Avi-8 have went ahead and released two new aviation themed watches, one being the “1960” , and the other being the “1980”. These watches are automatic, affordable, and decently designed in my opinion. Each one of these watches pays tribute to an era of Aviation History as well.
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Case and Dial
The 1960's case is rather similar or identical to the 1980's case. It is comprised of a very nicely brushed 316L Stainless Steel which came out superb for this price bracket in my eyes. The diameter comes in at 43MM with a case thickness of around 15MM. These dimensions definitely allow for some wrist presence if you have a smaller wrist. The small pull and push crown which is signed with the bullseye AVI8 logo allows 5 ATM or 50 meters of water resistance. With that being said, it is okay to wash your hands or perhaps even drop your watch in the pool, and you should be okay. Our lug measurement is pretty standard at 22MM and certainly does not seem out of place for this 43MM case. A nice thing that AVI8 did was utilize a screw down caseback with an exhibition window so we can get a glimpse of the movement at work. Heading to the dial, it is very 1960's themed, hence the name 1960s..Large numerals allow for easy legibility at a quick glance, as well as the silver brushed small seconds between 4 and 5:00. A slight black texture can be seen if you look close through the Sapphire crystal, but is not noticeable at first glance on this color iteration. There is some SuperLuminova on the indices and hands which is okay, not the greatest, but definitely good enough to read the time at night. Lastly, our quickset date is at 3:00, and it matches the dial color, which is a really nice touch and shows they put forth a bit more effort into designing this timepiece.
The movement shown through the screw down caseback is the trusty Miyota 8218 automatic Japanese movement. This movement is produced by Citizen and are usually quite accurate ( within +10 a day ) from my experiences. The movement also holds a power reserve of around 42 hours and contains 21 jewels. If you look closer, AVI8 has skeletonized the rotor, and added the logo at the center portion of the rotor which looks really cool, and adds some flavor to this movement. Standard striping is also located on the center bridge of the movement, which I always liked from the Miyota 8218's.
The genuine leather tan strap is 22MM and tapers down a bit towards the end. It is the same type of strap used on most of their models, except the outer portion seems a bit softer on this model, and flexible. The standard AVI8 brushed signed buckle is sized proportionately to the strap which I found a joy.
Case and Dial
The AVI8 1980 represents a different bolder ERA of pilot watches and general style. The case itself is absolutely identical besides a 3MM thickness increase to 18MM compared to the 1960s, but the dial is WAY different. There is a lot going on with this blue textured dial - from the large applied 0 and 6 , to the sub seconds register which is quite neat as it is meant to resemble an instrument in an airplane. If you look a bit closer, they smoked out the top portion of the case so we can get a glimpse of the automatic movement through the front of the dial. Our date window stays the same as the 1960s with a black background and white numerals. The broad sword hands seem to pop a bit more over the blue, and are filled with SuperLuminova ( Lume Shot in Video ). Overall, it is a rather unique dial, and I do understand it won't be to every enthusiasts tastes, but I think it came out okay.
The movement being used on the 1980 is the same exact movement as the 1960, the miyota 8218. It features hand winding, no hacking, 21 jewels, 42 hour power reserve, and relative decent accuracy within 10 seconds a day on my two examples. I do like the font they implicated on the back of the case and feel it really flows with the whole theme they have going here.
Now, this new blue Cordura strap is 22MM and tapers down to 20MM. It is rather soft to the touch but will need a couple wears to be fully broken in. On the backside we get a nice black genuine leather with embossing and branding as well. The buckle is standard, brushed and signed "AVI-8" neatly.
Final Conclusion on Both Pieces
These two new Centenary Flyboy editions are certainly appealing to the eye, and my wallet at under $300 USD. They feature some unique design elements we do not see in any other brands on the market today, and I take that as a win. They do create their own designs and really plan out their releases accordingly. I did like the previous AVI8 1940's watch as well, which you can take a look at back in my archives. If you are looking for a aviation timepiece out of the normal Flieger style, I think you will be quite content with a new 1960s or 1980s watch. I will leave a special discount code which you can use below on any AVI8 timepiece to save 20 percent. Also the Pre-Order link will be posted below as well for a special discount on these two new models when they release. Thanks for taking the time to read and I hope you enjoyed!
The main component of a mechanical movement is the mainspring, a spring that gradually unwinds and transmits energy. A mechanical watch will keep accurate time despite requiring winding up if it's manual. ... Inside an automatic watch sits a small weighted rotor that has to oscillate in order to wind the mainspring.