A very rare, attractive and large stainless steel divers wristwatch with center seconds, fixed spring bars and special military markings, made for the British Royal Navy

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  • Manufacturer: Omega
    Year: 1968
    Reference No: ST 165.024
    Movement No: 26'290'102
    Case No: 165'024
    Model Name: Seamaster 300 "Military"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 552, 24 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Nylon
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel
    Dimensions: 42mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed. Caseback further engraved "0552/923-7697 A/199/69".
    Accessories: Accompanied by an Extract from the Archives confirming date of production on March 13th, 1968 and delivery to the British Royal Navy, and Royal Navy Divers Log belonging to J.B. Fisher with photograph of "H.M.S. GANGES".

  • Catalogue Essay

    The necessity of creating waterproof and reliable timepiece for divers would soon inspire watch brands to introduce many competing dive watches, a few of which, including Omega’s Seamaster 300, are now considered icons.

    Omega introduced the Seamaster 300 in 1958 as part of their “Professional” line of watches. Whilst the vast majority was produced for professional and recreational divers alike, from 1967 until approximately 1970, a very small batch was made for military use and custom designed by Omega to meet the needs of members of the British Army and Royal Navy. A number of special features set them apart from Omega’s regular production units.

    Their cases, with distinctive curved and beveled lugs, were delivered with fixed spring bars. Dials featured an encircled “T” designation, signifying the use of tritium for the luminous hour markers and hands. The broad, sword-shaped hour and minute hands, as well as the angular sweep seconds hand, were also specially designed. The crown was screw down as opposed to the snap down design as found on production versions. Their case backs were engraved by the British Ministry of Defense with the military branch code, issue number, and year of issue.

    As many were used in combat and on military deployments, very few have survived with all factory military features intact. We are therefore thrilled to offer this piece in its full “mil-spec” configuration. Surviving in remarkable original condition, it is one of the finest and best-preserved examples of a military Seamaster 300 to appear on the market which is even more impressive considering its regular use through at least 1971 by a diver of the Royal Navy.

    The caseback engraving of 0552 indicates delivery to the Royal Navy as confirmed by the extract from Omega’s archives. The original owner kept meticulous records, and his dives are wonderfully documented in the original Royal Navy Divers Log accompanying the watch.

    The dial is original to the watch, still fitted with what’s known as the “thin” encircled T. Most SM 300 dials were replaced during use by the MOD, and can be found with “fat” encircled T’s that were reprinted by the MOD. The luminous have faded to a pale yellow, which match the hue of the luminous numerals on the original acrylic bezel. Even the original NATO strap is fitted.

    This military Omega Seamaster 300 wristwatch is a rare opportunity for collectors of sports or military watches to own an extremely rare and completely original example of one of Omega’s most sought after divers watches.

  • Maker Bio

    Omega

    Swiss • 1848

    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.

    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.

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103

Omega

Ref. ST 165.024
A very rare, attractive and large stainless steel divers wristwatch with center seconds, fixed spring bars and special military markings, made for the British Royal Navy

1968
42mm diameter
Case, dial and movement signed. Caseback further engraved "0552/923-7697 A/199/69".

Estimate
CHF60,000 - 120,000 
€55,600-111,000
$59,500-119,000

sold for CHF87,500

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89

The Geneva Watch Auction: FIVE

Geneva Auctions 13 – 14 May 2017