California dreaming with Laco pilot watches


Germany’s Laco is drawing attention to a new California-style dial for its latest limited edition pilot watches by holding its promotional photo shoot in the wine region of the Sunshine State.

I bet a lot of hands shot up when Laco was looking for volunteers for that trip.

California dials are a bit of a trend this year.


In recent weeks I have seen them on a Bremont/Bamford collaboration piece and a collection of colourful watches from Laco’s German compatriot Nomos.

What is a California dial?

California dials have half Roman numeral hour markers and half Arabic numbers and often a triangle or arrow at 12 o’clock.

Laco has chosen the dial design for two limited edition pilots named after Californian wine areas: Napa and Santa Ynez.

Napa is a classic pilot watch. It comes in a 42mm steel case with a clean white dial.

Its hour markers and sword-shaped hands are both white lume with blue outlines.

Laco says the second piece, the Santa Ynez, is designed for aircraft navigators where minutes matter more than hours.

So the watch has large minutes on the outer dial and smaller minutes in the centre.

Both watches, limited in production to 100 pieces each, use a Miyota 8321A automatic movement.

We are still waiting for a price but other pilot watches from the same Laco collection retail for around $1,000.

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