Forums Latest Auctions Members

Omega made cases vs contract cases in early watches

  1. oMEGaFanVintage

    oMEGaFanVintage Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    14
    Likes
    24
    hi.

    How do you tell the difference between a watch case made by Omega and a contract case? What are the defining characteristics?
     
  2. Tony C.

    Tony C. Ωf Jury member Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    4,386
    Likes
    10,935
    Omega manufactured cases (pre-1970, at least)? News to me...
     
  3. Edward53

    Edward53 Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    2,446
    Likes
    3,931
    Bit of a slap down there, was it really necessary? OP obviously didn't know about contract cases and the question was a fair one. Perhaps it could be rephrased as, how do you tell cases bought in by Omega from those made without their involvement?
     
    Kmart, Cad290, Foo2rama and 2 others like this.
  4. oMEGaFanVintage

    oMEGaFanVintage Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    14
    Likes
    24
    Thank you for rephrasing it for the right audience, Edward53. That's precisely my meaning.
     
    Nathan1967 likes this.
  5. Foo2rama

    Foo2rama Keeps his worms in a ball instead of a can. Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    11,458
    Likes
    15,680
    My understanding, which is not 100% correct is that they did not carry Omega reference numbers on the caseback. I know there are a few exceptions to that rule.
     
  6. gatorcpa

    gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    9,374
    Likes
    8,930
    Omega used cases made by many contractors. Some were made in Switzerland, some were made in their country of ultimate sale. Generally, this was done to avoid customs on imported solid gold watch cases, or because local standards for content were more lenient outside of Switzerland. For example, gold-filled cases were more accepted in the US than in other markets, so it made economic sense to make those cases in the US.

    Generally, cases made for Omega have a triangle logo with the words "Omega Watch Co.", that looks like this:

    Swiss made case back:
    [​IMG]

    UK made gold case back:
    [​IMG]

    Brazilian made gold case back (Carci)
    [​IMG]

    US made gold-filled case back. No triangle, but has the proper wording:
    [​IMG]

    Typical non-Omega 18K case. Probably from Argentina:
    [​IMG]
    Note the lack of the triangle logo above.

    Modern (post-1980) Omega cases are all Swiss made.

    Hope this helps,
    gatorcpa
     
  7. cristos71

    cristos71 Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    4,939
    Likes
    21,417
    I'll just add a French case back which although these do have an Omega logo, it is of an older type compared to the period of case production.

    014 edit.JPG
     
  8. Peemacgee

    Peemacgee Purrrr-veyor of luxury cat box loungers Jun 18, 2017

    Posts
    2,889
    Likes
    3,275
    Don't forget the other UK cases - by Dennison
    Probably more common than the Shackman shown above.
    Picture courtesy of Desmond's blog.
    IMG_2711.JPG
     
  9. oMEGaFanVintage

    oMEGaFanVintage Jun 20, 2017

    Posts
    14
    Likes
    24
    Thanks all.

    Here's a specific question then

    Is this a case made for Omega or a contract case? I'm told it's a case made for Omega IMG_4136.JPG

    Conversely, I'm told that that this is a french contract case.

    IMG_4370.JPG

    Any wisdom?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  10. omegastar

    omegastar Jun 20, 2017

    Posts
    1,424
    Likes
    3,546
    It is written Swiss made in the second one.
    This is the old Omega logo before the triangle, that was kept in France.
     
  11. gatorcpa

    gatorcpa ΩF InvestiGator Staff Member Jun 20, 2017

    Posts
    9,374
    Likes
    8,930
    A case made for Omega is a contract case.

    It was designed by Omega and produced for Omega by another company under contract.

    Until recently, most Swiss watch companies did not produce their own watch cases.

    For Swiss made solid gold cases, there are usually responsibility marks which contain a number that identifies the specific company that made the case.

    http://download1639.mediafire.com/8...ull_list_ Swiss_Gold_responsibility_marks.pdf

    Hope this helps,
    gatorcpa