#40: Time 4A Pint News - February 2018

Welcome to Episode 40 of the Time 4A Pint Podcast - it's been a busy month, with the Chrono24 get together in Karlsruhe, Time 4A Pint's first internet trolls, and the Time 4A Pint February meet up.

Plus we have our 4 picks from the February 27th Fellows watch sale, including the deliciously dirty, and untouched Omega Seamaster 300 that's this weeks cover star.

Chris's Picks from Fellows February 27th Watch Sale

  • Lot 184  - Omega Speedmaster MKII reference 145.014 - The first of the Omega Speedmaster Mark series, this watch has a 32 million serial number, putting production into approximately 1970, although you would need an extract of the archives to be absolutely certain.

    It features a cushion or tonneau shaped case with a  radial brushed top section, polished bevels and brushed sides, this one has a slight dent to the top of one of the bevels at the 4 o’clock position - over all the condition of the case is good, with marks and wear consistent with age.

    It’s wearing a bracelet which threw me a bit at the viewing as it’s stamped 1153/138, which is not a bracelet you’d find on this type of watch - closer inspection determined that this is the correct 1159/154, which has been retrofitted with an incorrect clasp from a bracelet found on Omega Dynamics from the mid 1970s, so that’s something you might want to put right if you won this lot.

    The dial and hands share a nice, even custard coloured lume, and all in all, I think this is a rather attractive MKII - some people would chose to get the case damage repaired, but I think it adds to the character, and would leave it as is.

    The watch contains a manual wind copper coloured 861 chronograph movement, this version fitted with a steel chronograph brake as used in regular Speedmasters from 1968 up until 1974.The basic timekeeping functions are working as expected, however the chronograph is not, with the top pusher starting on one push, and then resetting on a second, where you would expect it to stop, and the bottom pusher not currently functioning at all.

    Safe to say that this one needs a service which will run £350-£500 depending on who does the work for you.

    The estimate on this lot is £900 to £1400 plus fees, and I think if you can hit the middle of that estimate, and pick this up for £1200 plus fees, you’d be on the right track. Link to Auction. SOLD £1,000 + Fees.
  • Lot 190  - Omega Speedmaster Professional reference S105.012-65 - this one I’ve picked out as an interesting lot, that has definitely lived a life.  Talking to the team at Fellows, this watch has been consigned by the original owner, who bought it in 1965 - and as a result of him wearing, using and having this watch serviced as needed over the last 50 odd years, there are a fair few service parts present.

    They include the hands, pushers, crown, a 1980s bracelet, and when compared to the two year old Speedmaster that i was wearing on viewing day, I think the case has been replaced relatively recently too.

    Breaking it down into as a sum of its parts, the original components present are the dial, which is a correct for this reference close T stepped dial with long tritium markers, a correct for this reference dot over 90 with dot diagonal 70 bezel, the correct double bevel case back stamped internally with S105.012-65 HF, and the 321 calibre movement with a serial of 22827825, which puts it in the correct range for a 105.012-65.

    You’ll notice I’m being careful about using the word original, and instead using correct - because whilst these are the correct parts for a watch of this reference, there is no real way to know whether any of them have been changed for other correct parts at an early service.

    Sticking to the period correct parts, condition wise:

    The dial has discolouration to the lume plots which have gone a rather murky green and come away in parts

    The bezel is well worn in places, and quite worn on a couple of edges

    The caseback had marking consistent with wear, and personalised engravings on the back showing the initials GEH and STOCKHOLM, it also appears that the bevels of the caseback have received a bit of a polish. 

    The movement is currently functioning, and looks to be in good order, it’s always worth checking on the 321 if the column wheel has all its teeth, and this one does!

    The estimate on this was originally £7000-£10000, and has been reduced to £4000-£6000 after discussions between the watch team at Fellows and the seller.

    I think given its overall condition and overall market prices for this reference, this lot sits more correctly at the bottom of it’s estimate, than the top.

    An interesting one to watch for sure. Link to Auction. SOLD £4,600 + Fees.

  • Lot 204 - Omega Seamaster 300 reference 165.024SP - Let me start by saying that this watch, in the metal was a little bit disgusting, and that’s a very good reason to buy it.

    With muck inside the case back tool slots, a crown that’s lost it’s omega logo, and no longer screws down fully, a consistently worn case, back and bezel and upon opening a seal which has turned to liquid gloop. This watch is near perfect.

    Not in the brand new, and unused sense, but in the honest, used, and likely.. And this a risk to say, but original condition sense, which is how I, and a lot of collectors like to buy their vintage watches.

    Under UV the lume plots on the dial, bezel numerals, and hands light up consistently and then fade as you would expect from tritium items.

    The movement is a calibre 552 with a 22 million serial number, putting production to approximately 1965, although you would need an extract from the archives to confirm this.

    The watch is running, although given the state of the seals, and crown, I’d say a service is long overdue.

    It’s fitted to an aftermarket bracelet, but comes with it’s original but damaged bracelet, a box, and papers dated to 1970.

    The estimate on this lot feels a little conservative at £1400-£2000 plus fees, and I could see this heading a little over £4000 if a couple of people really want it. Link to Auction. SOLD £4,100 + Fees.

  • Lot 431 - Omega RAF 53 Fat Arrow reference 2777-1SC -  We had one of these on the show a few weeks back in episode 34, and this is one of my personal favourite Omega tool watches.

    Designed for the Royal Air Force, just under 6000 were produced, originally with a “thin arrow dial”, that was painted with radium - the RAF then went through the process of replacing these with “fat arrow” tritium lumed dials.

    This one is all present and correct with nice straight, fixed lugs, correct handset for the fat arrow dial, and the all important anti magnetic movement cover, and corresponding spring in the case back.

    Condition wise, there is some wear and maring to the case, as you would expect of an issued military watch, but nothing that detracts from its overall appearance.

    The movement is running, and keeping time, although on adjusting the hands, the sweep second does move around with the hour/minute hands, and the crown feels a little wobbly, so a service is probably not unwarranted.

    Estimate on this lot is £900-£1200, And I wouldn’t be surprised to see it hit top estimate, or even go a little bit over. Link to Auction. SOLD £1,150 + Fees.

To see the full catalogue, head to https://www.fellows.co.uk/The-Watch-Sale/2018-02-27.

If you have any questions, about any of the lots in the February 27th watch sale at Fellows, and would like to speak to a member of their team head to https://www.fellows.co.uk/contact