April 25 2017
Sold for £1,700
With the ‘right’ Speedmaster MKI becoming ever more expensive, it’s inevitable that buyers are going to start looking towards Omega’s less celebrated chronographs when searching for interesting additions to their collections – so we can expect values of early Flightmasters to head north sooner rather than later.
Launched in 1969, the model was designed as a true multi-functional watch aimed, in particular, at long-haul pilots. The multitude of crowns and pushers bristling from the distinctively-shaped case serve to control 30 minute and 12-hour chronograph counters, a 24-hour indication and an independently-adjustable second time zone (featuring a jet-shaped hand).
The latter function was Omega’s answer to the Rolex GMT Master which also offered a second time zone but executed it using what some would say was the cruder method of a non-independently adjustable hand paired with a revolving bezel. In fact, Omega’s somewhat impertinent period advertising for the watch was headlined: “Introducing the Omega Flightmaster, a pilot’s watch that has rather more than a revolving bezel…”
This steel, first generation model looked to be in original condition and was the better of two examples offered in the sale. Both, however, suffered the significant dial fade common to the Flightmaster, which only remained in the catalogue for four years across the two generations but was produced in 37,000 examples.