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Omega Speedmaster Broad Arrow 1957 Column Wheel Automatic Chronograph 3551.20 42MM Automatic
WHY THIS WATCH
Inspiration from the Past
Released in 2002 as a homage to the Speedy Pro, the Omega Speedmaster ref. 3551.20 is inspired by the Broad Arrow Speedmasters of the past. The idea behind this Speedy was to make a Speedmaster that had some attributes of the old broad arrow speedmasters, but with some modern twists. With it's laser engraved tachymeter, broad arrow hands, and a case that is identical to the Speedmaster professional, this watch is borrowing a lot from it's past. The creme dial with fire-blued hands is where this watch begins to differentiate itself from the older references. Also, the movement used here is not the manually wound movement we are used to seeing in Speedmasters but instead an automatic Calibre 3303.
An Automatic, Column Wheel Calibre
This watch is driven by the Omega Calibre 3303, an Omega Chronometer Certified free-sprung, automatic column wheel chronograph. Note that column-wheel chronographs are considered superior to their lever cam counterparts, as the chronograph initiation in a column wheel chronograph is silky smooth. Note that column-wheel chronographs are much more rare as they are harder to make.
Dial-side we have a very high contrast creme dial with flame-blued hands and sub-registers. This dial is gorgeous, and highly readable, due to the contrast of the white background on the blued hands, as well as the enhanced readability of the Broad Arrow Hour Hand.
Same Old Speedy Case
With it's twisted lugs, and 42mm diameter, this case is nearly identical to the cases used in the traditional Speedmaster Professional. This is a good thing, sine the Speedy case is a true uni-corn when it comes to wrist comfort. Despite being 42mm this case fits like a gem on most peoples wrists. I've rarely heard someone say the Speedy Pro is too big on their wrist. On the back you get the famous Speedmaster engraving. I'll also mention this watch does have an inner iron case for anti-magnetism.
Sam's "Tasting" Notes
The first thing that I noticed while wearing this watch is the pure legibility of the dial. The combination of the blued hands, creme dial, and broad arrow hour hand make this a "time at a glance" watch, where I don't have to strain at all to know what time it is. The crystal on this watch is something special. It's a curved sapphire that's made to look like an old-school acrylic crystal. I'm getting the best of both worlds with this crystal: I don't have to worry about scratches and it's got the beautiful curves of an acrylic. I can tell this is not your average, off the shelf chronograph movement. Upon engaging the column-wheel chronograph there is no "stutter-step", it's just a smooth continuous flow all the way. The bracelet is a predictable Omega bracelet from this era. It's not much to look it but it does the job and is always comfortable. I put this watch on an emerald-greeen leather strap and it's stunning. This watch takes to straps very well. I like that this has a date that doesn't stand out like a sore thumb. This is a really under-rated watch for the price. There's not that many white-dial Speedmaster models so it feels like I'm wearing something a little more different than your standard black dialed Speedmaster Pro.
THE LITTLE DETAILS
Watch is in overall excellent condition with normal wear from normal use. Most of the wear is on the bezel. The sides of the case and the lugs are clean with only very minor wear. The curved sapphire crystal is clean. The chronograph calibre is running strong, keeping good time, and resetting to zero. The factory Omega bracelet is in great condition with minor marks, and will fit a 6.5 inch wrist (more links available upon request if you have a bigger wrist). No box or papers.
Come Visit our Storefront in Mclean, Virginia
Want to see this watch in person? We are located in Mclean Virginia a few minutes from Tysons Corner I and II malls. We are by appointment only, so please look us up on the web to get the number and schedule a time to browse our catalog.
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