In the field of wristwatches, the Speedmaster is a true icon, and the most historically important model made by Omega. Its history spans almost sixty years with the very first Speedmaster launched in 1957, having slowly and gracefully evolved through the decades with a variety of dial, hand, bezel, and bracelet variations, and today’s modern Speedmaster line has unmistakable ties to the original. The first generation model, reference CK 2915, is considered by collectors as “the grail” for a number of reasons. In terms of design, it was the first chronograph to feature a tachymeter scale (or, as Omega called it at the time, the Tacho-productometer scale) on the bezel, rather than on the dial. In terms of movements, Omega did not go for a brand new caliber, turning instead to caliber 321, an extremely robust and reliable column-wheel chronograph, which it recognized as the best available option for its new Speedmaster.<br /><br />In production only between 1957 and 1959, the reference 2915 was produced in three different iterations: -1, -2, and -3. CK2915-1 and -2 are the very first – and most collectible - Speedmaster models. They have unique differences from all later generations of Speedmasters, most notably in their dial graphics and important elements of case design. The large, “Broad Arrow” minute and hour hands are one such trait, but also the metal bezel - rather than a bezel with black insert - and slightly different dial graphics, distinguishable by the oval “O” of Omega. This oval will later become perfectly round. Also the case has details which would later be abandoned, such as the “Speedmaster” designation engraved on the slanted edge of the case back rather than on the center.<br /><br />The present lot, a reference 2915-2, belongs to the second iteration of the first generation of Speedmasters, fitted with all of its original parts exhibiting all of the early details collectors adore. The first is the rare Base 1000 metal bezel, followed by the dial configuration. The Omega signature features the iconic "fat" O followed by the slightly longer "r" in the Speedmaster signature. Its original “broad arrow” hands are well preserved, and the dial is stunning, with luminous hour markers perfectly matching the hands’ luminous material. <br /><br />Offered in wonderful overall condition, this Speedmaster from 1958 is an all original textbook example of one of the very first Speedmaster models - an enduringly iconic reference revered by enthusiasts, and a trophy watch for the connoisseur.
Dial: The dial is preserved in unblemished condition with a beautiful matte black surface. The luminous hour indexes and hands have aged uniformly in color. Some luminous hour markers have minor loss when viewed under magnification. Case/Bracelet: The bezel has lost some of its black printing but remains very sharp. The case has seen a polish in the past but retains its original proportions and facets. The ‘SPEEDMASTER’ engraving on the side of the caseback is rubbed but is still very visible. Movement: The movement is running at the time of cataloguing and the chronograph function operates correctly. A service is recommended.
<a href="mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org">Paul Boutros</a><br> Head of Watches, Americas<br> +1 212 940 1293<br> <a href="mailto:email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org</a>
For another example of a reference 2915-2, please see <em>Omega Sportswatches</em> by John Goldberger, pp. 102-103.
Speedmaster, "Broad Arrow"
<p>Omega's rich history begins with its founder, Louis Brandt, who established the firm in 1848 in La Chaux de Fonds. In 1903, the company changed its name to Omega, becoming the only watch brand in history to have been named after one its own movements. A full-fledged manufacturer of highly accurate, affordable and reliable watches, its sterling reputation enabled them to be chosen as the first watch company to time the Olympic Games beginning in 1932. Its continued focus on precision and reliability ultimately led their Speedmaster chronograph wristwatch to be chosen by NASA in 1965 — the first watch worn on the moon.</p><p>Key models sought-after by collectors include their first, oversized water-resistant chronograph — the reference 2077, early Speedmaster models such as the CK 2915 and 2998, military-issued versions of the Seamaster and oversized chronometer models such as those fitted with their prestigious caliber 30T2Rg.</p>