Omega Speedmaster 125
the automatic chronograph-chronometer
Proud Testimony to 125 years of watchmaking
Written by Chuck Maddox  (
on 24 April, 2000, certain rights reserved.
Last Revised: 6 February, 2004 14:55 GMT

Photo by Edwin Leung

"The Omega Speedmaster 125 is a very special watch. Very few were made. Not only is it an automatic chronograph, but it also carries the certificate of the Swiss Institutes for Official Chronometer Tests. This means that along the will all the practical advantages of a true chronograph, the Speedmaster 125 has the uncompromising timekeeping efficiency of an official chronometer.
Omega has designed the Speedmaster 125 as a commemorative watch for it's 125th anniversary. It is the latest in the Speedmaster line, the most distinguished family of the watches in Omega's history."

-- Excerpt from the Omega Speedmaster 125 Instruction manual

 (Quotation Courtesy of Simon Debrux)


Omega Speedmaster 125
{Note: This picture is adapted from the Speedmaster 125 manual and is not an accurate portrayal of the '125's dial. It is included for illustrative purposes only...}
Top of Article
Table of Contents:
My acquisition
Living with the 125:
General Impressions
Case back
Optional Bezels
Water Resistance
Place in Speedmaster Line
Parts Availability
Speedmaster 125 Q&A
Rouge's Gallery
Owner's thoughts...

In 1973 Omega celebrated the 125th anniversary of it's founding with a very special commemorative watch. Omega chose to make the watch commemorating it's birth with a watch that symbolized and embodied the highest standards of craftsmanship in the Omega tradition.
This watch heralded a number of firsts... While it is Omega's first Chronograph-Chronometer ever offered for sale, it is first Chronograph-Chronometer with automatic winding offered by any manufacturer to the public. Nowadays, Chronograph-Chronometers with automatic winding are much more commonplace, but considering that automatic winding chronographs, considered the "last great complication to be achieved" was only introduced 4 years prior to the production of the 125 makes the feat all that more notable.
This special watch was produced as a limited run of 2,000 examples. Unlike more recent Speedmaster commemorative editions within this line, no engraving was done on the case or the case back of the watch. Some examples do have a faint, apparently punched number on the case back. But the case and case back is otherwise free from xxxx/2000 or other annotations.


Main features of the Speedmaster 125
Speedmaster 125 Diagram

-- Diagram inspired by one in the original manual

Three position signed Omega crown:
Position 1 (normal operating position):
For occasional rewinding of the watch if it has not been warn for 48 hours or more.
Position 2 (For Instant Date Setting):
Pull crown out to position 2 and turn the crown clockwise until the date indicated in the calendar window (4 in diagram at left) is correct. Note: Before you try to set the date, make sure that the time on the watch is between 3 o'clock and 8 o'clock so that you avoid binding the automatic date change mechanism with the quick change mechanism.
Position 3 (Time Setting):
Pull crown out to position and turn the crown until both the main dial hands (1: Hour, 2: Minute) and the 24-Hour arrow (5) are properly set.
Other items indicated in this diagram:
1: Hour Hand, 2: Minute Hand, 3: Second hand (in sub-register at 9 o'clock), 4: Calendar Date window, 5: 24-Hour Arrow, 6: Chronograph Second Indicator, 7: Chronograph Minute Indicator, 8: Chronograph Hour Indicator. Pusher A: starts and stop's and restarts the Chronograph, Pusher B: Resets the Chronograph after the Chronograph has been stopped.
Having said all of the above, the operation is very simple if one is accustomed to using a Chronograph. The only true complications over a Speedmaster moonwatch, for example, are the Date function and the 24-hour indication register.
When one is setting the time on the watch one has to remember to make sure that the 24-Hour indication is properly set for AM (0-12 Hours) or PM (13-24 Hours). Aside from indicating the (local) military time, this sub-dial is very useful for determining what time it is elsewhere in the world. For example, if the watch is properly set to London time, and one knows the time differential to Amsterdam is +1, Hong Kong is +12, and Chicago is -6, one can simply visually count +1, +12, and (counterclockwise) -6 around the 24-Hour Dial to determine the local time in those cities.

