145.022-76 Reviewed

This watch is on sale at www.Omegafrums.net. I have no connection to the watch or the seller. I am reviewing it as there have been few examples on the market of this reference and this one does seem nice. I like looking at nice ones.

206065-407f0ff8c675456764cf242dcba46045
Photo from listing. Here we can clearly see the domed dial, the DN90 bezel, and the white hands

A 145.022-76 is near the tail end of the interest of this site. It is this reference where we see the dial change from a stepped to a dome – not flat as in the MKII but slightly domed, like the very first speedmasters. Some of these 1970’s watches can acquire a very pleasing patina, although this one is not one of them. It remains in very nice clean condition with no degradation.

So first we must go over the basics, checking the movement serial and case match. The serial is 39m so fits in with my observations for a -76. The case back is correctly marked.

Lets go over the condition. We must be careful not to be confused, or diverted by the box and papers.

As always we start with the heart of the value, the dial. At the risk of contracting  myself immediately, the 1970’s series of references actually have the least value proportion in the dial, but this may be changing. This dial is a painted logo, short indices, T SWISS T, gently domed dial and is correct for the reference. The plots are slightly yellowed and do not match the hands, which appear to be service replacements and possibly superluminova. If they are not SL then they are very new looking tritium and they at odds with the rest of the watch.

The case looks good, with some minor signs of wear, but look like honest history marks to me, not signs of aggressive polishing. The sides appear to have the brushing on them but as is often the case its hard to see.

The movement, a calibre 861 looks clean, and the screws seem clean. The pushers do not look new, and I wonder how long until the movement needs a service. But then I wonder how long any watch I acquire needs a service. The serial fits in range and I am happy it is likely to be an original movement. The one question mark is over the reset position of the hour recorder, which is slightly creeping from the straight up position. It could just be that the hand is set on the post wrong, or we have chrono creep and a service bill.

206066-cac4245faa1e25e0876ddc13cbbe3d7f
Photo from listing. In this photo we can clearly see the subdial recorder at six o’clock is reset to a little past the straight up position. This needs further investigation and could just be a hand needing positioning or it is chrono creep that to me always indicates need of a service.

The bezel is the correct DN90 in good to excellent condition. It is only a matter of time before these bezels shoot up in value. It is important, I believe to make sure any watch of this era we acquire has a good one.

The watch comes with a 1171 bracelet and 633 endlinks. This ensemble adds about $200-$400 to the value.

The box and papers are a nice touch, but we are not shown what is written on the Omega paperwork – an oversight by the seller no doubt.

Always I ask myself, do I like the look of the watch? In this case I do. It is fairly common example, in very nice, used condition. The hands can be checked and adjusted as required. Is it worth the money? Well thats up to a buyer. This comes with added value of the bracelet, box and papers. Remember the chart is the price of head only.

Finally the seller is a well respected member of OF and has history so satisfies the “Buy the Seller” Rule.

Check the page for the 1970’s watches here.

Disclaimer:

Just because I review a watch it is NOT A RECOMMENDATION.

You must do your own due diligence both on the watch and the seller.

You must determine what you are willing to pay on your own.

Limited Editions

I have added a page that talks about the 1969 18kt gold and the 1975 Apollo Soyuz.

See it Here

 

 

Sothebys London March 2016

There is only one Speedmaster in Sothebys London sale on 8th March 2016, and its not very interesting, apart from a learning opportunity.

soth mk 2
145.022-69 from the Catalog. Showing a MKII dial in a Pre-Moonwatch case. Photo from Sothebys

You can link direct to it here.

