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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 11:13 am 
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The Navitimer dial was a very complicated dial to produce.

It was a process of about 35 steps, and it could go wrong at any time.

In short, the procedure began with a brass dial plate, which was then silver-plated. Next, the numbers and indexes were created using a lithographic process, whereby the black paint was applied to reveal them in negative, with the silver showing through. At last, a coat of clear lacquer was added, which often tended to patinate over time, giving the silver a yellowish hue.

Sometimes, the words “NAVITIMER” and “COSMONAUTE", on the all-black dials, were also created lithographically and sometimes they were printed on afterwards, along with the “BREITLING” name. The “B" logo and/or AOPA winged shield were either printed on or manufactured separately and then attached.

The outer slide rule was also made of silver-plated brass, and then the numbers were applied in black, before a coat of clear lacquer was added.


Kurt B http://www.kurt-b.com


Last edited by Kurt B on Fri Mar 24, 2017 6:30 am, edited 2 times in total.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:13 pm 
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As far as I know, L. G. Breitling s' subcontractor for those fine pitch dials used on Navi's and Chronomat was the company Linder AG .

You don' t speak of the electric soldering of dial feet at the beginning.
"Painting" is not the best word for describing the technology used for printing scales and their numbers ,texts as Navitimer - Geneve - Tswiss made T , etc , and lume too . It is the "ink tranfer marking " technique , : 1 pattern/ color = 1 transfer , possible accuracy around 5 microns .

Basically the pattern is applied by chemical etching on a finely polished SS plate . Ink contained in an ink tank is applied in the pattern using a squeegee .
Then the transfer is made by pressing a silicon pad on the inked pattern , then pressing the silicon pad on the dial to be printed . Extreme accuracy in position and pressure allows a perfect transfer of ink on the dial . It is used for printing scales, numbers, index, brand, lume . 1 pattern/ color = 1 transfer .



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:41 am 
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saabreit wrote:
As far as I know, L. G. Breitling s' subcontractor for those fine pitch dials used on Navi's and Chronomat was the company Linder AG .

You don' t speak of the electric soldering of dial feet at the beginning.
"Painting" is not the best word for describing the technology used for printing scales and their numbers ,texts as Navitimer - Geneve - Tswiss made T , etc , and lume too . It is the "ink tranfer marking " technique , : 1 pattern/ color = 1 transfer , possible accuracy around 5 microns .

Basically the pattern is applied by chemical etching on a finely polished SS plate . Ink contained in an ink tank is applied in the pattern using a squeegee .
Then the transfer is made by pressing a silicon pad on the inked pattern , then pressing the silicon pad on the dial to be printed . Extreme accuracy in position and pressure allows a perfect transfer of ink on the dial . It is used for printing scales, numbers, index, brand, lume . 1 pattern/ color = 1 transfer .


Thanks Phil,

It was never my intend to write about the dial feet.

There's no doubt at all that you have a much deeper insight about this process then I do, and I must admit that I was considering asking you for advice before I wrote it.

I wanted to make it easy understandable, and as little technical as possible, simply write about the process from a superior point of view.

I have uploaded it to my website, and I will appreciate if you with a few words can make any corrections that is needed, without making too many deep explanations, it will then be corrected according to you, will you do that ?

Kurt B http://www.kurt-b.com


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 10:35 am 
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Hello Kurt ,

I was just focusing on the dial feet soldering as a keypoint , moreover with the 50's electrical technology .

I have appreciated your topic which is very clear and synthetic , from my side I cannot refrain from going inside the process.

In the coming days I shall take time to put a Navi dial on the table and try to imagine the process step by step. Then I shall send you some corrections suggestions by mp .



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PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:48 pm 
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Great writeup Kurt and Phil.
I grabbed out my 806 just now, and re-read your information again, and it certainly gives me even more admiration for the complicated dial!


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