The vintage Omega Constellation is the watch that essentially begun everything for me. The energy for watches that is. Various family members of mine had (and have) an Omega Constellation and it were these watches that got me keen on watches in any case. I acquired a pleasant vintage Omega Constellation from 1968 which I genuinely appreciate as it has been on the wrist of my granddad for more than 40 years (on a day by day basis). I got some Constellation watches myself also through the years.
So, it is no time like the present I give the vintage Omega Constellation a touch of merited consideration here on Fratello Watches. A couple of months prior, we (Bert Buijsrogge and I) visited a gatherer of uncommon and vintage Omega Constellation and Longines Conquest watches and chose to do a photograph shoot on the two assortments. The entirety of the vintage Omega Constellation models you will find in this article are made out of gold and have this Milanese gold woven wristbands. Since the proprietors love them coincidentally. Albeit some Omega Constellation watches were conveyed thusly, they likewise went ahead gold rice grain wristbands and calfskin straps.
Omega Constellation History
The Omega Constellation watch was before the lead in the Omega assortment. This specific family inside their assortment traces all the way back to 1952 and as per Omega’s Journey Through Time distribution (2007) it was on the grounds that their restricted created Centenary assortment was so high popular by clients. This 1948 Omega Centenary commemorated the 100th birthday celebration of the Omega company and was their first programmed chronometer watch. It wasn’t made in arrangement creation yet the interest for them was high to such an extent that Omega chose to make another group of programmed chronometer watches in 1952: The Constellation.
The first Omega Constellation models had guard developments and particular jewel formed hour markers. The watches in the photograph above likewise include the jewel formed hour markers on their pie-dish molded dials. The Dauphin hands were utilized until the late 1960s.
After a couple of years, around 1955, the Omega type 354 guard development with chronometer rating was supplanted by the type 50x arrangement. This development had a typical rotor and came in a few adaptations (date/no-date). In 1959 this scope of developments was prevailing by the type 55x (no date) and 56x (date) development families. Note that a portion of these developments were likewise utilized in Seamaster models, however just in extremely uncommon cases they were chronometer guaranteed. Extraordinary compared to other online assets on this point is the . He additionally includes a decent outline of the various dials and cases that were utilized in the Constellation collection.
Rich Dials, Fancy Lugs
One of the things that make the Constellation stand apart – as I would see it – from the other Omega groups of that time, is that the dials on these Constellation models were lavishly enlivened. The utilization of gold dials, gold hour markers, onyx hour markers, gold hands and gold applied logos and phrasing is something that wasn’t seen on any of their different assortments to this degree. A portion of the gold dials had a glossy silk brushed completion, others had a sun-guilloché design or a cross-incubated dial. There were various dials accessible for the Omega Constellation during the 1950s and 1960s.
The pie-container dials (see photograph beneath) were commonly utilized in the vintage Omega Constellation watches. The utilization of the gold jewel molded hour markers is more uncommon and just seen on the previous models. During the 1960s Omega added the utilization of the Onyx stick markers on a portion of the Constellation models. Better said, these are gold hour markers with an Onyx inlay.
Another thing that makes the Constellation alluring to a great deal of gatherers are those pleasant extravagant carries. Those early Omega Constellations have adjusted hauls and were later somewhat more restyled to the 1960s. A touch more rectangular, sharp edges yet exquisite (second photograph below).
Constellation Deluxe, Constellation Grand Luxe, Constellation II Deluxe Calendar
Omega likewise utilized Deluxe, Grand Luxe and Deluxe Calendar to show some of there Constellation models. It gets somewhat indistinct whether these watches had a more refined completion, more costly dials or gold arm band. The vintage Omega Constellation 168.010 I acquired came initially on a gold Milanese cross section wristband for instance and was likewise named ‘Constellation II Deluxe Calendar’. It has a quickset schedule (type 564) and was the replacement of the Constellation reference 168.004. I likewise end up possessing a vintage Omega Constellation 168.004 which has a type 561 development and a very much like dial. This model was demonstrated as the ‘Constellation II’. I can’t help thinking about what the ‘Deluxe Calendar’ of the 168.010 adds to it regarding finish and execution.
