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Discussion Starter #1
Now before I'm gunned down, let me explain what I mean. I've not seen the film or know that much about the doomed mission. But my understanding was that Commander James Lovell used his Speedmaster Professional for both the timing and interval of thrust for critical engine burns as they rounded the moon and set a course for home and the Speedmaster was crucial in assisting the timing of the engine burns to attain the correct re-entry angle.
Now was this time interval hours and minutes or was it seconds? (Please excuse my ignorance) Because if it was just seconds, hypothetically, nearly all watches would be as accurate as each over a time lapse of say 15 to 30 seconds. So (again hypothetically), if NASA had allowed any chronograph on board, it would have been just as useful in saving the men's lives as the Speedmaster. Am I correct in my understanding or should I just go join another forum and never return for thinking that of the iconic and legendary Speedmaster? :think:
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Re: Blasphemer!!

The critical burns were 35 seconds and 5 minutes, but both had to be timed exactly--a lesser chronograph might not have been up to the task...
So the critical burns were at 35 seconds and then at 5 minutes. So 5' 35" in total. Surely all chronographs are going to be as accurate as each other over a time duration of 5 and half minutes. Any differance is going to be in nano seconds which humans could not possibly time.
 

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Re: Blasphemer!!

So the critical burns were at 35 seconds and then at 5 minutes. So 5' 35" in total. Surely all chronographs are going to be as accurate as each other over a time duration of 5 and half minutes. Any differance is going to be in nano seconds which humans could not possibly time.
Well, I'm guessing that the other chronographs would have burned up or would have been defective by that time. The other chronographs failed pressure tests, temperature tests (the delta change too), so even if they could have timed the burns they wouldn't have existed in the first place anymore, Fergie. Maybe nowadays they know better. Never mess with a Speedmaster.:-d

Glimmer
 

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Stirrer !!

I would have thought after the whole Ellen MacArthur fiasco, you would have learned to lay off Omega icons :-d

I agree with your point though. They probably could have done almost as well by saying "one elephant, two elephant, three elephant...."

Still not selling my Speedy though.

 

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Discussion Starter #7
Re: Stirrer !!

I would have thought after the whole Ellen MacArthur fiasco, you would have learned to lay off Omega icons :-d
I like to go against the grain sometimes.

I agree with your point though. They probably could have done almost as well by saying "one elephant, two elephant, three elephant...."
That's just it, it's a point and a hypothesis. I know that NASA tested lots of chronographs and Omega won. I'm not contesting that. What I'm saying is, if any watch was allowed on board, surely the accuracy over 5 and half minutes cannot really make that much of a difference. If I owned a Speedy (one day I will) and matched it against my Pulsar chronograph and set the timers going, I would not notice a difference at 5 minutes, let alone 35 seconds. Maybe over the course of a month (again speaking hypothetically), but not in the time it takes to hard boil an egg!
 

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Though I haven't yet read the summary posted by Ulysses, I accept Fergie's point that any other chrono might have been as good for the two burns.

Critical, however, is the fact that the Speedy had to get through all the testing prior to NASA acceptance. As the sole survivor of these tests, Speedy was the only one available for the timings under the flight conditions.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I'll get my coat :-(

Can anyone spare any change for the bus ride back to TZ?
 

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This would be the guy that needs got!

IMHO, Omega never had "Its Way". Years ago they got lucky with a leaky Speedmaster, no pressure difference when subject to a vacuum (because a Speedmaster is good for handwashing, if you're careful!). They win the NASA watch bake-off with a crusty sealed Speedy that had been in the dealer's window for a couple of years and the legend is born.


Public forum. The snork. Get'em Eric! David
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Re: This would be the guy that needs got!

IMHO, Omega never had "Its Way". Years ago they got lucky with a leaky Speedmaster, no pressure difference when subject to a vacuum (because a Speedmaster is good for handwashing, if you're careful!). They win the NASA watch bake-off with a crusty sealed Speedy that had been in the dealer's window for a couple of years and the legend is born.


Public forum. The snork. Get'em Eric! David

Does that mean I come back in? I would never have said such hurtful things as what the guy said. In fact, as penance I'm off over there to shoot him (see, I'm a maverick, always going against the grain!).
 

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Trying to get a little something started huh?

Seems you are up to the task Fergie! That ought to do it.
Here are my thoughts:
The Speedmaster was on the Apollo 13 mission, not your Pulsar junker.
As far as up to the task, well, we won't ever know, as the Speedy
was the only watch allowed on board
A speedmaster not only had to time the critical burns but also the
time between the burns which was more than just a few minutes.
I'm with Glimmer.......Blasphemer!!
Be careful or you'll be banned back to TZ Omega Forum forever.
jim...
 

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It's an interesting point. Firstly, I agree entirely that any old chronograph would have been capable of these simple timings. The Speedmaster was chosen for its overall reliability in harsh environments, particularly when used for EVA (outside in space). The environment inside an orbiter is not very harsh and so choice of watch for use inside the orbiter is much less critical. But you still want the most reliable watch you can buy regardless. If the watch had failed for any reason during those critical timings it would have been a total disaster.
 

