In-Depth – Vintage Omega Constellation Watches


Vintage Omega Constellation

The vintage Omega Constellation might be the timepiece that basically started everything personally. The fervor for watches that’s. Numerous relatives of mine had (and possess) an Omega Constellation plus it were these watches that got me considering watches to start with. I inherited a enjoyable vintage Omega Constellation from 1968 that people truly cherish as it is existed the wrist of my grandfather in excess of four decades (every single day). I furthermore bought some Constellation watches myself too with time.


So, now it’s time provided the vintage Omega Constellation a bit of well-deserved attention here on Fratello Watches. A few several days ago, we (Bert Buijsrogge which i) visited a collector of rare and vintage Omega Constellation and Longines Conquest watches and made a decision to carry out a photo shoot on collection. All of the vintage Omega Constellation models you will observe within the following sentences are built of gold and possess these Milanese gold woven bracelets. Due to the fact the entrepreneurs loves them incidentally. Despite the fact that some Omega Constellation watches were shipped using this method, furthermore they came on gold grain grain bracelets and leather straps.

Omega Constellation History

The Omega Constellation watch was once the flagship inside the Omega collection. This unique family in their collection dates back to 1952 and according to Omega? Obtain A Hearty Time publication (2007) it absolutely was his or her limited produced Centenary collection am high desired by clients. This 1948 Omega Centenary commemorated the 100th birthday in the Omega company also it was their first automatic chronometer watch. It wasn’t created in series production nevertheless the curiosity about them am high, that Omega made a decision to make a new number of automatic chronometer watches in 1952: The Constellation.

The initial Omega Constellation models had bumper actions and distinctive gem created hour markers. Watches inside the photo above also sport the gem created hour markers by themselves cake-pan created dials. The Dauphin hands were utilized up to the late sixties.

Following a few years, around 1955, the Omega quality 354 bumper movements with chronometer rating was transformed through the standard 50x series. This movement stood a normal rotor and showed up several versions (date/no-date). In 1959 this feature of actions was been effective through the standard 55x (nodate) and 56x (date) movement families. Realize that a couple of those actions were also found in Seamaster models, only in unusual cases they were chronometer licensed. One of the better on-line assets relating to this subject might be the Omega Constellation Fanatics blog by Desmond. Also, he features a nice summary of the several dials and cases that were chosen for the Constellation collection.


Wealthy Dials, Fancy Lugs

One factor which will make the Constellation stand out for me personally within the other Omega categories of that time is the dials on these Constellation models were highly decorated. Using gold dials, gold hour markers, onyx hour markers, gold hands and gold applied logos and wording is a factor that wasn’t seen on any kind of their other collections with this extent. A couple of from the gold dials stood a satin-blown finish; others stood a sun-guilloch, pattern or possibly a combination-hatched dial. There has been a number of dials designed for the Omega Constellation inside the 19 fifties and sixties.

The wedding cake-pan dials (see photo below) were generally found in the vintage Omega Constellation watches. While using gold gem-created hour markers is more uncommon and merely seen round the earlier models. Inside the sixties Omega added while using Onyx stick markers on the couple of from the Constellation models. Better mentioned, they’re gold hour markers by getting an Onyx inlay.

Another factor making the Constellation appealing to numerous fanatics are people nice fancy lugs. People early Omega Constellations have rounded lugs and were later a bit more restyled for the sixties. A bit more rectangular, sharp edges but nevertheless very elegant (second photo below).

Constellation Luxurious, Constellation Grand Luxe, Constellation II Luxurious Calendar

Omega also used Luxurious, Grand Luxe and splendid Calendar to suggest numerous there Constellation models. It will receive a little unclear whether these watches stood a more refined finish, more pricey dials or gold bracelet. The vintage Omega Constellation 168.010 I inherited came initially around the gold Milanese mesh bracelet for example also it seemed to be named Constellation II Luxurious Calendar.  It provides a quickset calendar (quality 564) known as the successor in the Constellation reference 168.004. I furthermore occur to experience a vintage Omega Constellation 168.004 having a quality 561 movement together with a very similar dial. This model was indicated since the Constellation II. I question just what the Luxurious Calendar??¥ in the 168.010 adds into it if this involves finish and execution.

