Before we get to the intro, let’s take a moment to go back a couple of years. It’s 2019 at the Le Mans Classic. Engines firing up fill the soundscape and finely tuned racing machines speed around the Circuit de la Sarthe. There’s a palpable buzz in the air. Somewhere amongst the crowd, a small group of mechanical enthusiasts chat about bringing a project to reality which would combine the worlds of utilitarian horology with heritage, and iconic military motorcycle design. That leads us to today, where Ollech & Wajs and vintage motorcycle restoration specialist, Atelier Zevaco have collaborated to bring us the OW 350CI, a rugged military inspired field watch geared up to provide a second time zone. Let’s buckle up and take a closer look.
The OW 350CI gets its build inspiration from a fully restored Condor 350, an iconic motorcycle used by the Swiss military in the 70s and 80s. The dial comes in a deep khaki green with applied yellow toned cardinal hour indices, taking after the khaki painted metal frame of the Condor 350. The decently sized screw down crown, measuring at 6.10 mm, is built for left hand drive. The crown is not only strategically placed there for lefties, or for fellow righties that enjoy the comfort of an LHD set-up, but also to pay tribute to the reversed gearbox and inverted controls or “commandes inversées” of the Condor 350, hence the name OW 350CI.