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My first ever vintage, my first ever Omega, I trust you guys - did I do alright?

  1. Eon

    Eon Nov 9, 2019

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    Hey all, I'm a 19 year old freshman mechanical engineer and a massive watch enthusiast. I'm no means a vintage expert but I have always had an appreciation for them. Previously I had never really found a piece that "spoke" to me per se, lots of nice watches but none that gave the right vibe I was looking for.

    Well, a friend and I were at a knife and gun expo here in town and out of the 400 or so booths, a small handful were selling watches. They were almost exclusively vintage pieces, tons of old Rolex's from the 80s and 90s, lots of Bullovas, etc, but only two Omegas.

    The one I fell in love with was this little cutie. From what I've managed to find it's an early 1950s Seamaster with a 344 caliber bump movement in it. I had no idea movements like this existed but I absolutely love the little taps I feel every now and then. The engineering behind it is also super cool and I love staring at the movement despite it not being the cleanest example out there.

    I snagged it for $150 and I felt pretty good about that. Did I get a reasonable first start to the world of vintage or should I have done more research like I normally would have? I'd love to know if the 2576-13 on the interior of the case back is the reference number or what it is otherwise, what year it's from, and anything else a newcomer should know. Strap suggestions are also welcome!

    I made an account here just to get some thoughts so please go easy on me if there's something I managed to miss.
    Thank you!
    1.JPG 2.JPG 3.JPG 4.JPG 5.JPG
     
  2. Dan S

    Dan S Nov 9, 2019

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    Welcome to the forum. Indeed 2576 is the reference number, and the "-13" refers to the 13th run of that reference. The movement appears to be a cal 342, not 344 as indicated by the OP. Here is the Omega Vintage Database page for the reference: https://www.omegawatches.com/en-us/watch-omega-seamaster-omega-ck-2576

    As noted, the watch is from the early 1950s, and it appears to be mostly original, including probably the hands. The dial on your watch has been repainted at some point in the past, and the original luminescent compound on the hands and dial has also been replaced (probably a long time ago). The crown has been replaced, with what I suspect may be a non-Omega crown. For $150, none of these issues need bother you too much if you are happy with the watch.

    The faint hand-scribed engravings inside the case-back were made by watchmakers who serviced the watch in the past. As you may know, mechanical watch movements must be "serviced" every 5-10 years in order to continue to run properly. This involves disassembly of the movement, cleaning the parts, and reassembly with proper lubrication.
     
    Edited Nov 9, 2019
    phamti, chronoboy64, Sidnos and 5 others like this.
  3. Walrus

    Walrus Nov 9, 2019

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    Ya that’s a pretty bad redial but you didn’t pay much and you like it. As long as your happy it’s cool
     
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  4. STANDY

    STANDY schizophrenic pizza orderer and watch collector Nov 9, 2019

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    Redial and tired movement. But for $150 you done OK.
    Get a quote for a service and decide if it’s worth putting that amount of money into

    this bit looks troubled but @Archer or @JimInOz might know what it does
    4A4CD0BC-506B-4BE4-966B-24FCE32F45A7.jpeg
     
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  5. JimInOz

    JimInOz "Helpful Hints from Heloise" of bracelet cleaning. Nov 9, 2019

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    The bit with the screw in it is the Crown Wheel Core, it's a plate that hold the Crown Wheel (the silver coloured gear thing) down and stops it escaping.

    Its purpose is to transmit winding force from the crown/stem or the automatic winder to the ratchet wheel (the bigger silvery gear thing). That in turn is connected to the mainspring via an arbor, so the ratchet wheel eventually winds the mainspring.

    The Crown Wheel Core looks to either:

    Have the side broken off
    or
    Have been badly stained by rust/corrosion.

    It's close to the crown/stem so if water gets in, that's usually the place that corrosion starts.

    Hard to tell what it is without a better well lit pic.
     
