Monday, November 29, 2021

Our big day out, courtesy of Seiko


On the weekend we had a very special opportunity to attend the Supercars Supersprint event at the Sydney Motorsport Park, courtesy of Seiko. If you are a Supercars fan, or you have been following along with Seiko’s happenings, then you will know that Seiko has become a brand sponsor for the 2021 Supercars season. Sponsoring the team 18 Irwin racing car, driven by none other than Mark ‘Frosty’ Winterbottom. Being a big supporter of all things Seiko, we were very excited to see and be apart of one of their biggest initiatives to support Australian sport. Yuki Suganuma - Managing Director of Seiko Australia - said earlier in the year "Seiko has been a supporter of some of the world's biggest sporting events and occasions and we are excited to be joining one of the leading categories of global motorsport," 

We were invited inside the Team 18 garage where we were met by team manager Steve Henderson. He showed us their operations and most importantly, their cars. We were taken back at just how advanced these race machines were, as well as all the engineering and preparation that went into getting one race ready. 
We were also invited out onto the grid before the race to see all the Supercars lined up, and watch Mark Winterbottom prepare. Although nothing could prepare us for just how loud and mighty these racing machines were when they got fired up - absolutely incredible!

Seiko's support of the Supercars boils down to a very simple reason for them, with Mr Suganuma stating, "We are excited to bring Seiko 5 to the world of Supercars. Reliability, durability and performance are critical in both the world of Supercars and in every Seiko 5 Sports timepiece." It is very exciting to see Seiko get involved in and support local initiatives here in Australia, especially one that values engineering, accuracy and build quality - much like their own series of watches.

We thank Seiko Australia for their kind invite, as well as Team 18 for welcoming us into their garage and showing us their behind the scenes operations. We look forward to following along and supporting the rest of the Irwin racing team's season, and also to seeing more super cool Seiko 5 releases!

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

The Speedtimer is back, and better than ever


I would love to know what Seiko is feeding their design and development team because they just keep smashing it out of the park and they don’t show any signs of slowing down. Possibly the coolest release from Seiko this year, and maybe even the best Seiko chronograph in their current line up. An homage to their classic 1969 Speedtimer, amongst other things, the design feels familiar but still very Seiko. 

Sitting them in a line up the first thing that stands out is the range of varying dial designs, all drawing inspiration from different generations of sport chronographs - they represent the journey of chronograph design through the ages. The first is the sandy coloured tan dial with matching bezel, drawing inspiration from the classic chronograph era from the 1930’s-1950’s, really the first generation of sports chronographs. The second is the navy blue and red dial and bezel combination reminiscent of the more bold and vibrant designs from the late 1960’s to 1980’s and draws direct inspiration from the first Speedtimer released in 1969. The third is the uniform black dial and bezel design which is timeless, but was very popular from the 1990’s until now. The fourth is the classic modern look chronograph with a black and white ‘panda’ dial which draws a rather obvious influence from a particular, unnamed, popular chronograph. 

At a glance this watch might just look like a regular quartz watch ticking away, but Seiko have cleverly integrated their solar technology into the sub dials; opening up a world of dial design opportunities which Seiko have definitely made use of with 4 options from this release. The watch is fitted with a Seiko calibre V192 which includes a chronograph, date function, 24 hour hand and has a power reserve of 6 months after being fully charged up. 

One of my favourite things about this watch isn’t even the watch itself but the metal strap it comes on. Usually reserved for the dressier "Presage" models, this metal strap is iconic for being one of Seiko’s best bracelet designs. With solid links and a three-fold clasp with push button release reminiscent of more expensive Swiss watches.

These chronographs stay true to their modern sport watch design inspiration with a smaller case size over their other chronographs, coming in at a compact 39mm. 

There has already been a massive buzz about the release of these watches online with many who were unsure about Seiko before, jumping on this model because of how attractive of a deal this is for only $1050. We have one of each of these model's in stock, buy one, buy them all - you won't be disappointed. 

39mm stainless steel case, curved sapphire crystal, V192 Solar movement, Chronograph function, Date function, 24 hour hand, 6 month power reserve, 100m water resistance, 5 year warranty. 

SSC813P White
SSC817P Tan
SSC815P Blue
SSC819P Black

The watch you can't get from Seiko

At the moment, Seiko is the king of the limited release, super quirky and unique watches - pushing the boundaries of design and innovation to deliver a plethora of new and fresh ideas in the world of watch design. This one is no exception to that rule. In fact, this watch may be the greatest example of this to date.