Setting the calendar date is also trivially easy. While the watch is a quite complicated one from the watchmaker or jeweler's viewpoint, it's operation is in reality quite simple to the owner/wearer. Only Triple-Date and Triple date Moonphase, and rattapante chronographs are more complex in operation than this model.

The long and winding road to acquisition:
I had become aware of the existence of the 125 shortly after I got into the watch collecting hobby in a big way in the winter of 1998-1999. I first became aware of it an it's history from the Omega Designs Book. When I read that the production run was so small and considered that 25 years had past I had assumed that my chances of ever locating one, and one in an acceptable condition at a reasonable price were small next to nil. Further investigation of various on-line jeweler's and auction sites turned up that while the 125 wasn't readily available obtaining one was a genuine possibility.
Nevertheless, because I have fairly finicky tastes, the 125 wasn't the highest priority in my collection. I personally prefer chronographs with 3 sub-registers. Which leads to an interesting discussion about what is and isn't a 3-Register watch. Personally I refer to chronographs with 3-sub dials as 3-register chronographs. There is another camp that calls a Chronograph that is capable of recording the elapsed time in hours, minutes and seconds as being 3-register... With this definition, a watch with 2 sub-registers (hours and minutes) but no small seconds are considered 3-register chronographs as well. About a year ago I purchased a 2-sub dial watch which sported a central minute register, thus it in essence qualified as a 3-register even though it had only 2 sub-dials. It got me to thinking that bumping the Speedmaster 125 up a couple of notches on my "wanted list" was justified.

I had seen a couple of 125's in the spring of 1999 go on eBay in the mid to high $800 US range. With an idea of what I was willing to pay I placed a bid on a particularly nice 125 from a seller in San Francisco in May of 1999 at $925 or so. At the last minute I was outbid and someone else won the auction. As I had several other auctions I was bidding on at the time that amount was as high as I felt I could go for that piece, still pay what I thought was a reasonable price and still be able to bid on the other items I was interested in which were higher up on my "wanted list". Before long I wished I had continued bidding.

After that auction concluded there was a dry spell of over two months when you couldn't find a 125 for love nor money. One appeared and went for $1,500 US another appeared and was went for $1,800 US. When another one appeared on eBay just after this second one I entered the bidding and was successful at $ 1,375 US. I took the precaution of e-mailing the seller before bidding and he assured me that the bracelet would fit me, with 8"/19.5 cm wrists this is an important consideration. The upshot is that while I am very pleased with my purchase, it is important to not always be "penny-wise" when purchasing a watch. I know that the inclination is to wait for another one, but sometimes it may turn out better to give a little.

San Franciscan Speedmaster 125
Speedmaster 125 from San Francisco I passed on...

Living with the Speedmaster 125:

General Impressions:

OK, if there is one word to describe the Speedmaster 125 it is Massive. Both in physical size and in weight the Speedmaster 125 is a big watch anyway you look at it. A detailed listing of the Speedmaster 125's dimensions follows in it's own section. But to sum up, it's by far the heaviest and in some dimensions the largest watch I own. It's almost 20 grams heavier than my next heaviest watch. I have read that the current model Seamaster Professional Chronograph in Stainless Steel is more than 20 grams heavier (my Seamaster Pro Chronograph is Titanium so I can't confirm this). Describing how it feels to have the 125 on your wrist is fairly easy. It's like attaching an ingot of heavy steel on your wrist. This is not a watch for the weak of heart or limb. Having said that, it's not an uncomfortable watch to wear, but rather it is not likely you will mistake it's feel for any other watch you own. You get used to the weight but you always know that it is there. Did I mention it was HUGE? =)


The watch has a very "rectangular" feel to it. It's not beveled or contoured like certain other Omega models, such as the Flightmaster, that might allow it to blend into your wrist. As a result it tends to stick up noticeably from ones wrist and in addition to potentially attracting accidental contact with door jambs and wall, it might be difficult to wear under a long-sleeve shirt cuff.

Another feature of the Speedmaster 125 is that the Movement and crystal can me removed from the case as a single module. This feature also appears on the Speedmaster Automatic c.1045, and the Omega Speedmaster Mark IV.

