Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch Alaska Project III
ST 145.0022 Alaska III
(aka: Radial, Alaska Project III)
|Name: ||Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch Alaska Project III|
|Produced: ||1978 - 1978|
|Limited: ||Yes, 56 units|
|Material: ||Stainless steel|
|Diameter: ||42.00 mm|
|Lug Width: ||20.00 mm|
|W/R: ||50.00 m|
|Indexes: ||Stick / Dot|
Created in 1968
17 jewels until 1992
18 jewels since 1993
Used on second generation "moon watches"
|Time:||Small Seconds, Hours, Minutes|
The Omega Speedmaster Alaska III Project 145.022 is different from your regular Speedy Pro on a number of points: it features a so-called 'Radial' dial lacking the 'Swiss Made' designation, a fully brushed 'Star Watch' case, and a case back lacking any moon-references, preferably engraved with NASA inscriptions - a more in-depth analyses is provided below. It is estimated that a little over 50 examples of these were made. It served as the inspiration of the 2017 'SpeedyTuesday' limited edition.
The most obvious difference compared to a regular Speedy Pro is the alignment of the numbers of the subdials, but the complete lack of any ‘Swiss’ wording at 6 o’clock is also very unusual – and thus quite notable. A possible explanation is found below;
Something that is often discussed in Speedmaster circles is the ‘Made in America’ rule. Supposedly NASA insisted that the majority of parts -or value- of their equipment should be made in the USA. So how does a Swiss watch company -with the only watch certified for use by NASA at the time- get around this? Omega’s solution was to have the cases made in the USA, and so they did. They contracted an American case maker and had them make Speedmaster cases. While this may seem like a random thought, it actually isn’t: the mark of the Star Watch Case Company can easily be seen in the pictures of the case back.
While rules for ‘Swiss Made’ or any other designation have changed quite drastically in the last 20-30 years, it is not that much of a leap to think that the 50% value added in the USA (including casing, regulation) would exclude the Speedmaster Professional in NASA-disguise from using such wording on its dial. It is documented that Omega did contract the Star Watch Case Company for just this reason.