Because Seiko is celebrating their 140th anniversary this year, they wanted to create a watch which highlighted their rich heritage as a company, as well as their connection to Japanese culture. In particular, they wanted to highlight the Ginza district in central Tokyo, which is of great importance to Seiko. Ginza was where the company’s founder, Kintaro Hattori, opened a shop selling and repairing clocks and watches in 1881, when he was just 21 years old. Today, Ginza is still where the company is located. For more than 120 years, a Seiko clock in Ginza has kept Tokyo on time. The Seiko clock looks down on Ginza’s most famous crossroads from the roof of the Wako store where one of the world’s largest Seiko flagship stores is located. Nearby are other Seiko establishments, including the Seiko Museum, a boutique dedicated to Seiko Prospex, and Seiko Dream Square, where people can experience each collection’s rich heritage and the unique worldview of Seiko.
Seiko's Flagship store in Ginza
When first looking at this watch, the main feature is obvious. The dial is absolutely stealing the show. But what is even cooler than this dial is the inspiration behind it:

"The intricate pattern of the dial incorporates two different sunray patterns which, as the viewing angle changes, create ever-changing impressions that capture the texture and feel of Ginza’s cobblestones. The seconds hand pays homage to the district’s history with Komparu, a traditional Japanese colour named after Komparu Street, where Ginza’s nightlife was once centred. This blue colour with a soft green tone which was first used in the middle Meiji era (1868 - 1912), instantly found favour among the many geishas who lived there and then gradually became a popular colour amongst the public."
Whether you love this watch for just the unique visual display of the dial, or the incredible backstory tied to it's creation, it is obvious that people have noticed just how cool it is - it is already sold out from Seiko's boutique.
Some people are already trying to cash in on the hype on Chrono24, with all the listings above the selling price. Crazy!
Today is your lucky day because Seiko has been kind enough to send us one of the 3500 pieces from this release. If you were looking for this watch or you've now fallen in love with it, jump on it - I doubt we will ever see this one again. We will even throw in an NH leather strap and buckle to go with the watch at no extra charge!
Seiko Prospex SPB259J1

Limited edition - one of 3500 pieces
Brand new, 38mm case, steel, screw lock crown, 200m water resistance, made in Japan, 6R35 Automatic Movement

They are finally here!!


What an incredible set of pocket watch stands. If you haven't been following our pocket watch stand journey this past month, then you might be wondering what this is all about. A few weeks ago, we invited woodcrafters to join us on our quest for an Australian pocket watch stand. The idea being that with the finished work you could display both Aussie craftsmanship, and your pocket watch. Well we finally got our first sets in and we are very excited. 

The stands are crafted from a selection of different and unique wood types with the first four being made by Australian woodcraftsman Manni, and the last made by Australian woodcraftsman, David. 

The first two are crafted from Tasmanian timber, one being made from Blackheart Sassafras, and the other being made from Myrtle. The first thing I noticed when I picked up these ones is that they have an uncanny and distinct 'Tasmanian' scent to them.

The third one is made from River Red Gum. What is cool about these particular pieces is that they feature figuring in the wood known as ‘fiddleback’, giving them that unique striping pattern that dances in the light. The fourth is made from a tree growth known as a Burl. Working with Burls is a time-consuming process. They must first be dried, then machined and rested in multiple stages, sanded, and finally polished. Which from start to finish may take place over a couple of weeks to several months depending on the size.
You can check out our full write up about making the Burl pocket watch stand here:

The fifth is made from Red Cedar and has a very cool story behind it. "The back story of the Cedar is it came from the original balustrade in Brisbane Town Hall that was salvaged by the builder who replaced it. It was destined for the tip until I realised that it was old growth timber, hundreds of years old and which cannot be bought these days."

These stands are the perfect companion for your desk to display your prized pocked watches and we couldn't be happier with how they turned out - each of them being completely unique and completely Australian crafted. 
Tasmanian Blackheart Sassafras
Price: $275
Tasmanian Myrtle
Price: $275
Fiddleback River Red Gum
Price: $275
 Burl from the root of a Yellow Mallee
Price: $275
This Red Cedar stand was made by David - 'The Box Junkie' with salvaged old growth timber from Brisbane Town Hall.
Price: $75