Omega has a long history of fakes. A number of Constellations were the object of counterfeiters from Hong Kong in the 1960s and 70s. Now, of course, the home of fakes is China, with Thailand, Indonesia and other Asian countries importing Chinese mechanical movements and producing better quality and often more exact copies of some of the top-shelf brands.
The earlier fakes are usually rather quaint and crude imitations of the real thing. The novice can learn to spot them quite easily, because of the poor quality of materials used, indifference to detail, and often the expropriation of the Constellation brand name with little else even vaguely resembling the real thing.
Early fakes can form a novel part of an Omega Constellation collection, and the knowledgeable collector uses them as amusing talking points. However, it is quite remarkable to witness how much that inexperienced Omega buyers will pay in on-line auctions for Constellations that bear no likeness to the genuine articles.
The pictures on this page show fakes of varying sophistication. Never-the-less, there were all snapped up on on-line auctions, a sobering reminder that demand and values are often driven by the naive and the gormless.
Get to know the case styles of the models you wish to collect, build up your own personal picture library of different dial and case styles, and know which movements were common in particular case styles.
Caveat Emptor, rarity and product knowledge steer the purchasing behaviours of astute collectors in any collecting field and these three principles are particularly important when purchasing earlier Omega Constellations.
For examples of newer Constellation copies and other freaks and fakes check out the chronocentric website and Franks Omega Pages
(C) Desmond Guilfoyle 2006