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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can anyone help me figure out the model and time period for this watch? It belonged to my grandfather who died in 1971. My guess is 50's-60's? When did Omega make their first automatics? This is an auto as you can see. Also on the back, it notes 10k gold. Do you think this would be sought after? Has some scratches but not bad. Runs very accurate but the reserve seems like only 8-12 when not worn. Thanks for any help!

Matt





 

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Pics of the back and especially of the insides would tell us more. But the dating to the 50's or 60's seems reasonable.

I suspect the watch does not have a lot of power reserve (how long it lasts without winding) because it needs cleaning. You should not use the watch without having it cleaned and lubricated if it is dirty as it will 'accelerate wear'.

You can look on eBay for what one would sell for at the cheap end. There are a number of places that will fix them up and sell them for the higher end... they usually have their own web sites (search for 'vintage omega' or something like that).

If I were you, I would treasure the watch. I wish I had my grandfather's watch. And it is a very nice watch too!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks very much for your reply. I did search the Bay for something similar but came up empty. The back is SS, with 10k inscribed but no numbers on the outside. It is indeed special but I had never given it much attention.
 

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Thanks very much for your reply. I did search the Bay for something similar but came up empty. The back is SS, with 10k inscribed but no numbers on the outside. It is indeed special but I had never given it much attention.
here are 3 current auctions that show watches somewhat similar to yours:

A Seamaster DeVille, similar DeVille w/black dial, a stainless Seamaster.

We need pics of what you can show, if possible, to refine what we can say.

Spend a hundred bucks on it and get it serviced. Then you will have, at the minimum, done your part to save a family heirloom.

Thinking about your watch got me thinking about my heirloom watch. I think I will honor our election of a new president with it's first wearing (for me). Uncle Jim would like that.
 

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Your Omega is a beauty! Great combination, Roman numerals, black dial and gold case!.
Limited $$ value, great Heirloom value!!

f you post a pic of the movement, with the numbers visible, the Experts can narrow down when it was made to a few years!
 

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Its great to have a heirloom watch from your family. My dad gave me my grandfathers old bulova a few months ago that i will have serviced and stored soon. I know it has a $$ value but its worth far more then that to me. My other grandfather has a omega that he got back in the 60's that he still wears today.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Guys, thanks very much for the feedback and advice. I think I will have the back removed to record the numbers.

Matt
 

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A pic too, we like pics !!!
You know, A pic tells more than a thousand words! Or as in my case, more than 2542 posts!! :-d ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I did find some small numbers inscribed on the back of the case (very small) which I did not previously see. 5-3-814. Not sure if this an Omega # or something that was added to it after a service or repair.
 

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I did find some small numbers inscribed on the back of the case (very small) which I did not previously see. 5-3-814. Not sure if this an Omega # or something that was added to it after a service or repair.
Anything Omega put on it would be clearly stamped into the caseback on one or both sides.
 

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The movement can be cased in a non Omega case, ie made by somebody else.
The stamps and nunmers on the inside of the caseback, and also on the movement are important.

Edit: Eeeb! Your typing is faster than mine!! :-d
 

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Since the watch case seems to be a comibination of 10K top (perhaps gold filled?) and stainless steel back, my guess is that this particular model was made specifically for the USA market.

The movement was made by Omega and shipped here in bulk, avoiding some customs duties. The US importers, Norman Morris Corp. of New York City, contracted with one of several domestic manufacturers to produce appropriate cases. These cases had their own reference system and very few of them are listed in Omega Bienne's records.

I'll venture a further guess that the movement is a 17 jewel caliber 560. Most of these "National Production" watches were limited to 17 jewels in order to avoid additional US customs duties. Other versions of these automatic movements had up to 24 jewels.

Many watch companies including Jaeger-LeCoultre, Longines and Rolex used a similar business model for some watches during the 1950's and '60's.

Hope this helps,
gatorcpa
 

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Since the watch case seems to be a comibination of 10K top (perhaps gold filled?) and stainless steel back, my guess is that this particular model was made specifically for the USA market.

The movement was made by Omega and shipped here in bulk, avoiding some customs duties. The US importers, Norman Morris Corp. of New York City, contracted with one of several domestic manufacturers to produce appropriate cases. These cases had their own reference system and very few of them are listed in Omega Bienne's records.

I'll venture a further guess that the movement is a 17 jewel caliber 560. Most of these "National Production" watches were limited to 17 jewels in order to avoid additional US customs duties. Other versions of these automatic movements had up to 24 jewels.

Many watch companies including Jaeger-LeCoultre, Longines and Rolex used a similar business model for some watches during the 1950's and '60's.

Hope this helps,
gatorcpa
Good info! I believe these tariffs disappeared in the early 50's. After the US watch industry disappeared, there was little point to this protectionism.
 

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Actually, I believe the customs tariffs still exist. IIRC it's about 3% of the value of the gold case, plus approx. $1.50 for each jewel in movements over 17 jewels (applied to all jewels, not just those over 17), and an additional amount for each adjustment performed at the Swiss factory. Additional amounts are charged for the watchband.

You can find the information here, but I'm not too sure which exact classification applies:

http://hotdocs.usitc.gov/docs/tata/hts/bychapter/0810C91.pdf

So an unadjusted, 17 jewel, raw movement would have very little customs duty appiled, where a 24 jewel chronometer adjusted movement in a gold case and band might have $50 or more in duties added to the manufacturers' cost.

These rates have not kept up with inflation, nor with the rise of the Swiss Franc against the US Dollar. So with fine watches starting at about $1,000 vs. about $100 in the old days, I suppose US customs tariffs are much less of an issue now than then.

Hope this helps,
gatorcpa
 

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Duties are so negligible they are not even collected at the end of the market where I buy all my watches (<$1,000 US).
 
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