Omega flightmaster 145.013

Omega flightmaster 145.013 Cal. 910 – The Pilots Watch for the Supersonic traveller. Perfect for that “jet set” lifestyle!

We have spoken before about how the Sixties were an important era for the watch manufacturers of the world, with many involved in the race to produce the first Automatic Chronograph.

Omega themselves were flush with the success of their Speedmaster watch; basking in the glory of Astronauts wearing their watch to and on the moon.

They didn’t sit on their laurels though, because in 1969 they released the flightmaster; a watch specifically targeting Pilots. Their tag-line “a pilot’s watch that has rather more than a revolving bezel.”; was a direct dig at Rolex’s GMT Master.

If you were to play “Top Trump – Watches” this is the watch to beat; with seven hands, three crowns, three sub-dials, two pushers, an internal bezel and a size that just can’t be ignored. It wins hands down!

Our particular flightmaster is in near perfect condition; we can only imagine that it has lived its life as a “Box Queen”.

The first thing that strikes you, is the case has perfectly crisp edges with minimal scratching. It looks pristine! As I am sure you are aware, with flightmaster watches, case condition is extremely important. It is impossible to recreate the Sunburst brushed finish; only Omega can do that. So, when they have been re-polished, as many have been, they just look odd. It will be difficult to find a better case than ours!

The second thing you notice, and why wouldn’t you, is the face. The dial has turned a beautiful grey and has become, what people call, a “tropical” dial. This discolouration is due to the slow breakdown of the paints used to colour the dial from changes in moisture and temperature levels over time. This only enhances the Green used on the 24-hour subdial, seen at 3 o’clock. The dial is original as it shows “T Swiss Made T” at 6 o’clock. Omega stopped using Tritium and would have replaced the dial had it been serviced by them.

The hands retain their original lume, although some foxing has occurred; but they still hold their bright colours. The inner rotating bezel also shows some light scratches, with the “55” minute marker being particularly scrubbed. Nothing that takes away the shine though.

The three crowns and two chronograph pushers are all in good condition and retain their enamel colour coding which determines their function. The colour on the crowns and pushers relates to the colours of the hands. At first sight, it looks bewildering; there is just so much information to take in. But with time, if you will excuse the pun, it becomes a very simple and pleasurable thing to use.

The case back is a marvel too. It is engraved with the Ω symbol, the outline of a DC-8 with “flightmaster” below. Notice it is “flightmaster” not “Flightmaster”. I wonder why? Does anybody know? The engraving has worn and is starting to fade around the Omega logo; but what is fantastic is it still has the Sunburst brushing to its sloped sides and the recesses used to open the caseback are still sharp.

Inside, the mighty Cal.910 chronograph movement is working as it should, keeping time within specification, having been serviced recently.

The new soft leather “Rally” style strap is non-original. People just love trying this watch on so, it is a little creased!

We bought this watch with an Omega presentation box. It would make sense that this is the actual box it was supplied in, but we cannot say for sure. Nonetheless, they have lived together for many years, so it seems right they should stay together.

Finally, there is an Omega Guarantee booklet, dated 12th March 1971 which shows the Model reference: 145.013 and Serial number: 29132323. This would suggest this watch was manufactured in 1969, the first year of production, but wasn’t sold until 1971.