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Omega RAF pilot’s Ref. CK2292
Here we have something rather special from WWII: A military-issued RAF pilot’s watch by Omega, dating back to 1943.
These watches were produced to Mil-Spec by the British Ministery of Defense for RAF pilots and navigators. They were used by brave young pilots throughout the second half of the war.
The cases were made of Duralumin, a special alloy of aluminum, manganese, magnesium, and copper. While there are stories of this alloy being used for its lower glare in the cockpit compared to stainless steel, it is far more likely that a shortage of steel was the reason for using something different.
While the case was made of Duralumin, the case back was actually steel. This one comes with the associated military engravings, making it extremely attractive.
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Omega was founded in La chaux-de-fonds by Louis Brandt in 1848, although the company would not be named Omega until 1903. It is one of the most successful Swiss watch houses, both in terms of sales and historical significance.
Louis Brandt was already rather innovative before his Omega days. He developed the very first minute-repeater wristwatch with Audemars Piguet in 1892. Although Brandt died in 1903, Omega would not lose its innovative nature. Among its biggest accomplishments are the manufacture of the first tourbillon wristwatch movement in 1947 and the first large-scale commercial implementation of George Daniels’ co-axial escapement in 1999.
The biggest highlight in Omega’s history is undoubtedly the moon landing in 1969. Both Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin wore Omega Speedmasters on the lunar surface. But there is so much more to this Swiss powerhouse. They launched the very first dive watch with the Omega Marine, all the way back in 1932. That is some twenty years before the Blancpain Fifty-Fathoms and Rolex Submariner would redefine the category.
Omega has no shortage of hit collections. From the Speedmaster to the Seamaster and from the Constellation to the De Ville, with tons and tons of variations within all of those lines. You may opt for a yellow gold pie-pan Constellation or for a chunky Ploprof. There is something for everyone.
And that is before we go into Omega’s military history, including the Dirty dozen MOD-issued field watch. And we cannot forget James Bond, with his tricked out Seamasters since 1995’s Goldeneye.
No wonder then, that we love Omega so much!
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