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SEIKO7A38

Sometimes These Things Just Gotta Be Done.

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In case anybody interested in 7A38's was wondering why :dontgetit: ....

I hadn't flagged eBay item # 110781791508 in the Heads Up On Yet Another 7A38 Franken thread - I hadn't missed it. :tongue_ss:

Orologio uomo marcato Seiko quartz Chronograph

7A38-706A-Gold-WhiteFaceFranken-703B-tanLeatherStrap-eBayItaly-Nov2011-2.jpg

7A38-706A-Gold-WhiteFaceFranken-703B-tanLeatherStrap-eBayItaly-Nov2011-3.jpg

7A38-706A-Gold-WhiteFaceFranken-703B-tanLeatherStrap-eBayItaly-Nov2011-4.jpg

7A38-706A-Gold-WhiteFaceFranken-703B-tanLeatherStrap-eBayItaly-Nov2011-5.jpg

7A38-706A-Gold-WhiteFaceFranken-703B-tanLeatherStrap-eBayItaly-Nov2011-6.jpg

Orologio uomo

SEIKO QUARTZ CHRONOGRAPH

Quadrante rotondo bianco con numeri

Cinturino in pelle marrone

Funzionante Con scatola

Au Contraire :tongue2: - I'd seen it, in the first hour it was listed on eBay Italy :shocking: - and already decided to go for it myself. :naughty:

And Yes - I knew it was a Franken from the outset. :yes:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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The seller made no claims for 'rarity' - or very much else, for that matter.

In fact, she's just one of these AFFARIINVISTA! eBay proxy sellers, where you bring in your stuff and they sell it for you.

So there was little or no point in asking too many questions about the watch, or its origins.

But some parts of it are rare. :grin:

The arabic number dial is the 720LXS19, which according to Seiko's database is used only in the 7A38-706B SAA084J.

In fact, that would appear to be an error. I've just examined mine's dial and it is clearly printed 727O not 720L. See below.

I've only ever seen one of these - a photo posted by SuperMario_Bros fairly recently on Orologio & Passioni.

He described it as 'his ugly duckling 7A38', but from what I can glean from Seiko's database, Mario's is 'correct and original'.

In fact, I'd already written this as a footnote to another thread, so here's a copy and paste:

Another somewhat belated footnote - and partial answer to my own question:

Oh and has anybody ever seen a black-faced two-tone 7A38-706A or the 7A38-706B with the 720L dial, by the way ? :whistle:

At the time of writing, I still haven't seen an example of the black-faced two-tone 7A38-706A ....

But more recently (in October) I came across my very first sighting of the elusive 7A38-706B. :shocking:

I was reading back through an existing 7Axx thread on Orologio & Passioni, entitled: Census: Seiko 7A28/38/48

I found a couple more pages had been added. Halfway down page 6, on 6th October, 'SuperMario_Bros' had posted this:

.... my ugly duckling 7A38-706B

7A38-706B-StainlessGold-WhiteFace-SuperMario_Bros-OrologiPassioniit.jpg

He's certainly not wrong in calling it an 'ugly duckling'. It shares many components with the two-tone silver-faced 7A38-7060.

But what makes this unique is the off-white non-lume dial, with Arabic / italic Breguet-style numbers, which is reminiscent

of the similar-hued 725O dial of the gold-tone 7A38-7280. The (main and subdial) hands fitted look similar (if not identical) too.

But the strange thing is, that on Seiko's database, the dial part number is shown as (7A38)720LXS19 ('L' indicating Lume).

I've rotated and zoomed in on the photo, and what's actually printed at the bottom of the dial looks more like: 7A38 727O

Which if you study these things as I obsessively as I do :nerd: actually makes a lot more sense ('O' indicates a non-lume dial).

Speaking of which :umnik2: ....

The slightly unusual (for Seiko) subdial division marking is very similar to a couple of the dressy Yema N8's and Orient J39's.

