Omega Cal.491 Automatic 18ct Pink Gold 1955 37.5mm Two Tone Dial
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Restored, Serviced and Guaranteed
A Beautifully Well Cared For and Lightly Used Example
Superbly Restored Two-Tone Dial, with Original ‘Dauphine’ Hands
Jumbo Size 37.5mm 18ct Pink Gold Case excluding the Omega Signed Crown
Very High Grade Cal.491, 19 Jewel 1st Rotor Automatic Movement in Top Condition
High Quality Burgundy Alligator Embossed Strap & Pink Gold-Plated Omega Buckle
All in Absolutely Top Grade & Simply Stunning Condition
VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty Included*
VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee
Hardwood Presentation Box Included
Free Worldwide FedEx Delivery
Free UK Special Delivery
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Since the company was founded in 1848, Omega has pioneered a huge range of technical innovations in watchmaking. Britain’s Royal Flying Corps chose Omega watches in 1917 as official timekeepers for its pilots and again in 1940, RAF Pilots watches were supplied by Omega. The 40s also saw the first tourbillon wristwatch and the first of the famous Seamaster watches, whilst the 50s and 60s introduced the legendary Constellation, Speedmaster, Seamaster 300 and Railmaster. Over these years, everyone from John F Kennedy to Elvis wore Omega watches on official duties. What’s more, in 1962, astronaut Wally Schirra took his Omega Speedmaster into space on NASA’s Mercury Sigma 7 mission, and in 1969 two Omega Speedmasters landed on the moon, worn by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.
A truly exceptional jumbo sized 37.5mm Cal.491 Automatic in 18ct pink gold, in fully restored condition. There are numerous aspects which make this watch special, including the stunning two-tone dial and the pristine condition of its very high-grade Cal.491 rotor automatic movement. However, the obvious notable aspect of this watch is its size. During the 1950s, the largest Omega watches were typically 35mm and sometimes 36mm. 37.5mm 1950s Omegas are very rare and it is estimated fewer than 1 in 1000 were made in 18ct Pink Gold. A further aspect is that it is also very rare to find a 1950s Omega automatic watch of this size as most were hand-wound watches. This was also one of Omega’s very first rotor automatics, as 1955 was the year Omega introduced its Calibre 491. All of which means this watch is very special, and we are very unlikely to see another.
This watch has recently completed a full restoration by ourselves and is in pristine condition throughout.
The superb two-tone, Ivory and Champagne dial catches the light beautifully, as we have tried to demonstrate in the photographs. The 3, 6, 9 dial with applied gilt numerals and spearhead hour indices, is matched by the original restored ‘Dauphine’ pink gilt hands, all of which look wonderful against the dial and pink gold case. This dial, with its subsidiary seconds dial, is typical of the early ’50s, effortlessly classic, elegant and stylish. It is just the kind of style which never goes out of fashion and which many of the largest watch companies are trying to recapture today.
The dial is signed ‘Omega’, with ‘Automatic’ below and ‘Swiss Made’ at the very bottom.
This is the original dial which has been restored to the very highest standards by our dial restorers, who are considered to be the best in the UK.
As can be seen in the images, the original Omega very high grade Cal.491, coppertone, rotor automatic movement is totally pristine. Until 1955, all Omega automatic movements used bumper rotors which bounced back and forth in between bumper springs in a 230-degree arc. The Cal.491 was Omega’s first modern style full 360-degree rotor automatic movement, and one which remained in production until 1960. It is part of the same family as used in the top of the range Omega Constellation Chronometer models of this period. These watch movements are robust, accurate and reliable, meaning this watch will be perfectly suitable for both evening wear and everyday use.
This watch has just been fully overhauled and serviced by our vintage Omega specialist watchmaker and is calibrated to run arrow straight within +6 seconds per day, with a 46-hour power reserve when fully wound. This is truly outstanding for any watch of this age and we are therefore more than happy to offer this watch with 12 months’ warranty on the movement*.
The movement is signed ‘Omega Watch Co Swiss’ – Nineteen Jewels – and Cal.491 with the serial number 14677314.
*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the list price is paid.
