Oblong Omega

Thread: Oblong Omega

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  1. #1

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    Oblong Omega

    Hi All,

    I bought this Omega wristwatch in a street market in Quito, Ecuador for $20 US 3 years ago, having worn it as my regular since. Over the years I've never been able to find nything out about the watch and would like to know what type this is and whether it is worth anything?

    The back case is stainless steel and a different colour to the front enclosure, the back case is numbered 550687 externally.

    Internally the working number is 7549567 and has the word Omega in old fashioned cursive writing. Also, on the front the word Omega is present but without the logo. I thought that this was a fake or dummy of some sort (given the price) am I right?
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  2. #2
    Member JohnF's Avatar
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    Re: Oblong Omega

    Hi -

    We'd need to see the movement to know anything else: Omega does, however, maintain a database of movement numbers and would be able to help you further.

    If it were to be an Omega, then one from the 1930s or so. The case will be a two-piece case and protection of the movement is minimal.

    So see if you can take a picture of the movement so we can proceed with identifying what it might be.

    But the lack of the greek Omega letter isn't too promising...

    JohnF
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  3. #3
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Oblong Omega

    The serial number would date it to the early 1930s so it makes sense that it would be a genuine Omega.
    Like JohnF I'd like to see the movement.

    There are fathers who do not love their children; there is no grandfather who does not adore his grandson. ~ Victor Hugo

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  5. #4

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    Re: Oblong Omega

    Quote Originally Posted by Ray MacDonald View Post
    The serial number would date it to the early 1930s so it makes sense that it would be a genuine Omega.
    Like JohnF I'd like to see the movement.
    Thanks again Ray and John.

    When you say serial do you mean on the case or the movement?

    When I take the movement out the glass container on the front comes off separately o the back (which is clipped in). You'll see from the photos that the movement is fastened to the watch face (with the cursive OMEGA logo upside down when held at 12'0'clock, i.e. the right way up)

    The watch wind on the side has a symbol on it (the only symbol to be found anywhere) which looks like a small circle with a 'u' attached to he bottom left and then a long stem coming of the end of the 'u' (if the loop was the right way up that is [and if any of that made any sense])

    Any further ideas?

    Many Thanks,

    Tom
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  6. #5
    Member JohnF's Avatar
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    Re: Oblong Omega

    Hi -

    Well, if the movement isn't clearly labelled Omega, then it's probably not one. That said, after I took a closer look at the picture, it is marked Omega.

    Looking at my handy Shugart, it looks a LOT like a calibre 100 Omega. The serial number places it, as Ray has mentioned, in the early 1930s (the serial number 7000000 started in 1929 and the serial number 8000000 was used in 1935, placing your serial number directly in the middle there somewhere).

    So, your next step to identifying your watch is to contact Omega itself. At this link you can register with Omega and ask them about your vintage watch: they maintain an excellent database of their vintages, and may be able to tell you exactly when it was manufactured, to whom it was sold to (or at least the country it was shipped to, if not the jeweler), etc.

    Omega also offers restoration services. The calibre 100 is considered by Omega to be "Very Old calibre", Type 4, subcategory C, and they would want 860 Swiss Francs for a very comprehensive and complete restoration of the watch.

    If you really treasure the watch, want to restore it to as original condition as possible, and want to be able to wear it for the next 30 years, then consider having them do the work. I've seen before/after pictures, and they do a fantastic job. This is one fantastic service that Omega offers which puts virtually all other makers to shame: they really do stand behind their product.

    Of course, that also is a chunk of money, and Omega is infamous for taking their time, and your watch may be off to Bienne, Switzerland for up to 6 months. The price doesn't include postage or anything like that.

    But please, please do have a qualified watchmaker look at the watch and check that the mechanical parts are doing fine. It looks like you have gotten quite a deal on the watch. $20????

    JohnF
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  7. #6

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    Re: Oblong Omega

    Thanks for that John,

    I do indeed treasure the watch, problem is that I have to take the watch off every time I wash my hands or it gets scratched all the time reaching into my pockets for change for the barman! The other problem is that the leather strap I have has to be looped in and 'glued' together as the bar is soldered to that case (it seems that my watch was more than likely snatched off its owner from a street robbery and sold to me for $20 in a market stall).

    I have a number of other watched that I bought whilst over there, Elgins, other Omegas and one or two that are different. They all need fixing though (bar the Omega) and they are all pocket watches. I had intended to fix them as a hobby, given that they are beautiful machines (I'm a young mech. eng. also)

    To be honest, I don't wear the Omega much nowadays due to the above and it gets kept in a box (along with the functional Longines) and I'd rather look to sell the working ones, get something that doesn't need attention 24/7 and begin learning more about the mechanics of watches. Also, I NEED to alleviate my student debts and so sell these two watches.

    I registered with OMEGA VINTAGE and couldn't find anything that matches the calibre you stated, or match the movement number. I am looking to find what price I could get for the watch and whether I should have it serviced (though £350 less p&p is a bit of a hurdle!)

    Given the above if I can release this and the longines, in the above thread, I can keep hold of my other babies that are dormant.

    Can you advise further on where I might be able to find an example of my watch and current price? Sorry to be brash - you're help and advice is much appreciated.

    Thanks again,

    Tom

  8. #7
    Member Ray MacDonald's Avatar
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    Re: Oblong Omega

    I suggest you look for vintage Omegas on eBay as that is the most comprehensive watch sale site in the world.
    If the watch hasn't been serviced for a while its value will be quite low. My source book (which admittedly is a couple of years old) lists 1930s era Omegas for $300-$500 generally and these are assumed to be in good working order (i.e. clean and lubricated). As you can see it often costs more to get a watch restored than it's worth on the open market.
    I could be off as much as 50% in my estimate. A watch is worth what a buyer will pay. However buying and selling old watches isn't a way to become rich, unfortunately.

    There are fathers who do not love their children; there is no grandfather who does not adore his grandson. ~ Victor Hugo

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