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  Omega Speedmaster space chronographs (Page 10)

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Author Topic:   Omega Speedmaster space chronographs
Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-27-2017 03:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Omega release
Celebrating 60 years of the Speedmaster with George Clooney and Buzz Aldrin

Surrounded by a universe of light and sound, OMEGA has celebrated the 60th anniversary of its iconic Speedmaster watch with a star-filled event in London. George Clooney and Buzz Aldrin were the guests of honour at the "Lost in Space" evening, a theme which paid tribute to the Speedmaster's unrivalled legacy in space exploration.

The night was hosted by Professor Brian Cox at London's Tate Modern which was transformed to give guests a truly sensory experience. Inside, the venue was given a sleek and futuristic touch with a centrepiece of 60 important Speedmaster models from 1957 to 2017.

Raynald Aeschlimann, the President and CEO of OMEGA, was the first on stage and welcomed guests to the event with his thoughts about the brand's most well-known chronograph.

"The Speedmaster is one of the most, if not the most, iconic chronographs in the world. Not only for OMEGA, but for the many men and women who have worn and trusted it. Even after 60 years, its power and charisma has not diminished. We're so proud to have an event of this scale and to share it with the Speedmaster's biggest fans."

The OMEGA Speedmaster has enjoyed a long and varied history. Most famously, as part of Apollo 11 in 1969, Buzz Aldrin stepped onto the lunar surface and, in that moment, the OMEGA Speedmaster became the first watch ever worn on the moon.

48 years later, Buzz appeared spectacularly in a spacesuit on OMEGA's stage. After a great applause, he later recounted his memories of his time in space.

"We weren't scared. More so, we were proud to have been able to represent everyone and to have the skills and the knowledge to carry out something that was very meaningful to us as astronauts, of course, but also to so many other people."

Standing alongside Buzz was the renowned actor George Clooney, who is not only a dedicated Speedmaster follower, but also a lifelong fan of space exploration. Since childhood, the Apollo missions and the OMEGA Speedmaster have been amongst his most treasured memories.

"Speedmasters were a big part of my growing up. My uncle and my father, we all had them because it was such a big part of the moon landing. And it was huge in our lives. My father gave me, as my graduation present, a Speedmaster. There's every reason to love them because they're elegant watches. But I also love them because of the history."

When asked about his memories of the moon landings, George gave a very personal tribute to Buzz. "It mattered to all of us. What you did mattered to all of us and I can't thank you enough for your courage, your leadership and everything you've done."

It has been more than 50 years that the OMEGA Speedmaster has been relied upon as an essential tool in space. In 1965, the watch was officially tested and qualified by NASA for all manned space missions. The man in charge of that process, ex-engineer James Ragan, was also at the event in London and spoke to guests about the Speedmaster's reputation within NASA.

"Of all the watches we tested in 1965, the Speedmaster was the only one that passed all the tests. The others got eliminated in the very first test. So it has a very good reputation with NASA and even today is still used in space. That says a lot about the watch."

The Speedmaster's impact has been truly far-reaching. Amongst the many VIP fans at the London event were American actress Liv Tyler; British actress Gemma Arterton and British singer Ellie Goulding.

The "Lost in Space" event concluded with a performance by ESKA, who gave a rousing rendition of David Bowie's classic song Space Oddity. It was a wonderful way to complete a night of pure entertainment and imagination.

Whizzospace
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posted 05-19-2017 01:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Whizzospace   Click Here to Email Whizzospace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The San Antonio Omega Boutique had a great Speedmaster 60th Anniversary event this week.

I provided a couple of display items, including the crew signed Saturn V model and Apollo 13 couch fragment in lucite (image).

They went all out with themed food and drink ("Tang-tini, sir?"). Plus, the catering staff wore blue Space Camp flight suits. I believe we had a few more fashion watch folks than space watch folks, compared to last year's event. Still, a great party with many special edition Speedmasters!

