NAAFI 1016 Rolex Explorer


Some watches are special not for complication, rarity, or brand, but rather the life they have lived. More often than not, watches that fall into that latter category are steel Rolex tool watches. For a multitude of reasons that encompasses advertising, reputation, and design, people who really do things seem to often align with Wilsdorf.…

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RAF IWC Mark XI 6B/346


Casual, utilitarian, and subtle, IWC’s Mark XI set the template for much of the manufacture’s current design language. IWC proved their metal with the Type X, made for Armed Forces in the Second World War. This led the RAF to place an order for an updated aviator’s equivalent in 1948, and the IWC Mark XI…

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Value Prop: RAF-Issued British Military Omega 6B/542


I am not a pedant, but I must admit that the recent Bond Seamaster rubbed me the wrong way. To many watch collectors, myself included, the MoD broad arrow symbol is a bit sacred. Seeing a commercialized movie prop given that marking by Omega themselves seemed to me uncomfortably close to the watch equivalent of…

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7A28-7120 Seiko RAF-Issued Gen I Chronograph


Highly collected, issued military watches do not necessarily have to come with prohibitive values. With a little careful research, one or two may actually provide value. And when I say one or two, I mean basically just Seiko 7A28 military chronographs. As a rule, I tend to prefer mechanics to to quartz for all the…

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Hamilton 1813 6B RAF-Issued


Although field watch is somewhat ambiguous and meaningless designation, I think this RAF Hamilton could be a perfect working definition. The watch is completely without pretense, function over all other considerations. Mildly undersized for comfort, tritium for legibility, an uncluttered dial, and simple (easily fixable) movement. I long for simplicity in the era of the…

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A Lemania RAF Monopusher Series 3


Aviator’s chronographs are certainly some of the more sought-after pieces in military collecting. The humble complication is a tool with an important purpose in aviation, but still useful outside of it. Lemania, in collaboration with Omega and Tissot, created some of the most robust, widespread military chronographs. Also, arguably, some of the most handsome. There…

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