Whenever I hear the word “Flyboy” I consider Topgun. That’s never something terrible. Who doesn’t like being helped to remember Pete Mitchell’s misuses over the mists? Thus I started my week with the AVI-8 Flyboy Lafayette in atypically “high” spirits…

If you asked me, I would purport to like to consistently get what I request. By and large, there is a motivation behind why I request things. Yet, now and then those reasons don’t hold up under investigation. Take the AVI-8 Flyboy Lafayette, for instance. While communicating with the brand, I mentioned to test drive the dark dialed adaptation. Why? Since I like dark dials. I especially enjoyed the combination of bone, red, and dark that I saw on the pre-discharge renders of the Flyboy Lafayette. Also, when I’m picking watches for audit, I like to pick my number one alternative to give the model a superior possibility of finding a positive gathering on my wrist.

As you can see from the photographs in this article, my solicitation got tangled incidentally. Rather than dark, I got the salmon-dialed form in the post. Yet, for once, I’m glad about not getting what I requested. I won’t venture to guarantee I prefer this dynamic salmon cycle over the dark that grabbed my attention, however I surely delighted in having something else on my wrist for a while.

What’s in a name?

With a name like “Flyboy Lafayette”, you can wager there’s a good story behind this watch’s moniker. Also, there is. The Lafayette Escadrille was a volunteer unit of American pilots that served under French command in 1916 during WWI. The unit was named after the Marquis de Lafayette, who evidently had a lovely fruitful history when it came to wars (he was the French saint of the American progressive war).

Following the war (the Lafayette Escadrille was on the triumphant side in the event that your set of experiences is somewhat crude) a large number of the squadron’s individuals proceeded to assume dynamic parts in the establishment of the US Air Force. Their inheritances, as challenging, daring, glad sky contenders have persevered. What’s more, presently, over a century after they took to the skies with regards to opportunity, AVI-8 is respecting them with a watch.

A wearable tool

The AVI-8 Flyboy Lafayette AV-4076 is a 42mm, hardened steel meca-quartz chronograph with a staggeringly fascinating dial (particularly considering the value point). The last AVI-8 I looked into ( the Spitfire, assessed here ) additionally intrigued me with its nuanced dial plan. Its multi-leveled approach made for a fascinating look. This model, the Flyboy Lafayette, follows the equivalent formula.

Inside this watch, we have the  Japanese high-beat VK68 meca-quartz module with a 1/5 chronograph seconds hand. The VK68 is distinguished by its “balanced” game plan of the sub-dials. Ordinarily, you discover sub-dials situated at the cardinal focuses ( don’t notice that to the Rolex Daytona , coincidentally), yet with the VK68 we have an all the more even plan around the dial.

As such, the chronograph hour long counter sits plum somewhere in the range of 9 and 10 o’clock, the 24-hour marker is somewhere in the range of 2 and 3, and the going seconds is focused at 6 o’clock. There is an opening style date window simply a shade past 4 o’clock. It’s sort of unusual, sort of silly, however I sort of like it contrary to what I might think is best. Yet, how does this truly complex dial perform overall?

The dial

Blue on salmon is a readable combo. Do I always like it? Actually no, not really. I do very like salmon dials however for me, the tint must be perfect. Particularly with regards to pulling off the combination with blue. Maybe one of my #1 unsurpassed watches is the A. Lage & Söhne Datograph Perpetual Tourbillon with the red gold dial (740.056). Presently, you could contend that that dial is not salmon, rather plainly red gold all things being equal. It’s a strong contention (on the grounds that you’d be correct) however that’s the sort of shade of “salmon” I like. Some vintage Patek Philippe watches have the very, rich, red-blooded shade that gets me going.

That Lange, in any case, is by and large multiple times more costly than the AVI-8 Flyboy Lafayette, thus in any event, being referenced at the same time ought to be taken as some sort of compliment. As far as I might be concerned, the shade of salmon here is altogether too orangey to work with my skin tone. It isn’t, be that as it may, completely ugly, yet I figure it would work better with decent cleaned and applied hour markers instead of the yellowy numerals with blue blueprints. Indeed, that yellowy divide is iridescent yet at this size, those numerals barely fly in obscurity. I would have exited the Arabic numerals completely and maybe centered around energetically clear hands all things being equal. Give me the handest from the any day…

Is it a success?

In my assessment, the point of all little brands ought to be the equivalent. It ought not be to “disrupt” the watchmaking business. It shouldn’t be to make”luxury” available. Or maybe, little brands should better invest their energy on making smart plans that attention on giving the most ideal quality inside their picked value section. Basically, it is better for brands not to endeavor something over their station. Do it well, or don’t do it by any means. That would be my recommendation. In such manner, the AVI-8 Flyboy Lafayette in Salmon divides me directly into equal parts. Here’s why…

The dial tone and numerous levels are goal-oriented. Both function admirably enough and ought to be commended for their irregularity. The expansion of a pulsometer instead of a thoughtless tachymeter is additionally an extremely appreciated touch. I found the case machining sufficient and the nature of the brushed Jubilee arm band satisfying. The VK68 development is an incredible decision and a strong entertainer as all Seiko-constructed meca-quartz chronographs are.

The other side

On the opposite side, nonetheless, I am left unenthused by the weedy Arabic numerals and the uncomfortable endeavor to lume them. It doesn’t feel like added usefulness to me. It feels constrained. Furthermore, honestly, the outcome is so disappointing it could without much of a stretch have been forgotten about with no issue whatsoever.

Blued components frequently look extraordinary in extravagance watchmaking, yet truly just when that blue is accomplished through conventional strategies. Painted records just don’t do it for me and the application here (with my 3 and 9 markers marginally over the flat hub) isn’t the awesome. I discovered the handset to be a hodgepodge. I truly like the absurdly thin sub-dial hands (that was a victorious decision), yet the hour and moment hands left me cold. On pilot’s watches, I lean toward more extensive hands. This needle style consistently makes me consider field or channel watches for reasons unknown. Individual translations aside, they just didn’t smack of quality.

The counterpoise of the seconds is an evident point of convergence of the plan. A notable picture, the red, white, and blue roundel normally draws the eye. All things considered, it should be awesome. The printing of the focal blue spot here is imperceptibly askew. I may have been unfortunate, or I may be being a pompous Pete, yet the watchmaker in me can’t disregard such details.


In outline, I left away very happy with the AVI-8 Flyboy Lafayette considering its wonderful value point. Is it my number one watch from the brand? No, I think the Spitfire is marginally more accomplished (and still sensibly evaluated). I likewise think the Spitfire is more genuine to the plan codes I would expect a Pilot’s watch to hold fast to. In any case, I should say, the Flyboy Lafayette is amazingly near being a nailed-on home run.

With cleaned silver hour records, less superfluous sub-dial printing, and a wide, cleaned handset that gets rid of the adorable yet diverting roundel (which would look especially at home on an undecorated crown) this would be a fantastic purchase in this bracket.

But, believe it or not, with a sticker price of just €265 it is difficult to complain. Close by, the watch feels amazingly great worth and it hitters style brands in a similar value section beat up regarding looks, construct quality, and execution. Also, remember my evaluate of the tones is confined to this model I have on my wrist. In the event that you like the general tasteful yet need to look at different dials accessible, you can do as such . As far as I might be concerned, this is an extraordinary present for a more youthful watch sweetheart, simply finding their feet in the game.