Tag Archives: ST 145.022

Press Release: The ten most representative OMEGA Speedmaster models

Omega Speedmaster CK 2915

Omega Speedmaster CK 2915

1. Omega Speedmaster – 1st generation (1957) 


The OMEGA Speedmaster is a definitive candidate for the most famous chronograph in the world. Without any doubt it also is the world’s most important one. Selected by astronauts, tested and certified by NASA and worn on the moon – it has credentials that no other watch can boast. 

It all started rather inconspicuously in 1957, the year OMEGA introduced its “Professional” line of watches that included the Seamaster 300, the Railmaster and the first Speedmaster. Conceived not for extra-terrestrial use but rather for an earthly desire – speed – the very first Speedmaster, the CK 2915, was intended for and marketed to car enthusiasts, motorists and racing drivers. Its tachymetric bezel placed – for the first time ever – outside the dial and crystal and designed to form part of the exterior case design, was yet another world premiere in OMEGA’s long list of achievements. Powered by the legendary manual-wound calibre 321, defined by the graceful lines of its symmetrical case design and proudly displaying time with hands featuring a “Broad Arrow” hour-hand, the Speedmaster became an instant bestseller.

Omega Speedmaster CK 2998

Omega Speedmaster CK 2998

 
2. Omega Speedmaster – 2nd generation (1959) 

1959 saw the introduction of a revised Speedmaster model, the CK 2998. While the symmetrical case and the calibre 321 were retained, new “Alpha” design hands replaced the ones found on the first model. The tachymeter bezel was also standardized in the black aluminium version still in use today. The CK 2998 was the very model purchased by Mercury astronauts Walter “Wally” M. Schirra and Leroy G. “Gordo” Cooper in 1962 as their private watch. It was worn by Schirra during his Mercury-Atlas 8 (Sigma 7) mission, becoming the first OMEGA Speedmaster worn in space, a full two years before NASA’s now-famous tests that led to the official selection of the Speedmaster for use in all of NASA’s manned missions. 

Omega Speedmaster ST 105.003

Omega Speedmaster ST 105.003


3. Omega Speedmaster – 3rd generation (1963) 

The next development within the Speedmaster family was a decisive one. Introduced in 1963, and powered by the manual-wound calibre 321, the ST 105.003 is the exact model delivered to and tested by NASA. Responding to a request for wrist chronographs in October 1964, OMEGA’s North American agent furnished NASA with the required number of ST 105.003 Speedmasters, without knowing exactly what they would be used for and without informing OMEGA headquarters in Biel, Switzerland. These watches, as well as models from other competing brands, were tested almost to destruction in a series of tests that can justly be described as the toughest trials a watch had ever endured. Emerging victorious and functioning within the required specifications as the sole watch that had not suffered catastrophic failures in the strenuous trials, NASA declared the OMEGA Speedmaster as “officially certified” equipment for its manned space program. Following the successful trials, NASA procured further examples of the ST 105.003 and officially equipped its astronauts with the Speedmaster. This model reached further fame when it was worn for the first time outside the space capsule: on the wrist of astronaut Edward White, this model became part of America’s first “spacewalk” (extra-vehicular activity, or EVA) on June 3rd 1965 during the Gemini 4 mission.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ST 105.012

Omega Speedmaster Professional ST 105.012


4. Omega Speedmaster Professional – 4th generation // The original “Moonwatch” (1964) 

While the brand had no knowledge of what was going on in Houston – indeed NASA’s selection process was carried out without involving the respective companies’ headquarters – the Speedmaster’s design was steadily evolving. In order to offer additional protection to the chronograph’s pushers and its crown, OMEGA designed a slightly altered watch case. Its right side was slightly enlarged, thus enhancing the protection. As it turned out, this “asymmetric” case would be identified the world over as one of Speedmaster’s trademark design-elements. It was introduced to select markets in 1964 with the model ST 105.012 that also featured the mention “Professional” on the dial, as it was indeed prominent part of OMEGA’s professional line of watches. Powered by the same movement, the calibre 321, the model further evolved in 1967 to the reference ST 145.012, with the addition of a slightly improved method of attaching the pushers to the chronograph’s case. This model proved to be the last one to use the brand’s calibre 321, the very movement that guaranteed perfect timing during all six lunar landings up to and including the very last mission to land on the moon: Apollo 17. 

