OMEGA Speedmaster "First Omega In Space" 1962 – BaselWorld 2012

You’ve probably heard it by now, OMEGA introduced the remake of the “First Omega in Space” Speedmaster. The watch worn by Walter ‘Wally’ Schirra on the 3rd of October 1962 during the Sigma 7 flight, was the Speedmaster ref. CK2998. This is a second generation Speedmaster, a few years before it became the official choice by NASA and renamed ‘Speedmaster Professional’ in 1965. We had a look at the new remake of this Speedmaster ‘1962’ during our appointment with OMEGA in BaselWorld and we’d like to share our findings and the pictures we took, with our readers.

As you can see, the dial lacks the ‘Professional’ wording and has the applied OMEGA logo again, like it was used in those days. The font that OMEGA used doesn’t match with the original one, but that has been a matter of ‘corporate branding’. The hands are according to the original 1962 ref.CK2998 Speedmaster as well, except that the use of the chronograph second hand belongs to the original CK2998-1 (or mark 1) and the small sub register hands to the later CK2998-2. On the other hand, we’ve seen so much combinations through the years, including those who left the factory in Bienne in the 1960s that is getting hard to have the exact rights facts on the table. Despite that, OMEGA did a great job to create a dial that comes so close to the original model.

With a diameter of 39.7mm a tad bit smaller than the current Speedmaster Professional ‘Moonwatch’, but we’ve found it to wear very well. The straight lugs of this Speedmaster are very interesting and correspond to those of the original CK2998. The finish on the case differs a bit from the original Speedmaster from 1962, but nevertheless does the watch give you a feel that are you are actually wearing this vintage Speedy from the 1960s.

OMEGA Speedmaster "First Omega In Space" 1962   BaselWorld 2012

OMEGA decided to put a vintage looking brown strap on the watch, something of which Jean-Claude Monachon (OMEGA’s Head of Development) told me was a very clear decision by them. It would not make sense to have either the current stainless steel bracelet resized for this Speedmaster “First Omega in Space” but it also wouldn’t have made sense to do a remake of the original bracelet as it wouldn’t meet their current standards for a bracelet.

Inside the Speedmaster 1962 is the famous caliber 1861, based on the manual winding Lemania 1871 chronograph movement. We are glad that they used this movement instead of a new co-axial movement, historical wise it should be the caliber 321 but this is definitely the best solution as the original caliber 321 is not available anymore. We love the new co-axial movements by OMEGA (read RJs thorough review of the Speedmaster Co-Axial caliber 9300 here), but it would not have made sense.

OMEGA Speedmaster "First Omega In Space" 1962   BaselWorld 2012

This watch has a sapphire crystal and also the case back is different than the original ‘Seahorse’-only engraved one. The caseback is embossed with OMEGA’s original seahorse emblem, the wording “THE FIRST OMEGA IN SPACE” and “OCTOBER 3, 1962”, which is the date of the Mercury-Atlas 8 (Sigma 7) mission. The caseback also has the number of the watch engraved. Unlike the annual Limited Editions that OMEGA introduces (this year was the Last Man on the Moon edition), this Speedmaster is not a limited edition.

This is a watch for Speedmaster collectors and lovers all over the world, we’re sure. Since OMEGA have done their best to create a straight-lug CK2998 remake, we are sure that the audience will understand some of the compromises that have been made to let it fit in the current OMEGA catalogue.

OMEGA will get this watch delivered to authorized dealers in October/November 2012, at least ‘after’ the 50th anniversary of Wally Schirra’s Mercury Atlas 8 mission. Price is set at CHF 4750.- (including taxes).

An all original OMEGA Speedmaster pre-Professional (and thus pre-Moon) CK2998 sells for much more than that. It makes the Speedmaster ‘1962’ or ‘First Omega in Space’ a very interesting and attractive Speedy for those who can’t find a vintage ref.2998 to their liking, don’t want to spend so much money for one or just prefer new watches. Whatever reason it may be, we think that this remake Speedmaster pre-Professional will be a very good seller amongst Speedmaster collectors and aficionados all over the world.

Below a picture of Wally Schirra (who passed away on the 3rd of May in 2007), wearing his OMEGA Speedmaster over the sleeve of his NASA suit.

OMEGA Speedmaster "First Omega In Space" 1962   BaselWorld 2012

More information: www.omegawatches.com. Also make sure to keep an eye on their Facebook page during the BaselWorld exhibition and other events.

OMEGA Speedmaster "First Omega In Space" 1962   BaselWorld 2012

12 Comments

  1. Anonymous Reply

    […] […]

  2. Alex Reply

    A true Icon of the watch world . The speedmaster endures and will endure for ever .

  3. Omega Speedmaster | How to be Swell Reply

    […] Modern Speedmasters are available with a more scratch proof sapphire crystal. Omega will be also releasing a remake of the first Speedmaster that made it to space later this year. If you want to own a piece of […]

  4. Speedy pro or Aqua Terra - Page 3 Reply

    […] Looks sharp! OMEGA Speedmaster “First Omega In Space” 1962 – BaselWorld 2012 OMEGA Speedmaster "First Omega In Space" 1962 – BaselWorld 2012 Omega Speedmaster Professional / 3570.50.00 Tissot Visodate 1957 Heritage Tissot T-Touch […]

  5. Speedmaster 9300 Reply

    […] […]

  6. Nicolas Reply

    The watch from Schirra had not the refference; CK 2998 but the refference; 105.002 !!

    1. Robert-Jan Reply

      Hello Nicolas,

      The Schirra watch is in the Omega museum in Bienne and it said CK2998. Also, the in the Omega ‘Journey through time’ book (by Marco Richon) the Schirra watch is mentioned as a CK2998. His watch was produced on November 15th 1961, before the 105.002 was actually introduced (1962). Unless I can see some confirmation or evidence that it is a 105.002 he was wearing, I will change the text with pleasure :)

      Thanks for your comment anyway!

      RJ

  7. Nicolas Reply

    Sorry; ST 105.002

  8. Speedy Tuesday - Omega Speedmaster Professional 3577.50 From The Moon To Mars Reply

    […] the Speedmaster First Omega In Space (which we reviewed here), this 2004 Speedmaster Professional ‘From The Moon To Mars’ is also a numbered […]

  9. Speedy Tuesday - Omega Speedmaster 2915 Reply

    […] understand why Omega decided to bring out a new Speedmaster timepiece who has the same shaped case (click here for our view on the Speedmaster ’1962′ they introduced this […]

  10. OMEGA Speedmaster CK2998-5 | Fratellowatches Reply

    […] we’ve written before, the CK2998 was the Speedmaster that joined Walter ‘Wally’ Schirra in space during the Sigma 7 mission. It is the straight-lug Speedmaster that still has a lot of […]

  11. Speedmaster CK2998-3 FAP (Fuerza Aerea del Peru) | Fratellowatches Reply

    […] CK2998 was in production between 1959 and 1963 and was actually the watch that was worn by Wally Schirra during NASA’s Sigma 7 mission in […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>