March 22, 2017
by Bilal Khan
Omega is celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Speedmaster, Seamaster 300, and the less remembered yet cult-collector’s favorite Railmaster watches with what they’re calling the Omega 1957 Trilogy. The reeditions are staying true to the original designs but with METAS approved Master Chronometer movements for the Railmaster and Seamaster. The Speedmaster, however, retains the iconic manual-wind 1861 caliber that’s immediately associated with the “moonwatch.” Of course, all three will be limited editions, coming in 3,557 pieces per watch and 557 pieces of the Trilogy presentation box that’ll include all three watches. Let’s see what Omega has to offer with their reissues of the Speedmaster ref. CK2915, the Seamaster ref. CK2913, and the Railmaster ref. CK2914.
Omega went to great lengths to keep the overall theme of the 1957 releases. Using digital scanning and imaging technology for the first time, along with designs and original drawings of each model, Omega managed to create an accurate nod to the original models while keeping with a modern execution for each watch. Take, for example, the 2017 reedition of the Speedmaster compared to the actual 1957 model seen above.
All three watches will feature the “tropical” dials fans of the vintage Omega watches are fond of, and even an eclectic, retro logo on each piece – a nod to how 1950s suppliers each had their own interpretation of Omega’s logo. Each case is made of brushed and polished stainless steel with a design that Omega has updated for strength and to match the featured vintage-designed clasp with retro logo. I think the retro-vintage-style LumiNova indices are a cool touch – however, I can see some enthusiasts thinking it kind of takes away some of the “feeling” of the watches that carry over so many traits of their predecessors.
Let’s begin with the Omega Speedmaster 60th Anniversary Limited Edition, a watch which should come as little surprise considering the online catalog of 60 Omega Speedmasters (that we discussed here) released on their website last week. Reissues of this iconic Speedy aren’t anything new – take, for example, the Broad Arrow ref. 3594.50.00 released some years back which carried over the design style but was sized at 42mm. Of course, the retro-styled Speedmaster ’57 Vintage watch which took a lot of inspiration from the original but went in its own direction. Here, we see a more true-to-the-original reedition that carries over the 38.6mm case but, as previously mentioned, features the caliber 1861 movement (the original 1957 CK2915 featured the caliber 321 movement).
While the Omega Speedmaster is the model most widely known for the “Broad Arrow” hands, all three models will feature this style; a move that I am quite fond of. It’s a not-so-subtle vintage nod to already iconic timepieces, and I feel it gives an originality and character to a collection that tends to have the same look repeatedly in the spotlight.
The Omega Railmaster 60th Anniversary Limited Edition Master Chronometer will measure 38mm wide carrying over all the design elements of the 1957 model with the addition of the Super-LumiNova for contemporary buyers’ standards. It might “ruin the feel” for those who are seeking an exact replica, but Omega decided to also add a contemporary movement, the caliber 8806 which is magnetic resistant to 15,000 gauss and has been a staple movement for Omega since their adoption of the METAS certification. This movement operates at 25,600vph and has a solid 55-hour power reserve.
Considering this watch was designed for scientists who would be exposed to magnetic fields, the update is pretty apt. Though this is a limited edition, the size and classic design here make me think that we could be looking at good competition to the Rolex Explorer I, no?
The Seamaster 300 60th Anniversary Limited Edition Master Chronometer (seen further above with the 1957 original below it) retains the broad arrow hands, bidirectional rotating bezel, and triangular hour markers of the 1957 original. Omega introduced the Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial back in 2014, but it was spruced-up and not intended to be true to the original model, with a 41mm case and a lot of refreshes and updates (you can read all about it in the hands-on article linked to above) that made it far from a reedition. Here, we get a 39mm case with black aluminum bezel, caseback with iconic seahorse engraving, and original Naïad sign on the crown. The movement is updated, with the same caliber 8806 as we see in the Railmaster.
As mentioned earlier, each piece is available on its own, with the option to buy the entire “Trilogy” as a set. Buyers who opt for the set will receive packaging inspired by the original 1957 presentation. This includes the iconic red-corduroy lining, and the retro-vintage Seahorse logo on the top of the lid, along with two replacement straps – a leather and a NATO – in addition to smaller boxes for each watch.
So often when we see a vintage-inspired rerelease there’s bound to be a chorus of “why did they change the [insert design feature here]?” so Omega is bound to make the historically-accurate enthusiasts a little happier with this set of reeditions. Again, there will be 3,557 of each watch and 557 available “Trilogy” sets. Price for the Omega Speedmaster ref. 322.214.171.124.01.001 will be CHF 6,700, the Omega Seamaster Ref. 126.96.36.199.01.001 will be CHF 6,500 , and the Omega Railmaster ref: 188.8.131.52.01.002 will be CHF 6,300. We’ll get you pricing for the Trilogy when we have it. omegawatches.com