Which points to the designs of various Seiko 7A38's; Yema N8's and Orient J39's having been penned by the same team.

So another very rarely seen 7A38 variant breaks cover. Like my 7A38-724A, it's the only example I've witnessed to date.

Both watches have English / Italian day wheels. With their styling, it makes me wonder if these were only sold in Italy. :lookaround:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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My original plan, had I won the eBay auction (that was a foregone conclusion - check the timing of my snipe) was ....

to take the dial, Tachymeter dial ring and movement out of this watch, and build it into my 'spare' two-tone 7A38-7060

- thereby, effectively building myself the 7A38-706B (like SuperMario_Bros) which was missing from my collection. :hammer:

When I say 'spare', I have two two-tone silver-grey faced 7A38-7060's.

The second one, I bought on eBay Germany in January this year is almost mint.

The first one, which I bought back in December 2008 is not quite so tidy.

So logically that would have been the one to 'sacrifice' to build my 7A38-706B, right ? :butcher:

7A38-7060-StainlessGoldSilver-eBay-Dec2008-Purchased.jpg

That's the eBay seller's listing photo - the first of any 7A38 that I ever right-clicked and saved - almost exactly 3 years ago.

That's what makes that particular 7A38 a bit special. Although it's been surpassed, it was still only the second I ever bought,

(after my original stainless 7A38-7270). So I was kind of in two minds, as to whether I really had the heart to break it up. :unsure:

So there was little or no point in asking too many questions about the watch, or its origins.

But in fact, I had asked the seller one question. What is the 7A38-706x number on the case-back ?

7A38-706A-Gold-WhiteFaceFranken-703B-tanLeatherStrap-eBayItaly-Nov2011-5.jpg

She had replied 7A38-706A - which given my prior intentions was the wrong answer - not what I was hoping. :(

To properly build myself a two-tone 7A38-706B, of course I needed a case-back with that model number stamped in it.

So, here am I thinking I'm looking at a Franken 7A38-706X made up from: The gold-tone case from a SGP 7A38-7060;

the dial / movement and Tachy ring from a two-tone 7A38-706B, fitted with the case-back from a 7A38-706A. Right ? :huh:

Wrong ! :duh:

Suggest you guys may want to 'refresh' your screens. I'm making this up as I go along. :grin:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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Wrong ! :duh:

And Yes - I knew thought it was a Franken from the outset. :no: :blush:

Nope. Turns out this is actually a good 'un - just like Seiko intended it. :clap:

Here's your clue:

7A38-706ASGPP1070167-Resized.jpg

Something which was clearly visible in the eBay seller's photo which I missed altogether. :oops:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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Anyway, the watch arrived this morning, and despite the scratched and chipped (original) crystal,

the worn gold plating on the bezel, case, pushers and crown, my thoughts were how 'right' it looked. :)

Particularly when compared to the 'ugly ducking' 7A38-706B. Even though I'd convinced myself it was a 'Franken'. :blush:

It really did seem a shame to cannibalize it, because it looked like it had been in that configuration for quite some time.

So I did a quick sanity check on Seiko's database, and sure enough I found what I'd seen previously and expected to find.

The three variations of 7A38-7060 - stainless, two-tone and SGP:

7A38-7060SeikoOz.jpg

The previously known two variations of 706A - stainless and two-tone:

7A38-706ASeikoOz.jpg

.... and the 7A38-706B which came in just two tone:

7A38-706BSeikoOz.jpg

Note the incorrect dial number shown (720L as opposed to 727O).

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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Something which was clearly visible in the eBay seller's photo which I missed altogether. :oops:

The clue is the wording on the case-back: BASE METAL ST. STEEL BACK - as you'd expect to find on an all SGP 7A38.

Had it been an all stainless 7A38-7060 or 7A38-706A, it would have read simply 'STAINLESS STEEL'.

Had it been a two-tone 7A38-7060, 7A38-706A or 7A38-706B, it would have read 'ST. STEEL SGP BEZEL'.

