Hands-On Three Seiko 55th Anniversary Dive Watches
The issue with restricted release watches is that they regularly celebrate something inconceivably obscure and simply important to a chosen handful. Seiko’s 55th commemoration set of three isn’t one of those restricted releases. All things considered, it celebrates over 50 years of innovation in jump watches. A large number of us in the side interest discovered our way in through a Seiko jumper, and that’s no mishap. With regards to democratic, innovative, and legitimate watchmaking, Seiko is at the top. A significant number of their plunge watches explicitly embody that thought. Think about Seiko’s restricted version set of three delivery as a wearable history exercise in the long (and proceeding) bend of how the Seiko jump watch has ascended to become a symbol. It’s a brief training in Seiko’s chronicled relationship with the sea, exploration, and specialized innovation.
Of course, these are not standard creation models, and they’re positively not spec’d or valued that way by the same token. This is Seiko utilizing the 55th commemoration of its jump watch as a chance to create something that doesn’t have to observe standard principles of planned creation. Powerful and open jump watches have for some time been a pillar in Seiko’s line up, and it’s imperative to take note of the first examples that enlivened this set of three were actually that. Yet, with this threesome, it seems like Seiko returned to the watches with this inquiry: If we could maximize the specs of these models, what might it resemble? You’re taking a gander at the result.
These three are pressed to the bezel with specialized features like an overhauled development and another case material, however that doesn’t change the manner in which they wear. It does, in any case, change the manner in which one can appreciate the watch.
The three watches that make up the set of three are the SLA037, SLA039, SLA041. As such, a cutting edge re-creation of the 62MAS/6217 from 1965, the 6159-7001 from 1968, and the Professional Diver’s 600m from 1975. While the watches were declared all together, the real deliveries have been staggered.
In a standard Hands-On post, we’d be investigating how a solitary watch wears, and we’ll do that, however this is certainly not an ordinary Hands-On post in light of the fact that Seiko chose to give the trinity to us at the same time. It’s a chance to take a gander at the watches together and dissect topics and common strings among the three models. Watches are seldom delivered in a vacuum. Before it was an authority driven market, the presentation of a watch was principally a response to useful requests of explicit conditions and needs. For the 62MAS, that was an Antarctic mission and, all the more comprehensively, the coming of SCUBA diving.
Now, obviously, watches are a response to the nostalgic yearning of gatherers. The 55th commemoration triplet is unequivocally focused on gatherers – just 1,100 examples of each model will be fabricated. So what is that wistfulness based on, in any case? For what reason are these three specific models worth celebrating?
The Start Of The Seiko Dive Watch
In 1965, Seiko delivered the 62MAS, the first-historically speaking jump watch from the brand. It featured a non-hacking 6217 development, a speedy set date, and a great 150m of water obstruction. It wasn’t really a reaction to the advancement of early plunge watches coming out of Europe during the ’50s, especially any semblance of the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms or the Rolex Submariner. The catalyst for the creation of the watch was to address the issues of specialists who might be working in the unforgiving states of the Antarctic during the Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition that would occur beginning in 1967 as indicated by a report revealed by The Grand Seiko Guy . In a November 1968 sales update news release Seiko kept in touch with sellers inside Japan that Dr. Tetsuya Torii, a JARE research researcher who we’ve covered here , gotten back from the eighth Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition (1967-68) with the news that the 62MAS Seiko had given performed well in Antarctic conditions. Then, back in the Kanagawa prefecture, Seiko was at that point testing their new model, the 6215, Seiko’s first 300m jumper, by having the team head of the upcoming campaign 9th JARE endeavor to Antarctica take it plunging to perceive how it performed before Seiko would give four models to be utilized in the Antarctic. The 6215 flaunted a monobloc case and 300m water obstruction, it went at a bargain in June in 1967. In only two brief a very long time after the 62MAS, Seiko had multiplied the water opposition rating.
Source: The Grand Seiko Guy
The 1965 62MAS, Seiko’s first jump watch.
When the Japanese jump watch was delivered in 1965, Japan had arisen as the main financial force in Asia. Broad restoration endeavors after World War II permitted Japan to thrive. A monstrous influx of innovation and innovation moved through the auto business, shipbuilding operations, steel assembling, and gadgets creation. Watches additionally profited by this period of prosperity, and when you’re talking watches in this time, you’re talking Seiko and Citizen. Seiko was apparently a zaibatsu, or an enormous Japanese company that had a financial preferred position because of vertical integration. Thinking back, the 62MAS was the essential competitor to the jump watches from Europe innovatively, despite the fact that its delivery predates the appearance of Seiko in America and the majority of the Western world. Seiko set up for business in the U.S. in 1967, when Tokyo’s K. Hattori & Co. set up Seiko Time Corp. in New York, as Joe Thompson brings up here .
