These limited-edition watches preserve vital history under each dial and contribute to CAF’s mission to fully restore the airplane to its original 1944 configuration, according to officials.
The CAF acquired the historic C-47 and set out to restore it to flight-ready condition. In the process, damaged portions of the aluminum exterior had to be removed and replaced.
Rather than discard this sentimental material, the CAF approached Tockr, a Texas-based watch brand known for its aviation watches, including an existing C-47 watch collection.
Together with CAF, Tockr engaged watch designer Emmanuel Gueit to design a new limited-edition watch that would incorporate the salvaged plane material as a focal point: The Tockr D-Day C-47.
“The Commemorative Air Force is excited to work with Tockr on the D-Day watch,” said Leah Block, CAF Vice President of Marketing. “The Invasion of Normandy is a defining moment in American history. We believe this history is worth saving and worth preserving. This watch is an extraordinary tribute and way to remember the sacrifice of those who served our country.”
“I founded Tockr to combine my two loves, aviation and watches, and also to honor my grandfather, a pilot who actually flew C-47 aircraft during World War II,” said Tockr Founder Austin Ivey. “When the Commemorative Air Force approached Tockr for this project, we immediately accepted. I can’t think of any better way to honor my grandfather and brave World War II veterans like him than by creating a special watch in their honor, using material from the C-47 aircraft that lead the D-Day invasion. Though working with this salvaged material presented challenges, we made every effort to preserve and protect the unique character of the aircraft material used in each dial for posterity.”
Although every D-Day C-47 watch is assembled in Switzerland, the design produced for Tockr by Emmanuel Gueit is decidedly American, Tockr officials said.
Made in batches of 100, each numbered piece contains a unique portion of That’s All Brother as the base for its dial, preserved under sapphire crystal. The unique dials bear evidence of their history with distinctive weathering.
The Tockr D-Day C-47 comes in three dial styles, each ranging from dark to light military hues of brown and green, but differentiated by varying degrees of original weathering, chipping, and scratches and distinctive markings.
“Clean Cut” offers the lightest degree of weathering, while “Stamped” features medium weathering, with some original type in yellow, brown or blue hues. A third, “Hard Worn,” variation is heavily weathered, crackled, and chipped with large areas of exposed aluminum.
The watch’s 42mm cushion case contains a Swiss self-winding ETA-2824-A6 movement, which offers 40 hours of power reserve. The watch comes with two straps, one made of drab canvas webbing and one made of leather, each featuring a “quick change” spring bar.
The case bears the iconic ‘That’s All Brother’ Nose Art faithfully engraved on its case back as it appears painted on the original aircraft.
The individually numbered watches come with a certificate of authenticity signed by the CAF guaranteeing use of genuine material from That’s All, Brother.
In 2019, CAF and That’s All, Brother will return to the skies over Normandy for the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of D-Day, retracing the path from the United States to England and on to Normandy.
The watches are priced at $1,990.