Omega Replica just launched its Speedmaster Apollo 11 50th Anniversary Limited Edition as we reported the other day. Even though some traits have been improved, it’s more or less a reissue of the original gold Speedmaster – which was also a limited edition, and itself a tribute to the original Moonwatch. The luxury watch is one of the most particular Speedmasters ever made. It says that it’s also part of a rising trend among heritage watchmakers like Omega to reissue famous timepieces from their archives.
One of the most outstanding characteristic of the 50th Anniversary “Moonshine Gold” Speedy is its semi-transparent caseback, which features “1969-2019” and the limited edition number highlighted in burgundy, as well as the words “Master Chronometer” and an inner gold and PVD decorative ring. “The caseback was a long discussion,” Omega’s President and CEO Raynald Aeschlimann tells the FT. The original “is very well-known for its engraving celebrating the Moon landing, but as the new watch uses the latest certified Master Chronometer movement with the co-axial escapement, the determination was taken to have a see-through back.”
Aeschlimann is at pains not to call this a “vintage” reboot. “I don’t call it vintage, I call it a link to an unbelievable history,” he tells the paper. “The Speedmaster was never discontinued – it is a special look. As much as I hate the word, it is a very modern iconic design: it was the first chronograph with the tachymeter scale on the bezel, and the watch community understands this is not just part of the DNA of Omega – it is part of the DNA of the chronograph wristwatch.”
He founds that the replica Omega keeps an eye on the burgeoning market for vintage Speedys, which partly encourage this reissue. Meanwhile Breitling is also getting in on the reissue action. The brand recently unveiled an almost exact watch of its black-dial 806 Navitimer from 1969, in both gold and stainless steel, which is set to officially debut at Baselworld this month. The texture and color of the hand-painted luminous numerals were specially mixed to the original, as was the number of “beads” on the bezel.
But, the case is 0.15mm thicker to make it totally water-resistant. “The fake Breitling has one of the richest and most beautiful back catalogues,” as the watchmaker’s CEO Georges Kern tells the FT. “I made up my mind to go for a limited series that honors one of the more mythical models.” Two amazing replica watches to be sure.
As Omega fans knows that the brand had played a important role in space missions including Apollo 8 since 1965 as NASA officially acknowledged the Speedmaster as “flight-qualified by NASA for all manned space missions” after rigorous inspection and placed an initial order of 15-20 replica watches. Now Omega replica is celebrating the 50 years anniversary with a limited edition fake watch, the Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Apollo 8 with the price tag of $9,750 apiece, it’s an variation of the first black ceramic Dark Side of the Moon Speedmaster released in 2013, which has received great popularity among collectors or who is beloved of Moon Watch purists. Another remarkable model is the Grey Side of the Moon, which was debuted in 2016 with a meteorite dial.
The most notable feature of the Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Apollo 8 is its skeleton dial, which would bring about controversial opinion among watch fans. Omega first debuted a skeleton version of the Speedy in 1992, but this time the movement is in darker color making the fake watch looks more menacing. It was also “laser-ablated to decorate the bridges and main plate with realistic imagery of the lunar surface,” Omega notes. The dial-side is a light shadow to show the view of the moon’s surface from Earth, while the back of the watch shows the dark side that only can be seen from space. This modified version of the brand’s Calibre 1861 is called the 1869 to commemorate the first moon landing in 1969.
The whole replica watch is produced in black zirconium oxide ceramic, with striking yellow painted chronograph hands and a tachymeter scale and crown brim with Super-LumiNova. The black leather band also has a section of yellow rubber through its middle to maintain the black and yellow highlight scheme. The back of the fake watch is engraved with the words “WE’LL SEE YOU ON THE OTHER SIDE”, spoken by Command Module Pilot Jim Lovell on board during Apollo 8 as the spacecraft was going to lose radio contact with ground control as they began to enter the dark side of the Moon.
In the minds of many fans and collectors, Rolex and James Bond are intimately “bonded” together the two actually had a sophisticated relationship. Over the years it was reported that the replica Rolex refused to ever sponsor the films or provide watches for the actors — often leaving them to be sourced by a third party, or even the crew. While the fake Rolex might have made a huge commission off of brand recognition over the years, they didn’t actually market themselves as the ‘Bond watch’ once.
It was 1995 and Pierce Brosnan was chosen to play 007 in GoldenEye. By this time, Hollywood was capitalizing on product placement and the amazing replica Omega saw their opportunity to secure their brand alongside the coveted Bond brand of sophistication.
It’s not like Omega wasn’t already seen as a great watch, they just weren’t seen as the Bond watch. Either way, the marketing strategy further cemented their brand identity and bolstered their connections to the British Royal Navy — which in real life, had partnered with the brand often.
Fast forward to 2006 and we have a new man playing Bond once again, this time, Daniel Craig. Along with the new actor came a makeover for the Bond brand — a bit edgier, but still along the lines of styled and refined. The brand reportedly decided to continue with the Omega replica partnership because while top-end, sharp and luxurious, it didn’t come with the same high-brow as Rolex and seemed to be a better fit for their new leading role.
Now, let’s take a look at the specifications. The Omega Seamaster 300m chronometer is one of the brand’s best thanks to its ties to the secret agent — but this chronometer watch bolsters a great reputation on its own owing to a handful of key features.
The Planet Ocean is smaller than what we’re used to seeing on Bond’s wrist with a smaller 42mm case. But, the look is fitting for the refined Bond going for a more understated, but still classic, look. The amazing replica watch featured in the film has specs like: a black dial, steel bracelet, Seamaster written in a stunning orange as well as a second hand with an orange tip, alongside 600 meter water resistant case, a screw-in crown, see-through case back, unidirectional rotating bezel and helium escape valve.
That movie prompted the fake Omega to launch a limited edition Skyfall Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m due to booming popularity. The watch also celebrated Omega’s seventh appearance in the Bond films. What sets it apart from the original? While we can’t guarantee you’ll be as cool Bond once you put one of these beauties on, but we can assure you’ll look just as good.