Omega Speedmaster 125
Photo from Eric Katoso's My Favorite Omega's site...
Case back:
The 125 is equipped with a relatively plain Speedmaster case back with the usual "seahorse" emblem. Some examples do have a faint, apparently punched number on the case back. In the case of the author's example the number 1 30x with a space between the 1 and the 30x. I do not know at this time if there is any special significance to the number on the case back. In speaking to the two other 125 owners that I know on the phone, only one of their watches has the inscription, that being 1 36x.
Speedmaster 125 Case Back
I asked Vintage Information at for clarification on this point and John Diethelm from replied that " if your personal timepiece has a number " 1308 " this logically means that you own the n° 1308/2000." I would assume that other examples that do not have a similar inscription probably have had the inscription worn off via normal use, or possibly had the case back exchanged at some point.


I personally prefer the balance of a 3-sub dial layout. However the 125 provides a great deal of information with it's two sub-dial arrangement. This is due to the fact that small second hand is superimposed with a 24-Hour dial indicator. This is possible by moving the Chronograph minute indication to the center pinion eliminating the need for a minute sub-register. The 24-Hour military time indication is useful for determining the current time in other time zones if one knows the differential. I am a licensed HAM radio operator, so this is useful to me as I live in Chicago and are -6/-5 GMT and I can visually look 6 or 5 hours in advance of the indicated time to determine want is current GMT or UTC is. The chrono hour register is in it's typical 6 o'clock position, and the chrono seconds is also indicated via a hand located on the center pinion.

There is a date window located at the 3 o'clock position. Interestingly enough, did not include a Day window to complement the date window. I do not know why this decision was made. The Speedmaster c.1045 series, several models of which were near contemporaries of the 125 and so equipped. However these models were introduced in 1974, after the 125th anniversary, so I suspect that either the c.1045 movement was not developed enough or it was thought that it would not be easily adaptable to achieve chronometer status which also was a wanted feature.

One feature of the 125's dial makes it unique to non c.321 movement Omega Speedmasters, It features an applied metal logo like pre-Moon Speedmaster's and Seamster's with the c.321 movement. It also has the word "Omega" and "125" also in applied metal. The only part of the logo that is in white paint is the script "Speedmaster".

Speedmaster 125

Speedmaster 125 Logo/Dial Detail

The applied logo on the Speedmaster dial has the effect of sometimes disappearing depending on the lighting conditions. It is very difficult to get a good picture of all three metal applied inscriptions at the same time. Because of this oftentimes pictures will not capture them. Don't pass up a pictured 125 that doesn't appear to have these elements out of hand... Chances are the effect is caused by a reflection (or lack of reflection) of a dark object.

It is an interesting note that the Speedmaster 125 marks the first, and I believe last use of an applied metal Omega logo on Speedmasters after the switch to the c.861 movement until the 1957 Speedmaster replica was introduced in the late 1990's. It is yet one more way that while Omega was reaching to the future with many innovations it also "tipped it's hat" to the past with some of it's styling influences.

Optional Bezels:
View of the Bezel
Bezel Type/Description/Example of Use:

Basic Scale/Tachoproductometric

Basic Scale/Tachoproductometric

Description: Allows one to compute speeds and machine outputs.
Examples of Use:
1) To calculate the speed of a car over a known distance press the top chronograph button when entering the fixed distance press it again when the fix distance. If the time elapsed is 45 seconds the second hand points to the figure 80 on the Tachy scale. If the fixed distance is a Kilometer then the car is traveling 80 kilometers per hour. If the distance covered is a mile, then the speed is indicated in Miles per hour.
2) To calculate the output of a machine, start the chronograph and count a set number of units made, at the end of this number stop the chronograph. If you counted to 1,000 and the second hand points to 75 on the Tachy ring, the machine's hourly output is 75 time 100 or 7,500 units per hour.
Telemetric (offered in both kilometers/miles)


Description: The Telemetric scale is graduated to indicate the speed of sound in air. This allows the user to calculate the distance between the observer and a situation that is observable both visually and audibly.

Description of Operation:
On an optical signal, start the chronograph. When you hear the sound stop the chronograph. The number indicated at the distance in kilometers or miles (depending on scale).
Examples of Use:
At the flash of a bolt of lightning start the chronograph. Stopping the chronograph when you hear the thunder (in the case of the diagram at left at 5 Seconds) will indicate on the Telemetre ring 1.6 km or 1600 meters away from the wearer of the watch. Sounds like a good time to take cover! =)



Description: The Pulsimetric scale is graduated to indicate the rate of respiration or pulse of a patient. This allows the user to take a pulse or observe a certain number of respirations and read off the correct number of respiration/pulse per minute.