Omega Speedmaster Professional ST 145.022

Omega Speedmaster Professional ST 145.022


5. Omega Speedmaster Professional “Moonwatch” (1968) 

In 1968, one year before Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin set foot on the Moon, OMEGA introduced yet another milestone in the Speedmaster’s evolution: a new movement. Bearing the reference ST 145.022, the new model was powered by the OMEGA calibre 861, the successor of the storied calibre 321. The new manual-wound movement featured several new design elements and reflected OMEGA’s advances in watchmaking technology. Incorporating some production-related improvements as well, the new movement and its succeeding versions continue to power the Speedmaster “Moonwatch” to this very day. 

Omega Speedmaster Professional Mark II Racing

Omega Speedmaster Professional Mark II Racing ST 145.014

 


6. Omega Speedmaster Professional Mark II (1969) 

This model marked the first redesign of the classic Speedmaster Moonwatch case, thus introducing a new or second generation of Speedmaster models into OMEGA’s catalogue. Its birth year was 1969 and the name chosen was “Mark II” to signify that it was in fact the second generation of the manual-wound Speedmaster. Offered in various distinct iterations (stainless steel with black dial, stainless steel with grey and orange “racing” and “yachting” dials, gold-plated with a gilt dial and a very rare version in 18K yellow gold) and powered by the calibre 861, the Mark II’s barrel-shaped case, also referred to as the “Pilots’ Line” case, has its roots in a rather secret (at the time) project that OMEGA was working on: a further enhanced and strengthened version of the Speedmaster for prolonged EVA-use on the lunar surface. One version of this ambitious research project that spanned more than ten years and was code-named “Alaska” featured a strengthened and well-rounded watch case with hooded lugs and protected crown and pushers. When the research project shifted directions, some of the original ideas formed the basis of the “Pilots’ Line” cases and were introduced commercially in the form of the Speedmaster Mark II and the Flightmaster. 

Omega Speedmaster Professional Apollo XI BA 145.022

Omega Speedmaster Professional Apollo XI BA 145.022


7. A gold Speedmaster to celebrate the successful Apollo 11 mission (1970) 


Created especially to commemorate the most important event of modern times, this model was manufactured be¬ginning in the autumn of 1969, first in a special series of 28 num¬bered pieces. Bearing a different inscription (“To mark man’s conquest of space with time, through time, on time”) along with the receiver’s name, it was offered to each of the astronauts active at that time at a gala dinner on November 25, 1969 at Hotel Warwick in Houston. Due to its success, a total of 1,014 of these watches were produced up until 1972. 

Omega Speedmaster Professional ST 145.0031 Snoopy Award

Omega Speedmaster Professional ST 145.0031 Snoopy Award


8. Omega Speedmaster Professional “Snoopy Award Limited Edition” (2003)

A special model produced as a series limited to 5441 numbered pieces to commemorate the Silver Snoopy Award presented to OMEGA by NASA in recognition of the brand’s contributions to the Apollo program. 

Omega Speedmaster Professional 311.32.42.30.04.003 Apollo 13 Silver Snoopy Award

Omega Speedmaster Professional 311.32.42.30.04.003 Apollo 13 Silver Snoopy Award


9. Omega Speedmaster “Apollo 13 Silver Snoopy Award” (2015) 


In 2015, OMEGA introduced the OMEGA Speedmaster “Apollo 13 Silver Snoopy Award”, a watch that pays homage to the unforgettable mission 45 years ago and celebrates the teamwork, quick thinking, ingenuity and courage that brought Commander Jim Lovell, Command Module Pilot Jack Swigert and Lunar Module Pilot Fred Haise home safely. 
A closer look at the timepiece shows that Snoopy, the beloved dog from the Peanuts cartoon and a NASA mascot, decorates the dial and the caseback – a small tribute to the Silver Snoopy Award that OMEGA was presented with in 1970. 

Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Vintage Black 311.12.44.51.01.006.

Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Vintage Black 311.12.44.51.01.006

10. OMEGA Speedmaster Dark Side Of The Moon “Vintage Black” (2015) 

Inspired by the incredible discoveries NASA astronauts made while exploring space, OMEGA launched a statement-making timepiece in 2013 that caught the attention of watch fans and collectors around the world: the ceramic Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon. Combining the brand’s commitment to quality and innovation with its space legacy, OMEGA’s collection of ceramic watches includes now nine stunning models, one of which is known as the Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon “Vintage Black”. These stylish timepieces are emblematic of OMEGA’s passion, pioneering spirit and keen sense of what the watch world wants.

