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During the Second World War, the wheels of the watch industry were turning—and turning hard. Thousands upon thousands of robust little watches were produced for the war effort, adorning the wrists of soldiers, sailors, and airmen on both sides. With waterproof stainless steel cases and stark black dials, these watches laid the groundwork for military and field watches that would follow.
After the war, many brands sought to make watches that coupled the robust construction of these military watches with a less-militaristic look more suitable for everyday wear.
Foremost among these brands was Omega. In the postwar years the manufacture applied the lessons learned in making watches for the war effort, and what resulted was a bevy of subtle, understated, and yet ultimately alluring watches. As sturdy as their military predecessors, these watches looked good on the wrist while standing up to the rigors of travel, weather, and daily use.
The dials, though less spartan than their military forebears, were still uncluttered and legible, often dotted with radium for added visibility in low-light conditions.
Even with these style notes coming right out the war-time guidebook, Omega took care to make their new consumer pieces beautiful, often introducing a variety of fancy lug styles.
While Omega saved its high-grade automatic movements—first produced in 1942—for its luxury Seamaster line, pieces like this one—a Reference 2791—were powered by manual-wind movements in the vein of their warlike forefather, the Calibre 30T2.
In the case of this particular Reference 2791-6, the movement that powers it is the Calibre 266, one of the 30T2’s successors that enjoyed an impressive production run of nearly 23 years.
Though the movement shares the same antimagnetic properties as its predecessors, the similarity to Omega’s military watches ends there. Instead of being meant for life as a tool, to be worn hard and then discarded once it’s past its period of usefulness, this watch was meant to be seen.
The champagne sector dial is adorned with applied gold tone markers. Against the heavy patination of the dial, the subtle interplay of the markers and dauphine hands—as well as the applied Omega logo at 12 o’clock—is simply eye-catching. The sinuous curves of the lyre-shaped lugs draw the eye in a way that’s all form and little function, but in the best way possible.
At 36mm, it’s the perfect size to slip under the cuff of a tailored tweed blazer, but that dial is so handsome that you almost wouldn’t want it to.
Stainless steel case is approximately 36mm (excluding crown). Reference 2791-6. Calibre 266 Manually-Wound Movement.
Overall Condition: Case is in very good condition overall with normal signs of moderate use and wear. Dial is in very good condition showing signs of age. Signed crown.
Includes one 18mm light brown strap with white contrast stitching.
Analog/Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.
We back each Analog/Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.
All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states. We are happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.
Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options