Sunday, September 20, 2009

Seiko SNX425K

This is my  Seiko SNX425K watch. It is nice  and cheap Seiko. I can't remember  what I paid for this watch but I  do know it was below USD100. The model number should be SNX425K1 as  it  originally  came  with  a  metal  bracelet,  but  the  watch came packaged with the cloth strap.



Collection: Military
Model Number: SNX425K (7S26-00D0)
Manufacturer: Seiko

Basic specifications:
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, day and date
Case: stainless steel
Crystal: Hardlex crystal
Movement: 7S26A automatic
Water resistant: 3 ATM

This watch is part of the SNX Military series. The entire series consist of the following:

SNX425K - green dial
SNX427K - black dial
SNX429K - blue dial
SNX431K - khaki dial

K1 denotes metal bracelet and K2 for cloth strap.



This watch, to me looks a lot like the Hamilton GG-W-113. Well that is the reason I got it. I wanted a watch that looks like the Hamilton, but can be used as a daily beater. Sadly, my wife has claimed this watch as hers and she has only used it once.



CASE

The case is made of stainless steel. It has a matte finish and the finish is typical Seiko. It is good. The case measures 35.5 mm. Actually it depends on where you measure the case as it tapers slightly to the back. The lug to lug is 41 mm and the lug width is 18 mm. It is 11.5 mm thick.

The crown is at the 4 o'clock position. The crown, non screw-down, is small but matches the size of the watch. Any bigger and it can overpower the watch. The crown is also matte and measures 3.5 mm in diameter and 1.5 mm thick. The crown is easy to use and has the normal 2 position adjustment. Pull the crown once for the day date quick adjust and pull it out another time for time adjustment.



The case back is polished stainless steel and features a display back. The case back does not match the rest of the case which is matte or bead blasted. The watch when it was first issued, came with a solid case back (ref: 7s26-3080) but have since been issued with a display back. The solid back version is thinner and allows the use of the one-piece design strap. I would not use the the one-piece strap on a display back on the fear that it will mark the crystal.

There are many discussion as to the reason for the change and also why many current Seiko, especially Seiko 5 are issued with display back. One argument states that it is a cost factor as the display back is cheaper and also to have a common case back to enjoy economies of scale. Yet another idea put forward was to introduce to the youth of today (in Japan) to the marvel of the automatic movement. There, the youths grew up in the world of quartz movement and may not appreciate analogue timekeeping.



The markings on the case back are rendered on the inside of the crystal. This ensures that it would not rub-off with use. The case back is signed 'SEIKO' and that is larger as compared to the other markings. We also find the reference number - 7S26-00D0 and the material for the case - st. steel. The other legend is 'Water Resistant KY'. There is no indication of the water resistant rating. I understand that the watch has a water resistant rating of only 3ATM. It would be better if the rating was 5ATM.



MOVEMENT

The watch that I have is fitted with the popular 7S26A movement. I been told, but have not seen, that the newer models are fitted 7S26B movement. Please remember that this watch has been discontinued and the newer models could be about 4 years old. Anyway back to the movement.



Basic specifications:
Base movement: 7S26
Parts count: 64
21 Jewels
21,600 A/h
Power reserve: 42 hours



So what is the difference between the the 7S26? Well from my understanding, the 7S26 is made is Singapore. The 7S26A and B are made in Japan. The 7S26B is an improved version of the 7S26. The improvements were made to the escapement and to the pawl level of the automatic winding system for better stability and accuracy.



As this is a basic Seiko movement, it lacks the hacking ability - second hand stop when the crown is at time setting position. It also lacks the ability to be hand-wound. However, the watch only needs a slight movement for it to start ticking. The rotor winds the watch both ways. The movement has the quick-set day and date adjustment. The movement is undecorated as are most Seiko movement in this class.



The rotor is signed 'SEIKO TIME CORP' and the calibre number '7S26A'. Just above that is the number of jewels, 12J. The movement is signed 'SEIKO" in a number of places. I count 3.

DIAL

This watch comes with a green dial. I would prefer a black dial, but since it is no longer 'my' watch, ...... The dial is matte (which I like) and is rather busy. This is due to the size of the watch and not the design. The dial has the 12 hour scale and the 24 hour scale, hence the military moniker. The Arabic numerals are rendered in white. The hour index has the Lumibrite dots as the numerals itself are not lumed. This makes reading in the dark easy as Seiko are known for their lume.



The dial is signed 'SEIKO' and the legend is raised stainless steel (?). Just above the 6 o'clock marker we find 'AUTOMATIC' and '21 JEWELS'. Below the 6 o'clock marker we find '7S26-1684 TG2' which indicated the current iteration of the model. The solid case-back has the '7S26-3080' reference. There are no other markings on the dial. The date window is at 3 o'clock. The date and day wheel is black on white except for Saturday, in blue and Sunday where it is rendered in red.

As with most Seiko that I have, the day does not change at 12 but over a period of 2 hours beginning at 1 am. The day switches between English and German/ Spanish (?) and sets to the language selected at 3 am. The date changes at midnight.



HANDS

The hands are of the military design and is rendered in white. This does reduce reflection if it was in polished stainless steel. The hands are Lumibrite filled. Reading the time in the dark is easy. The minute hand does not extend to the minute marker. I find the hand design good as it makes reading time at a glance easy.



CRYSTAL

The crystal is typical Seiko. It is the Hardlex crystal. The crystal extends 0.5 mm above the bezel. It is flat and I believe it does not have any anti-reflection coating. I was told that the crystal is signed (etched) 'SEIKO' at the 6 o'clock position but until today I have yet to see it.



BRACELET

The watch came with a metal bracelet and the cloth (nylon?) band. I have the watch fitted out with the nylon strap as most military watches are fitted with cloth/ nylon strap. The strap is green, the same colour as the dial. It is thick and comfortable and unlike military straps, it is a 2 piece design. The quality of the strap is good as can be seen from the work they put in. Unlike most military straps that I have where the holes on the strap are heat edge sealed, the Seiko strap further reinforced by a 'leather' strip on both sides of the strap. How is that for detail.



The strap is 18 mm across the entire length and measures 75 mm on the buckle side and 110 mm on the other side. It has a single keeper (very broad) and that is heat bonded and not stitched together. The stitching on the strap is good and is the entire strap is green with no highlights.

The buckle is of the tang type buckle design. The buckle is matte (bead blasted) or frosted (Seiko official term?). It is signed 'SEIKO' and is made of stainless steel as indicated on the buckle.





CONCLUSION

This is cheap watch and it does what it sets out to do. It is an automatic watch with an in-house movement. The movement is reliable and robust and is a proven movement. Reading the time is easy. Accuracy is questionable but a trip to your friendly watch maker solves that problem. To me, this watch offers great value for money. Sure it does not have the refinement of better brands, but can you get it for less then USD 100?

10 comments:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  2. Hi dingdang,

    Welcome and comments deleted as not watch related.

    Regards,

    Ivan

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  3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  4. Hi longge,

    You know the drill.

    Regards,

    Ivan

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  5. Hi Ivan,

    May I know here can I still get this model?
    Heard that it has been discontinued.

    Best regards,
    Dominque

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Dominque,

      Welcome to the blog. With regards to your question, I believe you are correct. However you can still find them in the stores.

      All the best with the hunt.

      Regards,

      Ivan

      Delete
  6. Hi. My nephew picked me up a Sieko 5 Military whilst in Hong Kong about 10 years ago. Runs like a top. Great gift! It is my every day, go-to time piece.

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  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  9. Hi there! I have a similar one to this. Just wanna ask how valuable is this watch now?

    ReplyDelete