Glycine is renowned for their pilots watches. In fact, one of the most popular models Glycine has ever made is known as the Airman. The Airman was 1st seen back in 1953 and was one of the most popular watches to count in 24 hour increments. The history of the Airman has lead to it’s popularity today and with many variations to choose from, but the Base 22 goes back to it’s roots the most.
The series is actually available in 3 different movement variations…The Purist, which counts in only 24 hour increments, has 3 hands and displays 2 time zones. The GMT, which has 4 hands, counts in 12 and 24 hour increments and has 3 time zones. Also, the GA version, which counts in only 24 hour increments, has 4 hands and the has 3 time zones. Specifically, I will be discussing the Purist model of the Base 22 3887-11/66-LB9.
The Purist is definitely the least busy of the 3 variations. I know for myself, reading the watch takes some getting used to as the dial only reads in 24 hour increments, and it is not something I have had in my collection before. For pilots and military, I am sure it would be much more convenient. One of the interesting features of the Glycine Base 22 Purist is that the 12 o’clock indicator is actually at the 12 o’clock position, which is usually not the case. Most other 24 hour counters I have handled have had the 24 at the 12’oclock. On the other 24 hour counters, the date would change at the 12 o’clock position, where the Base 22 changes date at the 6 o’clock position. I personally think because of this, the watch will be easier for me to adapt to.
The Glycine Base 22 Purist has the 24 index dial, and it also has a 24 hour counter bi-directional rotating bezel. This allows the wearer the easily adjust timezones without having to adjust the actual time. The bezel is engraved with the numerals so you can align the appropriate time to the hour hand. There is also a locking crown for the bezel at what would be the 4 o’clock position, reminiscent of the 1st Airman. Once the crown is unlocked, you can easily adjust the smooth gliding bezel and lock it solidly into place. Aside from the cool function, I think the additional crown gives the watch a lot of character.
All 3 variations are base ETA 2893-2 movements, that Glycine decorates and modifies to meet the specific time displays. The movement is displayed through mineral crystal on the case back, but the dial is protected by sapphire crystal with dial anti-reflective coating. The case is 42mm wide and is a combination of brushed and polished finish.
I think Glycine makes a fantastic timepiece for either a pilot or just a collector who loves unique function. The Base 22 is certainly a personal favorite. Retail is very reasonable considering all the watch does at $2,350 and also comes with a free copy of the book “Glycine Airman a 24 Hour Timeline of Flight”. Feel free to check out all the Glycine’s at AZ Fine Time HERE.
Thanks for reading!
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