Porsche and military are words not often combined. Granted, the VW people’s car does have a tenuous connection to certain German politics but let’s gloss over that very quickly. In the 1980s, Orfina was contracted to provide a watch for the Bundeswehr. They turned to the newly established Porsche Design to style a chronograph dial. The result is a somewhat bizzare fusion of 80s auto-inspired design and militant, utilitarian function.
This was an era of materials experimentation. The newly discovered finishing process of PVD was a revelation of the early 80s. The stealth appearance seems only apt for military use, where a highly-polish steel would be a locating beacon in the dark. This Porsche Design by Orfina chronograph was the result. The reference (7177) was produced for military-commissioned models marked ‘BUND’ on the case back and for this, a civilian market version. Nonetheless, this 7177 features military in text on the dial and appropriate 3H markings. Inside lies the legendary Lemania 5100, a workhorse if ever there was one. This chronograph is a tool watch to the very core, despite its styled exterior.
Early PVD applications are fragile. Keep that in mind. But green PVD is the rarest finish in this model, black PVD and bare metal are more common. This example’s finish is really rather strong all things considered. Additionally, the tritium 3H dial is perfect. You generally see fading or light cracking in portions of these dials yet this 7177 shows no signs of aging. The bracelet is similarly unmarked. This is a strong example of a very cool and purposeful watch. It would hold equal ground with a Sinn EZM or Tudor Pelagos as a dependable tool. But you get the additional bonus of 80s styling by Porsche. What’s not to like?
Find this Military Chrono here from Bulang & Sons for 5900 EUR.