They gave out some enjoyable Apollo themed promotionals, and noted Omega spokesman Lt. Gen. Tom Stafford offered a nice video message.

Philip
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posted 06-06-2017 07:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Omega boutique in Vienna, Austria has a renewed mini-museum and is certainly worth a visit.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 07-21-2017 06:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Omega video
George Clooney was just a boy when his hero Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon. Nearly 50 years later, the two legends of space and screen finally met. This is the story.

328KF
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posted 07-21-2017 12:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kind of clueless on either Omega or Clooney's part to end that skit with "C'mon Buzz. Let me buy you a drink..."

Philip
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posted 10-03-2017 09:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This #SpeedyTuesday 3rd October marks the 55th anniversary of the first Omega Speedmaster chronograph in space as Wally Schirra wore his personal CK2998-4 onboard Sigma 7 in 1962.

Some rare images at MoonwatchUniverse.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-21-2018 05:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
collectSPACE
Omega reveals 'Dark Side of the Moon' chronograph for Apollo 8 50th

The 50th anniversary of the first mission to fly humans to the moon has inspired the design of a new timepiece from the watchmaker that made the chronographs worn by the crew.

NASA's Apollo 8 astronauts, Frank Borman, Jim Lovell and Bill Anders, were the first to view the far side, or colloquially, "dark side" of Earth's natural satellite while orbiting the moon in December 1968. Half a century later, Omega has brought into view the Speedmaster "Dark Side of the Moon" Apollo 8 chronograph.

Philip
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posted 03-22-2018 04:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Certainly not my cup of tea... might appeal to the younger generation but then again "de gustibus non est disputandum."

Larry McGlynn
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posted 03-22-2018 07:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I know my taste is in my mouth, but I actually like this watch. I am a fan of the skeleton dial with the imprint of the lunar face on it.

I wonder if this is a some form of trial for the Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Speedmaster?

Panther494
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posted 03-22-2018 08:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Panther494   Click Here to Email Panther494     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I certainly hope not. I feel the 50th Anniversary model should obviously be special but needs to maintain the "Professional" appeal.

I think the 40th model was excellent, still a Speedmaster but with a hint of "this is special." The red tipped second hand, single silver sundial. All very nice. Backed off with a stunning caseback.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-22-2018 08:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I like the look of the Apollo 8 model, too.

The only tweak I would have made was to use blue instead of yellow hands as a nod to "Earthrise."

dsenechal
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posted 03-22-2018 11:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for dsenechal   Click Here to Email dsenechal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Easily remedied with a case opener and a bottle of blue paint, Robert.

Any idea what the MSRP will be? I'd guess around $13K.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-22-2018 12:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Apollo 8 Speedmaster is $9,750. (Omega now lists its prices and sells directly through its website, though this model will not be for sale until August.)

328KF
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posted 03-22-2018 04:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
...use blue instead of yellow hands as a nod to "Earthrise."
This would have looked awesome. I like the design but that yellow is really off-putting. Earthrise was one of the lasting legacies of the mission, and it is sadly left unrepresented in this new interpretation of the Speedmaster.

TLIGuy
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posted 03-23-2018 11:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for TLIGuy   Click Here to Email TLIGuy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
With Apollo 8 being my favorite mission along with being a Christmas eve 1968 baby I was really hoping for something special for the 50th anniversary piece but I feel underwhelmed by this watch.

To Omega's credit the skeleton dial is well executed and live images of the dial look much better than these photos. The use of the yellow hands is a total mystery to me and makes this watch too similar to the recently released Omega Porsche watch. As Robert said, a blue chronograph hand would have been a better choice or maybe even red which is traditionally linked to chronograph hands. Blue or red would have been a nice nod to the mission patch colors.

While it's nice they used the hand wound movement to reduce the thickness of the watch the spacing of the sub dials is off because of the larger ceramic case. The 1861 movement and the 40mm case of the traditional Speedmaster is really what makes the watch so aesthetically pleasing to the eye. This larger case with the odd second sub dial throws the proportions off to my eye. Lastly, with all the spare space around the case back I'm put off by the DEC abbreviation and not December in full.

