Category Watches Published 15th September 2017 by Phil Mann
Wear the watch of the official Swifts Aerial Display Team and get your piece of aeronautical history. Each member of the world-renowned Swifts wears this watch during their stunning aerial displays and have released this limited edition to give you the opportunity to join them.
Inspired by the Swifts aerial display team, the elite Russian air force aeronautical acrobatics team. Developed by pilots and celebrating the history of aviation with design and features used by real display team experts.
AVIATOR are a brand inspired by Soviet aviation history, embodying practical and beautifully-designed watches with pilots and other extreme professions in mind.
They are the official time-keeper of the Swifts, which is from where this limited edition AVIATOR Swifts Pilot Chronograph takes its inspiration.
Both the development and manufacturing of this high-quality timepiece are based in Porrentruy, Switzerland, to ensure the watches are built to the rigorous and exacting standards required for pilots.
Every member of the Swifts wears this watch during their demonstrations and training flights as the watch demonstrates perfect performance under physical stresses and the extreme conditions of highly-complex manoeuvres.
This incredible Swiss-made timepiece boasts a superluminova coating on the hands and indices for excellent readability in any visibility conditions and allows perfect operation of the chronograph's frontal push-buttons, when while wearing thick pilots' gloves: a necessity when flying wingtip-to-wingtip at Mach speed. This is the only Swiss-made chronograph watch in the world with front-facing buttons.
It has a sapphire-crystal scratch-resistant lens and is water-resistant up to 100m for added protection.
The AVIATOR brand was founded in the year 2000 to celebrate Russian engineering and achievement. This watch is inspired by the Swifts aerial display team, the Russian answer to the Red Arrows and composed of eight elite Russian air force pilots, performing over 50 displays a year in 28 countries worldwide. And the watches they wear can be as important as any other instrument on board.
Real pilots are involved in the development of each AVIATOR watch and the Swifts Pilot Front-Button Chronograph is no different. They provide ideas and inspiration for functionality, required characteristics, and pilot mind-set and lifestyle tips for the design and development of each piece. Real aviation features are incorporated as are the important characteristics of visibility and readability under high-pressure environments.
The history of flying is intimately related to the invention of the wristwatch: like many fashion innovations, the wristwatch was born out of a necessity from the military.
As aviators experienced difficulties checking their pocket watches (attached by a chain to their waists) to time their performance during flights, they started to look for a solution. This resulted in the development of men's wristwatches, which allowed pilots to keep both hands on the controls.
From then on, wristwatches evolved from robust to sophisticated designs. The brand AVIATOR pays tribute to the history of aviation, developing watches inspired by this amazing story. Each family of watches represents a different era in the development of aviation.
Watches developed to meet the most rigorous demands of the contemporary flying services.
Formed from the most elite pilots of the Russian Air Force (the VVS) to demonstrate perfection in aerial acrobatics and to display the technical ability of the Russian arsenal of planes, the Swifts were formed in the mid-1980s, and spent the next 11 years training for their first display in 1991. Flying as close to one another as 3 metres apart, the Swifts both old and new are masters of the fly-by display, performing crosses, pyramids, stars, loops, barrel rolls in mid air, which require dedication and flawless technique from incredibly skilled pilots.
The Swifts fly the Mikoyan MiG-29 (NATO: "Fulcrum" ) twin-engine, fourth-generation jet fighter aircraft. Originally developed by the Soviet Union during the 1970s as the answer to the American F-15 (Eagle) and F-16 (Falcon), the MiG-29 has exported to more than 30 nations and is also popular in the Indian and Ukranian air forces, which led to the United States purchasing some in 1997 in order to better understand their combat abilities. Key design features include a high-mounted bubble canopy for improved visibility, swept wings and tailplanes and two vertical fins.
Based out of the Kubinka Air Base in Moscow Oblast, Russia, the team roster, composed primarily of Lieutenant Colonels in the Russian Air Force has remained unchanged for the last decade, as admission into the group is rare and hard-won. The Kubinka air force base is located West of Moscow and is well known both in Russia and abroad. For years, it has been known as the Air Force installation used for demonstrating advanced combat aircraft to national and foreign leaders. Nowadays, Kubinka AFB is known as the best aerobatics school where aerobatics teams are stationed.
Awarded medals for their work in highlighting the technical advances in Russian MiG aircraft and for strengthening military co-operation between countries, the Swifts have gone on to perform worldwide at festivals and celebrations across the globe.