Description of Operation:

The top chronograph button is pressed at the beginning of a pulse or respiration, it is pressed again when the proper number of pulsations/respirations has occurred. The proper number of pulsations is indicated on the bezel dial.
Examples of Use:
At the start of a pulsation the operator starts the chronograph, after the 15th pulse the operator stops the chronograph at 18 seconds. Reading from the stopped second hand to the Pulsimetric scale results in a pulse rate of 50 beats per minute for this patient.



Description: For industrial timing, statistical analysis, calculation of averages and cost prices the use of decimal division of time is common.

Examples of Operation:
To measure the length of time it takes to perform any operation start the chronograph when work begins and stop it when the work on the second piece begins. This results in the amount of time to produce a piece.
Examples of Use:
If a worker is fitting a bracelet to a watch, an observer starts the chronograph when the worker begins on a unit to be assembled and stops it when the worker begins on the second unit. The time read off the bezel indicates the time this operation took in hundredths of a minute, in the diagram at left 0.28 minutes per piece.

Although these optional bezels were available options for the Speedmaster 125 while it was shipping from the factory new. In correspondence with John R. Diethelm of Omega Vintage Information he states that neither he or anyone else at the factory remembers any 125 shipping from the factory with a non-tachymetre bezel...
However, below is a picture of a Speedmaster 125 equipped with a Pulsimetric Scale instead of the more common Tachymetre scale. This example probably had the bezel exchanged after it had shipped from Omega.
Speedmaster 125 Pulsimetric

Speedmaster 125 with Pulsimetric Scale Bezel
Omega c.1040 Movement

Omega c.1041 Movement
Omega c.1040 Movement

Omega c.1041 Movement

Omega c.1040 Movement as used in the Omega Speedmaster Mark III

Omega c.1041 Movement as used in the Omega Speedmaster 125
The movement used in the Speedmaster is the Omega calibre 1041 which is based on the Lemania calibre 1341 and is an enhancement of Omega's calibre 1040 movement. The c. 1040 movement was first used in the Omega Speedmaster Mark III, but was also used in the Omega Speedmaster Mark IV and several Seamster models of this era (1970-1976). There is not a great deal of difference between the c.1040 and the c.1041 visually... The parts changed are:
1041 Plate
1041 Rotor
1041 Chronograph Bridge
Chronograph bridge

c.1041 Movement Detail

The movement is stamped adjusted five positions and temperature, the c.1040 does not have this inscription while the c.1041 does.


The Speedmaster 125 also was equipped with an integrated bracelet, which was a rare and unusual feature at that time. While I cannot go so far to state that it is impossible to fit a leather strap or a bracelet to a 125, it would take a great deal of engineering and skill to do, and I have never seen the 125 equipped with anything other than one of two different varieties of metal bracelet. This heavy bar-type bracelet was the first bracelet of it's type that Omega offered. After several years Omega introduced a replacement bracelet that seems in 1977. I posted an e-mail to Omega Vintage information and John Diethelm of Omega Public relations was kind enough to reply with the following information:

The original stainless steel bracelet for this watch bears the number "1221/212" fitting the case reference ST 178.0002 = together is the catalog reference of the watch known as "ST 378.0801". In 1977 a new replacement bracelet of ref. "ST 1225/212 " was for technical reasons according to Omega. Probably due to an inability to produce the original bracelet. Spare links are typically not available, except possibly if the entire bracelet is sent to the factory, when it may be possible to "adjust" additional links. From the top the bracelets look identical, but from the underneath they look very distinctively different.

Basic initial Water Resistance:

The basic water-resistance of this watch was tested at the factory, (before delivery !) for 6 atm or 60 meters. And it is clear that such water-resistance will not last for ever! The gaskets have to be replaced regularly or at least during every maintenance service (every 3-4 years depending wear and tear of watch)

Comparison of the dimensions of Selected Speedmaster Chronographs.
(Not consistently sized)
Speedmaster 125
Speedmaster c.1045
Speedmaster Mark III
Speedmaster Pre-Moon Pro
Model Name:
Speedmaster 125
Speedmaster Automatic c.1045 with Bar Bracelet
Speedmaster Mark III
Speedmaster Pro.