Speedmaster Seven Questions I: Bart

Bart's 1972 Omega Speedmaster Professional 145.022

Bart’s 1972 Omega Speedmaster Professional 145.022

Today we’re launching a new segment: the Speedmaster Seven. Seven questions, aimed at giving our readers a little peek into the mind of Speedmaster collectors and aficionados. What drives them, what Speedmasters do they own and which ones do they dream of?

First to join the party is Bart, a 42 year old BI Consultant from Belgium, with whom we’ve been in touch since back in 2005 – how time flies:

Hi Bart, thank you for taking the time to answer our Speedmaster Seven questions!

  1. Do you remember the first Speedmaster you bought? When did you buy it and which type was it?

It was a Speedmaster Professional  ref. 145.022 ST69 with the Hippocampus on the back. I bought it in 1986, but I unfortunately sold it…(I learned an important lesson here)

  1. What ignited your passion for the Speedmaster?

I’ve been interested in mechanical watches since the eighties. I also like astronomy, aeronautics  and space exploration.  My taste in watches has changed several times over time and my collection nowadays is oriented towards vintage chronographs.

The Speedmaster is a true classic and certainly a must-have watch for someone with my interests.  I won’t re-list all its merits, but every time I put one of mine on, it puts a smile on my face and I proudly wear it.

  1. What is the last Speedmaster you bought?

I’ve bought a 1973 Speedmaster Mark IV ref. 176.009 in September this year.

Bart's 1972 Omega Speedmaster Mark IV 176.009

Bart’s 1972 Omega Speedmaster Mark IV 176.009

  1. What is the most distinct Speedmaster you own or have owned?

From the two Speedmasters that I own right now, the Mark IV is more distinct than the 1972 145.022 because that last one is more commonly seen.

  1. What is your collection like? For example, is it focused on Speedmasters, Omega’s, chronographs or ….?

My collection is mainly focused on vintage chronographs.  I’m essentially collecting movements.

I have affordable chrono’s (Citizen 8110a,Seiko 6139-600x) and less affordable (for me at least) chrono’s (Omega’s and Heuer).

This is my current chronograph movement list:

  • Omega 861 (Lemania 1872 derived)
  • Omega 1040 (Lemania 1340 derived)
  • Heuer cal. 12
  • Seiko 6139
  • Citizen 8110a
  1. Do you have a Speedmaster grail watch? If so, which one is it?

Yes I do! (of course) I’m really happy with what I have, but I would love to own the so called (nicknamed) Holy Grail, a ref. 376.0822, with the Omega 1045 movement, which is Lemania 5100 derived. I wouldn’t mind owning a Snoopy either.

  1. Bracelet or strap?

Speedmasters look good on everything, but on my 861 I prefer straps (Nato, leather) because of the versatility. I wear my Mark IV mostly on the bracelet which I like a lot.

More images in the gallery below.

Thank you Bart!

 

SpeedyWatches @ Monochrome part II: The Reinhard Furrer Speedmaster

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

Remember our posts about the Reinhard Furrer Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ a.k.a. Alaska Project III – the original article and the service pictures? Well, it’s one of the highlights of Bonhams on December 10th 2014 auction, giving watchcollectors (with deep pockets) the rare chance to own an actual NASA Speedmaster. Since we had the chance to extensively research this particular watch (our master watchmaker took it fully apart!), we can highly recommend it – it’s a very special watch with unrivalled provenance and looks to die for.

Our friends over at Monochrome-Watches took this opportunity to write an article on the Reinhard Furrer Omega Speedmaster Professional, using pics provided by SpeedyWatches. Thanks for a great read Brice, and we’re proud to have contributed to another stellar article on one of the prime watch blogs!

Full service – 145.022 caliber 861

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861

 

We recently took the ‘Reinhard Furrer’ Omega Speedmaster Professional reference 145.022 to our watchmaker for a full service. Of course we had to take a few pics of the Speedmaster Professional in full, up-close-and-personal glory up.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

The 145.022 is of course powered by the wonderful caliber 861, and that’s what you’ll see in most of these pictures. The caliber 861 has been used in the Speedmaster for decades and it’s a tried and tested movement.

The first picture shows various movements parts in a basket, ready for a cleaning. The pic above shows the movement missing a few key parts – most notable the main spring.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Next up we have a few more parts: glass – movement holder – crown – dust cover – dial – main spring. The glass and spring were replaced.

Omega Speedmaster Replacement Parts

Omega Speedmaster Replacement Parts

Replacement parts – factory sealed and 100% original. Only the best!

