Designed for submarines and loved as an icon the 1006 Navy Chair has been around since 1944.
First built for use on submarines in 1944, the Navy Chair has been in continuous production ever since.
The brief from the US Navy as they fought the end of World War II was simply to produce a chair capable of withstanding the rigours of a lifetime at sea. The quest to develop this chair was taken up in 1944 by William C Dinges a master tool and die maker with an engineering background who founded Emeco (The Electric Machine and Equipment Company). Although designed by Dinges and made to this day by Emeco. The original manufacturing of the chairs was actually a collaborative project with another company called Alcoa (the world’s largest aluminium manufacturer). The combined knowledge of Alcoa and their understanding of Aluminium alongside the machining skills of Emeco resulted in a chair that not only could stand the rigours of sea, salt and corrosion, but the battering from daily use by a crew of sailors.
The classic styling of the chair is of a traditional, comfortable and easy to stack. Add to this the fact the chair is made with one single material (Aluminium) enshrines the 1006 Navy chair as a design classic. It simply screams innovation as this was probably the first time one single material was used in such away, fusing form and function perfectly. This revolution of engineering and design, one material, one item with no serviceable or wearing parts, pre-dates plastic moulded chairs by some twenty years, and is far more robust.
A chair in 77 steps
Another amazing aspect to what looks to be a simple chair made out of Aluminium is how it is made. The total number of steps to make one chair is 77! Craftsmen take soft, recycled aluminium, hand form and weld it, then temper it for strength. Finally, the chair is anodized for a durable finish. PLUS the chair is guaranteed for life!
The chair has been around for many years now, adopted by some of the best boutiques hotels and restaurants the world over, not to mention many other areas of everyday life.
A new eco friendly chair for all seasons
If the original Aluminium chair wasn’t enough, in 2006, Coca-Cola approached Emeco to solve an environmental problem. How cut down taking recycled Coca-Cola bottles to landfill and instead “upcycling” them into an iconic structural item, made to last.
Emeco committed to the challenge with the new material, taking soft recycled PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) plastic, originally intended for short-lived fabric and textiles, and built a tough, one-piece, scratch-resistant chair for heavy-duty use. Say hello to the 111 Navy Chair. Once again a design classic – superb!
Where to buy a Navy Chair?
The 1006 Navy Chair is sold in a number of outlets across the globe including the Conran Shop for around £580. A bargain if you have the money to splash out over £2,000 for 4!
You can visit the Emeco website click here, however I can’t find a way to buy a chair on their website.
If you are a mere mortal like me with slightly shallower pockets but would still like a similar look for less. Try Amazon they have a range of very similar chairs from around £70-£100.