The Hangar Italy SF-260 EA pilot’s watch is a tribute to an aircraft, the military trainer designed in the early 1960s by Stelio Frati and manufactured by SIAI Marchetti, and later by Aermacchi. It is still used as a trainer, in particular by the 70th Stormo (Squadron) based in Latina, near Rome, where pilots destined for the Italian Air Force learn to fly. The EA is the latest version, and in June 2019, the 30 aircraft of this type based at Latina reached a total of 50,000 hours of flight. The company Hangar Italy, based in Sesto Calende (province of Varese), in the heartland of Italy’s aviation history and also the location of SIAI Marchetti, decided to celebrate this landmark with a 100-piece limited-edition pilot’s watch.
Pure pilot’s watch dial
The aircraft appears in front view on the dial, and in side view on the caseback. The 43 mm stainless steel case has a brushed “antique nickel” finish, and the narrow bezel gives the maximum space possible to the matt black dial which has a differentiated surface, smooth on the outer ring with the minutes scale, and with an acid-treated texture in the central part. The large, lume-coated numerals and the sword-shaped hands are pure pilot’s. The date window is positioned so as not to disturb the other dial indications. The only other element is the logo for “50,000 hours of flight” with the plane in plan view leaving a trail in the colours of the Italian flag. The same colours appear in the stitching on the natural leather strap.
SF-260 EA pilot’s watch technical specifications
The screw-down crown is large (7 mm) as befits a pilot’s watch. The case has a water resistance of 10 bar, 100 metres, so it’s perfect as an all-weather timepiece. The caseback is engraved with a view of the aircraft, the 50,000 hours logo, and the limited edition number: the name of the owner can also be added. The SF-260 EA pilot’s watch is powered by the self-winding Miyota 8215, which runs at 21,600 vibrations per hour (3 Hertz) and has a power reserve of 42 hours. Designed in 1977 and made by the Japanese company that is now part of the Citizen group, it is a classic automatic movement used by many watchmakers. It doesn’t have the stop-second function.
Price and personalisation
Without doubt the Hangar Italy SF-260 EA is an iconic pilot’s watch whose design was inspired by cockpit instrumentation, with the additional interest provided by its identification with a much-loved training aircraft. The watch costs €299, and you can order it direct on the Hangar Italy website, choosing your preferred number from those still available and specifying the name for personalisation on the caseback.
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Is this watch still available?
Van de Velde L.