Saturday, August 30, 2008

I am not a Quartz fan but this is a must-have!

SEIKO Quartz Chronograph Day-Date (NOS)
Caliber 7A38-7190 Fifteen Jewels
Dated: September 1985

I bought this NOS full set from an old watchmaker in Singapore. Although not a fan of quartz movements, I have learnt from numerous forums the horological significance of this full 15 jewels quartz chronograph with full metal parts.

I quote from SteveG as he wrote in his website (

Introduced in 1983, Seiko's 7A28 (and related) movements were intended as their best efforts in designing quartz-controlled chronographs. As with the JLC and Piguet movements, this now seems rather quaint, if not misguided, but at the time these held real horological significance. While the Swiss firms were naturally trying to preserve their vital traditions from the seemingly-past mechanical age, Seiko dove right in and produced the world's first all-analog-display quartz chronograph. Even though these watches were relatively modestly priced (about US$250), the 7A28s inside were clearly intended to be permanent movements. Most unusually, the mechanism is fully jeweled (15), uses no plastic parts, and allows for simple regulation by the user. A separate motor is provided for each indicating function, and the button at 10 o'clock temporarily stops the chronograph hands' motion as actual timing continues, providing an odd sort of "split-second" function. Best of all, while the main chrono-seconds hand moves at the typical quartz once/second, the hand within the subdial at 3 o'clock races along at a most entertaining 20 steps per second, (although it is labeled "1/10s").

From SteveG's website, a detailed scan of the movement (shown 7A28 but similar for 7A38) can be found here.
Shown below is a full steel caseback consistent with watches manufactured during that era. This particular Seiko was made in September 1985.

This is how the olden days Seiko Warranty booklet looks like. New Seikos now carry a warranty card instead. The pages in the 7A38 manual have also turned yellow from age.

Overall I am pleased with this rare gem. As I grow along the way of my watch quest, I have to admit that we cannot totally write off quartz movements. In fact there were a lot of quartz movements from the yesteryear that paved the way for the current watch making technology we have now.

So will I still buy and collect quartz watches?
The answer is Yes but selectively according to the age, rarity and technological advancement during that era.


Anonymous said...

this is a real beauty!

Anonymous said...

i have 0ne black and one sliver,but hey i think you had better deal with this jewel!
nice one,you have awsome collection!:)