Model Reference:


Movement Caliber:

Omega c.1041
Omega c.1045 (Lem. 5100)
Omega c.1040
Omega c.321

Base Caliber:

Lemania 1341
Lemania 5100
Lemania 1341
Lemania 2310

Movement Type:



Length Overall:


Width w/o Crown:


Width with Crown:




Lug Size

Not Applicable
Not Applicable


Width at case:


Width at clasp:


Thickness at case:


Thickness at clasp



With Bracelet:


With Strap/EOT:

Not Applicable
Not Applicable
Not Applicable


Model Specific notes:

Comes with an integrated Bar-Style bracelet that is integrated with the case. NOTE: All measurements are taken with the "2nd Generation" bracelet that is on the author's example of the Speedmaster 125...

Has a similar heavy bar bracelet to the 125 and a similar feature set.

This watch (along with the Speedmaster Mark IV) is closest internally to the Speedmaster 125.

This watch is included as a common "control" watch for purposes of comparison. I typically have this watch on a strap but weighed it with a current model (non-hair pulling) bracelet for this article...

General Notes:

Measurements were made with a VITA PQ100 Caliper, and a Pocket-Tech Electronic Digital scale by Gram Precision. All measurements except for the Strap/EOT measurement were made with an proper Omega Bracelet sized to my 19.5 cm (8 inch) wrist.

The Speedmaster 125's place in the Speedmaster line:
The Speedmaster 125 has a unique and unusual place in the Speedmaster line of Chronographs. While it was not the first of the non-moonwatch Speedmasters, nor was it the first Automatic Chronograph offered for sale, the Speedmaster 125 was the first watch ever made as having the following features on one watch:
  • Automatic-Calendar-Chronograph movement (Calibre 1041).
  • First Chronograph Officially certified Chronometer with according certificate.
  • First watch with a tempered mineral crystal sapphire was not available in such a large size
But in addition to these firsts, the Speedmaster 125 was the first time that Omega chose to celebrate it's anniversary with a limited production commemorative watch. Additionally, this watch is unique in that it's case, bracelet, and movement was never again offered in another or similar Omega model, unlike the recent 150th anniversary Omega Seamster. This watch was created especially for the 125th anniversary and never again been offered, making it unique.
Despite it's rarity examples of the Speedmaster 125 do show up on various Internet watch and auction sites fairly regularly. I'm fairly surprised at this as it is an excellent watch, very accurate, has a useful feature set and is very attractive. When I first became interested in collecting watches several years ago I was disappointed when I first came across a reference to the 125 because I figured I had little chance of acquiring one since only 2,000 had been produced over 25 years previously. Finding one proved to be easier than I had assumed it would be. I'm not certain why the apparent owner turnover is so high other than the possibility that the '125's weight and size probably have something to do with it. The Speedmaster was an "oversized" watch long before oversized watches were in style and they are not for the meek.
Up until recently (about Spring 2001) I've seen Speedmaster 125's go for prices ranging from the low $900 US range up to $1,800 US. It's a rare month that I don't see at least one to three '125's offered for sale on the Internet. Actual selling price will vary due to condition of the watch, length of the bracelet, location, extras (box & paper) and location of the seller.
However in Spring of 2001 the amount of money that Speedmaster 125's have been attracting started to rise markedly. Initially the cause for this was unknown but some posters on the Omega Forum on TimeZone mentioned that there was a new show on Japanese TV which featured a character who prominently wore a Speedmaster 125. As a result the valuation of the Speedmaster 125 have escalated to well over $1,500 for a pedestrian example, to well over $2,500 for pristine examples, with boxes and papers.
Carson on the Omega Forum was nice enough to do some leg work and come up with the following information:

'The TV Drama is "HERO" which stars Kimura Takuya and Matsu Takako. Its ratings went off the chart and this is the obvious winner of the Winter-Spring 2001 dramas. It's way ahead in the ratings over 30%. Kimura portrays a public prosecutor from the Aomori District Court who has been transferred south to serve the cause of justice among Tokyo's most elite. He never graduated from high school, but he somehow passed the bar exams. Instead of succumbing to the big city way of life he continues to behave like he did in Aomori much to the dislike of his professional colleagues in Tokyo. Kimura is the guy who wears the Speedy 125 in the Drama.'

