Perfect Omega Speedmaster in Popular
While it’s often the various Rolex sports watches that dominate the vintage market, the Omega Speedmaster can also claim to be one of the most famous sports watches in history, becoming the first NASA flight-certified watch in 1965 and then landing on the moon in 1969, few watches have the same ownership as the Omega Speedmaster.
For collectors of vintage Omega Speedmaster watches, the most significant defining feature is the type of movement. The very first Speedmaster watches featured the legendary Caliber 321 movement, it was Cal. 321 equipped models that passed NASA’s brutal series of tests, and it was fake watches with Cal. 321 movements that first landed on the moon, permanently cementing the model’s ‘Moonwatch’ nickname.
The Omega Speedmastercharacterized in our ‘Fresh Finds’ vintage auction is a ref. 105.003, which is the excellent same model that first underwent NASA testing and won the Speedmaster its flight-certified status. This special model dates back to 1965 and is what is known as an “Ed White” Speedmaster, as this reference was the personal watch of choice for American astronaut Ed White, who wore one on the outside of his spacesuit during the first American spacewalk as part of the Gemini 4 mission.
Visually distinct from all subsequent editions of the Speedmaster, the reference 105.003 remained in production for a relatively short period of time and stands for the final evolution of the ‘Pre-Professional’ Speedmaster models with straight lugs. By 1969, Omega had switched to the lyre-lug style of cases, and the brand continues to use this case design on the modern replica watches that it produces today.
This particular example of the ref. 105.003 Omega Speedmaster is in perfect overall condition, and is complete with its original ‘Dot-Over-Ninety’ bezel (DON bezel), together with its original tritium dial and hands, which have developed a warm and rich patina – just like you would hope to find on a vintage 1060s Speedmaster. Equipped with a circa-correct Omega stretch bracelet, this ref. 105.003 is a well-preserved example of a vintage ‘Pre-Moon’ Speedmaster chronograph, and it successfully represents the golden era of mechanical tool watches.