The 62MAS set up for what might become a scope of effective plunge watches executed at each level. There’s constantly been an available model in the arrangement, however as right on time as 1968, Seiko delivered a “superwatch” as the 6159-7001. It utilized a howdy beat development and a monobloc case, and it was grown explicitly for proficient jumpers. It featured twofold the water-obstruction of its archetype at 300m gratitude to a screw-down crown. In just three brief years, Seiko multiplied the water opposition and planned a watch that would address the issues of the most genuine jumpers of the period. During the ’60s and ’70s, Japanese designing ability, explicitly Seiko’s, was on full display.
A 1975 in-store advertisement promoting the capacities of the “Tuna.”
In the mid ’70s, plunging innovation had dominated that of horological plan and an issue arose: Crystals were jumping out of watches because of helium develop. An expert jumper composed as follows to Seiko:
“I am a jumper who works at profundities of 350m utilizing a plunging chime. When plunging to such profundities, we can compress to 35 atmospheres (ATM) throughout a brief timeframe prior to jumping. In any case, subsequent to jumping, we should utilize a decompression chamber to depressurize bit by bit. The sea floor is a very brutal climate where to work, and Seiko’s momentum 300m specification jumper’s watch is ill suited for use…”
Seiko acknowledged the demand to address the issues of this single diver.
They tended to this unmistakable issue by presenting the 6159-7010. It took 20 patents and an unpredictable way to deal with create the watch. Rather than incorporating a helium discharge valve like a portion of its peers, the 6159-7010 never let any helium in the watch in the first place. It accomplished this through extraordinarily planned gaskets and seals. Once more, water opposition multiplied, and the “fish,” as it became known, was water-impervious to 600m.
It was these three achievement jump watches that enlivened the 55th commemoration triplet that’s being turned out in summer 2020.
To completely comprehend the SLA037, one must rewind to 2017 when Seiko re-delivered the 62MAS as the SLA017. The upgrade was dealt with by Seiko’s long-term fashioner Nobuhiro Kosugi, and the managing reasoning behind the reboot was to keep it as close as could really be expected, tastefully, to the first. They succeeded: The watch is viewed as a masterclass in how to re-create a work of art. What put it over the top is the consideration of the 8L35, which is collected in the Shizukuishi Watch Studio in Morioka close by Grand Seiko developments. That’s exceptional. This isn’t the development you would discover in the Seikos that are intensely limited at retail chains (for the record, those developments, similar to the 6R15, are staggering – as are the watches they’re in).
Visually, the dial is the significant update that we get with the SLA037. It’s a dark blue and unobtrusively wears a weak sunburst pattern. It catches the light so that a tie molded sheen shows up when seen at a point. The thick encompasses embrace the LumiNova lists to frame an intense marker that’s unbelievably neat. The 62MAS laid the foundational plan language for some Seiko jumpers to follow, and it works similarly as in 1965. The clever thing about this watch is that it demonstrates that, as far as intelligibility, watches surely have not come far. A plan from 1965 can pile up to pretty much anything that’s been delivered as of late. The same textual styles are utilized, and the crown is signed.
Unsurprisingly, it wears like a vintage watch, as well. At 39.9mm, it involves that sweet recognize that a developing number of buyers are amped up for. The case is formed from Seiko’s exclusive “Ever-Brilliant Steel,” however the SLA037 features a matte completion, so it’s “splendor” is quieted. Yet, that’s just from a head-on position. The sides of the case are done with zaratsu cleaning (not to be mistaken for zaibatsu, an enormous vertically integrated Japanese company, which Seiko could be thought of, referenced above). The case completing is an intense improvement over the 62MAS. That seems like it would be self-evident, however it additionally feels like this is absolutely the watch that Seiko would make had they had the cutting edge producing innovation accessible to them in ’65. A blue jungle elastic tie that matches the dial comes with the watch, and as far as anyone is concerned, it doesn’t come on some other Seiko model.
Inside is Seiko’s type 8L55. This is the place where the most dramatic improvement is; what makes the SLA037 much more compelling than 2018’s SLA017 is the overhauled development. The 8L55 runs at 36,000 vph, while the old 8L35 operates at 28,800 vph. It utilizes 11 extra gems, and the force hold has been knock up to 55 hours.
Anniversary celebration aside, the SLA037 seems like Seiko followed the watch to its obvious end result, exploiting the various mechanical headways they’ve made throughout the long term and pressed it into the ultimate articulation of the 62MAS.