Click on pictures at right to load a full sized picture in a new window...

The bottom two pictures show Takuya wearing a Speedmaster 125.

-- Special thanks to Carson for his contributions to this section...

Here is a chart of recent eBay Speedmaster 125 Auctions
Recent eBay Speedmaster 125 Auctions
ending from 7 through 26 June 2001
As you can see with the exception of a couple of auctions, most of the Speedmaster 125's have been fetching from just over $2,000 to about $2,300. The person who won an auction at $1,550 got a sweet deal, the example that went for $2,700 was pristine, and the one that went for $3,050 not only was pristine, but also had all of the boxes, papers and even the original hang tag and was quite a find.
Parts Availability:
I should also point out that despite the extremely low production run Omega maintains a supply of spares for the c.1041 in their facility in Bienne in Switzerland. Although they do not ship parts outside of the factory, if you ship a Speedmaster 125 to the Customer Service at correct maintenance service (with proper c.1041 parts) is possible. For this you would need to contact Customer Service at the factory, in Bienne. So don't let fears about unavailability of parts dissuade you from purchase. Parts are available, although you will have to have it serviced in Switzerland.
Closing Remarks:
It seems these days at Omega that anniversary editions of watches with "quasi" limited production runs are a common occurrence. The Speedmaster 125 was the first of these offered to the public. (Note: Omega did offer a limited production run of 1,024 Gold Speedmaster Professionals immediately after the first moon landing, with the first 39 presented to President Nixon, Vice-President Agnew, NASA astronauts and officials). The Speedmaster 125 is unique in that there has never been another watch offered with it's movement, case or bracelet, nor is it likely that one ever will. It is a strong, full-featured, robust and heavy chronograph. The likes of which we are unlikely to see again.
Additions to the original article...
I firmly believe one of the best features of the internet is that updates, additions and revisions to information can be so easily and frequently update as needed. Nearly all of the information that follows with the exception of Acknowledgements and Right's sections have been added since the first posting of this page. With out further setup...
Speedmaster 125 Q & A:

Steve W.'s Posting...

Chuck Replies:

I saw Chuck Maddox's posts on the Speedy 125 last week and it sparked some questions. I have had one for a while. No serial number is visible on it, unfortunately.

Cool! Another reader recorded! It think this means 9 people whom are not embarrassed to actually admit to having actually read it!


Q1: If the serial number is present where is it stamped?

A1: The Serial Number on the 125 as well as virtually all Omega's of this era is the serial number on the movement... It has been only relatively recently that Omega has put serial numbers on the watch case. I should note that a number of Speedmaster 125 owners I've communicated with have stated there is a faint number stamped into the caseback usually in the form of "1 123" or "l 123" which may or may not indicate which example out of the production run of 2000 it is.

Q2: Is the movement module intended to be removed? For what reason?


That's two questions! =)

A2a: Apparently so. It shares this feature with the Mark IV and possibly the ST 176.0012 c.1045 Speedmaster Automatic. I would tend to doubt that this capability to be a "happy coincidence", but rather designed with intent.

A2b: What I know - it's hard for me to jump into the mind of the designer... What I can speculate... I would suspect that in the case(s) of the Mark IV's and the ST176.0012 the case was designed this way so that they could reconfigure a group of cases between these models quickly. Also if there was a problem with a case the movement could be quickly switched into another case.

Against the proposition that it is intended to be removed:

- It isn't easy to do.

- The sides of the module aren't very nicely finished.

- What would you do with it, once removed?

Ooop! Another unnumbered question!

Neither is changing the engine and transmission in a car... (Not easy to do, nor do the components necessarily look nicely finished...)

A2c: Put it in another (case)car... Or put another engine/transmission (movement complete) in.

In favour:

- If they hadn't intended it to be removed, why didn't they screw the module in more permanently?


Wow, here's another unnumbered question!

A2d: I can't think they would produce three different models with this feature without intending this capability.

Q3: Is this model considered "collectible", ie: will profits from selling it keep me in my old age?

