The original Bulova Avigation Hack A-11 watch was issued to U.S. soldiers during WWII and was one of the first watches of its kind. Its dial was highly legible with luminescent numerals, hands and markers while its large crown and solid one or two-piece straps were ideal for constant wear.
The watch and many others like it were known as ‘hacking’ watches because soldiers could pull out the crown and stop, or ‘hack’, the seconds hand at the 12 o’clock position to synchronize their watches. With a now-small 32mm case, the original A-11 was specially made for navigation.
The new model retains the original’s clean dial and distinctive coin edge case while expanding its color options and, literally, its case size (now at 37mm). Bulova is purposefully differentiating the new Avigation A-11 Hack watch from the many other military watches in its collection with a more contemporary color combination, namely a blue dial with red accents on a brown NATO strap.
Bulova stamps the back of the new watch with the same Military Spec information seen on the original A-11. Inside the new Avigation Hack A-11 you’ll find a reliable automatic movement (Miyota 82S0 3-hand movement with hack feature) boasting a 42-hour power reserve. Price: $450.
Bulova has partnered with online gaming community and marketplace D-Cave to develop two new versions of Bulova’s digital-display Computron LED watch reboot.
Both new Computron D-Cave models include new visual concepts inspired by the gaming world, and one Special Edition features an exhibition mineral crystal case top that showcases a gaming circuit board.
The Computron is a futuristic trapezoidal-cased watch that Bulova originally debuted in the late 1970s and re-launched in 2019 with steel and gold-colored cases and blue or red LED displays.
These new models feature a sleek black IP stainless steel case with a mineral crystal that shields the LED’s luminous green accents. The front-facing green LED displays digital hours and minutes with a dual time function. Bulova attaches a black silicone strap with three-piece buckle to the case.
The special edition of the watch retains the black IP case but adds a gaming circuit board to the top and a green acid-etched case-side decoration inspired by computer towers. This special edition watch will be made available to those who also purchase an NFT via D-Cave.
Bulova will present the watch in a custom box with D-Cave design elements featuring a QR Code that will guide users to the dedicated Bulova-D-Cave space on Decentraland.
“For over 145 years, Bulova has been about innovating and exploring new worlds,” says Jeffrey Cohen, President of Citizen Watch America. “Through our partnership with D-Cave and the iconic Computron, Bulova interfaces with the metaverse and the gaming universe, allowing us to reach new consumers and opportunities.”
Bulova has a long history with NASA and has been involved in multiple space missions. The watchmaker specifically celebrates Apollo 15 because on August 2, 1971, Apollo 15’s mission commander David Scott made lunar history while wearing a Bulova chronograph. You may recall that the original watch sold for nearly $1.6 million at auction in 2015.
Bulova notes that its partnership with the U.S. space mission ran from the mid-1950s until the 1970s. To learn more about Bulova’s links to U.S. space exploration, visit the digital Bulova Museum.
Bulova’s celebratory release replicates the style and dial layout of Scott’s watch from Apollo 15, with technical updates. The new model is cased in a new and larger 45mm titanium case, and includes new gold-tone accents and pushers.
Inside, Bulova places proprietary high frequency, high precision quartz movement, which boasts a frequency of 262 kHz, eight times the frequency of traditional quartz watches. This is the movement, with its apparently ‘sweeping’ seconds hand, that Bulova inserts into its Precisionist collection, which Bulova debuted in 2010.
The watch’s retro-styled dial includes the original Bulova logo and dial layout with a sapphire crystal. A sharp-looking grey leather NATO strap holds it to the wearer’s wrist, and the watch is water resistant to fifty meters. On the screw-down case back you’ll find an engraved image depicting a moon walk and the watch’s limited edition number. Bulova will make 5,000 50th Anniversary Lunar Pilot watches and will package each with a storybook and commemorative NASA coin. Price: $995.
In recent months my inbox has been a repository of reminders about classic American watch design. And while plenty of digital missives arrive from the encouragingly high number of youthful watch designers active across the United States these days, I’ve been especially impressed by the retro-design regimen currently underway at Accutron.
Accutron’s Legacy collection transports us back decades with its studied re-introduction of dials and cases that truly met, and in many ways help define, the Swinging Sixties and the Space Age. The collection’s aerodynamic curves, electrical references and rampant asymmetry are a treat to both the eyes and the wrist. And by retaining vintage sizes Accutron enhances the nostalgia, setting the imaginative dials within their proper proportions.
A stylish reminder of Accutron style from this era can be found in the Accutron Legacy Date and Day Q, a Legacy release that echoes the original 1971 streamlined ‘flying saucer’ 34.5mm oval case design and 4 o’clock crown.
Updated Bulova Classics
Bulova also understands the value its design archives. The Bulova Oceanographer ‘Devil Diver’, its Computron and Bulova’s array of military watches are prime examples.
Just recently Bulova notes that it is expanding its array of Bulova Classic designs with new versions of the 1948 Sutton and the 1960s Aerojet.
Both these re-releases are automatic models powered by Miyota movements. The new Sutton automatic ($395) recalls Bulova’s President watch, circa 1948, though the new model offers an updated 33mm by 49mm case size and a contemporary dial aperture to expose the movement. Bulova is offering the watch with a white dial on a brown alligator grain leather strap or with a black dial on a black alligator grain leather strap.
My favorite among the recent debuts is the new Aerojet, reprising a Bulova design from the 1960s. Bulova unveils two new 41mm steel-cased versions featuring the Aerojet’s signature cross hair dial with a bi-color Day/Night indicator and vintage Aerojet logo.
These come with colorful sunray blue or brown dials with a degrade effect. The blue model is available on a black distressed leather strap for $450 and the brown on a multilink bracelet for $495.
I am the proud owner of a 1965 Accutron Spaceview with its humming tuning fork. Love to hold that baby up to my ear and listen to that tuning fork just hum its little heart out!
Obtaining this watch was no easy task. Thank goodness for the expertise of John at Budget Accutron in Waterford, Michigan. The watch looks like new!
So, one year ago, when I first read about Accutron’s intention to possibly release their electrostatic Spaceview 2020, I dreamed about possibly having one on my wrist.
And then the announcement came and Accutron’s 60th Anniversary electrostatic Spaceview was due for release at the end of October 2020.
I began to investigate the possibility of working out a trade with for one by saying goodbye to some of personal favorite timepieces. All served me well over the years and brought me much happiness.
I found my way to Exquisite Timepieces in Florida, where Evan Richardson is the proprietor. Communications went back and forth concerning three watches that I hoped I could put toward a trade for this technological marvel.
So, with my Meistersinger Monograph, my Tissot Squelette and my Ball Watch Trainmaster Power Glow and the balance in U.S. currency, I was able to order my newest edition!
What makes this all so sweet is that I own an original Accutron Spaceview. By 1962 the Accutron wristwatch was adopted by NASA’s Mercury 7 astronauts, United States Air Force and civilian test pilots, and even by CIA pilots flying the A12 reconnaissance aircraft.
And now I have the two side by side. What is old, using a technology that was state of the art back in the 1960s has again truly become new and revolutionary, once again, in 2020.