My visit to the OMEGA Museum, Vienna.

01 April 2019

My visit to the OMEGA Museum, Vienna.

While sight-seeing in Vienna, I walked past the OMEGA Boutique and noticed they had a museum! As it turns out, the only other official OMEGA Museum in the world after the main one in Biel, SwitzerlandHere are a few photos I took of my visit. Hope you enjoy them.

 

The winner and runner-up for a Michelin Man look-alike competition held that day.

 

A close up of the current OMEGA Speedmaster on their hook and loop strap (part nr.  O93800006). Is the space-suit material genuine Saint-Gobain beta fabric as with the X-33 Speedmaster presentation box?

 

Omega Speedmaster NASA Velcro strap

Publicity photo of astronaut Frank Borman's Speedmaster on the 1965 NASA certification for space craft ("S/C") acceptance. Genuine NASA long hook and loop strap is sporting the gray/green olive drab shade of reinforcement tape.

Long and short watch strap versions with the exact same steel ring dimensions, Apollo era vintage loop tape and official Federal Standard olive drab shades (exclusively used by Kizzi Precision Flightgear) can be purchased here!

 

Omega Museum - Speedmaster display cabinet

Display cabinet chronicling the evolution of the Speedmaster generations. 

 

Omega Museum - Speedmaster evolution info

Explanatory notes for the displayed Speedmasters. Notably the museum identify up to five separate generations of Speedmaster.

 

1st generation 1957 Speedy CK 2915

1st generation 1957 Speedmaster, CK 2915. Apologies for the poor image, it was at the back of the display case and hard to focus on. The black bezel doesn't reflect the explanatory notes and is incorrect.

In fact, none of the bezels in this display cabinet are original to the year the watches were introduced, as can be checked by the alignment of the number 70 and 90 relative to its dot. Speedy Tuesday – Differences in Speedmaster Bezels

 

 2nd generation 1959 Speedy CK 2998

2nd generation 1959 Speedmaster CK 2998. The "First OMEGA in space". 

 

3rd generation 1963 Speedy NASA watch trial winner

3rd generation 1963 Speedmaster. An example of the type that would have been "Flight Qualified by NASA", although not yet inscribed as such on the back, and worn on Gemini missions. Here, «alpha» design arrow hands become baton hands, and a lume eye added to the sweep-second hand. 

 

4th generation 1964 "First" Moonwatch

4th generation, 1964 Speedmaster. "The first moon watch". With this Speedmaster, formerly straight lugs become beveled, and now has added crown guards.

 

5th generation 1968 Speedmaster. This is the watch I own so I didn't photograph it. I did however photograph a close up of the rather cool original "crater" box. This generation Speedmaster was carried aboard Apollo 17. Refinements to this watch were:

  • an improved 861 movement replaces the 321 movement
  • the face loses its "pie-pan" inner circular ridge
  • a new dart shape to the sweep-second hand
  • the Ω symbol is now printed replacing the applied cut-out emblem

 

 Speedy commemorative ASTP

The Apollo-Soyuz Test Program commemorative issue. Was on display in another cabinet and shows almost all of the distinguishing features of the 5th generation 1968 Speedmaster mentioned above.

For completeness it is worth mentioning there have been minor updates to the Speedmaster during the 1980s and 1990s reflected in the current Speedmaster available today, but which arguably don't rise to the level of a generational change.

Yet, despite all these tweaks, the defining but ever scratchable "hesalite" domed plastic crystal provides the continuity with all the Speedy generations from 1957 to the present.

And finally:

OMEGA Speedmaster 60th Anniversary collection

Poster showing the whole Speedmaster family after 60 years. 

Many thanks and appreciation to the staff at the OMEGA Boutique, Stock-im-Eisen-Platz 3, 1010 Wien, Austria