Grand Seiko Celebrates 20 Years of 9R Spring Drive

by shopidea.net
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To commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 9R Spring Drive movement, Grand Seiko is releasing a limited edition watch with a dial inspired by the sunrise on Mt. Buson, near the Grand Seiko workshop in Shiojiri City.

The first model is Heritage Collection Caliber 9R 20th Anniversary “Pink Snowflake” (SBGA497) It’s a reimagining of the first-ever watch model, the 9R, but with the trademark “snowflake” dial in pink.

And secondly, sports collection Spring Drive GMT Caliber 9R 20th Anniversary (SBGE305) It combines a black ceramic bezel with a dark red sunburst dial.

first thought

The invention of the Spring Drive caliber is undoubtedly one of Seiko’s most important achievements. It has most of the benefits of a mechanical movement while maintaining the precision of a quartz. Like any fully mechanical movement, it is powered by a mainspring rather than a battery, and timekeeping is controlled by a quartz crystal. As the first ever commercially available Spring Drive variant, the 9R marks a significant feat for Grand Seiko.

Nevertheless, these two new releases don’t seem to offer anything noteworthy or unprecedented, despite being the 20th anniversary models for the 9R Spring Drive movement.

In fact, the choice of a Mt. Hotaka-inspired dial for both watches seems commonplace, given that pink and red dials are relatively common in the brand’s catalogs. Additionally, the inspiration behind Grand Seiko’s dials seems rather repetitive. That’s because the brand too often takes inspiration from the landscapes of the places where its watches are made to create dial patterns.

The Pink Snowflake (SBGA497) is priced at $6,300 and is limited to 1,500 pieces. The new Sport GMT (SBGE305) is priced at $6,200 and is limited to 1,300 pieces.

Retailing for around $6,000, both offer a very good value proposition considering the brand’s Standard Snowflake and Standard Sport GMT are similarly priced. Grand Seiko is generally known for its watches offering great value. Zaratsu It features a gorgeous dial with a unique pattern made using polishing technology.

Sunrise at Mt. Hotaka

As always with Grand Seiko, the beauty of the dial is central to both watches. Each depicts a sunrise over Mount Hotaka in Japan, with the pink snowflake dial of the SBGA497 depicting a snow-covered winter landscape, and the dark red dial of the SBGE305 depicting the beauty of a summer mountain landscape. I’m capturing it.

Housed in a 41 mm case, the SBGA497 is a three-hand watch made of bright titanium with a red power reserve indicator between 7 and 8 o’clock. However, the SBGE305 is housed within a 40.5 mm stainless steel case and has GMT functionality. The SBGE305 allows the wearer to change time zones by operating the screw-down crown.Both watches are meticulously functional Zaratsu– Polished case, hour markers and hands with contrasting mirrored and satin-finished surfaces.

Cal is sitting inside a pink snowflake. The 9R65 movement features fine mirror-polished chamfers within the “Tokyo Stripe” that extends throughout the movement. The movement inside the Sport GMT is finished in the same spirit as the Pink Snowflake movement, but thickened with the addition of GMT functionality. The movement engravings inside both his 9R calibers pay homage to the Shinshu region, with the bridges and barrels reflecting the beautiful mountain ridges.


Key facts and prices

Grand Seiko Heritage Collection Caliber 9R 20th Anniversary Limited Model
reference. SBGA397

diameter:41mm
height:12.5mm
material:Titanium
crystal: sapphire
water resistance:100m

Movement: Cal. 9R65
function: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, power reserve indicator
Take-up: automatic
frequency: spring drive
Power reserve: 72 hours

strap: Matching bracelet

limited edition: 1,500 pieces
availability: Available at Grand Seiko boutiques and select retailers from March 2024
price: $6,300


Key facts and prices

Grand Seiko Sports Collection Caliber 9R 20th Anniversary Limited Edition
reference. SBGE305

diameter:40.5mm
height:14.7mm
material: stainless steel
crystal: sapphire
water resistance:200m

Movement: Cal. 9R66
function: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, GMT functions
Take-up: automatic
frequency: spring drive
Power reserve: 72 hours

strap: Matching bracelet

limited edition: 1,300 pieces
availability: Available at Grand Seiko boutiques and select retailers from March 2024
price: $6,200

Learn more about grandseiko.com.


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