Why We Love it
Why We Love it–
Watches with 24-hour displays are common enough, but certain methods for displaying ‘military time’ are more innovative than others.
Take, for example, the Gruen Airflight; A unique dial features cut-out indices with numerals 1-12 visible beneath; as the watch strikes noon, these indices shift to numerals 13-24, indicating the transition to the afternoon/evening. Pretty clever! Well known for its simple dress watches, Gruen was once the largest and most prosperous American watch company; the Airflight is among its more unusual, complicated designs.
This particular Airflight is housed in a 34mm 14K yellow gold case with faceted, stylized lugs, a signed crown, an acrylic crystal, and a smooth bezel. It features a domed, satin silver dial with a rotating 12-24 hour disc beneath the 12 apertures, an outer, black minute track, and a combination ring-dauphine handset.
Dating to the 1950s and powered by the hand-wound Gruen Calibre 510, it comes paired to a brown, two-piece alligator leather strap from I.W. Suisse. With its unique complication, fancy lugs, and excellent size, this vintage stunner from a historically significant American company would make an excellent addition to any budding watch collection.
Watches such as this one are fun and wonderful timepieces, and there's no telling if and when one of these in any condition, let alone excellent condition such as this example, will surface again.
Snap it up before somebody else gets the same idea!
In 1935, Gruen introduced its Curvex wristwatch — designed to comfortably hug the wrist, it became the company’s most notable model and was available for both men and women. World War II saw the company convert entirely to production of fuses, gauges, and other equipment for the U.S. military. By the time the War ended, the U.S. watchmaking market was beginning its inevitable decline, losing market share to Swiss imports. By 1953, the Gruen family sold its interest in the company, which was broken up in 1958.
In 1977, Gruen’s Biel/Bienne facilities were taken over by the firm’s former supplier, J. Aeger, which subsequently became part of Rolex. Today, classic Gruen models such as the Curvex, the Airflight, and the Techni-Quadron provide relatively affordable reminders of a time when American preeminence in industrialized watchmaking was famed throughout the world.
Analog:Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.
Since our pieces are vintage or pre-owned, please expect wear & patina from usage and age. Please read each item description and examine all product images.
We back each Analog:Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.
Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.
Shipping & Returns
Shipping & Returns+
All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states.
Most of our products are on hand and will ship directly from our headquarters in New York City. In some cases, watches will be shipped directly from one of our authorized partners.
We generally ship our products via FedEx, fully insured, within 5 business days of purchase. An adult signature is required for receipt of all packages for insurance purposes. Expedited shipping is available at an additional cost. We are also happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.
Returns must be sent overnight or by priority international delivery, fully insured and paid for by the customer. A restocking fee may apply. Watches must be returned in the same condition as initially shipped.
We welcome international buyers, please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.