The description is:

Omega
A MANUAL WINDING STAINLESS STEEL CHRONOGRAPH WRISTWATCH WITH REGISTERS REF 145.022 69 ST MVT 30581261 CIRCA 1968
• cal 861 manual winding copper finished movement, mono-metallic compensation balance, seventeen jewels • black dial, luminescent baton indexes, three engine-turned subsidiary dials for constant seconds, 30-mintue and 12-hour registers • stainless steel tonneau case, black tachymeter bezel, two round chronograph pushers, downturned lugs, screw-down back • case, dial and movement signed
diameter 42mm
So what we have here is a 145.022-69 (not that i see the inside caseback) and the movement in the 3058xxxx range which puts it well outside the 1968 range that sothebys claim.
The bezel is the correct but less valuable DN90 in quite good condition – how long before people realize these are going to be as important to complete a watch as the DO90?
The dial is from a Mark II:
mk2-2
Two MKII’s from my collection. On the left a Romanian chancy purchase that came out well, and on the right a tropical dial that flew under the radar on Ebay. Note the dials are flat.
These dials are for the 861 movement and so drop right on and fit correctly. Even though the MkII dial is flat, and the original 145.022 dials are domed or stepped. MKII dials in Moonwatch cases are not unheard of, but I think if you are going to do it, make it special:
1-P1160105
A transplant of a MKII entire internals into a PreMoon case. I kept all the original hands, which have faded nicely. The bezel, a DO90 no less, cost $7 on ebay about four years ago.
Until recently,  black145.022-69 dials were selling for $100-200, until this came along for a staggering $800:
dial
An 861 Speedmaster Dial sold on Ebay for $800. Photo from listing
This will fit the Sothebys watch.
I wonder if the Sothebys watch will sell. I think it was cataloged by someone who while being a watch expert, does not understand Speedmasters – nor did they have the sense to email me about it. (Many now do). I am sure the $800 ebay dial is an outlier, but the buyer of this watch will have a long struggle to get his moneys worth when these watches are selling regularly and in better condition on ebay for less. Here is just one that sold for $2650 last week:
e3
A recently sold 145.022-69. Photo from listing

2998-6 for sale in Italy

I spotted this and it is asking Euros 17,500 and I wanted to run it through my thinking with regard to the price chart. Prices for 2998’s have been wildly variable as has the quality. The site selling the watch is here.

IMG_5094_grande

First sight this looks like a nice watch, and at todays exchange rate works out to $19,520. As a 2998-6 it has the alpha H/M hands and stick subdials, and a drop chrono – all correct. The hour hand has triangle lume which I prefer, and the minute hand reaches the outer track. The lume on these hands looks possibly redone, but I dont mind.

The dial is a stepped, AML non T non Professional dial, that looks in good condition. The plots look wobbly on the 6, 8 10 and 12. Have they been retouched? Possibly but not to my mind a big infulence on the value. Why? Because if they are touched, it is quite good and doesn’t look new. It is entirely possible they are original, and when it is close like this, I cant see it changing what people will pay.

The bezel is a good example of the correct DO90 bezel – some minor marks would prevent it selling for the maximum $2200 that we saw recently, but still in the $1800 range.

Lets check the serial is in range. It is a -6, so I have seen them in the 18946xxx as well as the 1864xxxx range. This watch is 18645919. The seller offers an Omega Extract, but if it is 2010 or before, it is not reliable.  Now the movement itself is in good condition – check the screws, which are clean, and show only minor, expected, turn evidence.

IMG_5107

My price chart showed in January price of 10,000 (Good) to 15500 (Collector) –  It has since been increased.

This is when it gets hard. This watch is very good. So I think I would use the collector grade, and knock off value rather than good and add on.

My thoughts:

  • 15500 less:
  • Bezel (-400)
  • Case, polished but they all are (-1000)

So my value is $14,100. I realise that my prices on the chart are often called too low. But this is on offer by a dealer, and so we should add a dealers margin, $2000-4000 and we now reach as high as $18,000.

Still out of reach. What could raise the price?

  • The dial is very good, after we satisfy ourselves the lume is acceptable.
  • The triangle lume is more desirable.
  • The movement is very good

In summary this watch is one of the very few offered on the market in recent months. I have concerns the dial plots and the extract. Only the buyer can satisfy himself on these legitimacy points, which to be fair, are things that need to be looked at carefully on all 2998’s.

