When it comes to watches that orbit the world of space travel, aviation, CIA lore, and exploration, some of the nerdiest reading you can possibly get into will involve the Bulova Accutron Astronaut. Seeing duty alongside Omega Speedmasters and Rolex GMT Masters, the Bulova Accutron Astronaut was officially supplied to CIA test pilots flying the Lockheed A-12, which saw its first test flight in 1962 as the predecessor to the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird. Today, these watches are often difficult to find in good condition, require very specific servicing needs, and can fetch a high price. But in recent years, Forstner introduced the A-12—a modern reinterpretation of the Accutron Astronaut with vintage dimensions and an incredible bracelet.

Forstner A-12 Specifications

Case Size39mm (diameter) x 39mm (lug-to-lug) x 12.6mm (thickness)
Water Resistance50m
MovementRonda 515-24HR
BraceletForstner Revived Bullet Bracelet, 5 link design
Lug Width18mm


  • Vintage vibes and a design that does a great job paying homage to the original Bulova Accutron Astronaut.
  • Wearable dimensions and a sturdy case that has heft to it.
  • 5-link design Bullet Bracelet with articulating links and several options for sizing.
  • Quartz accuracy and the added functionality of secondary time zone tracking.


  • Absence of a seconds hand makes it difficult to know if the watch is running or not.
  • Clasp might seem large to some.
  • Meager application of lume.
  • Difficult to gauge accuracy or set to reference time without a seconds hand.

While the Forstner A-12 comes so close to nailing everything I’d want out of a daily watch, I found that the lack of a running seconds hand made the wearing experience suboptimal. The bracelet is phenomenal, well-built, and honestly put the OEM bracelet on my Omega Speedmaster to shame. I wonder if Forstner would ever be willing to launch a redesigned version with a running seconds hand. Aside from that, if you’re a fan of watches tied to this era of space travel and don’t mind the things I pointed out, the Forstner A-12 might be a solid pick for you at $475.


Leave a Comment