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Expanding my horizons - learning about f300s

  1. Ritzwatch

    Ritzwatch Aug 26, 2017

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    A friend of mine knows I linger on this forum, enjoying the opportunity to learn a bit more in my hobbiest pursuit. He forwarded me a series of pictures last night of a f300. I don't know a lot about these electrics, I confess, so I decided this was an opportunity to try to learn. (These are not my pics, and the watch is 1000 miles away, so this is all I can give you).

    I checked Chuck Maddox's case reference, Old-Omegas brochures, eBay for previous watch sales, as well as past OF posts and a few other internet sites. I came away with my own conclusion, but, to paraphrase a Mod on this forum, "everything is possible with old Omegas". So, rather than rely on myself, especially on a watch that I have never studied before, I decided to share some pics and get some input from those more knowledgeable than I. If the answer is as obvious as I think it is, please be gentle with me. Thanks,

    First, the watch and dial:

    thumbnail_IMG9569821.jpg f300.1.jpg

    Seems to be a "D" shape watch from around 1972 or so. The case doensn't appear to have been polished too much, and the brush markings seem to be consistent with those on the bracelet. Not really my style, but hey, this is about learning, not buying, right?

    I have only seen a few of these, mostly in Steel, and mostly Constellations, so my first thought was that this had to be the wrong dial for the watch. I have found images of this dial in online photos or brochures, but in round-cased watches; I can't find it in a gold Seamster. My initial thought was that this should be a Constellation, not a Seamaster, but it seems to be right. I am o.k. with this, provided those are little bits of lume I see at the end of the markers, and not just glare from the angle of the photo. The fact that this is a gold "OM" dial makes sense on this gold watch. So, I think this dial is correct, but my failures to recognize redialed watches in the past is what makes me a happy OF sales forum buyer, so if I am wrong, please correct me.

    Then, the movement:

    thumbnail_IMG9569901.jpg

    OK, a 9162 (at the 3 o'clock position on the movement) - aka an Omega 1250. What I was expecting from this watch. Of course, the pics are lacking enough detail for me to be sure of a serial number, I'd like to see a 34m+ serial number (1972+), but the next photo gave me a "what the hell" moment and caused me to think a lot less about the movement number.

    The case back:

    thumbnail_IMG9569831.jpg


    Yeah, for what appears (to my still-in-training eye) to be an otherwise decent piece, why is there an Observatory on the back of a Seamaster? WTH? Did someone take a round-cased Seamaster dial and put it in a Constellation D Case? Would those even fit? Now my instincts kick in and I want to know what is going on; let's check the case back just for kicks:

    thumbnail_IMG9569891.jpg

    It doesn't show as well as I hoped, but I believe the ref # to be 198.0004.

    So, because of the "9", I think this case is right for a Constellation Electric, so it could be a fit for this watch; however, the "1" makes me think it should have been on a strap, not a bracelet. I haven't any idea on the .0004, and couldn't find it on the hit-or-miss vintage database, but I have seen that reference before when associated with images of steel watches, and this caseback is marked 18k.

    So, my initial impression was that someone swapped out a Seamaster dial on a Connie, simply because I associate Connies as a higher end Omega in 1972, and this was cased in gold (if the hallmark were correct). However, based on the "19x"caseback ref #, I think someone either lost the original casebook, scarred up the original gold when removing it and found an incorrect replacement, or just didn't know what they were doing and lost track when opening too many watches to change batteries at some mall kiosk. Whatever happened, my sleuthing leads me to believe that at some point the wrong caseback found its way onto an otherwise right watch.

    What (or how much) have I missed here? Advance appreciation to the Forum for your kind input.
     
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  2. Larry S

    Larry S Color Commentator for the Hyperbole. Aug 26, 2017

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    Great sleuth work. Kinda obvious caseback issue but it shows the rigor one needs to pursue outside of buying on this forum. That said, I don't own one, yet, but Omega did very creative things with Quartz as I gather info from these forums. Really handsome watches.
     
  3. padders

    padders Aug 26, 2017

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    I think you may be right about the dial swap. The D cases were marked up as Connies AFAIK, though that is a solid gold dial so perhaps a few D cases were badged as SMs. It doesn't really matter, all the hummers other than the cones and 198.005 diver were pretty much exactly the same spec regardless of branding. Don't get too hung up on 398 vs 198. In my experience, all hummers are 198s, regardless of integrated bracelet or strap.

    I assume you have already seen this website with lots of hummer info. If not, enjoy:

    http://electric-watches.co.uk/makers/omega/omega-f300-tuning-fork/omega-f300-case-numbers-and-dates/
     
    Edited Aug 26, 2017
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  4. Ritzwatch

    Ritzwatch Aug 26, 2017

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    Thanks for the replies, guys. You two have, in your posts, more concisely crystalized my question: Which of these is wrong? Right now, it seems I have one vote for each: One for the Case back (LarryS), One for the Dial (Padders). I will be interested to see what happens as others weigh in.

