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Vintage Seamaster Legit or Frankenwatch?

  1. Amochosto

    Amochosto Jul 17, 2018

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    Hi Omega-forums members.

    I have a 1960’s Omega Seamaster that my wife purchased for me because it was very similar to a lost watch worn by my late father, gifted to him by my mother when they got married.

    I have looked around trying to learn more about it, for the most part when I have found Omegas they look like it they are labeled as de Ville on the dial. I believe it is a reference 165.0001 or 165.0002.

    When I shine an UV light on the watch the hands light up, but there seems to have never been lume on the dial as currently configured, is this a sign the hands have been replaced or the dial redone?

    It’s not in great shape visually, but I still get a kick from wearing it. Originally I didn’t really care if it was a Frankenwatch because it’s primary purpose is to remind me of my dad, but as I have been reading this forum I have started to formulate a few questions.

    First please let me know what you think about the authenticity of this watch/dial etc.

    Second, the watch looses about 27 seconds a day, I have come to the conclusion that I should no longer wear it until I get it serviced to avoid damaging the movement, am I on the right track or should I put it back into the rotation.

    I know people will want to see pictures of the movement, but I have no confidence in my ability to open the case without causing any damage, so when and if I do get it serviced, I will ask the watchmaker to take pics for me.

    The crystal is quite badly worn, but the dial looks in good shape, some imperfections that appear to be on the dial in these pictures are actually a result of scratches on the crystal.

    From reading this forum and other sources, I understand there have been some examples of the “Swiss Made T” writing, but “T Swiss Made T” is much more common, I also Understand that the “Seamaster” font on my watch would generally be seen in Omegas built earlier than mine likely was (around 1964), but there are examples of this early font showing up much later than 1964. I also believe that in order to find out more I could use the serial number and input it in Omegas website, but the serial number is in the case, and again, I don’t want to open the case myself

    Anyway without further ado, I would like to put up quite a number of pics, and any input from the assembled wisdom of this forum would really be appreciated.

    Apologies for the pics, but all I have for a camera is my iPhone so I can’t take any awesome pictures like some other forum members do.

    70E913E6-754F-4C8A-A2C4-244329CD5733.jpeg 09996774-EDE0-4D0F-B960-33436DC7385B.jpeg 70E913E6-754F-4C8A-A2C4-244329CD5733.jpeg 83157CE2-DE77-48B8-943B-DA349D31D6B7.jpeg 88DD9DCA-1D39-43A8-84CF-EC1D1553CC17.jpeg DEE0A656-CF86-4145-9450-8892A1BB8888.jpeg 8F974816-02AF-4398-B63F-C4D1C2E605EE.jpeg 3EB93505-FBE1-4C0D-A860-A47535D8A2EA.jpeg
     
    75CBB0EB-BF52-452B-9D45-EC5D14DD2BEA.jpeg 0D0CF741-B00F-481B-ACD2-C25CCE5D6D38.jpeg
  2. Shabbaz

    Shabbaz Jul 18, 2018

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    Dial looks good to me. It's a unishell which means you can open it only from the dial side by removing the crown and plexi. A watchmaker should do this. You can give it a service, because service history was probably unknown when you received it. Then you can ask the watchmaker to make pictures of the inside. Then you have all the info you need. If the scratches on the plexi are to deep you can replace it. Otherwise polishing will help. Not sure about the hands. Good luck!
     
  3. michael22

    michael22 Jul 18, 2018

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    I don't see ay tritium on the dial or hands.
     
  4. Amochosto

    Amochosto Jul 18, 2018

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    It’s not obvious, but there is tritium in the little crevices on the hands. It lights up when I shine a UV light on it. There is no tritium on the dial however.
     
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  5. Amochosto

    Amochosto Jul 18, 2018

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    Thank you, I will get the watch serviced. I have a friend who has a similar Omega, within his collection, and he has a guy... I look forward to having more knowledge on the movement.
     
  6. michael22

    michael22 Jul 18, 2018

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    I think it's a redial, but not an ugly one, so that's good.
    What is the case diameter, without crown?

    It looks more like a 147. *** case rather than a 165.*** case.
     
    Edited Jul 18, 2018
  7. ulackfocus

    ulackfocus Jul 18, 2018

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    Gotta make a correction here (sorry Michael). For 6 digit reference numbers, a 147 would be a man's manual winding chronograph with a chronometer rating inside a water resistant case, so scrap that guess. 165 is a man's automatic center sweep seconds without date, so that's a very valid possibility if not for the following information....

    Front loading cases came into use in the very late 50's, and the shape of the S in Seamaster was switched to the rounder style around 1962-ish. Plus, this is a pre-DeVille model, which started going on the dial of these style Seamasters in 1963. However, Omega switched their model numbers from 5 digits (XX.XXX format) to 6 digits (XXX.XXX) around 1962. Also, this could be an American made case, probably making it a 4 digit reference number.

    In conclusion, we need to see inside of the case to be sure of exactly what it is unless somebody specifically knows that exact reference from experience.