For a few models, it is very clear why they consider it the Constellation Grand Luxe, as they accompanied a wonderful gold Reinhor block arm band and a silver box. Be that as it may, these models – regardless of their sign of Deluxe, Grand Luxe or whatever – utilized precisely the same developments with a similar completion. At that point there are some white gold and even platinum models, which are extremely uncommon and demonstrated Deluxe and Grand Luxe. Confusing.
Observatory of Geneva
All gold Constellation models have the observatory of Geneva hand-engraved on the back. The treated steel models and gold/steel models have a (gold) emblem on the back with the observatory of Geneva. Where the dial includes this gold star featuring the model name ‘Constellation’, the case back has the observatory engraved under a brilliant sky. The eight stars looking into the issue back represent the numerous adventures of Omega on the planet chronometer competition. As I composed over, the Constellation is consistently a chronometer watch. An affirmation that verifications the high exactness of a development. Other than the Constellation, some different groups of the Omega assortment likewise included watches that had a chronometer rating. Notwithstanding, the vintage Omega Constellation being the leader of the brand around then were completely evaluated chronometer.
1970s and later..
In my assessment, the vintage Omega Constellation watch is generally intriguing somewhere in the range of 1952 and 1970. The carefully formed cases, extravagant carries, 10-sided crowns, lovely copper-shaded developments and rich dials of those early vintage Omega Constellation watches were supplanted by awkward molded 1970s models. There are some wonderful ‘iconic’ models in there, for example, the rectangular with a dial made of aventurine quartz. However, by and large, you could say that they don’t inhale a similar class as those prior models.
You really could say that the Omega Constellation assortment lost a touch of bearing in those years. Many various models, case shapes, etc. It wasn’t until 1982 where the previous lead of the brand was rethought. In that year, the Omega Constellation ‘Manhattan’ was presented. This new plan with its four paws that pushed on the precious stone, an incorporated arm band and chronometer development (likewise for the quartz models, which have an alternate norm for their chronometer affirmation obviously) was planned via Carol Didisheim is as yet in the assortment. Albeit the plan was refreshed during the years, the underlying 1982 design is still obviously being followed. The current Omega Constellation family isn’t viewed as their lead any longer, it is an exceptionally well known watch in specific nations (for example China and India). As of late Omega even once again introduced the pie-skillet dial to a Constellation restricted edition.
Collecting Vintage Omega Constellation
If you are in the market to purchase a vintage Omega Constellation, there are various things you need to consider. One of them is that it is a little watch for today’s principles. With a distance across of approx. 34mm it is minuscule. By and large, it was very brilliant of Rolex to make their Oyster Perpetual Day-Date (ref.1803) in 36mm, as that was viewed as typical for quite a while 34mm is viewed as little for 10-15 years at this point. Since I referenced the Rolex Day-Date in any case, it is fascinating to realize that a full gold vintage Omega Constellation with gold wristband was a touch more costly in those days than the Rolex Day-Date 1803. Albeit the Omega Constellation Grand Luxe on a gold Reinhor wristband gets more than the normal gold Day-Date on President arm band, most gold Constellations are as yet less expensive to get than a gold Day-Date.
However, the vintage Omega Constellation costs have gone up in the most recent years. Kindly disregard the costs you may have found in the OmegaMania 2007 list, as it appears to be that there was a ton of ‘air’ in the costs a portion of the sold watches brought. A touch of common sense and the assistance of commercial centers like , and the different will show you that you can have a pleasant gold Omega Constellation for around $3000 USD. For a pleasant early gold Constellation (Deluxe) with those large precious stone molded hour markers the cost will be high obviously. In the event that you need to have an Omega Constellation on a gold arm band, as envisioned in this article, the cost may even twofold. Nonetheless, consistently remember that it is about condition!
Although Omega can support a great deal of their vintage watches, having a type 354 (guard), 50x, 55x or 56x overhauled will set you back. Omega is straightforward in these adjusting costs. Take a gander at this on the Omega site and you will have a sign of the expenses. The referenced types are in the fourth class (exceptionally old types). A complete upgrade of the watch is being done on gauge though.
A huge thank you to the collector of this wonderful Omega Constellation watches who wish to remain anonymous.
*This article showed up first on June 28th, 2014 and has been refreshed since.