Omega's Constellation family – like this full serviced gold 1969 Omega Constellation Ref. 168.017 Chronometer here – has been around for nearly 70 years as one of Omega’s oldest collections.
First appearing in 1952 with the chronometer Calibre 354 automatic movement, the Constellation was designed to be Omega’s bellwether watch, taking full advantage of Omega winning yet another chronometer competition – meaning the movement was tested for precision in five different positions and temperatures, certified, and stamped with a caliber number as a signifier it passed inspection – at the Geneva Observatory.
The Constellation was named in honor of the Constellation jet that flew during World War II. Constellation casebacks commonly feature a medallion with the Observatory of Geneva crowned by a constellation of eight stars – the stars represent eight big chronometer competition wins, which was a world record.
Since 1952, the Constellation has undergone countless aesthetic transformations, from the pie-pan dials of the 1950s to the ultra-thin quartz watches of the 1970s leading to the consolidation of the collection in 1982 with the Constellation Manhattan. Constellation movements were constantly upgraded and for decades it remained the watch to first see the best new movements from the manufacturer.
The first run of Constellations used the Omega Caliber 35x bumper movement which was replaced in 1955 by the full rotor Caliber 50x series; the 50x family of slow-beat automatics represented the ultimate in production watch manufacturing, with the mid-500 series as the best automatic production movement Omega ever produced.
The Constellation was originally branded as the “Globemaster” in the United States, dropped in 1956 as Douglas Aircraft – manufacturers of huge transport planes of the same name – held the trademark. Fast forward to the 21st century, which featured Omega purchasing the same trademark in preparation for the debut of its Globemaster watch, which channels the spirit of the original.
This Omega comes with a leather strap, nylon strap, springbar tool, and hard plastic travel case.
1969 Omega Constellation Ref. 168.017 Automatic Chronometer
DIAL: Omega Chronometer-signed dial, with matching hands.
CASE: Gold case measures 35mm (w/o crown, 37mm with) x 40mm, with sharp caselines; matching caseback features a clear and defined Constellation emblem case.
We have an original vintage ad for a gold Omega Constellation Chronometer in the shop now, similar to this one, here.
CRYSTAL: Omega-signed domed crystal, with light imperfections and one light scratch.
BAND: Dark brown leather strap, with accent stitching – a nice compliment to the vintage nature of this Omega. This Constellation also comes with a black nylon strap, with gold-plated stainless-steel hardware.
MOVEMENT: Omega Calibre 564 24-jewel automatic and hand wound mechanical movement. We have performed a full service on this Constellation.
CROWN: Omega-signed gold crown.