Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy: The Beagle has Landed!

The Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy has a wonderful story to tell. Its face and case back are pure fun with a mindful message of what was almost lost. All wrapped in the latest edition of what is without a doubt one iconic watch.

Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy

Born of a near tragedy

On April 13, 1970, NASA’s Apollo 13 suffered a cryogenic oxygen tank explosion in the service module. Left without power and adrift between Earth and the Moon, the Apollo 13 crew abandoned its lunar mission.

Focus became getting safely back home. Since the command module was the only life support available to Apollo 13’s crew, that became their lifeboat. But it was a lifeboat without sufficient electrical power for all the command module’s critical functions.

The circumlunar trajectory followed by Apollo 13 (image courtesy Andrew Buck/Wikipedia)

NASA plotted a course that would slingshot Apollo 13 around the Moon and back to earth. Exact timing of the rocket burn determined the distance needed to reach Earth. NASA calculated the burn time to be exactly fourteen seconds.

There was not enough power for the computers to time and control the burn. But there was an Omega Speedmaster strapped to the wrist of astronaut Jack Swigert.

Swigert’s Speedy did its job, timing the burn to the exact fourteen seconds needed. Apollo 13 returned safely to Earth floating to splashdown under its orange and white parachutes. For this life-saving feat of precision timing NASA awarded Omega its Silver Snoopy on October 5, 1970. This award is a rare honor bestowed on NASA contractors for providing equipment that turns out to be mission critical and/or lifesaving. The astronauts themselves give the award.

For more on Omega’s Silver Snoopy Award see

The 50th Anniversary version is different

Omega has issued two earlier Snoopy Speedmasters. The first was released in 2003, the second, in 2015. Both are limited editions with the first having 5441 pieces issued—the length of time the ill-fated mission lasted. The second release, commemorating the 45th anniversary of the Silver Snoopy award has just 1970 pieces (the year of the award).

The latest commemorative Silver Snoopy edition released in 2020 honors the 50-year anniversary and has no production limit.

The Snoopy releases have been gradually changing. The 2003 edition has the traditional black dial with a blue emblem of Snoopy in his space suit in the nine o’clock subdial and the same image on the case back.

The 45th anniversary edition has a white dial with a cartoon image of Snoopy at nine o’clock with the thought bubble, Failure is not an option. Also, on the face between 12 and 3, text beneath the time track reads, What could you do in 14 seconds? The case back exhibits the Silver Snoopy Award in solid silver.

The 50th anniversary is an even greater departure. The face is Ag925 silver with blue markers and subdials. The hands are also blue and filled with Super-LumiNova.



The case back is where Omega surprised and delighted Speedy fans the world over. There’s a detailed image of the gray moon complete with craters. To its right is a beautiful blue disk of the Earth. It’s linked to the second hand on the watch face so it always rotates counterclockwise.

Back of the Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy

Then there’s the Beagle himself, piloting the command module across the case back. Snoopy’s spacecraft is linked to the chronometer. When engaged, Snoopy does a flyby every sixty seconds.

Finally, there’s NASA’s motto, Eyes on the Stars, in white floating as a banner across the starry night sky.

A collector’s item whose value will appreciate?

Some owners hope so. Others believe the fact that the Beagle’s 50th Anniversary edition is not limited—as are its two predecessors—will keep the value static. If you follow my writing, you know that I never buy a time piece for investment. Well, almost never. I did buy an early Rolex Skydweller, blue dial in steel. It has appreciated about 50%. I still have it and likely always will.

The Beagle’s 50th has a one-to-two-year wait time from initial order. And that’s for buyers with a preexisting relationship at their Omega authorized dealer. If the AD doesn’t already know you, fuhgeddaboudit. They’ll not likely even accept your order. Omega has a number of lines and many variants within each line. Their manufacturing capacity is not limitless. So already the supply of newly minted 50th Anniversary Beagles cannot begin to satisfy demand.

Enter the aftermarket. If you really want a 50th Anniversary Silver Snoopy you can likely find one. They come in all conditions, from merely good, to like new, to unworn; from watch only (an unfortunate occurrence) to full set. Prices on the aftermarket have moved as expected for a hot item. They initially jumped from the $10,600 AD’s list price to as high as $30,000.

Aftermarket price trend of Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy (grapg courtesy Chrono24)

Since release, secondary market prices have fallen by roughly 50%. With some patience and research, you can likely find a new, unworn full set Silver Snoopy 50th Anniversary for $17,000 to $18,000.

Here’s my guess for the future: Secondary prices will hover around $17,000 until 2025-2026. That’s when and if Omega releases a 55th Anniversary edition. At that time, production of the 50th Anniversary edition could cease, possibly driving prices up again. If Omega doesn’t top the animation of the 50th Anniversary edition with the 55th, then all bets are off. We could witness a price bubble for the 50th.



Is this the perfect Speedmaster?

Some say so. I’m not one of them. I love my 50th Anniversary Beagle. It tips the smile-o-meter at 10 out of 10. Every time I put it on, there’s a giggle in my throat. Omega did a wonderful, innovative job that is pure fun for any collection. But maybe I have a more critical eye than some. In my humble opinion, this is a vaunted commemorative release of an iconic tool watch. It is not the tool watch.

Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy dial details

If you’re considering the 50th Anniversary Silver Snoopy there are some things you should know before you order or buy.