For a lot of models it’s very apparent why they think of it as the Constellation Grand Luxe, simply because they incorporated a beautiful gold Reinhor brick bracelet together with a silver box. However, these models despite their indication of Luxurious, Grand Luxe or whatever used exactly the same actions concentrating on the same finish. Then you’ll have some white gold or platinum or platinum in addition to platinum models, which are unusual and indicated Lavish and Grand Luxe. Confusing.

Observatory of Geneva

All gold Constellation designs have the observatory of Geneva hands-engraved round the back. The stainless models and gold/steel designs have a (gold) medallion round the back while using observatory of Geneva. Where the dial features this gold star highlighting the model title Constellation, the problem back gets the observatory engraved within starry sky. The eight stars round the situation back indicate the various exploits of Omega in the world chronometer competition. After I written above, the Constellation is certainly a chronometer watch. An accreditation that proofs the top precision from the movement. Besides the Constellation, another categories of the Omega collection also incorporated watches which in fact had a chronometer rating. However, the vintage Omega Constellation is the flagship from the trademark in individual’s days counseled me rated chronometer.


Seventies after which..

For me personally, the vintage Omega Constellation watch is best between 1952 and 1970. The elegant created cases, fancy lugs, 10-around the sides crowns, beautiful copper-colored actions and wealthy dials of people early vintage Omega Constellation watches were transformed by cumbersome created seventies models. You’ll find some beautiful legendary models inside such as the rectangular Constellation Marine Stardust getting a dial produced from aventurine quarta movement. In general you are able to condition they don’t breathe the identical class as people earlier models.


You actually could condition the Omega Constellation collection lost a bit of direction in people years. A lot of differing types, situation shapes and so on. It wasn’t until 1982 where the former flagship from the trademark was reinvented. Because year, the Omega Constellation Manhattan was introduced. This new design having its four claws that pressed round the very, a built-in bracelet and chronometer movement (in addition the quarta movement models, which have another standard for chronometer certification clearly) was produced by Carol Didisheim which is still inside the collection. Despite the fact that the look was up-to-date throughout time, the very first 1982 design remains clearly being adopted. The current Omega Constellation folks are not regarded as his or her flagship any more; it is a very popular watch inside a couple of nations (e.g. China and India). Recently Omega even reintroduced the wedding cake-pan dial with a Constellation exclusive edition.

Collecting Vintage Omega Constellation

If you are to buy a vintage Omega Constellation, you’ll find numerous what exactly you need to think about. One of these simple is that it is small be careful for today’s standards. Getting a diameter of roughly. 34mm it’s very small. Searching back it absolutely was quite smart of Rolex watch to create their Oyster Perpetual Day-Date (ref.1803) in 36mm, as that was considered normal for just about any very long time while 34mm is known as small since 10-15 years. Since I Have stated the Rolex watch Day-Date anyway, it’s interesting to know the full gold vintage Omega Constellation with gold bracelet was a bit pricier in people days in comparison to Rolex watch Day-Date 1803. Despite the fact that the Omega Constellation Grand Luxe around the gold Reinhor bracelet brings more than the normal gold Day-Date on Leader bracelet, most gold Constellations continue being cheaper to acquire when compared to a gold Day-Date.


However, the vintage Omega Constellation prices increase in the last years. Please overlook the prices you might have noticed in the Omega Mania 2007 catalog, since it seems that there’s plenty of air inside the prices a couple of from the offered watches fetched. A bit of sense that really help of market places like, as well as the various sales forums will reveal that you will have a pleasant gold Omega Constellation for roughly $3000 USD. For just about any nice early gold Constellation (Luxurious) with people large gem created hour markers the price will probably be lots of course. If you want to include an Omega Constellation around the gold bracelet, like pictured within the following sentences, the price may even double. However, always keep in mind that it is all about condition!


Although Omega has the ability to service plenty of their vintage watches, obtaining a quality 354 (bumper), 50x, 55x or 56x maintained will set you back. Omega is transparent throughout these maintenance prices. Check this out complete maintenance service prices round the Omega website and you will have an indication in the costs. The stated calibers will be in the 4th category (early calibers). A whole overhaul in the watch continues to be done on estimate though.

A sizable thanks for the collector of individuals beautiful Omega Constellation watches who want to remain anonymous.