A lovely, original and complete example of this historic and sought after Grand Seiko with movement serial number 304814 and case-back 5902168. A very interesting and unusual example of a Grand Seiko transition piece, known as such because it has the 43999 dial, Cal. 430 movement paired with a 5722-9990 caseback. There was a cross over during 1965 with 43999’s with the cal. 430 movement given the newer 5722-9990 casebacks. To me this gives the watch a great point of interest. Both the 43999 and 5722-9990 are referred to as 57GS. Caseback is beautiful, all text still proud and well defined. Dates to September 1965.
These watches combine classic 'Grammar of Design' styling with a fabulous movement and gorgeous dial. The photos speak for themselves but it's getting very hard to find clean examples like this one. Lion medallion is sharp and well defined. Serviced November 2020 and running at Chronometer grade accuracy.
Movement: Original SEIKO Cal. 430 - Serial Number 304814 in beautiful condition, screw heads pristine, no previous service marks. Fully serviced November 2020, test worn for 24 hours & keeping chronometer grade time during inspection. Please see photos of watch on timegraher for readings. Accuracy shown cannot be guaranteed but +/- 10 s/d is our benchmark for serviced watches. Date turns over at midnight & quickset works as it should. Not guaranteed water resistant.
Dial: Beautiful silver sunburst, close to mint with just two tiny stains under the lacquer between 9 and 10. Raised applied SEIKO logo and wedge shaped polished indices. Marked Chronometer below logo, Grand Seiko DIASHOCK 35 JEWELS above 6 and MADE IN JAPAN 43999TO below 6 o'clock
Glass: Original, a few minor marks that could be polished out if desired
Hands: Original, sword shape, very good
Case: Original, unpolished stainless steel, some very minor age related wear but no noticeable dings. Beautiful case back, very well defined markings and iconic lion medallion
Crown: Original, marked W Seiko. Well fitted at 3 o'clock. Quickset working smoothly but as with all vintage watches it is very important not to use the feature between 8pm and 4am as it will stress the mechanism
Beat Rate: 18,000bph
Diameter: Approx. 36.5mm
Lug width: 19mm
Band: Stainless steel bracelet contemporary to the watch with Seiko clasp
Year and location of manufacture - September 1965 - Serial No. 5902168
* The story of Seiko and the Observatory competitions in Switzerland
By the late 1950's the Swiss were in a league of their own as other watch making countries such as Germany, France, Britain and the US began to fall behind in terms of quality and accuracy. Seiko saw this as an opportunity to prove their worth as makers of world class chronometer grade movements and in 1964 began participating in the annual competition for accuracy hosted by the Neuchâtel Observatory in Switzerland - The aesthetic side of SEIKO’S mechanical watches were shaped and influenced by Taro Tanaka's now famous 'Grammar of Design' introduced in the late 1950's and still widely copied in quality watches of all makes to this day - Seiko’s results for the first year were disappointing but by the 1967 competition Seiko had won second and third places. For reasons unknown, Neuchâtel cancelled it's competition and the interest shifted to Geneva. A year later, Seiko demonstrated the best accuracy ever recorded, dominating the observatory competition for mechanical movements. Within four years Seiko had taken the world’s No.1 spot, sending shock waves through the watch making establishment. The results seem to have disturbed the Swiss watch making giants greatly and are still not widely recognised today. By 1968 both competitions had been cancelled for good...makes you wonder right? In my opinion SEIKO watches from this era are still underrated, unappreciated and undervalued, representing fantastic value for those looking for excellence in quality of workmanship, accuracy and finish. Please feel free to ask any questions and thanks for looking.
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