundeswehr Chronograph for Pilots’ as model 155 Bw. These impressive pilot watches were fitted with a Valjoux 230 hand-wound chronograph movement and a pilot’s bezel.
The design of the traditional 158 pilot chronograph is in keeping with its predecessor: the bead-blasted case with a diameter of 43 mm, the high- domed acrylic glass, a black, easy-to-use pilot’s bezel manufactured from anodised aluminium and a large, equally comfortable winding crown are distinctly reminiscent of our traditional pilot chronographs.
For the movement, we placed our trust in the modern, automatic-calibre SW 510 from the Swiss manufacturer Sellita. This enables a horizontal bicompax division and central stopwatch-second display, true to the historic model, with the seconds display at 9 o’clock and the stopwatch minute display at 3 o’clock. This movement also offers a date display at 6 o’clock. The stopwatch seconds and minutes hands are brilliant red. Optimum readability is also ensured in the dark, as the numerals, hour and minute hands are coated in luminous white. The 158 is resistant to low pressure and can withstand pressures of up to 10 bar.
A total of 500 of these traditional 158 pilot chronographs are being produced, each with an engraved limited-edition marking on the case back.