Lemania 817 “Viggen”, a Swedish Air Force watch

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Military issued watches have always made collectors to look closer… They often have some certain features which appeal a lot…

The fact that there is a military connection of course but there are others as well…

Often military issued becomes like a “limited edition” even if that was not the purpose of the watch.

Like with this Lemania chronograph reference 817 “Viggen” which were made for the Swedish Air Force in the beginning of 1970’s.

According to some sources, 400 watches were made of the Lemania Viggen.

Lemania 817 “Viggen” – Swedish Air Force

The watch was issued to the SAAB J37 Viggen pilots, hence the nick name “Viggen”.

The SAAB J37 Viggen was in service between 1971 – 2005.

SAAB J37 Viggen – Swedish Air Force, picture credit: Wikipedia

Another feature that draw collectors to military watches is that they are strong! Built for for a purpose, ready for a fight.

Lemania 817 “Viggen” – strong and beautiful

But not only strong… Beautiful as well!

Military watches are often “only the essential, no fuss” kind of watches, which to me makes them beautiful!

This is something Lemania already figured out in the 1940’s/1950’s: “inte bara stark…”, “…vacker också” – translated: “not only strong…”, “…beautiful as well”!

This is a scan from a Swedish sales ad from sometime late 1940’s, early 1950’s:

In the army time must be kept – you are dependant of a watch. The Swedish Army therefore choose the the strongest and most reliable watch. Among the most famous ones were chosen – after 3 years test – Lemania!

But Lemania also have other qualities, it is good to have as a friend to trust: it is waterproof, shockproof, antimagnetic, it has a “eternity” – spring!

Yes, there you have three arguments why collectors are appealed by military watches… Limited, strong and beautiful… T.W.O of the arguments Lemania already figured out long time ago…!

Stay tuned, more military watches will come…