8 New Glycine Airman Models Introduced on Massdrop

By: Michael Penate

In a surprising turn of events, the seemingly dormant Glycine brand has just announced eight new versions of their beloved Airman No. 1 pilot’s watch on Massdrop. Casual listeners of the podcast are fully aware of my affinity for the Airman No. 1 and my own personal hunt for a 36mm reissue. Until today, there was no confirmation that these models would ever return to the market but thankfully, watch fans now have a chance to scoop one of these up for just $599. What’s even more important to realize is that the brand is finally displaying some initiative to realize the potential for new designs and carefully though-out reissues. Personally, I hope this is a sign that we’ll be seeing much more from Glycine in the future. So, what’s exactly new about the latest Glycine Airman No. 1 release? Let’s get through it quickly, because they’re selling out fast.

For starters, I’ve personally never seen so much variety on offer for this specific model. Essentially, there is a 36mm version and a new 40mm version. Both can be configured with a black or ivory tone dial with a 24-hour readout or a more traditional 12-hour display + GMT. If you were on the fence before, I’m pretty sure you’ll find something to like this time around. Glycine also stated that the 40mm case was introduced as a response to consumer demand—so at least there’s a sign that Glycine is willing to work with their fans for something special.

The 36mm ‘Purist’ model is the closest connection to the Airman’s source material.

Unlike the last reissue, these new Glycine Airman No. 1 models appear to feature a fully brushed stainless steel case. Considering the high polish found on the last model, there’s a good chance this was another area enthusiasts complained about. It should make for a more subtle, instrument-like aesthetic that’s perfect for the Airman. Otherwise, the watch features the same twin-crown design (one for the bidirectional GMT bezel), 10m of water resistance (1 ATM), and a domed acrylic crystal.


 
 

Inside, all versions utilize a base Sellita SW330-1 automatic movement with 42 hours of power reserve and a 28,800 bph operational frequency. Even though it’s branded as the Glycine GL293, the fact remains that it is a very accessible base movement that is easy to maintain. It supports a basic time layout that drives the archetypal Airman handset over a clean dial along with a simple date aperture at 3 o’clock.

The Glycine Airman lineage encompasses one of the most overlooked and underappreciated stories in pilot watch history. Whatever the motivation was for this release, Glycine needs to understand that fans of the brand are eager to watch them actively continue this story. Whether it’s a tasteful reissue or a well-designed contemporary version, there are collectors out there that will very likely be watching closely. Currently, all eight versions of the new Glycine Airman No. 1 are priced at $599 and each one is limited to just 50 pieces.

Glycine


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