First is the strap. Yes, its textile material and stitching look great. But. It is the most gawd awful stiff strap of any watch ever made. Even if the reverse side does show the flight path of the ill-fated Apollo 13 being slinged around the moon. It is so stiff that simply wresting a wrist on a hard surface raises the case well above your arm. I found it irritating and enormously uncomfortable. Some say, “Oh, well just give it some time. It’ll loosen up.” It won’t.

My immediate solution was to order a replacement aftermarket strap. In my case, I took a page from Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary who is quite a watch collector himself with impeccable taste and the wallet to match. O’Leary puts a red strap on every piece he owns. From London’s Watch Strap Taylor I ordered a beautiful red French leather strap with eggshell stitching and an Omega deployant buckle.

Why the deployant buckle? People have heard about the animated case back and will inevitably ask to see it. The deployant buckle is easier to get on and off as well as not being so hard on the leather strap.

Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy

Next is dial readability. The Omega Speedmaster line is known for its dial legibility. It is most definitely a tool watch as is the first 2003 release Snoopy. The Beagle’s 50th Anniversary edition is not. The tricompax subdials are the same exact blue as the hands. This makes locating the hands to tell the time when they are over any of the three subdials problematic.

Also, the seconds subdial at nine o’clock features a blue hand over the same blue subdial face—unreadable. The same issues exist in the 45th Anniversary edition with its white face and mostly white hands.

For reasons of readability, I don’t consider either of the two anniversary editions true tool watches. Others will disagree. Yes, both have the tried-and-true 3861movement and all the other technical specs that have made the Speedmaster one of the world’s go-to tool watches for so many decades. Even so, if I can’t read the results, what good does all that do?

YET! To those having a problem with these shortcomings, I say, so what. I didn’t buy the 50th Anniversary Beagle to use as a tool watch. Nor should you. It’s pure fun and pegs the smile-o-meter to its limit. It is something to be treasured for what it is and leave behind what it is not.



What’s in the box?

This is where Omega really seized the chance to tell the Beagle’s story of precision and it’s use by three American heroes to save the day. And they tell it with a liberal sprinkling of humble humor courtesy of cartoonist, Charles Schultz. He donated his time and talent liberally to NASA over the years without compensation.

Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy packaging

The full set presentation begins with a large outer box in the thematic blue appearing throughout and eventually onto the watch itself. Within the outer box are two compartments housing the Operating Instruction manual and the book, Eyes On The Stars. This tells the story of Apollo 13 and the Silver Snoopy Award.

Next comes the blue, fabric covered inner box containing several things including the watch itself. This box is a replica of the AC case Snoopy and his fellow astronauts carry. It has Velcro closures, a carry handle, and the official Silver Snoopy Award patch on the top cover.

Lifting the cover the owner is greeted with the familiar image of Snoopy sitting atop his doghouse wearing his famous aviator’s leather helmet, goggles, and scarf. Beneath the artwork is the recurring theme of Speedy’s role in saving Apollo 13, What could you do in 14 seconds?

Inside is like origami with everything folded neatly into its own compartment. There’s a presentation platform and pillow where the watch sits. The platform transforms into a convenient travel box for the watch. Inside the pillow is a jeweler’s loupe (again blue) for viewing the amazing detail on the watch. The loupe has the same blue tachymeter scale around the eye piece as used on the watch bezel.

Beneath the floor of the presentation platform is a space for the travel box and various certification cards and warrantees.

Lastly, there’s a white microfiber cleaning cloth, again with an image of the official Silver Snoopy Award patch.

Truly, this presentation is made for a collector.

Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy

For more information, please visit

Quick facts: Omega Speedmaster 50th Anniversary Snoopy
Reference: 310.
Case: stainless steel
Dimensions: 42mm diameter, 14.5mm high
Functions: hours, minute, seconds, chronograph
Movement: Omega co-axial caliber 3861, manual winding
Power reserve: 50 hours
Water resistance: 50 meters
Price: 11,700 euros

Chris Malburg’s Omega Speedmaster Snoopy and his latest thriller ‘Slider’

Chris Malburg is also an author, his latest novel Slider is now available.

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3 replies
  1. Ed
    Ed says:

    Omega has annoyed the base with their blatant money grab on the MoonSwatch. As the economy tightens people are thinking: ‘ do I want to reward a greedy company for a watch that only a few appreciate ‘? I’ll save my cash for something else, thank you.

  2. Marilyn Cohen
    Marilyn Cohen says:

    Loved the article. There’s a whole generation or two of people that don’t’ know the history of the Apollo 13 flight. With Snoopy as the Speedy ambassador, it continues to be a stroke of marketing genius using this little fellow. Wonder how they will top the 55th anniversary?

  3. Lorin
    Lorin says:

    What a cool timepiece and story! Malberg’s review eloquently captures the essence of this unique watch, covering its significance, features, and drawbacks. Although I remember the 1970 Apollo 13 event vividly, as an 11-year-old, I had no idea about the Speedmaster’s crucial role in saving the astronauts’ lives when the electronic systems malfunctioned. What an allegory lies in this – mechanical analog precision coming to the rescue in a digital world. This timepiece is a snapshot in time that you can wear on your wrist! To me, this makes the experience of wearing it truly attractive far beyond any clever marketing. As the reviewer mentioned, “It tips the smile-o-meter at 10 out of 10…every time I put it on, there’s a giggle in my throat!” Now that’s truly out of this world!


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