Pete Brothers Altimeter Model 88

1:21 p.m. on April 13, 2010 (EDT)
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3,956 forum posts

Hi Guys,

I'm looking to add another altimeter to my list of gear.

Has anyone had experience with Pete Bros. or this model in particular?

The model 88 is priced at $195.00 and reads in 20' increments.

The model 80 is priced at $80.00 but reads in 50' increments.

I want a high quality, rugged altimeter. I don't feel I need all the bells & whistles offered on the digital models. I would rather have the ability to read in 20' increments than spend that money for something with a lot of features I don't generally use. Am I wrong?

Also are the 20' increments going to be accurate assuming I do the proper calibration, etc?

I'm open to advise or comments / questions.



This handsomely-styled precision analog altimeter/barometer is made in Germany according to our exclusive design. Its 16-jewel, temperature compensated movement is calibrated to 18,000 feet in six revolutions of the indicator needle. A small counter dial keeps track of needle revolutions, making it easy to read any altitude to within 20 feet. The counter dial window is located on the lower half of the dial face to give an unobstructed view of the entire sea-level pressure scale. Unusually rugged for such a responsive instrument, the Model 88 combines exceptional performance, practicality and value for the serious outdoor person.

Measures altitude from 0 to 18,000 ft. in six revolutions.

Calibrated in 20-ft increments.

Accurate to within 40 feet over entire range.

Measures sea level pressure from 28.7 to 31.3 inches.

Barometric pressure calibrated in 0.05 inHg increments.

16 jewel shock-resistant temperature-compensated movement. Housed in rugged metal case. Size: 2 3/4 x 2 5/8 x 7/8 inches Weight: 3.5 oz.

2:27 p.m. on April 13, 2010 (EDT)
Bill S
4,537 reviewer rep
6,037 forum posts

Peet makes excellent instruments. I have one of their digital altimeters, though a fairly old model, and don't use it much these days.

I have a strong preference, though, for the Thommen Classic over the Peet. I ended up with 2 of the Thommens, one I bought a number of years ago (a 27000 foot model), and the other an 8000 meter model given to me by a friend who decided he had no further need of it). Before electronic instruments, the Thommen was THE choice of high altitude mountaineers (sort of like Rolex watches, but a lot cheaper). It has a bit greater range than the Peet model you are asking about, but fairly similar specs. There are models with a lower altitude range (15,000 ft if I recall and corresponding metric). I have been careful, or as careful as one can be when carrying such an instrument in the backcountry and on expeditions. This one is 18 jewels, though I am told that beyond 15, it doesn't make much difference.

On the other hand, I mostly use electronic altimeters these days, packaged with other instruments, so the entire package is pretty compact and multifunctional. I don't have to use all the features (and usually don't). But it is nice to have a single device that does altitude/barometer and ascent/descent, along with watch functions (time of day, alarm, and chronograph) in a 2 or 3 ounce package, small enough and light enough to carry two different ones as backups.

However, there is nothing so neat as an analog altimeter - no batteries required!

9:43 p.m. on April 13, 2010 (EDT)
1,753 reviewer rep
3,956 forum posts

Thanks Bill,

The Thommen is on the list, but it is a bit pricey huh?

I would prefer an analog altimeter, that way my map, compass, altimeter set would be simplistic, and my GPSR could fill the widget requirement.

1:09 p.m. on April 14, 2010 (EDT)
Bill S
4,537 reviewer rep
6,037 forum posts

The Thommen may be pricey, but you get what you pay for. It has been proven in the field for many decades.

July 5, 2020
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