The REC RJM Spitfire Collection, The Latest From REC Watches!
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“Herr Reichsmarschall, give me a squadron of Spitfires!”- German fighter ace Adolf Galland’s quoted answer when asked what more he needed to clinch the victory during the Battle of Britain.
The Supermarine Spitfire aircraft today is a well-known, widely recognized icon, known as being an aerodynamic marvel, which helped change the course of History. Originally developed by Reginald Joseph Mitchell in the early 1930s, the aircraft was designed to be a short range, high performance interceptor plane. The Spitfire would soon become one of the most crucial parts, in the fight for air superiority over the English Channel. Tasked with the challenge of engaging the German Messerschmitt BF 109E fighter planes during the second world war. And now it is incorporated in to the REC RJM Spitfire watch!
RJ Mitchell was unaware at the time, however his creating would go on to be produced in a total or 24 different marks (variations), and would become the only British fighter aircraft to be in continued production before during and then after WWII.
Unfortunately, of the legendary Spitfires built between 1938 and 1948, less than 100 remain operational and in airworthy condition. The mission of REC watches with the REC RJM collection is to increase that number;
PT879 THE “RUSSIAN SPIT”
The spring of 1954. A Spitfire aircraft crashed on the Russian Tundra during what must have been an intense dogfight. This is the incredible story that followed;
The REC RJM collection fantastically incorporates genuine salvaged parts from that Spitfire Mark IX aircraft serial number PT879, which was among the approximate 1,118 Mark IX aircraft that were delivered in Murmansk as part of the Allied Forces ‘Lend-Lease’ aid policy to support the Russian war effort.
Severe losses were felt by the Russian Spitfire squadrons due to friendly fire. The British aircrafts looked too similar to the German BF 109 causing issues for the Russians, leading to these losses. There is no direct evidence to show that this was the same fate that was found by the REC watches PT879 Spit, but what they did manage to find out was that the aircraft crashed during a dogfight in spring ’45 with just 29 flight hours under its belt. The wreck was recovered off the Russian tundra by an unnamed farmer.
More than 50 years later, in 1998, the battered spitfire was recovered in Murmansk as a crashed, but complete example. This is the single Spitfire that has ever returned from it’s service in Russia, no other has ever survived like this. Today, the PT879 is beginning a full restoration by Peter Teichman in the United Kingdom. Peter, a recognized pilot, has made it his life’s work to restore classic fighter planes to relive their glory days, and is 100% uncompromising in restoring the PT879 Spit. His aim, to bring it back to the same standard as wehn it left the factory at Castle Bromwhich on the 4th of August 1944. An impressive number of PT879’s original parts are to be used in the restoration of the airframe, and more than 500 parts were used in the now-renovated fuselage.
Many parts were left un-salvageable from the wreckage in Russia. These aluminium parts, authentic pieces of world history, featuring original marks and dents, have now been directly incorporated into the design of the fantastic REC RJM Collection, ensuring that every single Spitfire timepiece becomes visually unique.
Along with this, to tribute this one of a kind aircraft, REC watches will be donating a portion of the proceeds of every sold REC RJM timepiece towards the restoration of the PT879 Russian Spit so that she may soon return to where she belongs: The skies!
DESIGNING THE REC RJM Spitfire
Limited in nature – and utterly unique in design
The mission with the RJM was to capture both the design, era, and story behind the PT879 Spitfire Mark IX aircraft.
Starting with the case design, we wanted to incorporate part of what made the Spitfire aircraft such an aerodynamic masterpiece – the wing shape and wing structure. This characteristic feature is captured in the crown guard, which takes its shape from the elliptical wing form as seen from above and is decorated with the internal spars and ribs that ensured lightweight and strength to the wing construction.
The crown of the watch actually takes its inspiration from the conical shaped nose-tip of the plane. This includes the indents where you would find the propeller blades situated. This also allowed REC to use a diamond crown design, typical for both modern and vintage pilot-inspired timepieces.
In contrast, we wanted the dial design of the RJM to capture both the experience of sitting inside a Spitfire aircraft, but also to take inspiration from watches worn by RAF pilots of that era. More specifically, their goal was to create a modern representation of the ‘Dirty Dozen’ watches, a name that was given to a group of 12 different watches commissioned by the British Ministry of Defense and worn by British soldiers during WWII.
Finally, they wanted the battle-scarred Russian Spitfire aircraft aluminum to take center stage in the design, literally. They positioned this perfectly right above 6 o´clock with integrated date function, adding depth and uniqueness to every timepiece, and ensuring that no two RJM timepieces look the same.
This is a great collection of watches, available in 3 different colours and available for pre-order right now.