THE STORY BEHIND
OUR VIRIBUS UNITIS A11

The inspiration – Seaplane Type OEFFAG Mickl H

The respective inspiration for this watch model was the seaplane type OEFFAG Mickl H with the aircraft identification A11. The pilot of this aircraft was Gottfried Freiherr von Banfield, who on May 31, 1917, won the first air victory at night in the air war history. At 22:30 he forced an Italian seaplane near Miramare Castle (northern adriatic sea) to land.

This well-known Austrian seaplane, the blue bird, had originally fitted a 145hp Hiero engine and reached a speed of 155km/h. After changing the engine into a 200hp Hiero engine, the A11 reached 180km/h.

Armed with two machine guns, the rate of ascent was 3000m in just 19 minutes.

The A11 was delivered October 1916 and was flown by Lschlt Banfield until mid of 1918.

The seaplane was stationed at the Santa Catarine seaplane station in Pola (today’s Pula in Croatia), with the northern Adriatic operation area.

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1)  The aircraft identification A11 of the blue bird can be found at position 11 on the dial.

2)  The blue colour of the dial and the bezel is based on the painting of this aircraft. The colour gradient to black is a reminder of the first night air victory within air warfare.

3)  The two arrows on the dial at position 9 are taken from a historical instrument for measuring the vertical speed. In this case, the upper arrow shows the service peak height of the A11, the lower arrow shows the water tightness of the watch (data in feet).

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 1) The manufacturer’s name OEFFAG Mickl H (an austrian airplane manufacturer) and A11 can be found at position 12 of the caseback.

2) The engraving with the side view of the ‘blue bird’ is centrally located on the back of the case. The aircraft identification A11, the cross pattée and the red-white-red flag on the fin are very characteristic.

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