It's interesting that it is not a limited production piece but I think the design and cost with limit the number produced on its own. At almost $10K I would never be a buyer for this watch but I'm really not the target audience. In that price range I'm looking for a mint pre-moon Speedmaster.

Here's hoping the Apollo 11th 50th hits the mark next year.

David C
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posted 03-23-2018 07:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for David C     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TLIGuy:
In that price range I'm looking for a mint pre-moon Speedmaster.
Yup.

Larry McGlynn
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posted 03-23-2018 09:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Oh, you spoiled it for me. I already have a pre-moon Speedy circa 1967. I used to like the new Apollo 8 watch.

YankeeClipper
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posted 07-05-2018 12:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for YankeeClipper   Click Here to Email YankeeClipper     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Through this thread I've read about the failures of the Rolex and Longines models during the High Temperature Test of flight qualification, the experiences of Dave Scott on Apollo 15 and Charlie Duke on Apollo 16, and the concerns of Jim Ragan regarding the Speedmaster's Hesalite Crystal and its susceptibility to high temperature and thermal cycling.

Given everything that is now known about the temperature extremes on EVAs and the lunar surface in particular, and the vibrations associated with launch and entry and lunar rover vehicle travel, does anyone know if the criteria limits for flight qualification of the Speedmaster have evolved over the years and become more stringent to reflect operational reality, or are they still the original test limits?

Philip
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posted 07-06-2018 04:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That's a good question...

The Speedmaster chronograph came standard with an acrylic polymer hesalite (plexiglass) doomed glass that gave a wide opening on the dial. Although prone to scratches, it was shatterproof, an advantage for use in a micro-gravity.

During the Alaska Project (code name for the research to design and produce the ultimate space watch) Omega tested the resistance of half a dozen different glasses and decided to use a raised bezel for the Alaska II project in 1972.

Due to cancellation of the Apollo 18 to 20 missions, the Alaska Project timepieces had no direct use for NASA but the Russians were interested and flew ex-Alaska II timepieces on the Salyut 6 space station. BIS Spaceflight magazine August 2018 issue has an article on the 40th anniversary of the EVA by the Soyuz 29 crew during which these ex-Alaska II Speedmaster chronographs in their distinctive red-colored outer cases were used.

Eventually the Alaska Project was resumed, leading to a radial dial Speedmaster used aboard STS-2 through at least STS-53, and the X-33 Speedmaster in 1998.

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 08-30-2020 10:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Not long ago I visited a jewelry store at the Stanford Shopping Center California and I looked at the Omega Apollo 8 commemorative "Dark Side of the Moon” watch. A super cool timepiece by any standards.

But I was a bit disappointed that the sales lady (who was very nice) had such a limited knowledge of both astronomy and spaceflight history. For starters she was flabbergasted that I could name the crew of Apollo 8 off the top of my head and had no idea about the Christmas eve reading of Genesis. She thought that the moon actually had a dark side and that the Silver Snoopy Award was created for Apollo 13 because Snoopy appeared on the Apollo 13 Omega Speedmaster.

I really do wish that Omega made sure that their sales representatives knew a little more science and history.

Philip
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posted 09-07-2020 11:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
A remark I have heard before...

Moreover sales personnel mostly don't have a clue about the older 1960s true Moonwatches such as the 105.003 and 105.012 Speedmaster chronographs.

Philip
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posted 09-16-2020 05:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Half a century after NASA astronauts' feedback to the Omega design team, this is in my opinion the most interesting and most exciting Speedmaster-wise development, the comeback of the practical "60 minutes" bezel.
The radial bezel design was produced for NASA astronauts between 1970-1978, adorned atop the coveted Alaska prototype watches. The bezel design was never put into production, and survives only in a handful of government and private collections. Until now.