It would seem that this SGP 7A38-706A is a genuine 7A38 variation - just one not documented on Seiko Oz's database.

Sometimes these things just gotta be done (even if for the wrong reason) and sometimes you just get plain lucky. :whistle:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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Turns out this is actually a good 'un - just like Seiko intended it. clap.gif

... my thoughts were how 'right' it looked. smile.gif

< snip! >

.... Even though I'd convinced myself it was a 'Franken'. blush.gif

It really did seem a shame to cannibalize it, because it looked like it had been in that configuration for quite some time.

< snip! >

It would seem that this SGP 7A38-706A is a genuine 7A38 variation - just one not documented on Seiko Oz's database.

Sometimes these things just gotta be done (even if for the wrong reason) and sometimes you just get plain lucky. whistling.gif

Sooo... what's the overall feeling then, convinced it's a limited original? Can you age it?

I notice your Seiko database image doesn't include the original designated band, unless cropped from the image - what's the plan for determining what it might have come on to begin with?

Yours, intrigued.....

Edited by howie77

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Suggest you guys may want to 'refresh' your screens. I'm making this up as I go along. :grin:

With apologies for the earlier edits. :sorry: I saw you, Howie77 and a couple of others reading as I was posting. :wink2:

It was only after I'd made the first couple of posts (including the misleading subtitle), I realized what I'd stumbled upon. :eek:

I'll admit that I do tend to take what I'd previously found on Seiko Oz's database as 'gospel'.

It is, all things said, an invaluable tool that we are very fortunate that they allow public access to.

But there are a few other (known good) extant 7A38 variants totally missing from their database, such as:

The 7A38-701A (SAA003J); the 7A38-7050 (product code not known) and the two-tone 7A38-7190 (SAA054J).

It make you wonder how many other models might also be missing - like this previously unknown gold-tone 7A38-706A. :think:

Perhaps I may need to exercise a little more caution when dismissing unknown 7A38's as Frankens in future. :lookaround:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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Shouldn't worry about it! Besides it's the journey that makes these articles of interest to me, so it matters not that you might correct yourself.

In my brief infatuations with Seiko divers while perusing those offered directly or indirectly from the Philippines, and also Soviet watches by way of the Ukraine I pretty much adopt an attitude of little trust in the first instance and work backwards anyway.

Ultimately it's got to be a bonus buying a 'parts watch' for the purposes of supporting other projects and receiving an original example instead!

Though... thinking about it.... you still would appear to have the same present challenge of converting your 2nd two-tone 7A38-7060 into a 7A38-706B ... naughty.gif

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Sooo... what's the overall feeling then, convinced it's a limited original? Can you age it?

Overall feeling, Howie ? :huh: How bloody amazingly lucky I was to have nailed it (manually) in the final second. :partytime:

If you look at the bidding history, I placed an initial bid of 50 Euros (against the opening bid of 49.99) on Day # 2:

http://offer.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewBids&_trksid=p4340.l2565&rt=nc&item=110781791508

At that point, bearing in mind I thought it was a Franken, I decided if someone outbids me, then so be it. :schmoll:

But I don't like getting beaten on eBay, particularly over something which had earlier taken my fancy. :aggressive:

So I went back for it, fortunately as it turned out. Yes I'm convinced. If you were wearing it, so would you be. :)

As to 'limited original' - this 7A38-706A, like my 7A38-724A and Mario's 7A38-706B are the only ones I've seen.

All have come from Italy and have English / Italian day wheels. So I suspect they were Italian market models.

If by 'age', you mean 'date' it - that's easy: serial number 8D3257 gives a manufacturing date of December 1988.

I notice your Seiko database image doesn't include the original designated band, unless cropped from the image -

what's the plan for determining what it might have come on to begin with?

If you're referring to those screen prints of Seiko Oz's database, no data is cropped from them, as such.