A3: Collectable? Yes, certainly. Will profits allow you to live independently in your old age? Doubtful... Ok, the 125 is what, 26-27 years old. I do not know what it's inital price was, but they are going for anywhere from $800-$2,000 currently. Considering that only 2,000 were originally made one would think that a) the price would be higher, and b) they would be difficult to find. Neither is the case. When I first learned of their existance via Omega Designs (2000 units, over 25 years ago I said to myself “That'd be a cool one to own, but I doubt I'll ever see one” I could probably find at least two or three available at the moment. They are not that hard to find and they seem to be passed from collector to collector fairly frequently. This is probably because of the size and heft of the watch.

Q4: Are there any other chronos, Omega or otherwise, which use the concept of a central minute counter as well as a second counter?

A4: Yes, plenty. With the Omega brand, there is the Mark III's, the Mark IV's, and the Speedmaster Automatic Day-Date c.1045 line of Chronographs, as well as similar Seamaster models... Aside from Omega, a number of manufacturer's including: Heuer/TAG Heuer, Bell & Ross, Porsche Design (Orfina), Sinn, Tutima, Tourneau, Revue Thommen, among many others use the Lemania 5100 movement (c.1045 in Omega parlance). A few other manufacturers used variants of the Lemania calibre 1341 movement including Tissot and Wakmann.

I really like this dial setup, but the Speedy 125 is not always suitable for day-to day use. I tried to take it to the Opera last night (a modernist 'industrial' piece; I thought the Speedy would be appropriate) but couldn't find a shirt with wide enough sleeves to cover it. Maybe in the '70s people wore flared sleeves as well as trousers.

As I stated in the article:

“OK, if there is one word to describe the Speedmaster 125 it is Massive. Both in physical size and in weight the Speedmaster 125 is a big watch anyway you look at it. A detailed listing of the Speedmaster 125's dimensions follows in it's own section. But to sum up, it's by far the heaviest and in some dimensions the largest watch I own. It's almost 20 grams heavier than my next heaviest watch. ... Did I mention it was HUGE? =) ...

The watch has a very ‘rectangular’ feel to it, like a ingot. It's not beveled or contoured like certain other Omega models, such as the Flightmaster, that might allow it to blend into your wrist. As a result it tends to stick up noticeably from ones wrist and in addition to potentially attracting accidental contact with door jambs and wall, it might be difficult to wear under a long-sleeve shirt cuff.”

The Speedmaster is an interesting bird... Is it elegant? Yes. Dainty, Nope! Understated? No way. It's a big brawny brawling watch that sometimes seems unsuited for polite civilized society. Unless you have "Popeye" arms (huge forearms and small wrists) you are unlikely to have a dress shirt cuff that will accomodate the 125.

If you like the layout but would like a little less massive package that the ST176.0015/ST176.0016 Omega Speedmaster Day-Date automatic c.1045 may be your best choice within the Omega line. I could mention a number of other manufacturers Lemania 5100 movement watches that would also be more suitable for an Opera environment than the 125. The 125 is like going to the Opera in a Shelby Cobra 427. A ST176.0015/6 is more like going in a Jaguar XKE V-12. The XKE is a little less "in your face".

Speedmaster 125 Rouge's Gallery:

This is one of the more obvious put-together or perhaps more properly named... Salvage job's. What's happened here is the original Speedmaster 125 case has been jetisoned for a very unusual "Hockey Puck" style case with Tiffany styled lugs for affixing a leather strap.

The reason's for such an abandonment were left unstated, could have been problems with the case, a person commisioning a unique piece, someone wanting a lighter watch. Needless to say, this is nothing that ever came out of Bienne...

A more subtle substitution is shown by the two examples on the right. This substitution is seen quite frequently on eBay and on line watch dealers. The example on the upper right is from a well known internet watch dealer, whilst the other is taken from an eBay auction. In each case (pardon the pun) the original Speedmaster 125 case has been shucked in favor of one from either a Speedmaster Mark IV Professional or a Speedmaster Automatic Day-Date (c.1045) ST176.0012. Again the reasons for this are not known, but in this instance at least the movement and the case are original Omega, it's just that they never left Bienne together like this...

The question is frequently asked “Is the movement in one of these a 1040 or a 1041” the answer typically is that you have a 50-50 chance at best... Usually the pictures supplied are not clear enough to hazard a guess.

