Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT

Thread: Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007

    Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT


    To preface this question, I am a complete newbie when it comes to watches.

    I saw an advertisement for the Citizen Skyhawk AT and immediately realized that I had to have one. (There may be a few here that can relate to that feeling. )

    My current Citizen Eco-Drive "World Time" has a sapphire crystal. Even though I try to be careful, it has taken some pretty hard knocks over the 5 or 6 years I've owned it (banging against doorways and such) and come out unscathed.

    While researching the Skyhawk, I found that it's crystal is made of mineral, not sapphire.

    How easily does a mineral crystal scratch? Are some mineral crystals more resistant to scratching than others?

    Why would Citizen use what is apparently an inferior crystal material in what I assume is one of their "flagship" watches?

    Thanks in advance.


  2. #2

    Re: Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT

    Yes, I agree the mineral crystal is a minus on the Skyhawk for general use.

    However, I would like to point out that some really tough watches like Sinn were/are equipped with acrylic crystals. One should bear in mind that though scratch resistance is superior, sapphire is also very brittle, which means it can crack/break on impact or sudden pressure changes. The Omega Speedmaster, the watch that made it to the moon and back, was also acrylic topped, as were some deep divers. Mineral crystals, though not as scratch resistant, can also take shocks better than sapphire. I'll also choose a coated mineral over an uncoated sapphire, depending on the dial color and watch type.

    So I'll hesitate calling mineral 'inferior' without weighing other factors. However, I believe Citizen will introduce a model with sapphire in next year's model.

    There are currently a few models sporting the same movement with sapphire. These are the Japan only Promaster PMV65-2241 and PMV65-2242 and the Attesa ATV53-2832, ATV53-2833 and ATV53-2834. You can purchase them on the bay or reputable Japanese merchants online.

    You'll find that many of the best watches from Seiko, Citizen, Casio and Orient are Japan only. They are usually Ti models with some form of anti-scratch/ding treatment (e.g. Duratect, Brightz Ti, DLC, Diashield) and AR sapphire.

    Perhaps Japan is a tougher market, or perhaps the U.S. market just ain't prepared to pay top dollar for a Japanese watch.
    Last edited by vandice; December 10th, 2007 at 10:31.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2007

    Re: Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT

    These posts are very informative to me. I placed an order for the skyhawk a-t last week and it is due to arrive this coming Wednesday. In doing further research after I ordered, I discovered the Japanese model with all the titanium and saphire. I contacted Citizen USA. They replied to my email by saying that a titanium model will be offered in the spring, but not the saphire crystal.

    They said they cannot sell that watch over here....they offered no reason though. I am comtemplating getting one from a retailer in Japan however.

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  5. #4
    Member thodgins's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Columbus, Ohio

    Re: Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT

    Go with Seiya or Higuchi. They are well known Japanese dealers and have a great reputation among WIS'.

    "The only reason for time is so that everything doesn't happen at once." Albert Einstein

  6. #5
    Member bobbysamd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Re: Why a Mineral Crystal in Skyhawk AT

    I love Citizen. I'm primarily a dive watch person now. I have an Auto-Zilla, a Twentieth Anniversary Aqualand, an Analog Aqualand and a Promaster. Thanks to the power of advertising, I'm now interested in the Skyhawk. Anyone know if the Japan-only model receives American radio signals?

    Also, how does the calendar function work? I looked at a Skyhawk today and the calendar function wasn't apparent.

    I second Seiya-san and Mr. Higuchi without reservation as excellent Japanese watch sellers. I've used both and their service is impeccable bar none.
    Last edited by bobbysamd; December 17th, 2007 at 02:45.

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