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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
It seems like the tritium dial on the Omega Speedmaster from the 90`s is fading, shrinking, and blemishes a lot faster than other tritium dials. I love the color and the way these dials look now, but will it be a problem further down the road. I am thinking dials where the tritium simply falls apart and off the watch?? Here is a pic from 1997 and one from 1977!!
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I read omega used tritium from 1962-1997. So you probably have one of last tritium painted dials. I may be wrong though.
 

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From all the trawling I've done online regarding tritium dials, it is that they all develop patina different from eachother. I've seen some dials that have developed a mellow eggshell colour and seem to stay that way, and others that have developed a rusty brown colour. IMO that is one of the appeals of vintage watches, they do develop their own unique look.
That's why I picked up a '98 speedy last week.
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
That dial has clearly been damaged. I have serviced hundreds of Speedmasters, both modern and vintage, and a dial that looks like this is not a factory defect, but plain old damage.
What do you say abot the 90`s tritium dials, will they hold up in the long run? Or will they look like the damage one in ten years time?
 

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What do you say abot the 90`s tritium dials, will they hold up in the long run? Or will they look like the damage one in ten years time?
My crystal ball is currently out for calibration, but I don't expect that "90's tritium dials" will be a known group of bad dials in 10 years time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
It is just because that certain period of dials seems to fade and shrink a lot faster than other dials!! 1993:
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Clearly you have convinced yourself, so there's no point in me trying to convince you otherwise...
Maybe your right, but it is an easy answer because I could say the same: Clearly you have convinced yourself, so there's no point in me trying to convince you otherwise
 

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The internet is a wonderful place to witness the rapid devolution of civilized discourse.

The latter dial appears water-damaged. Tritium dials from any era are wonderful and patinate nicely.

I've perused numerous examples, and there's rarely a significant deviation from decade to decade. However, I suspect that some of the older dials were replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Maybe I did not make myself clear, sorry for that. I think the question (concern) I have is legit. " I have been looking at Speedmasters from 1996-1998 with tritium dials because I love this exact model. Even though I love the dial and bracelet from this period, my concern is, after looking through countless pictures of this model. This dial seems to age faster than other dials, when you compare them to pictures of later dials!: Is there any reason to be concerned that the dial on this particularly model are going to fall apart quicker than others? Best regards, not judging anybody, please!!
 

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Maybe your right, but it is an easy answer because I could say the same: Clearly you have convinced yourself, so there's no point in me trying to convince you otherwise
You are correct - based on having hundreds of Speedmasters in my shop, having serviced them, removed hands and dial, checked the dials over for defects with a loupe, meticulously cleaned the dials while reassembling the watches, and having generally been up close and personal with many of them, I have certainly come to the conclusion that tritium Speedmaster dials from the 90's are in no way prone to unusual deterioration.

Is there any reason to be concerned that the dial on this particularly model are going to fall apart quicker than others? Best regards, not judging anybody, please!!
While dials will patinate, and how much patination someone considers "okay" or "damage" is somewhat a personal taste question, there is no reason at all to suggest that these dials will "fall apart" quicker than others. The only example you have shown of a dial that is "damaged" is one that was clearly damaged by some other means than just aging.

There are certainly some dials from specific eras that can have specific patterns of deterioration. For example there is a known serial number range for some 861 Speedmater dials that turn brown, like this one:



Again there is zero evidence that I have seen, or that any of the Speedmaster collectors I work with have seen, that the 90's tritium dials are particularly prone to premature failure.

Cheers, Al
 

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Love patina on older speedmasters, here on my 3592.50




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