Anyone who’s been involved in watch collecting for any real period of time will know that there are countless subcultures and subcategories of collecting, each with their own special qualities, their own ways of speaking about things, and their own never-ending obsessions. One of the most passionate groups of collectors in all of watch enthusiasm, though, is the Grand Seiko community, so we decided to team up with Grand Seiko again and sit down with some of the most passionate Grand Seiko collectors on the planet to talk about what makes these watches so special and why these three gents are so enthralled by them.
Now, as a Grand Seiko lover and collector myself, I’m lucky to call these three guys friends, so I was excited when we were able to line up the logistics and get JP Vicente, Stefan Molin, and Daniel Yong all on the line from Florida, Sweden, and Australia to talk all things Grand Seiko. If these names sound familiar to you, it’s because these are the three people we featured in our series of Grand Seiko Collector Profiles last year. If you haven’t checked those out yet, be sure to give them a look after the episode. Whether you’re a die-hard Grand Seiko lover yourself or a total novice when it comes to the distinctly Japanese watchmaker, there’s a ton to love in this episode, and I think it paints a great picture of the varied ways in which watches can make our lives just that little bit better.
We hope you enjoy Episode 92 of HODINKEE Radio. Check out the show notes below, and let us know what you think in the comments.
As you’d expect, JP, Stefan, and Daniel each brought some serious heat on their wrists. During our call, Stefan was sporting a vintage Grand Seiko reference 5645-8000 in solid 18k yellow gold with a matching 18k gold bracelet. This version of the 56GS is particularly rare, and the bracelet requires adjustment by a goldsmith (no easily removable links), but it was worth the trouble for Stefan. It took him four years to convince a friend in Tokyo to sell him the watch and another four years to finally settle on sizing and to get it adjusted. But just look at it. Wow.
JP was rocking one of my favorite modern Grand Seiko watches, the SBGA413, also known as the Shunbun or the Spring limited edition. It’s part of a set of four watches released just for the US market to celebrate the four seasons, and this one has a titanium case and bracelet, a Spring Drive movement, and a stunning light pink dial inspired by Japan’s famous cherry blossoms. JP bought the watch on his last trip to Japan to commemorate his visit to the Grand Seiko manufacture in Shiojiri, and it’s been getting a ton of wrist time ever since.
Finally, Daniel decided to wear his SBGK007, another modern classic and a HODINKEE team favorite (I’m looking at you, Cole). Daniel likes that the watch embodies a lot of classic Grand Seiko qualities, while also having something a bit funky about it with the asymmetrical layout. As he says it, “it’s a constant reminder to question what’s considered normal and that it’s totally cool to be different.” I couldn’t have said it better myself.
Sinn Modell 6000
Grand Seiko 4580-7010
Grand Seiko “First” Platinum