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Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes’ Spruce Goose Flying Boat

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

Just announced is the new Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition watch that both celebrates and actually incorporates the famously massive wooden “Spruce Goose” airplane designed by Howard Hughes in the 1940s. With a total run of 450 pieces of this new GMT from Bremont, there will be 300 in stainless steel, 75 in rose gold, and 75 in platinum.

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

The story of the Spruce Goose is pretty engrained in American aviation lore, at this point. The eccentric Hollywood studio owner who also owned the Hughes Aircraft Company sought to build a transport cargo plane that could avoid U-Boat torpedos during World War 2. Given supply shortages, the ship had to be built from wood rather than metal. Ironically, though the nickname was “Spruce Goose,” the plane was actually built from birch. Long story short, Hughes succeeded in building what was then the world’s largest plane, with a 320-foot wingspan. The only problem was that the Allies had already turned the tide of the war by the time the plane was ready. Eventually, the Spruce Goose did take flight (in 1947) for a full 26 seconds, proving that the plane could, indeed, fly. That was the first and last time it would.

Of course, the Spruce Goose is seen as a monument to ingenuity, grit, and ambition rather than the plane that changed the course of the war.

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

Everyone knows that aviation is Nick and Giles English’s “thing” and anyone who has met them would absolutely understand why they’re drawn to such a larger-than-life story like that of Hughes and the Spruce Goose. But how are the watches?

While I haven’t seen them in the metal yet (that will come next week), the H-4 Hercules watches look quite handsome and, again, just judging from press shots, very well finished. Done in either steel, rose gold, or platinum, each model measures 43mm-wide. On the dial, you’ll see the seconds sub-dial at 9 o’clock, date window at 6 o’clock, and the red arrow of the GMT hand.

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Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

The new movement here is BWC/02 which Bremont says is “based on the original proprietary automatic BWC/01 calibre built in partnership with movement house, La Joux Perret.” Of course, the addition of the GMT function is what’s new here.

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

It’s on the caseback that you get some of the Spruce Goose DNA. When the plane was declared a national treasure and preserved, there was some birchwood veneer that had to be removed from the plane. This birch was housed at the Evergreen Museum in Oregon, which shipped it to the UK, where furniture maker Silverlining was able to cut it to size. The four tungsten rotors designed to look like propeller blades on the movement are finished with this birch veneer. Also, aileron fabric from the Spruce Goose’s control surfaces are sewn into the bridle leather watch packaging.

Bremont H-4 Hercules Limited Edition Watch Celebrates Howard Hughes' Spruce Goose Flying Boat Watch Releases

While I’m reserving final judgment on the Bremont H-4 Hercules until I can see them in person, I have pretty high hopes. The design and finishing of the case, dial, and movement are promising. Plus, I imagine all the Spruce Goose-heads out there must feel exponentially more excited about it. Again, there will be 450 pieces made in total with each of the 300 stainless steel models priced at $11,895, each of the 75 rose gold models priced at $20,495, and each of the 75 platinum models priced at $30,995. You can learn more at bremont.com.

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Comments

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  • Raymond Wilkie

    Bring on the Bremont haters ( I quite like it )

    • Joe

      Can you like it and be in disbelief about the price?
      How much?!?!

  • SuperStrapper

    The forever-nefarious (base) caliber Bremont impaled their credibility on.
    Anyway, absolutely one of their more handsome references, but wow that pricing. You can do better at 1/3 of this sticker. Is this movement evolution a true GMT? *doubt*

  • Alex A

    There is a watch to celebrate anything I guess.

  • DanW94

    Celebrating this plane that flew for a mere 26 seconds in its existence is like celebrating a marathon runner who completed 2 miles in his one and only 26.2 mile race. Not exactly inspirational. I like the watch though.

  • anonymous

  • Hi Mr. Bilal. HiGuys?I’m not a Bremont hater people, sure I appreciate beautifully designed timepieces but incorporating real history into Bremont watches is just surreal. Few years ago, I had a chat with some Bremont Representatives at The Swiss Watch Gallery in KL and can tell you that TW0 most valuable Bremont watches that you should be aware of since these timepieces have almost doubled in price and climbing.Personally speaking, they should be displayed at the Smithsonian museum!!!

    The Wright Flyer LE (2014).The SS version is always on the wrist of Mr.Giles English https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/10e29b8e7c6214a75ae3f403402ae719bb8509dd7f05ce923f2557b8f6c2b7fb.jpg

    Mustang P51K-10 LE (2011) https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d4a437716d398e29797c2820a2bd6a8d0b40f7f8db6c4d2572d2293e92f1b239.jpg

    • Beefalope

      Lol. Nothing has doubled in pricing. People ASK for a lot of money for some of their watches on the used market, where they rot. It’s only when prices are slashed on them that they sell. They’re nice watches that are well-designed, but they’re nothing special and take a beating on the secondary market.

  • Swiss_Cheese

    Bremont… $31k… Bremont… $31k…?

    Sure platinum is expensive, but let’s say the case is somehow 150g – platinum is evidently around $30 per gram, that means there is roughly $4,500 worth of platinum, on top of the $12k for the SS model that’s still only $16.5k. I presume the different colour dial is worth the remaining $14k.

    Relatively nice looking watches – insane pricing.

    • Beefalope

      That’s Bremont in a nutshell. Every watch they’ve ever made has been stupidly overpriced. They’re a much better value on the used market.

  • PR

    The story is almost symbolic of the brand…trying too hard making something outrageous and over the top expensive that doesn’t have a need or place in the world while claiming ingenuity and significance. Almost poetic.

  • Beefalope

    Lol.

  • Ugo

    call me when they do it 2 mm smaller, with supercompressor case and rotating inner 24h bezel, true gmt movement, and around 5k.

  • SPQR

    “Hughes Aircraft Company sought to build a transport cargo plane that could avoid U-Boat torpedos during World War 2” I think you will find ALL cargo planes in World War Two could avoid U Boat torpedoes because they could fly and U Boats could not. If you actually mean that Mr Hughes sought to build a cargo plane that could replace the need for cargo ships then you are closer to the mark.

  • Craig A Clark

    I really wish they would do a plebs version that wasn’t a LE, because this ticks every box pretty well except price. Lovely.

  • dr3

    Nice looking, great rotor. Many similarities to the Tiffany&Co CT60.
    Pricing structure of Bremont LEs needs a bit of a sort. At these prices you would half expect a ride on that plane included ?

  • JosephWelke

    This is a lovely watch, instantly legible with a good complication and aviation heritage done right, unlike some of their other offerings. I’d wear one.

    But that price is utterly insane. That’s JLC, AP, VC money.

  • BJ314

    Those are some sweet timepieces. Homerun!

  • spice

    Nice but for that money they could have matched the date wheel?

  • NaJo

    Very well executed and handsome watches. Price a big no. Maybe at $5-6k.

  • Ulysses31

    The watches looks great, but I question the wisdom of adopting a failure of a plane as the theme for the watch. A plane that couldn’t even fly for half a minute would obviously not be war-ready and indicates a pretty dismal understanding of engineering. The price is eye-watering, even for Bremont, who by now are well known for their hubris.