Yeah, really! I know, holy shit!
This is one of the things that can really make blogging fun. Now that the blog has gained a little bit of reach, occasionally things float to the surface and I learn things through the blog that might never have been discovered otherwise.
After reading the recent post about the Omega SBS Seamaster presently on eBay, a collector who wandered in contacted me with the pictures below and a question: “Could I have missed the boat on this one? I get solicitations like this all the time, and since I’d never seen any before and there are so many fakes out there I just ignored it. Did I screw up?”
It’s hard to say with certainty as the hasty snaps taken by the seller don’t show much detail though I did the best I could to enhance the images, but from what we can see the watch appears to be an authentic Omega Seamaster Professional 300M Diver Chronometer 2254.50.00 with custom caseback. The helium escape valve is correctly positioned and oriented, the serial number is visible where it should be on the back of the 7 o’clock lug, and the red dot seal on the caseback threads is even still present. All of these of course are details that fakers seldom bother with or manage to get right, tending to indicate that the watch is indeed authentic.
The special design on the inside of the caseback is the UKSF Special Air Service badge insignia, along with the word “COMMUNICATOR” and the colors of the Royal Corps of Signals. Presumably the watch was made for communications support personnel of the 22 SAS Regiment.
There had been rumors about SAS-issued black dialed Seamasters a few years ago, but as photos never surfaced and other proof was provided it was largely dismissed as a myth. Many had wondered why the Special Boat Service (SBS) had chosen the blue-dialed models over these, especially as the black dial and sword hands bear a more distinct lineage to the Omega Seamaster 300’s used by the Royal Navy in the ’60s and ’70s.
So I hate to say it, but yeah, I think you screwed up. And quit talking to me and write back to the seller to see if it’s still available!
[EDIT: a UK-based collector more familiar with the organizational makeup and order of battle has related that this Seamaster is likely affiliated with the 264 (SAS) Signals Squadron, a communications support unit associated with the SAS and authorized to wear the tan SAS beret but whose members are not “badged” Special Air Service Troopers.]