And it just took Seiko a short three years after the 1965 62MAS dispatch to come up with a watch that featured a case plan that was well in front of the contemporary harvest of plunge watches in 1968.
Monobloc cases simply wear in an unexpected way. The SLA039 holds on and flat on the wrist on the grounds that there’s no indentation or edge framed by a caseback – it’s flush and tight. Once more, Seiko has effectively re-created a watch that praises the first from 1968 perfectly as the SLA025. It was a homer, and examples on the optional market are very looked for after.
The new SLA039 utilizes the same case shape and general stylish, yet it doesn’t follow the first as intently as the SLA025 did. There are no gold accents – all things considered, the same dark blue dial is utilized, and text and marker encompasses are currently dim and silver to match the dial. It loans an advanced vibe to the watch. Two aspects of the monobloc case structure a point at its driving edge, and the two features are zaratsu-cleaned. There’s a sure enchantment in the manner the sides of the case light up and mirror light while the front of the case stays brushed. There’s likewise something unmistakable about the manner in which the watch wears. The monobloc case has a major effect in bringing the 44.8mm size down to what in particular feels a lot more modest. It’s a tall watch at 15.7mm, however once more, something about a flat back makes it an absolutely reasonable wear.
The SLA039 features the same host of overhauls that the SLA037 has over the SLA017, namely a 8L55 development and “Ever-Brilliant Steel” case. This kind of steel has a slight gleaming sheen, and Seiko claims it’s 1.7-times more impervious to pitting than 316L, the standard metal utilized in most plunge watches. With regards to the SLA039, the case stands out. The plan is indisputable, and the utilization of Ever-Brilliant Steel bodes well in this application as the watch was initially intended for proficient use. Also, what’s great is that this 2020 model is rated for proficient use. In the event that you’re suspicious, “FOR SATURATION DIVING” is engraved in the caseback. It has the specs to match the device watch aesthetic.
But with regards to the device tasteful, there basically aren’t any models in Seiko’s past that embody the apparatus watch look more than the “tuna.”
The “Grandfather Tuna,” the 6159-7010, was an answer for an unmistakable issue in 1975. It’s once in a while commended for adjusted and controlled looks; indeed, it’s a remarkable inverse. In some cases, the consequences of configuration briefs land directly in the center of the practical wonderful range, different occasions they may slant aside. The Tuna has consistently arrived on the capacity side of the spectrum. In a record composed for Seiko by Taro Tanaka, the lead designer of the first 6159-7010, he takes note of that the outside appearance of the watch was surely important:
We made various models and attempted to refine the different components of the plan: including the shape, surface and shade of the external case (the part that is most attractive), the rotating bezel, crown (winding handle) and lash; the shared equilibrium of these components and the general operability of the watch when these components are combined as one; the vibe and comfort of wearing the watch; its feeling of essence, and the atmosphere or quality that it exudes.
And due to its really remarkable tasteful, it’s built up a religion following among the people the SLA041 is made for. Like different watches in the arrangement, it’s the ultimate articulation of what the fish can be. The specs have been pushed to the limit, save for the development. Rather than the 8L55, it utilizes the 8L35. The 8L35 is the genuine article, however, as it’s as yet a nearby cousin of the 9S55 found in Grand Seikos.
Ever-Brilliant Steel is utilized for the bezel and passed out titanium for the remainder of the case, much the same as the first. Titanium is better than steel from numerous points of view, so Seiko has just updated the pieces that were initially standard treated steel to its Ever-Brilliant Steel.
The dimensionality of the Tuna isn’t care for different watches. It’s not difficult to wear, sure, however it doesn’t vanish. The light weight of the watch takes a portion of the apparent “presence” away, however it’s the sort of watch that you may keep in the cabinet until a jump trip. Obviously, a few people utilize the fish as an ordinary watch, but on the other hand there’s magnificence in the possibility that it’s somewhat of a service to wear the fish. Wearing the SLA041 resembles breaking out the best china for a quite certain meal.
When it comes to this set of three, I can’t foresee there’s anything left unanswered: another material, a main development, and a dial shading that’s adored by many make this triplet extraordinarily attractive. These watches are executed at pretty much the most elevated level they can be inside the operational furthest reaches of Seiko. The lone thing I’d change? That in excess of 1,100 models are produced.
Pricing is as per the following: $6,300 (SLA037), $6,800 (SLA039), $4,500 (SLA041). The watches are presently being delivered in an amazed design with drops in June, July, and August 2020, separately. Each model is restricted to 1,100 examples and will be sold through select approved vendors just as Seiko stores. Discover more about the 55th commemoration triplet here .