IWC Hinged Lug Dress Watch
Why We Love it
Why We Love it–
Every watch has a history, a hidden lineage that guides it and makes it into the interesting and desirable timepiece we are so often in search of today. Sometimes the lineage is apparent - bloodlines of icons that have resisted change for decades. Other times, a watch is a remnant of an abandoned design process and serves as a window into an alternate future that never came to pass.
Such is the case with this special IWC. And by 'case' - we mean that quite literally!
Powered by a manual winding Calibre 83, this piece features a 35mm steel case with articulating hinged lugs, originally sold to IWC's agent in Slovakia in 1941 at the height of the Second World War. It is a style of case design popularized in the 1920s and 1930s by manufactures such as Longines, Omega, and Tissot - but rarely seen in the post-war years.
Its two-tone black and grey non-luminous dial has taken on a light speckled patina that highlights the gold foil Arabic indices and matching feuille handset, perfectly balancing it with a luxurious post-Art Deco/early Mid Century design language so beautiful you'd almost forget the world was in flames at the time of its construction.
This is a stunning piece that remains quite wearable by today's size sensibilities, and highlights an arm of design-think that has never truly been replicated. With IWC heritage and an amazing journey, all this lovely piece needs is a new wrist to call home.
Perhaps its story isn't quite over after all.
Though the International Watch Company was founded 35 years before Wilbur and Orville Wright’s first flight, the association between IWC and aviation began just as the age of flight dawned: A pocket watch made by the company in the 1890s found its way into the pocket of one Robert Albert Lotter, a pilot in the German Luftwaffe who served with distinction during the First World War.
Two decades later, in 1936, IWC released a watch that set the standard for pilot’s watch design, the Spezialuhr für Flieger, or Special Pilot's Watch. Another would follow in 1940, the Beobachtungs-ühren (“observation watch”), which spawned an entire model line in IWC’s current collection called the Big Pilot. However, despite the Big Pilot’s current popularity, it was the Special Pilot’s Watch that would lay the cornerstone for IWC’s most iconic line: the Mark series of pilot’s watches.
IWC released the Mark XI in 1948 according to specifications set forth by the British Ministry of Defense. These watches had to be legible, compact, and able to withstand exposure to the magnetic fields emitted by instruments in an airplane’s cockpit. The Mark XI, therefore, had a black dial with large luminous Arabic numbers, while its incredibly robust Calibre 89 movement was encased in an iron cage. (Later, in the 1950s and 1960s, IWC would produce myriad dress watches in steel and gold based upon the Calibre 89 movement, which remain relatively plentiful on the vintage market.)
The Mark XI served as the basis for design inspiration for a robust line of pilot’s watches still being produced today – easily identifiable by their clean, uncluttered dials, robust cases, and outstanding quality.
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.
IWC Hinged Lug Dress Watch