    If I were wagering, I'd bet it's a 55x series (550 or 552, most likely a 552) caliber, inside the equivalent non-date version of the 14.770 case (which held the 562 date caliber version). However, there is a small possibility it's a 165.xxx case since that S did exist on 1962 dials for a short time, ranging into the start of the 6 digit reference numbers for a VERY short time IIRC.
     
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  8. TexOmega

    TexOmega Jul 18, 2018

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    Dennis, Is that you?

    Or are we experiencing......

    Invasion of the Body Snatcher’s ?

    Great post!
     
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  9. michael22

    michael22 Jul 18, 2018

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    Thanks Dennis @ulackfocus ; so I should have written 14.7** rather than 147.***?

    The 165's I've seen have tapered lugs, & these lugs are straight, which is why I'm guessing 14.7**.
     
  10. TexOmega

    TexOmega Jul 18, 2018

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    May be an old redial, but still killer:thumbsup: either way.
     
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  11. Amochosto

    Amochosto Jul 18, 2018

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    Thanks for all the replies. The measurement is 33.9 mm measured from 4:00 to 10:00 (I don’t know if this is the right way to do it or not but since it’s pretty circular I think any error will be small). I honesty don’t know if it was cased in the US or not.

    I sure do look forward to seeing the inside, I am trying to get the contact info for my friend’s watchmaker as soon as I can.

    In any case, I was wondering what about the dial makes you think it’s refinished?
     
  12. Dan S

    Dan S Jul 18, 2018

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    The dial might be ok, but it's hard to tell because there is a LOT of distortion from the damaged crystal, which makes the printing look wonky in various photos.
     
  13. Amochosto

    Amochosto Jul 18, 2018

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    I wonder if someone would scrape up the crystal to hide a redial. Interesting.
     
  14. Dan S

    Dan S Jul 18, 2018

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    I wasn't suggesting that. I was just saying that when the crystal is so scratched up, it can make the printing look bad and uneven by causing distortion, even if the dial is good. So it's hard to judge the dial.
     
  15. ulackfocus

    ulackfocus Jul 18, 2018

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    I should have considered "typo" as one of the possibilities. Doh! :confused: So we'd both be looking to lay off our 14.7xx bets on somebody who'd wager on another reference. Know any good bookies here? :p

    Hahahaha! I used to post information like this all the time, in particular about the models I followed extensively (date-at-6 Seamaster bumpers, C-Case Constellations, chronometer and non-chronometer caliber 564 Seamasters, yada, yada, etc.) back when we had topics that required it. You know, back before the invasion. You'd have to go back a year or more before my sanctioned vacation to see the majority of these posts, because that's when this place wasn't schmucktastic.... say, from 2012 into 2015. ;)

    Nowadays, it doesn't take much experience to answer a thread asking "What strap goes with this watch?" or "Should I buy this ______________?" (fill in the series name of the crappy redialed overpolished piece of eBay trash). :p
     
    Edited Jul 18, 2018
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  16. Dan S

    Dan S Jul 18, 2018

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    So you don't have this sort of detailed and nuanced information about the correct color of NATO strap for a Speedmaster?
     
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  17. michael22

    michael22 Jul 18, 2018

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    My reasons for thinking it a redial:
    1. The "swiss made T" doesn't look quite right.
    2. If it is right, there should be tritium lume on the dial.
    3. Tritium doesn't usually turn completely black, & the lume in those hands looks black, like Radium goes.

    It also may be that the dial is original, but has had a cleaning. After the cleaning they decided to reprint the "swiss made T", but not replace the lume.
    The pics just aren't good enough to be sure either way.
    We'll just have to wait for a watchmaker to dismantle it. Please, ask for pictures to be taken, or to take them yourself, of the inside caseback, movement, & bare dial.
     
  18. Foo2rama

    Foo2rama Keeps his worms in a ball instead of a can. Jul 18, 2018

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    Swiss made T can denote only tritium on hands... rare... and anecdotal evidence is the single T denotes only the hands and not the dial.

    Tritium can go and will go black.

    Theoretically it could be in the window for radium with that logo.

    Hence the need to see inside, so the watch can be dated and checked vs known variants and labeling in that time period.


    If it is a redial it’s darn good. And the watch is very good looking.
     
  19. ulackfocus

    ulackfocus Jul 18, 2018

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    I used to think the same thing until a few veterans corrected me years ago. Whether there is one T or two T's depends on the amount of tritium lume used on the display (dial, hands, markers, etc.). Now, it makes sense that if only the hands have lume, then one T would be used, but not always. I can't quote you the actual quantity, but there was a line that if the amount went above that limit, two T's were used regardless of where the luminous material was. And yes, tritium lume can get very dark.

    I think radium stopped being used in favor of tritium around this period too (early 60's), but maybe a Speedmaster guy can be more definitive about that. @Spacefruit @gemini4 - can either of you help out on the luminous material switch?

    Also, if I were wagering I'd be betting that's an original dial. If not, that's an excellent reproduction of the coat hanger S from that era.
     
    Edited Jul 18, 2018
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  20. ulackfocus

    ulackfocus Jul 18, 2018

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    Dan S likes this.