IWC Calibre 89
Why We Love it
Why We Love it–
The Calibre 89 movement is one of the more important drivetrains to come out of the post war years. Standing firmly as the cornerstone of IWC's in-house workmanship, the Calibre 89 was a superlative creation, as accurate and reliable as it was beautiful.
The Calibre 89 began its life inside the mind of Albert Pellaton, a movement designer that had cut his teeth at Vacheron Constantin and come to Schaffhausen as IWC's Technical Director in 1944. For his first major project, Pellaton penned the Calibre 89, building on the skeleton of the Calibre 83, which had been IWC's workhorse movement since the early 1930s.
While the Calibre 89 is most renowned for driving the Ministry of Defense's Mark XI pilot's watch, it made its way into a wide array of civilian-grade timekeepers, many of which sported the same spartan design language as their military brethren. While we've offered a few of these late 1940s/early 50s gent's watches in steel, this is the first time we've found one in solid 18K gold, a rare expression of an otherwise buttoned-up watch.
But as is often the case in life (and watches), you can't always have it all.
Upon close inspection of this piece, it became obvious to us that the dial of this extraordinary example had been refinished, a fact that usually makes us pass up a watch without many second thoughts. But something about this one bit us. We realized that not everyone who is into vintage is into patina, and while we are often drawn to the wear and character that an unrestored piece has, there are many out there for whom a restoration reclaims the original beauty and class of a vintage watch.
In this instance, the restorer, whoever he or she was, had an extremely skilled hand. The eggshell dial is clean, the printing sharp and very true to the original scripted text, showing the expert touch. The solid gold case, while also refinished, was done so with extreme care, allowing the original elegance of the watch to shine through brilliantly.
Finding New Old Stock vintage watches, or examples that have survived decades of wear is becoming rarer and rarer and an increasing number of enthusiasts are looking for a special piece to whet their developing tastes, and a watch like this one, despite its restored state, is a wonderful way to get a stunning and historically important vintage piece at a fraction of the price it would otherwise be.
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 Calibre 89