Inspecting nearly piece of evidence available, we were able to faithfully recreate the original design down. Our anodized aluminum bezel insert brings the astronaut favorite into the hands of civilians for the first time.

Larry McGlynn
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posted 09-16-2020 09:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
When I met with the Omega design team I wanted them to create a 3-minute bezel for boiling eggs. For some reason, the idea just didn't catch on.

Philip
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posted 09-17-2020 04:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Five years ago, the first time I met Omega officials, they never had heard about their "ultimate space watch" Alaska Project Speedmaster chronographs being used by Russian cosmonauts... enough said!

Larry McGlynn
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posted 09-17-2020 01:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Don't tell me the Russians were using my 3-minute bezel!

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 11-28-2020 07:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Paul Newman's Rolex Daytona sold at auction for over 17 million dollars. Does anyone know the top price paid for a Speedy? I bet it's no where near the Paul Newman watch.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-28-2020 08:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As of 2018, the most paid for a Speedmaster was $408,500 for a first-generation reference 2915-1 "Broad Arrow."

By comparison, Ron Evans' Speedmaster used to time an experiment on Apollo 17 (as opposed to his NASA-issued and owned Speedmaster that he wore) sold for $245,000 in 2015. It is now the property of the Omega Museum in Switzerland.

If any Speedmaster had even the potential to command anywhere near $17 million, it would almost certainly be the first one to be worn on the surface of the moon, which not only remains government property, but has been lost to all since 1970.

CMD_OVRD
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posted 12-02-2020 05:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for CMD_OVRD   Click Here to Email CMD_OVRD     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It looks as though the long produced 1861 version of the Speedmaster is coming to an end. Lots of changes to the new model including dial, caseback, engraving, and bracelet.

Most importantly, the movement is being changed to Omega's Co-Axial 3861, which is quite the departure from the original Moonwatch. If you’ve ever been on the fence about the 1861, now might be the time to buy!

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 12-04-2020 10:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
After 50 years out of production Omega spent millions to recreate the caliber 321. They had 70 year old technical drawings but those drawings were insufficiently detailed and so they reverse engineered the Speedmaster Gene Cernan wore on Apollo 17.

The Caliber 1861 has been such a large part of the Omega story that I don’t see them ever retiring it. Not after they went to such an effort to recreate the classic moon watch movement. But that’s just my opinion.

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 12-10-2020 07:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yesterday, I bought the "First Omega in Space" which as I'm sure many of are aware is a recreation of the Speedmaster Wally Schirra wore on Sigma 7. I'm thrilled with the timepiece and I'm not letting it go. It's beautiful in every way and it's out of production.

However I have just one complaint. The presentation box displays the official Sigma 7 mission patch as in officially fake Sigma 7 mission patch. The Mercury mission patches are all fake and I sort of wish they'd all just vanish.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 12-10-2020 11:59 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA has adopted the souvenir Mercury patches as commemorative designs, so it is not surprising that Omega (and others) would use them as well.

For the subset of their customers who know the history, it would be better to use the artwork painted on the capsule. But for the majority of those buying limited edition Speedmasters, the decorative plaque is just that, decoration.

328KF
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posted 12-10-2020 01:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Fortunately the logo is just on the plaque in the box and not on the watch itself. I really liked the Gemini IV 40th anniversary blue dial version, until I flipped it over and saw that hideous red souvenir patch on the back. The one that looks like a third grader drew it. That was a deal breaker for me.

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 12-11-2020 01:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Logo or not I’d like to add that the First Omega in Space (FOIS) is just a stunning watch and I’m thrilled to own it. I actually prefer it to the “classic" moon watch as it’s lighter and the case is less bulky. Better suited to a small spacecraft cabin where every gram matters. The only disadvantage I can see over the classic is that the alpha hands, although more stylish, are bit less legible than the baton or ‘stick” hands that replaced them. This is a tool watch but also a great dress watch as well.

On a side note I hear that the 2020 Snoopy has been released to Omega dealers so I’m just going to have to see about finding one available for purchase.