  6. Eon

    Eon Nov 10, 2019

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    @JimInOz Here's some better lighting maybe, to my eyes in person it looks like corrosion. IMG_0730.JPG
     
  7. watchyouwant

    watchyouwant ΩF Clairvoyant Nov 10, 2019

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    Good start with vintage Omegas. The core will hold and function a while longer. The movement has been abused in the past. If you want to wear it on a daily basis, you should have serviced/cleaned/oiled. I would not replace parts for optical reasons. The plating looks gone due to past services and the wrong cleaning solution. As long as it works well, don't bother. Will do the job anyway. Case is ok. Dial is what it is. Lume is present behind the markers and on hands. Enjoy it and use as an entry to learn more. Be careful, vintage watches are addictive.....correct crown easy to find on eBay. You will have to replace the stem too; chances are high, that moisture in the past has rusted the stem in the crown.but, again, enjoy it and wear it! Nice model. Kind regards. Achim
     
  8. Eon

    Eon Nov 10, 2019

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    What would be the best way to get said quote? Should I try and find a local watch repair expert and see if they service vintage Omegas or should I try and do something more first party? Do you have any rough guesses on prices/timelines?
     
  9. STANDY

    STANDY schizophrenic pizza orderer and watch collector Nov 10, 2019

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    Find a watchmaker with a Omega parts account and ask. Can’t give you a price as parts might be needed. It will cost more than you paid for the watch but.
    ( maybe over double )

    So where are you in the world, members might be able to point you to a good watchmaker locally or not that far.
     
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  10. Archer

    Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Nov 10, 2019

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    I think it might just be dirty, and possibly has a scratch on it - will likely clean up fine.

    Parts account isn't much help with these, as Omega carries very few parts for the movements. I often have to go to the open market to find parts.

    Cheers, Al
     
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  11. Eon

    Eon Nov 10, 2019

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    I'm currently going to school in Tulsa, Oklahoma but I go back home to Boise, Idaho for breaks. There are a few watchmakers around here but I haven't been in OK very long so I have no idea who's the best to go to.

    On a side note, I was tentative on the service but after a day it's running pretty fast, fast enough to be of concern over long periods so I'll either need to only wear it occasionally, get it serviced soon, or just keep adjusting the time.
     
  12. BlackTalon

    BlackTalon Nov 10, 2019

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    Uh oh, your freshman engineering teachers are going to be all over you for coming up with the wrong number! :D
     
  13. Eon

    Eon Nov 10, 2019

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    I'd much rather blame my inability to recall the right number in the heat of the moment as opposed to poor researching skills. What happens on the forums stays on the forums, am I right? ::shy::
     
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  14. BlackTalon

    BlackTalon Nov 10, 2019

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    Sorry, bad joke. Although it was a few decades ago when I went through a gauntlet of freshman engineering weed-out classes, the way the teachers (largely retired Corps of Engineers guys) would skewer students for coming up with incorrect numbers/ answers is still imprinted in my brain.
     
  15. Eon

    Eon Nov 10, 2019

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    My professors are pretty down to earth guys, lots of time in industry so they know where being precise is important and where it's alright to slip a bit. If, for example, I said the movement in my Omega was a 7s26 or 6r13, I would have been shot on sight but since I got "close enough" they probably would have understood.

    Glad to know I'm in the right crowd of enthusiasts though, hope engineering treated you well!
     
  16. lpestre

    lpestre Nov 10, 2019

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    Personally, I always prefer to put more first to get a nice piece, it always pays in the long run.

    Bring it to a watchmaker, get a quote, and if the total amount is close to one with original dial, etc. I would resell it and buy another one.
     
  17. Eon

    Eon Nov 10, 2019

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    That sounds like a smart way to do it. The only problem is that I haven't been able to find a similar but more original version of it out there. I haven't really been patient in the search but the market isn't exactly overflowing with them.

    What do you qualify as a "nice piece?" Are we talking a perfect example or just something that you can find very little fault with?
     
  18. DON

    DON Nov 11, 2019

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    You got a well used watch at a good price. Sub dialed seamaster models are very popular. You also have an incorrect crown,, but easy to find

    You should show a picture of the balance to see where the regulator is sitting as you mention it's running fast

    DON
     
  19. JimInOz

    JimInOz "Helpful Hints from Heloise" of bracelet cleaning. Nov 12, 2019

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    I'll put $5 on it being fully "R".

    :whistling:
     
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  20. jeppehh

    jeppehh Nov 12, 2019

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    F5F0CCA8-F5E8-4818-8AB3-748410F0C201.gif
    :D