145.012 Quick Guide and Market Review

The 145.012 comes in two executions, the -67 and the -68 which is very rare. This is the last of the Calibre 321’s and the last 321 Speedmaster to see its value and interest rise. In the last six months the prices have risen considerably.

The first thing you need to check, (as usual!) is that you actually like the watch. Don’t waste time on an ugly watch, or one you think you ought to like.

Find a watch that attracts you, has a charm, a patina, or lack of it if that is what you prefer. People often get lost in technicalities, buy a watch that while having all the correct parts, has no charm, soul or attraction.

You need to read the pages on this reference to be confident but here is the short overview:

  • Check the serial, and case back reference are correct and matching. In this case the range is 2406xxx to 27xxxxx.
  • Check the case for (over) polish and condition. I have seen some recently with corrosion. While these are rare watches, it would have to be cheaper and more attractive in other areas to accept corrosion.
  • Check the dial for correctness and condition, and attraction. Have confidence in yourself. If you do not like the dial, it is unlikely to be a valuable watch. The Dial is an Applied Metal Logo, long indices 321 dial. They are all stepped. They all carry the professional moniker.
  • Check the hands for correctness and condition. Hands are white, should be aged, (no bright superluminova replacements) and it is this reference that first gets the square end chrono. So either drop end or square end is acceptable.
  • The bezel should be a DO90 and if it is not present, or in very poor condition, remember replacements are $800 to $2000.
  • Assume the movement needs a $600 service unless you see documents.

Things to be aware of:

  • The hippocampus on the rear on the premoon is acid etched, and was designed to be easily removed for re engraving by the customer. Careless servicing (polishing) might reduce the etching.
  • These watches were sometimes serviced by replacing the hands, bezel, and even dial with modern ones. See this page. This destroys the vintage attraction, and therefore value.
  • Brown dials can be very much more valuable than the Price Chart. See the Brown Dial page. This is a whole different area of collecting.
  • As a rule, everything will need an service.

Lets look at some on the market:

This one is on ebay now

Front 26 m 6000

This is being offered for a little under $5300. It has a faded, but correct bezel, correct dial and serial in the correct range. Howver the hands are superluminova and the chrono is wrong. The dial plots look white, but all the photos are overprocessed and washed out. I suspect the dial body is ok, but the plots are perhaps scraped, or missing lume. Deep in the listing is a photo of the hands all reset to zero, a good sign.

Here is another:

another

This one has original looking hands, a correct bezel and the dial once again has white, no lume plots. It is asking $7000, and is from the same Ebay seller as the first watch. The case shows signs of polish, especially the back.

Lets move away from Uruguayan sellers:

Here is one from Beverly Hills.

Its been on the market for some time, and now the market is closing in on his price. I like Jackomond, but I find the quality is not quite what the world wants today.

jsck

Once again we have the correct but faded bezel, and in other photos I can see the hands look ok, and the dial does indeed have lume. The whole watch is a bit tired. (I have actually seen this one in the metal.) But to be honest its nicer than the others so far. Serial is in correct range.

Here is an American one:

At $5900 with a 1039 bracelet this is looking even better value:

lux

This has superluminova hands. Otherwise the bezel and dial look nice, as does the case. What I like about this watch is the seller, who seems to have a little knowledge and also claims it to be serviced, no mean feat in the USA due to parts restrictions. The dial is correct but lacking lume, so although the body seems nice the plots are white.

This next one is dodgy as hell.

Seller claims it original and untouched, offering a box and papers.

dodgy

Going by just this photo I think I see a 105.003 dial, relumed, with a set of relumed hands. Its only on reading the sellers description and seeing this photo that I momentarily think I could be wrong. BUT. I dont know of any original 145.012 with a non pro dial. The story, coming from a longtime storage, and all the papers and bags, and the claim its all original.

s-l1600

$11,875

In summary prices are all over the place, but there are no really nice ones available. All need something.