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Omega serial numbers.

jjea

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Mar 17, 2009
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Some omega pocket watches holds its serial number in the movement but others don’t have any but in the case :mad:. Do you know if it is valid to use the number in the case for dating?
Thank you in advance.

Javier
 

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MartyR

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Dec 16, 2008
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I think that Omega rarely numbered their movements - of the five I have owned, only one was visibly numbered.

Where the case is signed by Omega, it may be that the case number means something, but personally I doubt that. I suspect that the reason for not numbering their movements was exactly so that they could put any movement in any case without the need to match up the numbers, so probably the case numbers are a completely different range from the movement numbers.

I don't know who made "Omega cases", so it may also be that they outsourced these to a wide range of makers and simply instructed them to put an Omega logo on them.
 

Kent

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Would the movement serial number be on the pillar plate, under the dial?
 

Roland Ranfft

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Hi there,

all Omega movements are numbered. Early movements have the number on
the dial side, but as the difference between case number (if from Omega)
and movement number is small for early samples, the case number can be
used to date early Omegas.

Here an early example (numbering started with 1,000,000 in 1894):
http://www.ranfft.de/cgi-bin/bidfun-db.cgi?10&ranfft&&2ustu&1222268443
Movement #1248889, case #1288131, both numbers date it to 1897.

Regards, Roland Ranfft
 

MartyR

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all Omega movements are numbered. Early movements have the number on the dial side, but as the difference between case number (if from Omega) and movement number is small for early samples, the case number can be used to date early Omegas.
That's interesting and useful, Roland. It does make me wonder why Omega hid their movement number - could it be for the reason I gave, that this absolved them from the need to match case to movement?

One of my five Omegas has a Wadsworth (gold) case, but the other four are:

1442636
3092672
3318208
4459004

I guess that the first is about 1898 (which looks about right) but what date is the last one? What surprises me is that the Omega name/logo on the dial of 4459004 is exacatly the same as your 1288331, and I understood that the style of logo on the case changed over time?
 

Roland Ranfft

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Hi MartyR,

what I wrote above is no real surprise. If a company is just one year old,
it simply can't have ten years old stock. So if they make or buy movements
and cases in about the same quantities, serial numbers will not differ much.

Later it can well happen that a particular case or movement lies pretty
long on the shelf, and accordingly the serial numbers may differ.

For instance there is a good reason to use a gold case as soon as it is
ready. So gold cases are often younger than the movement inside, and
therfore have a higher number.

Or imagine a very high grade movement. It costs the manufacturer not
much more than its simple counterpart, but it as not so easy to sell. So
the shelf time for such miovement is often longer than for its case.

Moreover Omega sold bare movements, and nobody knows whether they
made according gaps in case numbering.

However, in any particular case one may imagine why there is a difference,
but you'll never find out the actual reason.

Regards, Roland Ranfft
 

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