The solid 18ct pink gold Omega Swiss made watch case measures 37.5mm in diameter, excluding the Omega signed pink gold crown. This is the largest dress watch made by Omega in this period, with only one or two Omega Chronographs made with slightly larger cases. Most of Omega’s watches made in this sized case were hand-wound movement watches and made with steel cases, with a few in yellow gold. Pink gold cases in this size are exceptionally rare. Added to this, this is an automatic and this means even with the help of the Internet and Google, you are very unlikely to find another and to see one face to face, probably never, without a visit to the Omega museum in Biel, Bienne, Switzerland!
The watch case is of three-piece construction and has nice crisp lines, which show the watch case has not been over-polished. It is in truly immaculate condition with no scratches, dings or marks visible to the naked eye. The press fit case-back is nice and tight and clicks back with a very satisfying click. The case also carries beautifully ornate swept back lugs which present the watch a little higher on the wrist, giving the watch a little more presence.
For technical reasons, it is always quite difficult to capture the correct shade of a pink gold watch case. Here it is a mid-pink approximately halfway between red and yellow gold. However, this changes, depending on the ambient light.
The watch case has been carefully inspected, cleaned and lightly polished to bring it back to the immaculate condition you see here. The case-back is of full thickness and has never been inscribed. The inside of the case-back carries all the correct Swiss 18ct hallmarks and it is correctly signed ‘Omega Watch Co’, ‘Fab Suisse’ and ‘Swiss Made’, with the Omega model reference number 2861 and the watch case serial number 11491934, which dates this watch to 1955.
Please note, as ever, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap & Buckle
The watch has been fitted with a high quality Hirsch Burgundy Alligator embossed strap, with matching pink gold-plated Omega buckle. We think this strap suits the watch very nicely and it goes well with the pink gold case and the dial. However, if a different colour or style of strap is preferred, please let us know and we will do our best to oblige free of charge. We carry tan, conker, dark brown and black in stock, in plain padded leather, crocodile skin or lizard skin, but can also obtain most types and colours of strap, from our partners at ‘Watch Obsession’ within 48hrs. If you wish, please take a look at their Hirsch range of 18mm straps, here.
The Box and Papers
Although there are no original papers with this watch, the reference numbers, markings, signatures and hallmarks are all correct, dating this watch to 1955.
Detailed particulars will be included with the receipt, along with our 12 months’ warranty*. A separate insurance valuation for the replacement value of this watch will also be provided at the time of sale along with our unique ‘Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee’ which states: “If this watch proves to be anything less than totally authentic, or not as described, Vintage Gold Watches of London will offer you a full refund at any time”.
The hardwood presentation box shown in the photographs is included in the sale.
A truly beautiful and very rare vintage automatic dress watch with a jumbo sized 18ct pink gold case, from one of Switzerland’s best known and most respected brands. The Omega Calibre 491 full rotor automatic movement is of a very high-grade and on a par with watches far more expensive than this. Indeed when new, this watch would have cost more than the equivalent Rolex. Omega watches are highly collectable and the rarity of this watch means the value will always remain strong.
A word about our prices – We always try our hardest to acquire the very best quality watches we can find, before restoring these to the highest possible standards. We then offer these at the fairest prices we can, taking into account our pre and post sales care and service. This approach inevitably means we will never be the cheapest, but nor will we be the most expensive. Indeed there are a number of well-known stores in West London which are very successful, charging between two to three times the price you see here. We therefore consider our prices to be fair, given the quality of watches we have to offer.
We are happy to accept PayPal as this is the quickest method of payment. However, if you choose to pay by UK bank transfer, we will be pleased to pass on a 3% transaction saving to you. Please contact us to reserve the watch and request our bank details. Similarly, if you wish to pay by International SWIFT or International Bank Wire Transfer, we will provide you with our BIC / Swift number and our IBAN number.
Please note, we welcome part exchanges and if you have a watch or small collection for sale, please contact us as we will be happy to discuss this.
We will be happy to Service, Repair, or Restore your watch, all at ‘sensible’ prices. Please see here.
If you have any questions, please call our landline 020 7727 7095 or mobile 07515 949 250 or if calling from overseas our landline number is +44 207 727 7095 or mobile +44 7515 949 250.
We will be happy to answer any questions and offer advice about this or any of our watches listed for sale. If you would like some general advice regarding any aspect of vintage watches, including buying, selling, or collecting, we will also be very happy to hear from you. We await your call!
Finally, please enjoy some time spent viewing our other fine Vintage Gold Watches!