Classic B-Uhr Pilot
The Dekla Flieger 44 Type B combines a historic B-Uhr design and a manually wound movement with modern in-house engineering and a hardened 6Steel German case.
This specific model has additional features not found on the other Dekla Flieger Type B watches that we carry:
- Automatic winding movement in place of manual winding
- Sapphire crystal back in place of solid case back
- Special FL 23883 engraving on case edge
Dekla is a German watch manufacture based in Stuttgart. They specialize in the the building of watch cases, certain movement parts, watch dials, and the production of hands - all in-house. Their engineering capabilities and hands-on approach allow them to produce watches with a remarkable attention to detail.
While the design dates back more than 80 years, we believe Dekla has set a new standard for Made in Germany Flieger watches.
6Steel Case Hardening
During World War II, a position of great importance within the German Luftwaffe was that of the Beobachter. The Beobachter (spotter) was a pilot designated to perform reconnaissance flights and locate targets of significance using a map and a compass.
To measure distance and to time bombing runs, the Beobachter also needed a legible and easy-to-use wristwatch. Enter the Beobachtungsuhr, or B-Uhr - the observer's watch.
The technical specifications for a B-Uhr watch were determined by the Reich Ministry of Aviation. Its design was simple, but distinct. It often emphasized minutes and seconds by putting those numerals around the outside of the dial with a smaller hour track in the center.
Arguably the most significant element was the presence of a central mounted seconds hand- a departure from the typical pocket watches of that period.
The watch required an oversized crown with deep ridges to allow for winding while wearing thick leather gloves and the leather straps were often extra long to accommodate a pilot's jacket underneath. Lume was a necessity for low-light flights, and the radium paint used on the numerals and hands cemented the design for the original German "B-Uhr" watch.
With modern SuperLuminova now available, Dekla opted for white BGW9 lume on this watch for optimum legibility during day and night.
In keeping with historic pilot's watches, this watch has "FL 23883" engraved into the side of the case. Early German pilot's watches featured the same engraving to certify its worthiness as an official pilot's instrument.
"FL" (Fliegnummer) meant that it was affiliated with aviation equipment. "23” meant that it was a navigational device. "883” confirmed that the watch was tested by the research institute (Deutsche Versuchsanstalt für Luftfahrt).
6Steel is a proprietary case hardening process developed for Dekla. During the process, the 316L stainless steel case is heated in a mixture of carbon gases at low temperature to allow for the diffusion of atoms.
This intricate process is repeated over many hours and results in a watch case with a hardness rating of 1300 Hv, or 6 times the original hardness of normal stainless steel.
The hardened watch case is then put through a vacuum chamber to increase corrosion resistance to sea water and sweat. This multi layering process makes 6Steel an ideal case material for sport and diving watches.
Important features of this watch include:
- 6Steel case hardened to 1300Hv
- Sapphire back to show the movement
- Flame blued hands made in-house
- Black lacquered dial
- Bead blasted diamond crown
- Sapphire crystal with interior AR coating
- White SuperLuminova BGW9 on hands, markers, 10, 20, 30 40, and 50 (glows green)
- Automatic winding SW200-1 calibre
- Water resistant to 100 meters
This watch is fitted with a black leather Dekla strap with white stitching and steel rivets.