It takes a lot of physical abuse to make a watch as iconic as an Omega Speedmaster verge on unrecognisable. But the owner of this watch tried. When photos of a badly beaten 1969 Omega Speedmaster started doing the rounds on Instagram, it had our immediate attention. So many questions: What the hell are ‘welding warts’? And what are they doing all over the case and pushers? What kind of monster does this to a Speedy, or any watch? And, most importantly, what kind of a maniac would take on a restoration project like this in the first place? “He was merciless. For him, the Speedy was not a status symbol, [or a] collector’s item, he could not care less about Omega or Moon missions, landings or space exploration. He just loved it, full stop.” To answer those questions in turn, welding warts are blobs of hardened solder, and they usually coat the area around where a welder is doing their work, and whatever is on their person. The monster who did this is indeed a welder. And the lunatic that agreed to try to restore the watch is Australian watchmaker Nick Hacko. We contacted him as soon as the…

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