The Grand Seiko Snowflake is an enormous achievement, and it is by all accounts the collector’s sweetheart for some time now. Be that as it may, there’s another legend since this year, the Grand Seiko SBGA407 Skyflake.
Of course, Skyflake isn’t the authority name for this Grand Seiko, yet aficionados utilized their inventiveness to come up with something in accordance with the first Snowflake. At the point when I was on the lookout for a Grand Seiko watch, I ruled against the Snowflake, for two reasons: the utilization of titanium and the case shape. I expounded on this battle in this long article . All things considered, I went with the hardened steel Grand Seiko GMT ‘Mt. Iwate’ with 44GS enlivened case and hello there beat development. Up right up ’til today, I don’t lament my choice. In any case, I likewise concluded that eventually, I would like to claim a Grand Seiko with the Spring Drive development. What’s more, I love the snowflake dial (which has been utilized by Grand Seiko since 2005). So this watch does bode well for me, however would I get it? Let’s find out.
Grand Seiko SBGA407 Skyflake
The Snowflake has been so effective, and Grand Seiko has been presenting more minor departure from this subject, henceforth the Grand Seiko SBGA259, for instance. A gentle assortment on the first SBGA211 Snowflake. Where different brands have been [almost] vilified for drawing out an interminable stream of restricted releases or minor departure from notorious models, Grand Seiko pulls off it very well. It would be an intriguing theme for another time.
The Skyflake dial
A quite a while past, more likely than not been around 2000, I purchased my first watch with a blue dial, and I wasn’t so sure. “Is it a craze, or will it stay appealing in years from now.”. It worked out to be broadly acknowledged eventually, as numerous watches have blue dials and I can likewise see this incident to various tones. Red and green are presently famous too, in spite of the fact that I actually pose a similar inquiry as I completed 19 years prior. Will it generally be cool in the (far) future? At any rate, you will be protected with this blue dial Grand Seiko SBGA407 Skyflake.
It is enlivened by the breeze cleared snow in the mountains of Shinshu, as indicated by Grand Seiko. Fans say it is the Skyflake, and I will go for that too. Blue snow is scant, I’ve been educated. It is the light-blue rendition of the Snowflake dial, and it is the principle fascination of this watch. The surface of the Skyflake (and Snowflake) dial is that of Japanese paper, which helps numerous to the surface to remember day off. The snowed mountain ridges may seem blue-ish when there’s an unmistakable blue sky.
Razorsharp hands and hour markers
One of the attractions for me in any Grand Seiko is the completion of the hands and hour markers. The degree of completing that Grand Seiko applies to them is to excess. It can without much of a stretch measure up to that of brands that are seen to be in higher echelons, as we appeared in this article on the SBGR311. I don’t need to get into ‘repeat mode’, so see with your own eyes beneath. Our photographic artist Bert “Berti” Buijsrogge is consistently glad to have a Grand Seiko before his camera, as it gives pictures of dials that have no imperfections or harsh surfaces.
Spring Drive 9R65
I will get to the case later, as I need to impart some more to you about the wearing experience of the Grand Seiko SBGA407 Skyflake. The case assumed a significant part there. Inside this Skyflake, we’ll discover the Spring Drive type 9R65. It is indistinguishable from the development utilized in the Snowflake, and other Grand Seiko watches with Spring Drive development. Likewise with the entire Spring Drive developments, the movement of the second hand is stepless and helps to remember an electric clock. A few group don’t like the possibility of an incorporated circuit (IC) in their mechanical watch, not to mention a quartz precious stone, yet it is an energizing innovation. An ideal combination of mechanical designing and craftsmanship and innovation, without relying upon a battery. The energy that comes from the mainspring is quickly being utilized and doesn’t should be put away some place. Albeit some would say the escapement is the spirit of the mechanical watch, or the ‘heart’, the Spring Drive answer for me is sufficiently mechanical to consider the watch a mechanical one, rather than a quartz watch. I have a few watches in my private assortment, yet none of them has a Spring Drive development. It isn’t intentionally, as I couldn’t want anything more than to add one to my humble assortment, yet picking the correct model takes longer than I suspected. I love the idea of Spring Drive and appreciate Seiko & Grand Seiko for the improvement of this development, which took almost 20 years.
