Breitling Articles, FAQs and Resources

General Info on Spotting Fakes

Spotting Fakes

This is going to be just one of several articles on spotting Breitling replicas. With the multitude of fake Breitling watches on the internet, its important to know what a real one looks and feels like.

I'm going to focus on newer Breitlings as the older Breitlings tend to be more varied and have more inconsistencies unlike the newer ones. With that, I'll go over some of the easiest ways to to arm yourself so you can spot the differences in fake and genuine Breitlings.

  1. There is only ONE open-heart Breitling. That is the Breitling for Bentley Mulliner Tourbillon. Chances are if someone is selling you one with a visible escapement, its fake.
  2. Subdials with days of the week or months. Breitling does not put the days of the week or month on the subdials, they put the totalizers for the chronograph there. Except in the case of perpetual and annual calendar models where they subdials have the Chronograph AND Day/Date/Month indicators.
  3. Quartz models are limited. This used to be a dead giveaway, but newer replicas are mostly all automatic. However, there are still cheap quartz replicas out there. Not many of the all-analog Breitlings have quartz movements, aside from the Colt and most ladies models. Keep that in mind.
  4. Bracelets are always marked/stamped. Breitlings always etches or stamps the date of birth and model numbers on their bracelets. If the bracelet doesn't have a stamp or mark on it, its probably a replica.
  5. Bracelets usually have screw construction. Some of the better fakes also have screw construction, but the cheap ones do not! The older Fighter bracelets have pin construction.
  6. Straps are always model numbered. Breitling straps always have the length and width marked on the strap as well as the model number. Additionally, make sure that the marking "Cuir Veritable" or "Croco Veritable" is correct. Many fake Crocodile straps are incorrectly labelled "Cuir Veritable".
  7. Anti-glare coating. Look at the crystal as it reflects light.. if the light reflected is not bluish/purple, chances are it is fake.
  8. Spelling mistakes, especially on the caseback. Many of the even well-made replicas have spelling mistakes on the caseback markings. They are in Swiss-French, so it is sometimes harder to notice these mistakes.
  9. Incorrect crowns or pushers. Most fakes, even the well-made ones, get the crowns and pushers wrong. Familiarize yourself with a real Breitling and these differences will be easy to spot..
  10. Poorly printed/stamped logos. Many fakes will have the applied or printed logos done very poorly. The proportions are incorrect and the overall impression usually is that logo is 'off'.
  11. Low-quality printing. I've never seen a fake do this right yet. When examining a dial under a loupe, you will notice that fakes have poor fuzzy lettering. The crispness that you see with a real Breitling just is not there.
  12. Incorrect spacing of subdials. A common mistake on fake Breitlings (prior to the creation of the fake Valjoux 7750) is the incorrect subdial spacing. Typically they were spaced too closely, but new fakes are tending to look more like the real thing.