As you may definitely know, Seiko is praising the twentieth commemoration of its Spring Drive innovation this year. To stamp what is indeed a significant groundbreaking event, Grand Seiko appeared two new hand-wound Spring Drive developments and a sum of four unique watches at Baselworld. We as of late invested a few hands-on energy with three of them and have indeed been overwhelmed by Grand Seiko’s faultless completing and regard for detail.
Brice previously covered the Spring Drive innovation comprehensively in his audit of the exceptionally alluring Snowflake , so I’ll just address it again momentarily here. Basically it combines components of mechanical and quartz watchmaking to make a half breed development that conveys unrivaled execution and exactness. What separates it from a conventional mechanical development is the utilization of a directing organ that is furnished with a selective speed control instrument, fusing an IC, an electronic brake and a quartz gem. This outcomes in a normal month to month pace of ±15 seconds (or ±1 second of the day by and large) and a base force hold of around 3 days.
Given the meaning of this innovation to Seiko, and for sure to present day watchmaking, it appears to be just fitting that Grand Seiko should bundle it up as wonderfully as could be expected. Furthermore, that is actually what it has done.
The first thing to note about these new models is the means by which thin and refined the cases are. Their esthetic is a lot of educated by the new Elegance Collection, additionally appeared by Grand Seiko this year at Baselworld. Every one of the four cases measure a comfortable 38.5mm in distance across and are refreshingly slender. The two platinum models – SBGZ001 and SBGZ003 – stand simply 9.8mm tall, while the yellow gold and steel forms – SBGY002 and SBGY003 – are marginally thicker at 10.2mm (because of the utilization of an alternate movement).
The cases are molded so that they sit level against the wrist, which makes them incredibly comfortable to wear. It’s likewise befitting of a dress watch, which ought to effortlessly slide away under a shirt sleeve. To my eye, the coordinated plan between the caseband and the carries likewise gives the visual impression that the cases are somewhat bigger than 38.5mm. I think this is uplifting news for the individuals who like the refined style yet stress that the measurements will be excessively little. Actually, I think this is just about the ideal size for a dress watch.
The two platinum models are crafted by the Micro Artist Studio, and both have been amassed and wrapped up by hand. The instance of one of them – SBGZ001 – has been altogether hand-engraved with a Snowflake design (coordinating the dial) – tragically not accessible while capturing the watches. As per Grand Seiko, the plan is enlivened by the magnificence of the snow in the Shinshu area, which is the place where the Studio is found. It’s a sensitive and painstaking cycle, with no two cases looking precisely similar. As anyone might expect, this adaptation is restricted to only 30 pieces. The other three models – in platinum (SBGZ003), gold (SBGY002) and steel (SBGY003), separately – have all been traditionally cleaned to Grand Seiko’s exceptionally exclusive requirements, which means as indicated by the Zaratsu technique.
The dials of every one of the four models are generally basic and downplayed however that doesn’t mean they are not eye-getting. A long way from it. Indeed, basic is the place where Grand Seiko truly comes into its front. The restricted release platinum model highlights a gleaming white Snowflake design engraved on its dial, as does the non-restricted yellow gold model. The other platinum model highlights a silvered dial with a grained finish, while the brilliant dial of the steel model is decorated with an eye-getting sunray design. On the platinum and steel forms, the hour and moment hands and hour markers are made of 14k white gold. This changes to yellow gold for the yellow gold version.
In average Grand Seiko design, the hands and files are overly sharp and fresh. You truly need to take a gander at them under a loupe to completely value the scrupulousness paid in their wrapping up. The Grand Seiko name, the moment markers and the wide range of various markings are carved into the dial, and altogether four models, a blued steel seconds hand gives simply a bit of difference to the dial. It’s a given that the dials are overly clear yet additionally very dazzling to take a gander at, particularly when the light hits just right.