    P.S. Man, I can fritter a Saturday a.m. away on this forum. :)
     
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  5. Vercingetorix

    Vercingetorix Aug 26, 2017

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    The 198.0004 search brings up d shaped Constellations. Searching d shape Seamaster brings up d shaped Constellations. My money is on dial swap. Lots of these solid gold watches scrapped in the past. My money is on the original Seamaster case getting scrapped, but the scrapper not knowing the dial being solid gold, saved it. Somehow it ended up in a Constellation case.
     
  6. Canuck

    Canuck Aug 26, 2017

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    This is a comment, not an answer to your question re: Constellations. I have an F300 DeVille with the dial marked chronometer. It has a plain back. So, Constellation, Seamaster, and DeVille watches with chronometer marked dials, F300 movements, some with plain backs, and some with "Observatory" backs. All movements capable of the same degree of accuracy. The chronometer rating on a mechanical Constellation meant a slightly different movement. Seems maybe it doesn't on F300 Omegas. The dial on the subject watch is seen on other models as well. Gold dial? Does anyone know for certain that Omega used solid gold alloy dials on gold cased Omegas?
     
  7. Deafboy

    Deafboy His Holiness Puer Surdus Aug 26, 2017

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    ...tuning fork in this case! ::bleh::
     
  8. No.15

    No.15 Aug 26, 2017

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    I know enough to be dangerous but I think you have a dial/movement swap.

    My F300 Seamaster has the sea monster on the back. It is a great watch and very accurate. BTW I find the 344 batteries fit a little better in mine.
     
  9. Ritzwatch

    Ritzwatch Aug 26, 2017

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    Pardon me if I may be a little slow on the update, @Deafboy. Doing a little more looking into this, and taking some screenshots from
    http://www.deskdivers.com/Site/SMf300.html

    The 1250 was in the SM line,

    Screen Shot 2017-08-26 at 1.13.49 PM.png


    are you saying the movement was not used in the Connies?

    When I read from the image, below, it says the crown and tube, as well as the lack of space for the bezel, differentiate these from the Connie, so, how does this dial end up in this watch without the room?
    Screen Shot 2017-08-26 at 1.13.17 PM.png

    I think I am with @No. 15 on this, and there was both a dial swap and a movement swap, putting a SM f300 inner workings into a Connie case.
     
  10. JackDaniels83

    JackDaniels83 Aug 26, 2017

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    As far is I know, the dial in most Omega f300 cases is a little bit smaller then the movement (I do not even have one that is designed a different way) and is fitted through the case back (I have quite a lot of them: click). The movement is held by three clamps and screws. Even the TV-cases have round dials, the only difference is that the round watches have hour and minute markers on the dial, the TV cases don't.

    Could be a service swap (due to lack of the original dial). I have sold four old f300 18K dials in the last 6 months. They are worth 130€ each (gold price). That means, if you decide to buy a constellation dial you can subtract the amount of 130 you will get for the old dial.
     
    Edited Aug 26, 2017
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  11. X350 XJR

    X350 XJR Vintage Omega Aficionado Aug 26, 2017

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  12. padders

    padders Aug 26, 2017

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    Yep that is the smoking gun. The dial was swapped from a gold 198.005 (pic above) onto a gold D case Connie. Mystery solved.
     
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  13. JackDaniels83

    JackDaniels83 Sep 15, 2017

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    I have acquired an 18K gold Constellation dial on a donor movement. Do you still need one?
     
  14. Ritzwatch

    Ritzwatch Sep 15, 2017

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    Thanks JD83, I will send a PM.
     
  15. mikechi22

    mikechi22 Sep 15, 2017

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    Your research skills are really tremendous! I admire you! In my obsessive reading of this site (life is quite uneventful living where I do in China, ahem), I've never seen a D-case come up, so your post was a revelation! Very cool!

    You probably have already uncovered in your reading that these hummers are expensive and difficult to repair, apparently. I still want one, though! My question to you...somehow I have the idea that you might be Americano...who has spare parts and can repair these in the USA? If you aren't a Yankee, please ignore the question.

    Otherwise, what an informative post!
     
  16. No.15

    No.15 Sep 15, 2017

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    Not in USA but this place is supposed to be good http://electric-watches.co.uk/
     
  17. mikechi22

    mikechi22 Sep 15, 2017

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    Yes, it would just be daunting to get from USA and back if I were to get one that needs a service.
     
  18. Damo

    Damo Sep 16, 2017

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    http://electric-watches.co.uk/

    ^ that place is good, I've recently had a date wheel replacement (common problem not clicking over at midnight) service and new crystal from there. And here it is...

    1505559670853663854851.jpg
     
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  19. Deafboy

    Deafboy His Holiness Puer Surdus Sep 16, 2017

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    I'm in the US and had my f300 serviced in the Philippines! Very happy with the work too!
    [​IMG]
     
  20. mikechi22

    mikechi22 Sep 16, 2017

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    Interesting! I'll keep that in mind! I need to get one first!