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When is a Seamaster 300 not a Seamaster 300? A Case Study on ‘Original Condition’ for Vintage Watches

When is a Seamaster 300 not a Seamaster 300? A Case Study on ‘Original Condition’ for Vintage Watches

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When it was initially dispatched back in the mid 1960s, the Omega Seamaster 300 was, together with the Rolex Submariner, a mass-delivered expert jump watch for the expanding sporting jumper market. There was additionally Blancpain and a couple of others like Doxa, Eterna, Favre Leuba, yet none of them was on a similar creation scale. The present ‘Vintage Corner’ isn’t intended to be a background marked by the jump observe however a greater amount of a prologue to what you should search for regarding the state of these watches today. The thought is to comprehend what the term ‘in unique condition’ signifies with respect to these sorts of vintage apparatus watches. Especially plunge watches, similar to the Seamaster 300, which will in general have suffered very some activity over their lifetimes.

The original Seamaster 300, with straight hauls, slim dark bezel supplement and ‘wide bolt’ hands, was supplanted in 1963/1964 by the presently notable Seamaster 300 ST 165.024. It highlighted a case very much like the Omega Speedmaster of the time. Comparative extents, with lyre hauls and even a similar lash shoulder size. It was initially delivered with ‘stick/pencil’ hands, huge painted markers on the dial and a level marked crown like the Speedmaster. A second model with date work was presented soon after 1964, assigned ST 166.024.

The watch was created with two sorts of programmed developments, utilizing the Omega Caliber 552 no-date or the Omega Caliber 565 with date, from 1964 onwards. Types 563 and 560 may likewise be found in models offered to the US market; because of import limitations, developments had a more modest gem check – 17 gems for this situation, rather than 24 jewels.

These watches resemble vehicles and made to be utilized for what they were worked to do (professional or sporting plunging). This implies they must be overhauled and that a portion of their well used parts have been supplanted. Completely unique watches might be not many, which is justifiable with device watches like this – particularly early plunge watches from the 1960s. Unique condition and box-and-papers demand by certain authorities has prompted fakes with old worn parts being ‘whacked’ onto more youthful watches, in that affectation of inventiveness. Much the same as vintage vehicles, purchase a vehicle with old uncovered tires and shot brakes and the sales rep will guarantee you that ‘it’s all unique, Sir. In any case, I wouldn’t drive it on the off chance that I were you‘. Obviously, it’s normal to have a USD 5,000 contrast in cost between an ideal one (in its unique box) and one that gives indications of an intense life.

  1. What we have here is a unique 1960s Seamaster 300, whose dial was annihilated by water departure. Here, I reestablished the case to a polished get done with brushed sides, as the first. The crown was supplanted with a later cylinder and screw-in crown. The dial was traded out for another old-stock everyone of these parts came from Omega (my watchmaker is authorize with the entirety of the significant gatherings). We coordinated the lume of the dial with what was found on the first hands, while holding the first bezel, which has broken at 5 o’clock. Early Perspex was utilized for the supplement, which would grow and withdraw with heat and ultimately break. Adding a ‘lighter’ NOS wristband ref. 1171 completed this restoration.
  2. This one was essentially obliterated and I saved it… everything was NOS aside from the case and development. This was a later model, with the sword hour hand. At the point when it came to me, the hand-set was destroyed, similar to the dial. NOS blade hands were the right substitution, the bezel was absent and the gem was broken. Both were supplanted, together with the crown. NB. The bezel on this one came from Omega and looks marginally changed yet that was in part because of the wide focal point utilized for the photograph and the way that it is a later version.
  3. Finally, on the extreme right, there is a beautiful early model with an overlaid dial. The other two expected to have their dials supplanted. In any case, the dial on this early form was not in a particularly horrendous condition, compared to the others. Consequently, I just adjusted the development, cleaned and polished the case. NB. These watches were available to be purchased when they were not as uncommon or however significant as they may be presently.

What is ‘Unique Condition’?

Back during the 1960s and during the creation time of the Seamaster 300, major makers made huge number of watches a year. At the point when advancements working on it tagged along, or when model reference numbers changed, these were essentially incorporated into creation. At the point when new hands were chosen, or even with headways in innovation (something very common during the 1960s), these brands didn’t toss out the old parts they had available. New parts were basically coordinated into the creation run and parts staged in as more seasoned parts ran out. You can see this unmistakably with casebacks on the Rolex Submariner 5513. Many are known to have the prior reference 5512 stepped inside, which is just clarified by the way that there was an excess to be utilized, prior to changing to 5513 models.

Here a few Omega Caliber 552 developments to show the distinction in their condition. Over, the matte and discolored rotor is an indication of water getting into the development and oxidizing the cleaned finish. The following is another 1960s Seamaster 300 with type 552, which looked nearly spic and span when it was opened. NB. you will see this impact on numerous unique early Seamaster 300 watches, as the crown permitted water to come in. It was subsequently changed to a screw-in crown and may not be viewed as an indication of a traded movement.

If you are looking for complete innovation, then you should remember certain things. Much the same as with Rolex, if the watch was brought to Omega for administration, either straightforwardly or through an assistance place, they may have redesigned a portion of the exhausted corrective parts. This may not be standard practice, yet I’m almost certain they would recommend it as they would need the watch returned in the most ideal condition – outwardly and precisely. In this case, the course of absolute ‘inventiveness’ may not be the best street to travel, in my opinion.

My contemplations on vintage watches, especially early ‘apparatus watches’, are that overhauled crowns or supplanted dials are important for the magnificence of possessing something that was initially intended to be utilized and manhandled, as an instrument. In this manner, parts should be adjusted or supplanted. Surely, a Seamaster 300 with an overlaid dial would look better with unique gold pencil hands rather than ‘later execution’ silver blade hands, fitted during administration. Nonetheless, this could be deceiving for marginally less educated gatherers. On the off chance that a such an instrument watch persevered through an extreme life and needed to experience a few assistance cycles, with its unique tritium dial traded for another old-stock help dial, then I actually think it is similarly however unique as one that seemed to be left in a cabinet for a very long time, after been overflowed down at the coast one Spring morning in 1970. An interesting point, particularly in the event that you expect to wear your vintage watches seriously.