To get more information on any specific variant, such as the band, you'd click on the [View] (detail) button.

Most of it is on the second level of the bill of material, but you do need to be careful how you interpret it.

Here, I've taken a screen print (despite what's shown in the header information) of 7A38-7060 SGP variant SAA018J3

7A38-7060SeikoOzSAA018J3.jpg

Unfortunately sometimes the wrong header data appears to get carried over in a search returning multiple lines. :oops:

On the Japan-built SGP 7A38-7060, the SAA018J1/J8/J9 variants use the gold-plated bracelet p/n G1105G

... but the SAA018J3 product code gives you the optional brown leather strap (with gold buckle) p/n BRJ47G.

Looking at the ends of the watch case on my well-worn SGP 7A38-706A, there are no indentations worn between the lugs,

- evidence of having had bracelet end pieces fitted. So I'd suspect it was always on a strap. Perhaps originally p/n BRJ47G.

By the way, Howie - my own Excel 7A38 database makes things a little easier for me to follow:

7A38-706xExcelextract.jpg

Hence the copious amount of notes in the R.H. column. :umnik2:

Next job - to add a couple of rows for the SGP 7A38-706A, I guess. :grin:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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.... you still would appear to have the same present challenge of converting your 2nd two-tone 7A38-7060 into a 7A38-706B ...

No, I'll try to be patient. I'm sure one will turn up on eBay sooner or later. They always do, eventually. Failing that .... :whistle:

I suspect I could probably persuade SuperMario_Bros to part with his -706B. I don't think he's exactly enamoured with it. :grin:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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Excellent!

And, in all this time I have only just this minute tried to find that Seiko database - and out of curiosity threw in 6309 calibre 7040 case search; now there's information I spent a long time putting together from various sources including Jules Borel, Cousins and various posts across forums. Recommended.

Anyway, congrats on your find Paul biggrin.gif

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:spamsign:

Paul, :thumbup: congratulations regarding your winning bid.

Just wondered how close you really were. :rolleyes:

Sometimes i bid bid with an attitude of if i buy or if i dont,

normally when i dont really care about the outcome, 'being a Fanken as it were' :butcher:

If this was the case with the 706 it really is a good job this one found its rightful owner.

Another one step closer eh' :big_boss:

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Paul, :thumbup: congratulations regarding your winning bid. Just wondered how close you really were.

If you look at the bidding history, I placed an initial bid of 50 Euros (against the opening bid of 49.99) on Day # 2:

http://offer.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewBids&_trksid=p4340.l2565&rt=nc&item=110781791508

My genuinely last-second maximum bid was a 'throwaway' 67.89 Euros - so there wasn't actually that much leeway. :whistle:

Another one step closer eh' :big_boss:

Indeed, Robert. More by luck than judgement on this particular occasion. :grin:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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The arabic number dial is the 720LXS19, which according to Seiko's database is used only in the 7A38-706B SAA084J.

In fact, that would appear to be an error. I've just examined mine's dial and it is clearly printed 727O not 720L.

First wrist shot of my undocumented SGP 7A38-706A, with the theoretically non-existent 727O dial. This almost as received.

All I've done, so far, is to replace the badly scratched and chipped original crystal with a 'cheapie' Cousins 32.0mm x 1.5mm.

P1070325-Resized-1.jpg

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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First wrist shot of my undocumented SGP 7A38-706A ....

In this second wrist shot, you can see some of the gold plating rubbing wear, and slight graunching to the bezel:

P1070324-Resized.jpg

.... probably better in this head only shot (again, a Q&D taken by flash :photo:) due to cr*ppy daylight conditions today:

P1070330-Resized.jpg

Note the English / Italian (DOM) day wheel as previously mentioned.

Also the well worn crown and the corrosion / wear on the pusher buttons. :(

In normal circumstances, I'd consider leaving such a 'beater' as is, but because of its comparitive rarity :think: ....

this one will very shortly be getting the full restoration treatment. :hammer:

You may remember, that when I built my Franken Cartier Ferrari Formula, using a 7A38-706x watch case ....