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 12-21-2020 03:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It seems that I was mistaken when I said that Omega wasn't going to retire the Caliber 1861 movement. I've read from what I believe to be a reliable source that it will be replaced by the 3861 co-axials.

1202 Alarm
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posted 12-21-2020 07:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 1202 Alarm   Click Here to Email 1202 Alarm     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My Speedmaster went on the moon today!

(That is, on my feldspathic breccia 'Rabt Sbayta 002" 12.1g lunar meteorite...).

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 12-22-2020 07:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
At the end of my first day of ownership of my First Omega in Space (FOIS) I was a bit disappointed to discover that the watch had lost about five or six seconds. Now this wasn’t bad considering that it’s not a certified chronometer but I’d hoped for better. Three days later I was surprised to find that it seemed dead on actuate. I put it on a time-grapher and was amazed that the accuracy was +/- 1 second a day. That's about as good as it gets for any mechanical watch.

So what’s the explanation for this? As a mechanical watch the Speedmaster has lots of moving parts. Apparently it had sat in a box for a year or more in a non running state. It seems that after a year of inaction it needs to run for a few days so that the lubrication can begin to do it’s job properly. The moral of the story is if you buy a new Speedy it might take a day or two to achieve it’s proper accuracy.

Larry McGlynn
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posted 12-22-2020 08:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by 1202 Alarm:
That is, on my feldspathic breccia 'Rabt Sbayta 002" 12.1g lunar meteorite...
The Nystrom Moon globe and the S-1C engine indicator light panel are nothing to sneeze at either.

Gordon Eliot Reade
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posted 01-26-2021 06:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gordon Eliot Reade   Click Here to Email Gordon Eliot Reade     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
One of the most impressive aspects about witnessing a Space Shuttle launch was experiencing the time lag between seeing the main engines and the SRBs ignite and hearing them ignite. To that end I’d like to see Omega reissue the Speedmaster with the telemeter bezel. By timing this lag you would quickly know your distance from the launch pad.

Of course you could achieve the same end with a simple mathematical calculation but that’s not really the point. The point is this; when was the last time you saw a Speedy with a telemeter bezel?

Philip
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posted 01-07-2022 02:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In last week's interview, Omega CEO R. Aeschlimann mentioned that the year 2022 will bring another important Speedmaster anniversary. Speedmaster fans will have to wait and see, but in my opinion and in order of importance:
  • 50 years Apollo 17
  • 60 years FOIS - First Omega In Space
  • 50 years Alaska II project

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-07-2022 08:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Omega has revealed its "Novelties" for 2022, and though there are several new Speedmaster models, none are themed-to or timed with spaceflight anniversaries. The new models include:
  • Speedmaster '57 Calibre 9906

    OMEGA's famous Speedmaster '57, first introduced in 2013, returns in 2022, with a Master Chronometer upgrade and slimmer profile. The new collection consists of eight new stainless steel models, all powered by OMEGA's Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 9906. The use of a manual-winding movement allows for a thinner case and finer bezel, giving the new '57 watches a streamlined look.

    There's a "sandwich" black dial edition with recessed hour markers filled with vintage Super-LumiNova - and three releases with PVD dials, in blue, green and a new varnished burgundy. The entire collection is presented with stainless steel bracelets or matching colored leather straps.

  • Speedmaster Moonwatch Moonshine Gold

    When it comes to case materials, fans of the Moonwatch are already spoiled for choice, with current collection models in steel, 18K Sedna Gold and 18K Canopus Gold. In 2022, OMEGA is taking lunar inspiration to the next level with two new models in 18K Moonshine Gold.

    One with 18K Moonshine Gold dial, black ceramic bezel ring and blackened subdials and indexes. Another with a PVD green coated dial and a green ceramic bezel ring.

    To offer aficionados even greater choice, OMEGA is offering two ways to fix their 18K Moonshine Gold Moonwatch to the wrist: a matching bracelet or strap. Powering all new models is OMEGA's Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 3861.


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