WatchPro looks at the significant and obscure Speedmasters that Omega has launched over the past 60 years.
The 1957 Speedmaster Broad Arrow was one of three Omega debuts that year (the Railmaster and the Seamaster 300 were the other two). All three watches were high-precision timepieces designed for professional assignments and offered similar performance and aesthetic features with black dials, very robust cases and stainless steel bracelets.
The 1959 Speedmaster ref. CK 2998 was the first Omega to reach space, when astronaut Walter Schirra wore the watch during the ‘Sigma 7’ mission of the Mercury Programme in 1962. Schirra had purchased the watch for his own use, but two and a half years later, the Speedmaster would be officially certified by NASA for all manned-missions, launching it into history.
For well over half a century, the Omega Speedmaster has witnessed events that have tested the limits of physical endurance and human courage, including the first manned lunar landing in July of 1969 and every one of NASA’s piloted missions since March of 1965. This is the watch that is commonly known as the Moon Watch.
Omega made a very limited number of stainless steel split chronograph prototypes as part of its Alaska IV project. These digital wristwatches with day, date and month, made for the NASA Shuttle were signed Omega, Speedmaster, Professional, Quartz, Alaska IV Model.
Omega celebrated the 50th anniversary of the caliber 321 movement in 1992 with a gold commemorative model limited to 999 units with a caliber 863 movement and an additional 250 units housing the caliber 864 chronometer version of the same movement.
Omega made its first watch for the original NASA Apollo Soyuz mission in 1975, and marked anniversary years of the mission several times, including this 2010 model made 35 years after the first American/Russian project.