I chose to fit a slightly 'wrong' 7A28-7020 SGP NOS bezel, instead of a 7A38-7060 one (which I also had in my stock) :wink:

I'd already decided I wanted to go 'two tone'. My spares stock provided .... a suitable N.O.S. bezel.

You'll notice I didn't write the correct bezel. This is a 'Franken' after all. :whistle:

I did have one in my stock, but instead of using the correct Seiko p/n 82334361 for a two-tone 7A38-7060 ....

I thought I'd try using the very similar-appearing Seiko p/n 82332581 normally found on a 7A28-7020/-7029. :hammer:

I'd deliberately been keeping this NOS bezel to one side, in case such a deserving project as this came along and needed it:

P1080331-Resized.jpg

The original SGP crown for the 7A38-706x case, Seiko p/n 45M54NA1 is unfortunately obsolete and NLA ....

so instead, I'll be fitting a p/n 45M74NA1 (as used on the 7A38-72xx's) - the differences are imperceptible.

P1080332-Resized.jpg

To ensure a good colour match, the watch case, NOS bezel, etc., will be going away for re-plating in the new year.

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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After a few (albeit 7Axx-related) 'distractions' earlier today .... getting back to my own latest 7A38 topic.

Something I forgot to mention was the strap - or my plans for a 'suitable' strap.

The brick red / tan 'Fatto a Mano' leather strap currently fitted isn't in too bad a condition at all.

It's obviously not the original strap - possibly the second or third the watch has been fitted with in its lifetime.

It may even bear some resemblance to the original Seiko p/n BRJ47G strap - if that indeed what was originally fitted.

I'm always torn as to what looks and matches best on a gold-plated 7A38 with a white dial and black markings.

Black (sometimes with white stitching) or Tan. :unsure:

Whereas I don't have many Seiko 7A38's which fall into that category - I do have a number of Yema N8's which do.

Some are on Tan straps; some on black (though usually something a bit exotic, rather than just plain old calf leather).

I'm going to try something a little different on this one. Black AND Tan (and 'exotic'). :whistle:

If you've read Renato's thread in the Russian section: Jetfighter On Kermit Strap - Mach, Look Away! ....

you'll have probably read between the lines that said 'Kermit' strap is winging it's way from Portugal to England.

Nope :no: - I'm not planning to (even trial) fit it on this 7A38-706A (although it has Quick-Change pins ! :partytime: )

But in posting a photo of an alternate version of the strap from the same supplier, Renato gave me an idea. :naughty:

It's really cool and they sell lots of very cool exotic grained straps. The frog grain also exists in a more brown/beige tone...

20mmFrogGrain-Strapcodecom-FRG2018002RE-SP.jpg

A Black and Tan 'Kermit' strap.

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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The arabic number dial is the 720LXS19, which according to Seiko's database is used only in the 7A38-706B SAA084J.

In fact, that would appear to be an error. I've just examined mine's dial and it is clearly printed 727O not 720L.

First wrist shot of my undocumented SGP 7A38-706A, with the theoretically non-existent 727O dial ....

For now, one last thought about that dial - a bit of anorak-level research (nothing unusal on my part). :nerd:

The model number 7A38-706A and sales product code SAA084J (for the known 'sister' 7A38-706B two-tone version) ....

fall roughly into the middle of the 7A38 numbering sequence.

The incorrectly allocated dial reference number on Seiko's database 720LXSX19 comes towards the latter part.

However, if you run a search on 7A38 on Seiko Oz's database, and then sort the 310 lines on (Descending) dial numbers:

7A38-727Odialdatamissing.jpg

Had it been correctly entered, the 727O (presumably also XS1x), would have been the (highest) last dial number allocated.

Just a thought. :whistle:

Edited by SEIKO7A38

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