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Thread: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

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  1. #1
    Sponsor JoeAZFT's Avatar
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    Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    As the days go by, I see more and more love for Grand Seiko, and
    totally understand why. They're all gorgeous pieces, beautifully
    crafted and have some of the finest motors in watches today. The
    piece I would like to discuss today is one of our best selling models
    here at AZ Fine Time.... The Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT - SBGE001.


    GS-SBGE001-1 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-2 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-3 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-4 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    Grand Seiko is notorious for their meticulous manufacturing. One of
    the finest attributes to a high-end "travel" watch is the operation of
    the GMT function. Seiko is using their completely in-house
    manufactured 9R66 Spring Drive movement in this traveler's master
    piece . This gives the watch accuracy unattainable by any other
    spring driven watch including what seems to be service free for many
    years over most of the Swiss competion.


    GS-SBGE001-5 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-6 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-7 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-8 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr

    For those not familiar with Spring Drive, it is basically a fully
    mechanical watch where the traditional escapement is replaced by a
    tri-synchro regulator. The tri-synchro regulator utilizes the energy
    from the mainspring to make electricity, that powers an extremely high
    accuracy quartz crystal, and transfers the frequency of the crystal to
    an electromagnetic brake that regulates a glide wheel (what would be a
    balance wheel, but rotates in only one direction) to 8 rotations per
    second. Of course, that's the simple explanation. This in turn gives
    the watch a rating to +/- 1 sec a day accuracy, but actual performance
    within 1-3 sec a month deviation. On top of that, the 9R66 has an
    independently controlled hour hand as opposed to GMT hands you will
    see on most other pieces. This gives the wearer ability to change the
    time without having to stop the second hand and ruin the time you had
    so masterfully paired to the atomic clock. Pull the crown out, turn
    to move the hour hand forward or back, screw the crown back in and
    you're ready for the next city. Now you have the ultimate, accurate,
    travelers movement.


    GS-SBGE001-9 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-10 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    The other key feature on this piece is its sapphire bezel. Seiko
    actually develops a domed Sapphire crystal just for the bezel! It
    truly gives the piece a gorgeous look on top of the fact it is scratch
    resistant. Under that crystal lies lumed indexes and numerals that
    glow like there's no tomorrow. They actually use the same natural
    lume that illuminates the Seiko Space Walk, just in slightly smaller
    applications. The bezel is bi-directional and allows you to view up
    to three time zones at once. The bezel operates smoother than any I
    have ever felt and the toothed edge only adds benefit to it's
    operation. Naturally, there is a domed - dual AR coated -
    high-definition - sapphire crystal that covers the dial of the watch.
    As I'm sure you can imagine, they are not easy to manufacture.


    GS-SBGE001-11 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-12 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-13 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    GS-SBGE001-15 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr

    Karatsu "blade" polishing is something I have mentioned in many of my
    posts. The SBGE001 uses this ancient form of artistry to polish the
    stainless steel in this watch. Everything in Grand Seiko, from the
    steel they use, the way it is forged, and the polishing technique
    applied, derives from the art form in manufacturing the katana blade.
    This gives the piece a gorgeous sparkle that competes with the finest
    pieces in the industry. It is also applied to the steel on the
    indexes and hands to make for supreme legibility.


    GS-SBGE001-16 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr


    The deep matte black dial also contributes to the legibility of the
    timepiece, making it very easy to see the glitter of the indexes
    reflecting light. The red GMT hand is also incredibly legible against
    the black matte. As you will notice, legibility is a major attribute
    to all Grand Seiko's.


    GS-SBGE001-17 by JoeAZFT, on Flickr

    Overall, the SBGE001 is an incredible timepiece and a true thing of
    beauty. It's the ultimate watch for the ultimate traveler (or even if
    your not). Grand Seiko has yet again set a new standard in quality.
    And soon, you will have the opportunity to own it's very limited
    counter part, SBGE021.

    Click to see the SBGE021...
    Name:  GS-SBGE021.jpg
Views: 3947
Size:  44.0 KB

    The SBGE021 is virtually the same as the 001, yet with a dark green
    sunburst pressed dial and gold GMT hand. This piece is going to be
    limited to only 100 pieces throughout the world and AZ Fine Time will
    be getting 6. The 021 is scheduled to deliver in March of 2012. Due
    to it's extremely limited availability, I would recommend giving us a
    call to reserve yours ASAP. As with all Grand Seiko's, there is a
    story to be told about this watch, and I will be gladly sharing it on
    the forum.

    As always, thanks for reading and I hope you all enjoyed. Please let
    me know if there's ever any help I can be.

    Thank you and Happy Holidays!

    Joe
    rsr911, hiro1963, CitizenM and 2 others like this.
    Joe @

    800-486-3996
    joek@azfinetime.com



  2. #2
    Member sharkfin's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Awesome piece, and post Joe!

    I love this one, and hope to acquire one someday.

    Cool that you got a limited edition green dial. I'd love to see real life pics of that one.
    I'm sure it be so much nicer in real life.