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

While the case and bracelet where not polished, they were thoroughly cleaned. One might recognize the unique swirl that only the ‘Star Watch Case’ Speedmasters posses.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Small parts. Very important though!

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Here’s the movement from the caseback side, missing part of the stopwatch mechanism.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Original Omega tool for testing and assembly. Dial side of the movement.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

The wonderful and unique ‘Radial’ dial is refitted. The hands are still missing.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978, caliber 861.

And the hands are back on.. This ‘naked’ view allows us to fully admire the great detail on this particular dial – it’s just stunning!

Read more about this Speedmaster in this post.

Add.: this watch is the very model being auctioned by Bonhams on December 10th 2014.

The Reinhard Furrer Omega Speedmaster Professional NASA 145.022

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

Earlier today we promised more pictures and details of the Omega Speedmaster Professional NASA 145.022 with so-called ‘Radial’ dial. No more waiting – ready for take off!

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

As noted by in the comments section of our previous post, it is indeed the very same Speedmaster that was first featured on FratelloWatches: the one that was once owned by Reinhard Furrer. After his untimely death the watch was given by his family to a friend and fellow astronaut, who now still has the watch in his possession.

FratelloWatches did a rather comprehensive write-up on the history of this watch and the late Mr. Reinhard Fuller. It is worth a read! As their is little to none to be added to the Fratello post, we’ll stick to pictures and a few remarks on the specifics of the watch and it’s design.

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

A few notable differences

This Omega Speedmaster 145.022 is different from your regular Speedy Pro on two key points: the dial and the caseback. While the dial features the exceedingly rare Radial number alignment, the caseback is engraved with NASA issue numbers.

An example of a Speedmaster with a similar dial can be found in the OmegaMania catalogue. The obvious difference compared to a regular Speedy Pro is the alignment of the numbers of the subdials, but the complete lack of any ‘Swiss’ wording at 6 o’clock is also very unusual – and thus quite notable.

While Ace Photo Studio did an excellent job in the 10 minutes (!) we gave them for this shoot (no Photoshop!), the high-res picture by Antiquorum is really the only way to get a grasp of the fine details. The picture below allows us to fully admire the detailed print of the subdials:

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978 by Antiquorum

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978 by Antiquorum

But as stated, while the lay-out of the numerals of the subdials is obvious, it is not the only thing that caught our eye when admiring this Speedy. What about the lacking ‘Swiss’ designation – in whatever form?

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978 by Antiquorum

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978 by Antiquorum

Is there any way to make sense of this? While it might seem puzzling, there might be an explanation. Please – do not hesitate to share your views in the comments! Note – we are still looking for ways to verify the segment below;

The Star Watch Case

Something that is often discussed in Speedmaster circles is the ‘Made in America’ rule. Supposedly NASA insisted that the majority of parts -or value- of their equipment should be made in the USA. So how does a Swiss watch company -with the only watch certified for use by NASA at the time- get around this? Omega’s solution was to have the cases made in the USA, and so they did. They contracted an American case maker and had them make Speedmaster cases. While this may seem like a random thought, it actually isn’t: the mark of the Star Watch Case Company can easily be seen in the pic of the caseback below – it is the line starting at 3 o’clock.

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

While rules for ‘Swiss Made’ or any other designation have changed quite drastically in the last 20-30 years, it is not that much of a leap to think that the 50% value added in the USA (including casing, regulation) would exclude the Speedmaster Professional in NASA-disguise from using such wording on its dial.

It is documented that Omega did contract the Star Watch Case Company for just this reason – if interested, you can read more about it right here.

Below you’ll find a few additional pictures of this stunning watch. Once more: do not hesitate to share your views in the comments!

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional 'Radial' 145.022 ca. 1978

Omega Speedmaster Professional ‘Radial’ 145.022 ca. 1978

We would like to thank the following entities for making this happen:

  • First of all of course the gentleman collector who owns this stunning Speedmaster. It would not have been possible without your cooperation!
  • Ace Photo Studio for the excellent job performed in the very short time frame we permitted – please note, these pics were made in just 10 minutes without any Photoshop! Kudos guys! Their website is not up yet, but don’t hesitate to ask us for details.
  • FratelloWatches for finding out about the watch and its whereabouts.
  • Antiquorum for the high-res pic as found in the OmegaMania Auction.
  • Military Watch Resource and user Camfam for the info on the Star Watch Case Company.

Add.: this watch is the very model being auctioned by Bonhams on December 10th 2014.