Last weekend was an important one for watch authorities and enthusiasts. Perhaps also for financial backers, I may add. We’ve seen (or heard about) a portion of the consequences of the Rolex 6062 (5mio USD) and Rolex Daytona 6263 3.7mio USD) for example. You can debate the ‘hot air’ in these costs, however somebody paid these amounts so it is as real as it gets. In any case, what about the Omega Speedmaster watches we expounded on as of late, that were auctioned through Antiquorum and Christie’s. I’m talking about the skeleton Speedmaster in gold and the two gold 1980 Speedmaster Professional Apollo XI pieces .

Auction Results

Let’s start with the piece that was skeletonized by nobody else than Armin Strom: the Speedmaster Jubilee 27 Chro C12 reference 3696.50 that celebrated the 50th anniversary of the 27 Chro C12 development (which later on became caliber 321, no optical contrasts) in 1992. Antiquorum estimated this watch somewhere in the range of 20.000 and 30.000 Swiss Francs, yet the outcome is 52.500 Swiss Francs (counting premium). Just 50 pieces were made of this gold adaptation (there were also other commemorative models for the same anniversary). A rare piece and the value is by all accounts fair in the collector’s world. Gold Speedmaster Professional models are rare anyway, and this skeleton rendition combines crafted by Strom with the Moonwatch heritage. My theory is that the gold Speedmaster Professional watches will become more popular after some time (like we’ve seen with Daytonas from Rolex) and gain more appreciation by gatherers. Companion of the show and our periodical auction reporter Sacha Davidoff snapped the picture beneath of the watch, days before the auction took place.

Next are the Speedmaster Professional watches auctioned by Christie’s. I already momentarily referenced the two gold pieces, one in yellow gold (numbered edition of 300 pieces) and one in white gold (numbered edition of 20 pieces). It is a watch that was acquainted in 1980 with commemorate the Apollo XI Moonlanding and the re-qualification of the Speedmaster Professional for the Space Shuttle program. I now and then allude to the yellow gold model as the “Stafford” Speedmaster as Gen. Thomas P. Stafford is wearing this particular watch frequently. He has No.A217 as his personal watch  (see under an image of his watch). The other Speedmaster that Christie’s auctioned is the Speedmaster Apollo XI from 1985 that was limited to 1000 pieces just and was actually the primary stainless steel Speedmaster to feature a display back.

The stainless steel Speedmaster Professional 345.0808 got 10.625 Swiss Francs, including purchasers premium. That may seem as though a great deal for a 1980s Speedmaster in stainless steel, yet it comes with box and papers. This watch commemorated the 20th anniversary of the qualification by NASA (1965). Later on, Omega made other limited runs of this watch as well with a marginally unique caseback.

Then there are the two gold watches, reference BA345.0802 (yellow gold) and BC345.0802 (white gold). The two watches were depicted in detail last year on Fratello Watches ( click here ). I always was under the feeling that there were 300 models altogether, of which 20 were the white gold edition and 280 were in yellow gold. Which also would mean that the yellow gold models started with the A021 number. However, just yesterday I discovered this isn’t the case, there are yellow gold Speedmaster 345.0802 models that have an interesting number underneath A021.

Anyway, the yellow gold model (numbered (A)031) got 30.000 Swiss Francs including purchasers premium. That is a considerable amount for this model, that normally sells for much lower, however this one is complete with box and papers and the particular letter from Thomas P. Stafford and Space Shuttle program ‘brochure’. This watch isn’t as rare as the gold skeleton Speedmaster or the white gold edition obviously, yet a lot rarer than the Apollo XI 1969 model with the burgundy bezel . That one normally gets more than this yellow gold piece, as it has the heritage of the astronauts (all Apollo astronauts were given one) and the US president at the time (Nixon wouldn’t take a particularly costly gift).

Image by Herbert Mayer

The white gold edition, BC345.0802 and just 20 made has the novel number A04 and I anticipated that it should get along admirably at the auction. This watch has the same specifications as the yellow gold edition, with the rare caliber 861L (L stands for extravagance finish) and the typical engraving on the caseback. This Speedmaster Professional BC345.0802 is complete with box and certificate and got an incredible 87.500 Swiss Francs including purchasers premium. I’ve been watching the auction via the live association and I saw all three watches went to Australia. I trust it is the same purchaser, so he will have a pleasant threesome of pieces (all ‘sapphire caseback’ firsts) that compare to each other. Especially the white and yellow gold ones are very rare to have together.

Does these outcomes mean these will be the average going costs for these pieces? Nah, I am not altogether persuaded about that. What it did, is raise more awareness for these rare watches which will certainly be reflected in the going costs on the market. Where the yellow gold ‘Stafford’ pieces were traded for around 10.000 – 12.000 Euro (without box and papers), they may get a smidgen all the more presently because of the awareness and the fact that individuals realize that these are actually very rare.

I simply trust that the costs won’t go as crazy as what we are seeing with Rolex. It would make the existence of the Speedmaster gatherer harder than necessary. Also less fun, I may add. The beneficial thing about the Speedmaster is that you can in any case source a decent vintage 1970s piece for under 5000 Euro, the cost of a brand new Moonwatch. That said, the increase in number of fans and the demand for all-original (quality) pieces is being reflected in today’s estimating. Our companion of that will give you some guidance.