So my 35th birthday is coming up in November. For a while now I’ve been promising myself the black dial Grand Seiko 9F GMT (SBGN003). I already own a 9F (SBGX095) so the the movement has has already proven itself to me beyond its stated capabilities.
Recently thought I’ve come to learn about Seiko’s other and lesser(?) HAQ watches and movements. One in particular is the SBCJ Alpinist with the 8F56 movement.
It’s quite obvious IMHO that the 9F is the far superior movement. Superior in accuracy and craftsmanship, but somehow I find myself drawn to the SBCJ.
For one, the price of a SBCJ is about 1/3 of the GS. Now, I have no problem spending $3k on a watch, be it mechanical or quartz, but in going with a SBCJ am I basically getting the same watch and saving $2000? Maybe even more?
Additionally, the SBCJs have a quiet, understated charm about them that is missing from the SBGNs (though I would agree that they are certainly less flashy than similar offerings) and this is something I really appreciate.
One of the main issues that’s holding me back from the Alpinists is the ruggedness and reliability of the 8F56 in the long term. Already (10-15 years on) there are reports of 8F56 movements losing accuracy and I’m not thrilled that you can’t reset the perpetual calendar on your own if needed. Again, the 9Fs would certainly be superior in this aspect.
Thoughts? Am I acting crazy by even putting these two timepieces in the same class or is this just the typical watch collecting neuroses that we all have?