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  Replica Apollo Omega Speedmaster velcro strap

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Author Topic:   Replica Apollo Omega Speedmaster velcro strap
Kizzi
Member

Posts: 15
From: Manchester, England
Registered: Apr 2012

posted 04-20-2012 08:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kizzi   Click Here to Email Kizzi     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'd like to share what I've been making: a Velcro watch strap for my Omega Speedmaster. To cut to the chase, pictures of the finished article are available here.

Being a scale modeller, I've approached it as I would if I was making as accurate model as I could. Firstly, I based my research on blueprints in Chuck Maddox's site.

There are about 10 watchbands in the Dwg. SEB12100030, so I had to choose which one was flown to the moon. Sheet one of the blueprints details all the material specifications that the watch strap should be made from, for example:

  • MIL-F-21840C Type II velcro tape.
  • MIL-T-5038 Type III (O.D. binding tape).
  • MIL-S-7720A (stainless steel). The spec allows for 302 or 316 steel.
It's apparent that only the -201/202 and -209/210 configurations where made from black Velcro, while the six other configurations were all made from beta fabric (or Velcro made from beta fabric) so as to be fireproof in 100% oxygen. This also seems to bear out that I can't find any pictures of white watch straps used other than for training, such as here.

The 19 inch -201 Velcro watchband also seems to have been either for the cuff checklist or the mirror (from image here). NASA noted that Apollo 17 left two wrist mirror and SEB12100030-201 watchbands on the moon.

So the Apollo moon watch strap used for an Omega Speedmaster has to be either the -202 or the -209/210. This is born out by the pages 8.4-1 to 8.4-3 of Handbook of Pilot Operational Equipment for Manned Space Flight. A search for "Chronograph, Irwin, Apollo 15" and "Ron Evans SEB12100030 1087" should bring up contemporary photographs of each.

The last problem was what sort of markings should be printed on the watch strap. Bonhams did have a photograph that you could zoom in on for Fred Haise's Apollo 13 watchstrap, but that has now been removed. The best resource now available is based on JSC part numbering system for flight hardware. Sometimes you see CF-55052-5 printed on the watch strap, but that's for the original Gemini project design, with a rounded tab end.

All in all I'm very pleased with the results. It's not really a 1:1 scale model, but not an original flown item either. I do think it is the most accurate NASA watch strap for the Omega, though.

garymilgrom
Member

Posts: 1731
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 04-20-2012 11:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Beautiful work!

freshspot
Member

Posts: 287
From: Lexington, MA, USA
Registered: Dec 2005

posted 04-20-2012 06:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for freshspot   Click Here to Email freshspot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That's awesome!

Jurg Bolli
Member

Posts: 565
From: Albuquerque, NM
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 04-27-2012 12:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jurg Bolli   Click Here to Email Jurg Bolli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Do you have any plans of making more than the one you have?

Kizzi
Member

Posts: 15
From: Manchester, England
Registered: Apr 2012

posted 04-30-2012 02:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kizzi   Click Here to Email Kizzi     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Jurg Bolli:
Do you have any plans of making more than the one you have?

Yes, once I developed the techniques of making the steel loops, and the printing, and tamed a semi-industrial sewing machine, they're quite fun to make.

My next project is the -207. Early days still, just sourcing the right materials!

dsenechal
Member

Posts: 409
From:
Registered: Dec 2002

posted 05-02-2012 11:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dsenechal   Click Here to Email dsenechal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I can vouch for Phil and the Omega straps that he's producing. They're the best looking replicas out there. He is also a nice guy.

spaced out
Member

Posts: 2691
From: Paris, France
Registered: Aug 2003

posted 11-25-2012 02:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaced out   Click Here to Email spaced out     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
To avoid any confusion now or in the future I would strongly suggest that you mark the item as a replica in some way that can be easily checked. It could be a discrete marking of some kind but it should be indisputable proof that the item is not an original.

Also, I don't think you should use a real serial number. For example, it wouldn't affect the accurate appearance of the replica to use a serial number starting with a digit not actually used by NASA.

All times are CT (US)

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