Ollech & Wajs Early Bird
Why We Love it
Why We Love it–
December 1965. Across the United States, families gathered together to watch something that had never before been seen on television. Before their eyes, a spacecraft—Gemini 6A—splashed down in the North Atlantic.
The mission of Gemini 6A coincided with that of Gemini 7 and marked the first time two manned spacecrafts orbited Earth together; furthermore, the satellite that broadcast its reentry—Early Bird—also achieved a first of its own.
Intelstat I, its official name, was created by Hughes Space and Communications Company. It was the first satellite to be launched into geosynchronous orbit. While orbiting 22,300 miles above the equator, Early Bird handled network traffic—telephone, TV, and fax transmissions—between Europe and North America.
Early Bird was operational for four years, and ended its service with the broadcast of the Apollo 11 mission.
The same year that Early Bird was launched, Ollech & Wajs released an Early Bird of its own.
Established in the 1950s by Albert Wajs and Joseph Ollech, Ollech & Wajs specialized in the production of tough, purpose-driven military divers and automatic watches.
The Early Bird, released in 1965 and named after the satellite, was typical of their products—in the best way possible.
Like the Glycine Airman, the Early Bird utilized a 24-hour dial layout. However, the Early Bird’s added benefit of a 24-hour bezel (in classic blue and red, reminiscent of the Rolex GMT Master) meant that it could display two timezones at once. The Early Bird’s robust 38mm case (rated to 200 meters) and legible dial meant that it was an ideal choice for servicemen in Vietnam, many of whom bought Early Birds to replace their general issue watches.
This particular Early Bird has a sharp case, flawless dial, and a bezel that’s retained its vibrant colors - easily the nicest one we've ever had.
Strapped on a Tropic-style rubber strap, it’s the kind of get-up-and-go watch that anyone—whether servicemen or sportsman—could admire.
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.
Ollech & Wajs Early Bird