If there is one thing better than an iconic mid-century dive watch in the eyes of watch enthusiasts, it might just be real military provenance. When a watch gets a special version designed in collaboration with and for use by a military unit, it exalts it to the highest of watch echelons, especially if they are never made publicly available. When that watch happens to also be a mid-century diver, a so-called grail or unicorn is born. Today, we’re excited to say a modern watch with such potential is now available for purchase at the Windup Watch Shop, the Yema Superman French Air Force Limited Edition.
In the 1970’s Yema supplied French Air Force Rescue Divers with their now iconic locking bezel Superman dive watches. As a tribute to that watch and their work together, Yema was selected to create a new watch for the French Air Force. Starting with the Superman Heritage as a base, this new version retains much of the iconic design, but adds in a modern flavor, giving it a sleeker and more mission-ready appearance. Stealth black hands, French-flag roundels and red text on the dial are distinctive, modern elements. Available in either all brushed steel or all black PVD, with either mechanical or quartz movements, there are several versions to select from. All are currently available for preorder at 10% off (ends May 5th), and are expected to ship late Summer.
Yema Superman French Air Force Limited Edition
The automatic version is limited to just 1948 pieces, celebrating Yema’s founding. This is the real collectible version, coming in either 39mm for the purists or 41mm for those who want more wrist presence. Powering the automatic is Yema’s in-house MPB1000 caliber, which features 31-jewels, a quickset date, hacking seconds, a frequency of 28,800 bph and 45 hours of power reserve. Each watch comes mounted to an H-link bracelet and comes with an additional fabric strap made out of black canvas. $999 in steel (39mm or 41mm), $1,199 in black PVD (39mm or 41mm).
Yema Superman French Air Force Quartz
For those who want the style of the above, but a more accessible price tag, Yema has also created a quartz version powered by the reliable Ronda 515 FE movement. Given their high accuracy, durability and shock-resistance, quartz movements have a long history in military watches. Only available in 39mm, and a slimmed down 10.8mm profile, this version is sure to wear extremely well. The Yema Superman French Air Force Quartz is available as an open edition in brushed steel on a strap for $399 or bracelet for $499, or black PVD on a strap for $449 or bracelet for $549.