What are such examples worth? Only as much money as you are willing to lose on it.

My advice... There are plenty of better, more worthy watches out there for my money. I suspect the same of your money too...

A Long Time Owner's thoughts...

One of the nice things about writing pages like these is that I get a constance stream of pleasant emails from readers. The following is typical of email I receive:

From: George Sokol
To: <>
Subject: Speedmaster 125
Date: Wed, 4 Feb 2004 23:42:48
Dear Chuck,
Just read your testimony of the speedmaster 125 and as an original owner thought that I would add some information to you about them.
I bought mine in Rome Italy 5/1975 for around A$380 duty free, as the original list price in Australia was $550. To put this in perspective my annual salary was circa A$3000. The reason that I picked this watch was that it was very different and individual and was also guaranteed unconditionally unbreakable for 12 months, in writing, in the guarantee. The only exclusions, in writing, was that it was not guaranteed against fire or theft. At that stage I was breaking watches at 3 month intervals, hence a durable watch was desirable.
From memory it was waterproofed to 60 mtrs and suitable for altitudes to 300,000'.
I broke the sapphire face in London UK 1977, dancing??, and the clasp on the band broke resulting in a new band circa 1981 A$300 Melbourne Australia.
Apart from that and a couple of services it has been great. I have used it most of the time either gardening etc or business meetings and it still elicits comments. I am very happy with it.
Further, the small 24 hour face with luminous triangle was either advertised in the brochure, or instruction manual, as being perfect for dark places and activities such as caving, to distinguish correct time of day or night.
Thought this may be of interest to you.
Best Regards
George Sokol


The Speedmaster 125 seems to have a number of fans, both new to ownership and "old-timers" whom have bought new. The 125's are very solid durable watches. Thank you George for your thoughts and permission to include them here.


Omega has a rich history of achievement throughout it's history of over 150 years now. Another Swiss manufacturer has a similar history of achievement, primarily with Chronographs and Stopwatches, with many parallels to Omega including many multiple appointments as official timekeeper of Olympic Games. That being Heuer (now TAG-Heuer). In 1985 Heuer celebrated it's 125th Jubilee by producing a commemorative chronograph of it's own. Called the Ed. Heuer & Co. 125th Jubilee Chronograph it took a decidedly different tack...
Ed Heuer & Co. 125 Jubilee
The Ed. Heuer & Co. 125th Jubilee Chronograph is a four-register manual wind chronograph with Moonphase and date complications. I just thought I would include it as I believe it's an interesting counterpoint to Omega's 125 chronograph. I think it looks a little like a IWC DaVinci.
I would like to thank the following people for their interest, efforts and contributions to this article:
  • Simon Debrux, who has supplied many of the graphics included here. This article would be vastly different if it were not for his contributions.
  • Bill Sohne for his advice and pointing me in the right direction on a couple of questions regarding the uniqueness of the 125 as well as information pertaining to the 125's bracelet.
  • Edwin Leung who contributed the extreme close up of the dial of his newly purchased Speedmaster 125 which serves as the opening graphic in this article.
  • Chuck Anastos provided a number of details on his Speedmaster 125.
  • The picture of the Modularity of the Speedmaster 125 is used from Eric Katoso's excellent Omega Collection site.
  • Robert Jan who has provided valuable feedback on this article.
  • Carson, for doing searches and documenting the reason behind the recent valuation jump.
  • George Sokol and all of the other Speedmaster 125 owners through the years who have emailed me their experiences of their ownership, and their positive and constructive feedback.
  • Last, but certainly not least, John R. Diethelm / Public Relations at who has patiently answered my numerous questions. It is John and people like him that set Omega apart from other watch concerns.

Statement of rights retained and permissions granted...

Permission is granted for Damon, Derek Ziglar or RJ to include within the FAQ's they are writing as long as credit (and a link to this article) is given and the acknowledgment section (immediately above is included. The creator's of the images credited above retain their rights them. This article was written for the Dutch Speedmaster Owner's Group Newsletter and they retain permission to publish it. Permission for personal, educational or non-commercial use is granted. The author retains all other rights not specifically mentioned here... For all other use please contact the author.

Disclaimer: Opinions are my own and knowing me should be taken with a grain or two of salt...

Omega Speedmaster 125