One of the reasons that I regularly get against Spring Drive is the story that these watches need to return to Japan for administration or fix. That may have been the case some time back, however today it isn’t. Grand Seiko has been striving to get watchmakers in nearby business sectors up & running too for these watches (and developments). Here in The Netherlands, for instance, even the Zaratsu cleaning should be possible locally. For a Spring Drive type Grand Seiko watch, the help costs are €430,- . That’s a reasonable cost, in my opinion.
The SBGA407 on the wrist
As I’ve advised you, one reason for me to go for the SBGJ201 (Mt Iwate) rather than the Snowflake was the utilization of titanium. Another was the state of the instance of the SBJ201, that shows similarity with the exemplary Grand Seiko 44GS style case. The instance of this SBGA407 is enlivened by those first Grand Seiko watches during the 1960s, indeed, it is a round case with long and rich hauls. A GS-marked crown is there to address time and date, and for manual twisting of the spring. A force hold pointer is – like most Spring Drive models – obvious at 8 o’clock on the dial. I might have lived without, however it doesn’t trouble me as well.
Due to the shape, the watch fits pleasantly on the wrist. What’s more, instead of the 44GS style case, with its wonderful long and wide Zaratsu cleaned surfaces, I am not neurotic when strolling in the store attempting to abstain from hitting shopping baskets. That case is so pleasantly done, that you naturally become altogether too cautious with it (and eventually, it is an article for day by day use). With a distance across of 40.2mm and a thickness of 12.8mm, this watch sits comfortably on the wrist. As you can see on the picture underneath, taken inside my office, close to the window, the hands and markers play delightfully with the light. These watches don’t use lume (which I don’t end up finding extremely rich at any rate with regards to feel), however it likewise isn’t truly important with the cleaned finish of the hands. Indeed, even in low light conditions, you will actually want to understand time, as long as there’s simply a smidgen of light.
Stainless steel, Spring Drive and a Snowflake/Skyflake dial, all huge green checks in those tickboxes. When settling on the SBGA211 Snowflake and the SBGJ201 Mt Iwate, the state of the case was vital to me. What’s more, if this blue dial Skyflake would be accessible during the 44GS case, I would have cried, monitored up and get my hustle on to prepare the assets. Yet, it isn’t. This watch has a case shape which is less frank than the 44GS or the instance of the Snowflake, and a round case isn’t that one of a kind, however extremely simple on the wrist.
The tie that comes with the watch is a crocodile cowhide one, in a dull blue tone. It comes with a three-section collapsing catch (or twofold collapsing clasp), which does the work impeccably (in spite of the fact that I favor a tang buckle).
Pfff. This watch is essentially dazzling, and with a retail cost of €5900, it leaves a ton of the competition thinking about what they’re fouling up. The completing is heavenly for this sort of cash. It resembles purchasing an Audi vehicle that comes with a Bentley inside; it nearly doesn’t bode well. In any case, you additionally need to understand that lone watch geeks and devotees like us will see and appreciate this. On top, it comes with the Spring Drive development. Also, once more, that’s a ‘on top’ for me (and maybe for you), however this innovation is frequently still misconstrued by a larger part. In any case, in the event that you resemble me, you buy a watch for yourself, not to dazzle others. To dazzle yourself, which is the thing that (any) Grand Seiko will do.
Is it all great? Well. As I composed above, on the off chance that it would have the 44GS case style, it would be an easy decision for me. As far as I might be concerned, this watch winds up on a waitlist until further notice. A waitlist for future buys (as I actually need to recuperate from some different buys this year) and truth to be told; there aren’t numerous on there. Up until this point, it is loaded up with dress watches only. For about, a thickness of 12.8mm may be excessive, however I am OK with it. What I didn’t especially like about this watch was the lash. The material was fine, just as the matte completion, however it was very much long (and I don’t have little wrists!). Something I saw before with (Grand) Seiko lashes. However, that’s simple to address. More hard to tackle is to tidy up the dial a piece. I’m thinking about what it would resemble when there would be just an hour and moment hand, maybe the seconds hand. However, no force hold marker and date window. A faultless time-just watch, with an open enormous (Skyflake) dial surface to appreciate. Simply pondering so anyone can hear, and surely not a dealbreaker for this Grand Seiko SBGA407 Skyflake.
When you’re on the lookout for a Grand Seiko, or a dress watch when all is said in done, make a point to give this watch a try.
All details are recorded beneath. Snap to visit the authority Grand Seiko website.