    Also, you guys think you'll be getting one of these? SBGE015
    This is by far my fave of the three. But priced out of reach.

    cheers, happy holidays Joe.
    Dave
    #88

  3. #3
    Member HR F1's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    I'm looking forward to some in-the-metal shots of that green sunburst dial!
    JoeAZFT likes this.
    "Using no way as way, having no limitation as limitation." - Bruce Lee

  4. #4
    Member CitizenM's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Awesome watch, I just wish it had a display caseback.

    One question about the *R66 movements though, do they have a quickset date?
    Daily Rotation: Grand Seiko Hi-Beat + Aqua Terra 8500 + Ananta Double Retrograde
    Non-Daily and Former: 1965 Timex Handwind + Citizen Signature Grand Complication + Citizen 8651 + Planet Orient + 1965 Wyler Automatic + Omega Constellation

  5. #5
    Member Auragentum's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Thanks for the very nice introduction to the GS GMT. Great to hear from an AD who actually knows what he is talking about - and then some.

    When I bought my Rolex GMT 116710 recently I also considered the SBGE001, which I actually tried on a couple of times. At the end of the day I decided in favor of the Rolex, mainly because the GS footprint was slightly too large for my liking.

    I however did not know that the bezel was lumed! I think that is the first GMT bezel I have seen on any watch with lume on it - many diver bezels with lume, but so far haven't seen a GMT bezel. Now had the GS dealer told me about the lume - deciding on the Rolex instead would have been harder :) Making the decision even harder would have been the setting of the GMT hand, without stopping the second hand. Was not made aware of this either. Perhaps if the GS salesman had been as competent as you when demonstrating the GMT to me, things would have turned out different.

    In any event, spring drive is really nice and I always find myself mesmerized by the smoothly sweeping second hand, just like I did on the Accutron movements. Thanks again for the insight and please keep it coming.

  6. #6
    Member Raoul Duke's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    i hate the overuse of the term "grail watch" but in this case it fits. unless i hit the lottery, i may never be able to justify spending the money on this wonderful timepiece. therefore, i will say- this is my grail

    thanks very much for terrific photos and a great write-up, Joe
    JoeAZFT likes this.

  7. #7
    Sponsor JoeAZFT's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Quote Originally Posted by sharkfin View Post
    Awesome piece, and post Joe!

    I love this one, and hope to acquire one someday.

    Cool that you got a limited edition green dial. I'd love to see real life pics of that one.
    I'm sure it be so much nicer in real life.

    Also, you guys think you'll be getting one of these? SBGE015
    This is by far my fave of the three. But priced out of reach.

    cheers, happy holidays Joe.
    Dave
    Thanks Dave!

    I'm hoping to have one myself one day. I unfortunately haven't seen the green dial yet, but I'll be sure to post pictures the moment I do. You know as well as I do that the image I have would never do true justice!

    I don't think they'll be sending over the 015, but I'll be in Basel this year and will be sure to inquire. Not the 1st time I've had this request.
    Joe @

    800-486-3996
    joek@azfinetime.com



  8. #8
    Sponsor JoeAZFT's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Quote Originally Posted by CitizenM View Post
    Awesome watch, I just wish it had a display caseback.

    One question about the *R66 movements though, do they have a quickset date?
    I wish they had the display back too. Far to fine a movement not to show it off.

    Unfortunately no quick set date on the GMT's.

    Thanks for the good questions.
    Joe @

    800-486-3996
    joek@azfinetime.com



  9. #9
    Sponsor JoeAZFT's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Quote Originally Posted by Auragentum View Post
    Thanks for the very nice introduction to the GS GMT. Great to hear from an AD who actually knows what he is talking about - and then some.

    When I bought my Rolex GMT 116710 recently I also considered the SBGE001, which I actually tried on a couple of times. At the end of the day I decided in favor of the Rolex, mainly because the GS footprint was slightly too large for my liking.

    I however did not know that the bezel was lumed! I think that is the first GMT bezel I have seen on any watch with lume on it - many diver bezels with lume, but so far haven't seen a GMT bezel. Now had the GS dealer told me about the lume - deciding on the Rolex instead would have been harder :) Making the decision even harder would have been the setting of the GMT hand, without stopping the second hand. Was not made aware of this either. Perhaps if the GS salesman had been as competent as you when demonstrating the GMT to me, things would have turned out different.

    In any event, spring drive is really nice and I always find myself mesmerized by the smoothly sweeping second hand, just like I did on the Accutron movements. Thanks again for the insight and please keep it coming.
    Thank you very much for the kind words and I'm glad you enjoyed the post.

    It's too bad that you didn't get to see the brighter side of the GS when making your decision. The GMT Master II is definitely a nice piece and it's one of the few GMT's with the independent hour hand, but Seiko's Spring Drive got me hooked. Any time you ever have any questions, let me know and I'll be glad to help. I'm into all watches and can talk about them for days on end. One of my favorite parts of the job!

    Gotta love that lumed bezel
    Joe @

    800-486-3996
    joek@azfinetime.com



  10. #10
    Member hiro1963's Avatar
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    Re: Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE001 and sneak peak at the Limited SBGE021

    Quote Originally Posted by CitizenM View Post
    Awesome watch, I just wish it had a display caseback.
    That would have been awesomer!

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