Of course, the genuine treat is the thing that’s inside these watches. The Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGZ001 and SBGZ003 (the two platinum models) are both outfitted with the recently evolved hand-wound development, type 9R02. The elite work of the Micro Artist Studio, it has two mainsprings set in equal inside a solitary barrel and uses the one of a kind Torque Return System* to create 84 hours of force. A force save marker is noticeable through the sapphire gem caseback, close to the bellflower-molded barrel. For the individuals who are interested, the bellflower is the image of Shiojiri, where the Micro Artist Studio is located.
As you would expect at this level, the development is hand-completed and hand-amassed. The edges of the two scaffolds have been painstakingly cleaned flawlessly, furnishing a striking differentiation with the hairline finish of the extensions themselves. Once more, the appearance is generally straightforward, yet the execution is simply on another level. Precision is in the request for ± 1 second for each day.
*Torque Return System: When the mainspring has been completely wound and the force yield is at its most elevated, roughly 30% of the accessible force isn’t expected to keep up the accuracy of the watch, and is essentially squandered in an ordinary development. The Torque Return System utilizes this energy to rewind the mainspring, bringing about an expansion in the force save. In Caliber 9R02, this framework is enacted for 48 hours after the mainspring has been completely wound.
The Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGY002 and SBGY003, then, house another hand-wound Spring Drive development, type 9R31. This in-house development is made at the Shinshu Watch Studio (close to the Micro Artist Studio) where any remaining Grand Seiko Spring Drive watches are made. It has a similar double mainspring structure as type 9R02 yet doesn’t utilize the Torque Return System. This outcomes in a somewhat lower yet adequate force save of 72 hours. Exactness stays unaltered, notwithstanding, at the profoundly precise pace of ± 1 second for each day.
All four models are conveyed on a crocodile leather lash with a three-overlay fasten with press button discharge. The yellow gold rendition includes an earthy colored tie, while the other three are on the whole dark. They’re comfortable on the wrist and tie in pleasantly with the general dress watch theme.
Price and availability
Pricing fluctuates fundamentally. The platinum models are EUR 78,000 (SBGZ001, restricted to 30 pieces) and EUR 58,500 (SBGZ003) separately. While the Yellow Gold Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGY002 is EUR 27,000, and the treated steel Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGY003 is EUR 8,200. Kindly note, nonetheless, that the steel adaptation is restricted to 700 pieces worldwide.
More subtleties at www.grand-seiko.com .
Technical Specifications SBGZ001 – SBGZ003
- Case: distance across 38.5mm x thickness 9.8mm – 950 platinum, hand-engraved (SBGZ002) or cleaned (SBGZ003) – top quality double bended sapphire gem with hostile to intelligent covering – transparent screw caseback – 30m water-resistant
- Dial: silvered, with or without snowflake design – hands and hour markers in 14k white gold
- Movement: type 9R02, in-house – hand-wound with Spring Drive innovation – 84h force save – exactness of ± 1 second out of each day (± 15 seconds of the month) – Dual-Spring Barrel and Torque Return System – 39 gems – collected at the Micro Artist Studio by hand – hours, minutes, seconds, power save (back)
- Strap: crocodile tie with three-crease catch with press button release
- References: SBGZ001 (engraved), restricted release of 30 – SBGZ003 (cleaned), not limited
- Price: EUR 78,000 (SBGZ001) – EUR 58,500 (SBGZ003)
Technical Specifications SBGY002 – SBGY003
- Case: measurement 38.5mm x thickness 10.2mm – 18k yellow gold (SBGY002), tempered steel (SBGY003) – top quality double bended sapphire gem with against intelligent covering – transparent screw caseback – 30m water-resistant
- Dial: silvered – snowflake design (SBGY002) – sunray design (SBGY003)
- Movement: type 9R31, in-house – hand-wound with Spring Drive innovation – 72h force save – exactness of ± 1 second of the day (± 15 seconds of the month) – Dual-Spring Barrel – 30 gems – hours, minutes, seconds, power hold (back)
- Strap: crocodile tie with three-overlap catch with press button release
- References: SBGY002 (gold) – SBGY003 (steel), restricted to 700 pieces
- Price: EUR 27,000 (SBGY002) – EUR 8,200 (SBGY003)