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Since its founding by Eugène Meylan in 1914, Glycine has been producing watches at its factory in Bienne, Switzerland. Meylan was an uncompromising watch engineer who strove for perfection and nothing less. He had a profound understanding of both the market demands and the possibilities offered by the technological advances of the time. Today, offering excellent value at reasonable prices is an essential part of Glycine's philosophy. The company's strong foundation, coupled with its emphasis on rugged and reliable products, make Glycine a respected name in Swiss watchmaking today.
Travelling the world is indeed a breathtaking experience, exploring places out of our comfort zones and embracing new surroundings. We simply love it, don’t we? Well, so did Samuel W. Glur. One of the biggest aspects of flying from one country to another is the time differences affected by various time zones. This is exactly what sparked Samuel Glur, a sales representative for the Swiss watch manufacturer Glycine, to set about creating the world’s first ever 24-hour dual time timepiece after an engrossing in-flight conversation with the captain, expressing the details of what a perfect pilot’s watch should be like.
|Glycine Airman 44 Black GMT Ref. GL0056|
This watch was none other than the legendary Glycine Airman, introduced in 1953 featuring a 24-hour dial and a 24-hour rotating bezel for the tracking of an additional time zone, a spectacular piece that later became incredibly well-regarded by both military and commercial pilots. The success of the Airman was a result of the perfectionist mindset of Eugène Meylan, Glycine’s founder, an accomplished watch engineer who never stopped striving for greatness since the founding of Glycine in 1914. This was a key trait that lived on in the company even till this day, bringing exceptional Swiss timepieces illustrious for its incredible value.
Preserving all the best attributes of the original Airman, the Glycine Airman 44 Black GMT Ref. GL0056 is a modern interpretation of the 1953 model. The classic aviator-style case is constructed out of corrosion-resistant 316L stainless steel, measuring with a diameter of 44mm, a lug to lug distance of 51mm and a thickness of approximately 12mm. Although significantly larger than the first Airman, the GL0056 comes in a contemporary size which exhibits a strong and masculine wrist presence of a modern day tool watch while retaining a comfortable fit on the wrist as a result of its pleasantly curved lugs.
|Based on the original 1953 Airman|
With over a hundred years of watchmaking experience, Glycine definitely knows a thing or two about producing fine watch cases. This robust case is completely crafted and hand-finished in Switzerland to a high standard the Swiss is renowned for, displaying a satin brushed finish at the top of the lugs and a highly polished on the side of the case, divided cleanly with a well-defined polished chamfered edge. The Airman comes supplied with a 22mm black calfskin leather strap, pairing well with its black dial.
Staying faithful to the original design of the Airman, the Airman 44 Black GMT houses an engraved steel 24-hour bidirectional rotating bezel for the tracking of a second time zone, a vastly practical feature certainly favored by frequent flyers. Functionality seems to be deeply rooted into the design of this iconic piece, featuring a neat feature hailing from back in the ‘50s - its ingenious locking mechanism. The thumbscrew crown situated at the 4 o’clock position sets the bezel in place, effectively preventing any accidental movements on the bezel. A simple but extremely handy piece of technology, even by today’s standards.
Bezel locking system done by the crown at 4
Further, it features the original 24-hour on the outer-track that flanks the off-white colored lume plots. With a double 24 hours markings from its bezel and dial, this allows one to track up to three different time zones, The bold syringe-style hour markers and handsets filled with a right amount of C1 SuperLuminova for superb glow-in-the-dark.
Used to be powered by vintage movement Felsa Bidyanator automatic movements, the Airman got its upgrade by having a Glycine GL293 movement which is essentially an ETA2893-2/SW330, operating at 28,800 bph (4 Hertz) with hacking and hand winding capabilities. It has 25/26 jewels with a power reserve of 38 hours. With this movement, the Airman follows a more current style time reading by driving the main hour hand around twice per day, having a slim GMT hand doing the 24-hour duty.
The Glycine Airman will always be an eminent name in the world of aviation timepieces as the first ever 24-hour dual time watch. Embodying such a prestigious heritage, the Airman 44 Black GMT Ref. GL0056 is a faithful representation of the original Airman in a modern form factor that offers exceptional value for the price, especially for a Swiss-made offering that packs an impressive mix of solid specifications.