I've had a few arrivals recently and I can finally say I am very happy with my diver collection, so I decided to do a State Of The Diver Collection post. Please excuse the Q&D quality - I took these pics in the living room while watching NCIS Los Angeles. Hope you like them!
So here they all are in their little home. No need to list them, as I'll briefly discuss each one. Sadly one of my favourite divers, my MIRB Frogman, left home recently to make way for a non-diver trade. He is sorely missed, and I hope in 2011 or 2012 I can get another Froggie to replace him.
So what's in the box???
How come this guy doesn't have a nickname? To me he is the Grand Master of my diver collection. My oldest diver, and the wisest! The 6105 is so old that it really seems to be constructed in a different way to my other divers. It has quite a real vintage feel to it. In that aspect it is similar to the Sea-Dweller. He is wearing one of Will Jean's Type II Waffles (the original is wrapped in plastic somewhere). As an owner of the original waffle, I must say I like that the Type II is an identical copy. I can put it on the 6105 and it is exactly how it would look when it came out of the factory. But that is a conversation for another day...
Although this 6105 is supposedly all original, the upper case surface looks as though it has been slightly polished. I don't know why anybody would do this, and it might be the result of constant rubbing and wear. Not sure, but it annoys me, and I'd love somebody who knows what they are doing to refinish it appropriately. Any suggestions? This watch is worth it. Such a special diver. I don't want to play favourites, I was going to say it is the crown jewel of my collection, but nah. It's just a special little old man full of experience, stories, and wisdom.
Seiko SBDX001 'Marinemaster 300'
This is the newest member of the family, only arriving 2 days ago. As such, I haven't really formed an opinion other than that it is a beautiful watch let down by ill-fitting endlinks. I think on rubber it will really come together as a brilliant, very special watch. A shame, because the rest of the bracelet is beautifully made. Possibly I will send it back to Seiko one day and see if they can find some better endlinks for it. One more thing - the bezel on this looks absolutely STUNNING. Like a layer of crystal over wet black ink. Bezel action isn't too shabby, either.
Seiko SBDC001 'Sumo'
This was my second modern diver, and my first with a mid-range movement. But it's not the smooth winding, accurate movement that makes the big impression. It's the incredible case. The case is as well finished as the MM300, and I happen to love the style with the extravagant curves, and tapered yet heavy and thick lugs, and the semi-concealed bezel. A common complaint is that the bracelet is too narrow for the case, but I love how the width of the bracelet accentuates the roundness of the gorgeous case. Unfortunately, the bracelet isn't that great (it should be thicker, and constructed from 5 links) but on MM300 rubber this is a superb watch. I copped a lot of grief for daring to compare the Sumo with an Omega SMP when I was new to the forums. Well I stand by that comparison to this day - it' a hell of a watch. (I do want a 2254 though!)
Seiko SBDA001 'Samurai'
The Ti Sammie is my first modern Seiko, my first Seiko diver, my first Ti watch. It's also the only watch that I bought while it was current and which has since been discontinued. Why would Seiko discontinue such a great and affordable dive watch? Too affordable, maybe? I don't know, I'm just glad I have one. It's a very special watch. Wears so well (I'm wearing it today), and one of the few Seiko divers where the bracelet need not apologise. In fact, the bracelet is a standout, and looks and feels superb. That said, the whole look of the watch changes on black rubber. The matte angular surfaces are quite brutal, and it is clear this thing is no pretty boy desk diver but is up for professional business just as much as any 007.
SKX007 'Desert Storm'
My first mod, and quite an extreme one IMO. Takes the 007 away from it's dive roots into the world of field and fashion watches. I REALLY like this watch - the vintage look of the dial, the matte slightly rough feel of the ceramic, the colour scheme, the dome of the thick sapphire - but equally I can 100% understand if somebody considers this an abomination.
Seiko SKA427 'PVD BFK'
To focus on the kinetic power system is to miss the point. This is IMO one of the standout dive watch buys on the market today. As impressive as the Monster. My only PVD watch, and I have been pleasantly surprised that the coating is actually more scratch resistant than S/S. To this day it is literally unmarked.
Seiko SKX779 'Black Monster'
Not much to say that hasn't already been said. Love it or hate it, the impact of the Monster on the dive watch scene is undeniable. Personally, I LOVE it!
Citizen Crystron 600m
My only Citizen diver. A bit of a random purchase. It was sitting in the window of an estate jeweller which was closing down. One lowball offer later and it was mine. Plenty of Sabi, or Wabi, or whatever we're calling it this week. I just like the rugged, no BS design. It is a tough dive watch, nothing more, nothing less.
Orient 300 m
Big and surprisingly refined in some ways, like the bezel, but overall best descibed as a 007 on 'roids. Still quite new to me, but really growing on me. Shame the bracelet isn't twice as thick, as it's a heavy mother. Also a shame they didn't go with 5 links. What is it with Seiko and bracelets? You have to spend $2,000 to get a decent one?
Rolex 16600 Sea-Dweller
The odd one out! Like the Monster, not much I can add to the story. A sub style watch from the creator of the modern dive watch, but a bit more exclusive than the Sub. And without that horrid pimple on the crystal. I like it.
That is all for now. I have one more diver incoming (the Remora) and the Deset Storm wil then be moved to my other box (of randoms). After all, it's not so much a dive watch now, although it could be used as one in a pinch. I also have another random incoming (the trade for two G-Shocks) so I'll post the other box when it and the Remora have arrived.
Thanks for looking!