Collecting with Confidence

One of the most frustrating aspects of collecting vintage watches is the number of fakes, frankenwatches and fraudsters one encounters in pursuit of this noble, but increasingly costly, passion.

The comeback of the mechanical watch has drawn out all sorts of insects from under their rocks. The pursuit of one's passion for Omega Constellation watches will inevitably lead to numerous encounters with rogue repairers who charge house prices for inferior work, linear decendents of horse theives who palm off fakes as the real thing, Doctor Frankensteins who create sought-after models from parts of other watches, the usual bevy of shonks, crooks and tricksters out to convince the gullible and the unwary to swipe their well worn credit cards, and, of course, hundreds of knowledgeable and earnest collectors who share both their knowledge and passion for the mechanical watch.

In a recent seven day survey and follow-up I completed on the listing of vintage OMega Constellation watches on a major on-line trading site, more than 50 percent of all listings were of watches that were inauthentic in some way - that gives you some idea of what collectors are up against.

This blog, then, is a space for Omega Constellation enthusiastists to share and build knowledge so as to be armed against those who prey on our passions for these beautiful timepieces. There's an old saying, 'the greatest fear of those who live under rocks is light', and I'm hopeful that the more light we shine on some of the dubious practices of the shonks and charlatans, the more we'll have them writhing in shame.

(C) Desmond Guilfoyle 2006


  1. Hello Desmond, I have a question on the purchase of a Constellation.
    But am not sure whether it is a fake or real one.
    The owner only has a "Precious Stone certificate " with it, as publiced by the jeweller.
    Not sure whether it is fake ore not.
    Hopefully you can help me?
    Thanks in advance
    Kind regards, Marcus

  2. Hi Marcus,

    You will have to send me an email so I can reply. If you have a pic send to

  3. Anonymous7:00 am

    Hi Desmond,
    Are there any reputable/trustworthy jewelers in Chicago that you would recommend?


  4. Hi Desmond:

    I recently purchased a Constellation and sent it to Bienne for service. They suggest that I refinish the dial prior to servicing it. Can I get your opinion on this? I can send the pics to your email if this is the most convenient way.

    Thanks for your help - great site by the way...


  5. Hello Desmond:

    Can I ask your advice on a Constellation I purchased recently? I just sent it to Bienne for service and they're asking me to refinish the dial first. I can send pics.

    Thanks in advance,


  6. Hi ken,

    Send me some pics to and I'll take a look at it for you