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It's an interesting point. Firstly, I agree entirely that any old chronograph would have been capable of these simple timings. The Speedmaster was chosen for its overall reliability in harsh environments, particularly when used for EVA (outside in space). The environment inside an orbiter is not very harsh and so choice of watch for use inside the orbiter is much less critical. But you still want the most reliable watch you can buy regardless. If the watch had failed for any reason during those critical timings it would have been a total disaster.
But any old chronograph wasn't chosen. David
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)

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Re: Stirrer !!

I like to go against the grain sometimes.



That's just it, it's a point and a hypothesis. I know that NASA tested lots of chronographs and Omega won. I'm not contesting that. What I'm saying is, if any watch was allowed on board, surely the accuracy over 5 and half minutes cannot really make that much of a difference. If I owned a Speedy (one day I will) and matched it against my Pulsar chronograph and set the timers going, I would not notice a difference at 5 minutes, let alone 35 seconds. Maybe over the course of a month (again speaking hypothetically), but not in the time it takes to hard boil an egg!

Honestly Fergie you have a point...who knows what NASA might be testing right now as we speak, and what might pass (God I hope its' not a...)? Then they can label it, "the second watch to be worn on the moon!" But the Speedy, I guess, deserves all the acclaim and history right now because it was the first.

Should I say it? Perhaps the Speedmaster CO-AXIAL LIMITED EDITION STUDDED WITH DIAMONDS CASED IN 18K GOLD WITH AR REFLECTIVE COATING ON THE SAPPHIRE CRYSTAL WITH POWER RESERVE OF 55 HOURS should be more accurate the next time they send the Space Shuttle up...

Glimmer, hiding for cover from Eric and all the lawmen
 

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Now before I'm gunned down, let me explain what I mean. I've not seen the film or know that much about the doomed mission. But my understanding was that Commander James Lovell used his Speedmaster Professional for both the timing and interval of thrust for critical engine burns as they rounded the moon and set a course for home and the Speedmaster was crucial in assisting the timing of the engine burns to attain the correct re-entry angle.
Now was this time interval hours and minutes or was it seconds? (Please excuse my ignorance) Because if it was just seconds, hypothetically, nearly all watches would be as accurate as each over a time lapse of say 15 to 30 seconds. So (again hypothetically), if NASA had allowed any chronograph on board, it would have been just as useful in saving the men's lives as the Speedmaster. Am I correct in my understanding or should I just go join another forum and never return for thinking that of the iconic and legendary Speedmaster? :think:
The Speedy won the right to be on manned space missions because it could survive the harsh environment OUTSIDE a spacecraft better than any other.

The Speedy was the only timing device available on Apollo 13 because all others were electronic and had failed.

The conditions inside the Apollo 13 spacecraft, while not as harsh as outside it, were less than ideal as most life support, heating and cooling had been turned off. While we don't know, less hardy timekeepers might not have functioned appropriately.

Lastly, the guys in the best position to know whether the Speedy made a difference or not, the crew of Apollo 13, gave Omega the award. That's what makes the award so special. It was not a NASA decision, not governmental, not corporate (so to speak), but something the astronauts decided to do.

Putting it another way (and keeping in mind quartz chronographs did not exist at the time), if you were going to be trapped in a harsh environment of extreme temperatures with the possiblity of rapid change in temperature, what chronograph would you want to take with you?

NASA gave the astronauts the best tool for an extreme environment to do a mundane task: accurately tell time. And the Speedy did it well. Unlike the electronic timers which were useless, unlike the Bulova which failed on Apollo 11s LEM, unlike the Rolex, Bulova and other chronographs which failed testing.

Sometimes achieving the mundane consistently and quietly is extremely praiseworthy. I think this is the case with the Apollo 13 Speedy.
 

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I think it's an interesting point, Fergie, and others have stated things well. Indeed, just about any watch with a second hand (not even a chronograph) may have been able to time the burns with similar accuracy. Unfortunately, the mission was cut short, so Speedy never really got the opportunity to face the truly harsh conditions that we know it can withstand. But, while it's possible that a different watch might have succeeded, we'll never know. What we do know is that Speedy did.

eric
 

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But any old chronograph wasn't chosen. David
Yes, for the reasons I said.

The Speedmaster Pro chronograph is nothing special in terms of its functionality i.e standard 12 hr chrono that can time stuff to a realistic resolution of about 0.25 sec. Accuracy will depend on total elapsed time, eg. if the watch is 10 sec per day fast, it will be 0.03 sec fast over 5 mins. So pretty insignificant in this case. There are hundreds of chronos out there that can deliver the same basic functionality (many offering much more) and practical accuracy. But very few that are capable of passing all the NASA durability tests. For example, not even the X-33 is EVA approved, despite having far more functionality than the mechanical version.
 
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