2017-05-17

No 253 - Seiko 6139-6002

OK, so which one of you Seiko nerds have not ended up in the 6139 chronograph swamp? Not many I assume. Man, I didn’t even want to go there but they’ve been circling all around me where ever I’ve been. “The first automatic chronograph in space and yadayadayada”. Jeez, I even had one in my box, which had been given to me by S.L. just in case I wanted to buy one, for over a year and a half without wearing it. That one even had a day wheel in Swedish which in retrospective was quite cool. In the end I never did buy it from him and eventually returned it. It was just something about it. Something about all of the 6139’s. To me they felt fragile and I just didn’t feel comfortable wearing them. I also didn’t like that push/pull quick set feature of the day/date configuration. It felt like they movement was going to give up any second and I hated that feeling.

The one I got from S.L. with Swedish day wheel that I never bought.

The day wheel says Tis for Tisdag (Tuesday).

But then one day a so called Pogue came flying my way for $230 and I could no longer look away. And from what I could tell it was all original. This was in March 2015 and the sales prices for the Pogue’s had just taken a serious leap upwards. I might have kept mine for a week before I sold it and I of course sold it for the same price that I got it for so no profit that time either, even though I easily could have made some. 

I gave the watch a shot and I didn’t like it. Simple as that. So now I know and don’t have to give it any more thought. The 6139’s simply aren't for me. End of story. I know there’s a lot of history and stories about this particular watch reference (why it’s called the Pogue etc.) that I haven’t mentioned but honestly, it doesn’t excite me so if it excites you there are plenty of other sites you can go on and read about that. To me this was just another flip.

#253 - The Seiko 6139-6002.


From February 1975.

You always want a day/date for Friday the 13th.


© All pictures by a Watch Flipper's Diary unless noted.

2017-05-09

No 252 - Sinn 856 UTC

In early 2015 I got hooked on Sinn again. I was really struggling to find the perfect all-purpose watch and after some serious research I came to the conclusion that Sinn must have the answer. At least on paper they had all the features I wanted in a watch. My shortlist of demands was something in the 40mm region with a screw-down crown, WR200m and matte black dial. What made me look towards Sinn was of course all their cool technologies and it was their TEGIMENT treatment of the steel that really won me over. It felt like a must have feature for a 24-7 watch. I went through their catalogue over and over and finally settled for the 856 UTC-S. I actually thought the 857 UTC-S was better looking and I would have preferred to have a bezel but it was the size of 43mm that made me hesitate. In the end the 856 felt like the better choice to me.

In March 2015 I headed down to the only authorized Sinn dealer in Sweden; Erikson Urhandel. I showed up just a couple of minutes before closing time and happened to crash an on-going Rado event. So, before I could go on asking the staff about Sinn I had to listen through the entire sales pitch from the excited lady from Rado. Unfortunately they had just sold their only 856 UTC-S but when I compared the regular 856 UTC with an 856-S non-UTC I actually preferred the finish of the regular version even though I usually prefer PVD. I also reasoned that the non-PVD version also was going to be more versatile from an everyday wearing perspective.

Down in the Subway on my way home from Erikson Urhandel.

#252 - The Sinn 856 UTC. The complete kit.

A closer look.




I don’t know how many Rado’s that were sold that evening but at least Erikson's got another Sinn sale. I did my best to avoid other watches and was 100% dedicated to this watch for a very long time. It was perfect on the wrist, kept perfect time (ETA 2893-2 inside), was super legible and had a design that I really liked. I truly was super happy with my choice. The only function I could feel that was missing was the bezel though. It wasn’t until I lacked one that I realized how much I actually used it. Still it never was something that I considered being a deal breaker since everything else about the watch was so good. What happened instead was that I got bored. Which I always do. I guess there’s no way of preventing that. That’s just how I function. Too much of the same every day and I get bored. The 856 UTC did a great job and came very close to be the perfect watch but it couldn’t cure my flipping madness.

A series of random wrist shots from through the years.









Sinn is a brand that still have plenty of watches that I just have to try out. I recently crossed the UX (so awesome!) from my list of must haves and I just added the new U1-S to that list. They also keep presenting new and innovative designs and features and I’m sure I will continue to add Sinn watches to my list. A fantastic brand for true watch nerds!

Resting on top of on one of my Vans Star Wars Slip-On shoes.

At home trying out my new Vans Star Wars Slip-Ons.

Waiting for a train in the Old town of Stockholm.


© All pictures by a Watch Flipper's Diary unless noted.

2017-04-12

No 250 - Seiko SCED019

I find those Giugiaro designed Seiko's to be irresistible. I love them! I love the crazy off set design, weird angles and odd color combinations. Unfortunately I didn’t discover this batch of re-issues in time. I would of course have wanted the classic black and red version, the so called Bishop, named after the android from the Sci-Fi classic Aliens, who’s wearing one in the movie. That one was of course sold out immediately and is now ridiculously expensive. I picked up my SCED019 from Chino. Good price and fast delivery. I quickly realized that this wasn’t a good watch for wearing on your left arm. On the other hand (no pun intended), being designed the way it is makes it perfect if you’re a right hand wearer. I never wore mine and it was sold in a few days. I never even cared to size the bracelet so I was really in for a treat the next time I picked up another Giugiaro designed watch because I had no clue what I was in for.

#250 - The Seiko SCED019 designed by Giorgetto Giugiaro.

Not very pleasant for your wrist as you can see.


© All pictures by a Watch Flipper's Diary unless noted.

2017-03-31

No 249 - Sjöö Sandström Landsort D1

When I wrote the piece about the Landsort D2 I just briefly mentioned the D1; the version with the crown at 9 o’clock. Already when they announced this watch I realized that it was going to be inevitable for the two of us not to cross paths one day. When I saw the D2 for the first time the D1 was actually all I could visualize in my head, so to me the D1 is really how the watch should have looked from the start and the fact that it eventually was produced the way I wanted it was simply amazing.

#249 - The Sjöö Sandström Landsort D1.


Beautiful caseback.

I bought this watch new. That rarely happens but once I do purchase something brand new there usually is a rather special occasion going on. I was saying to myself that IF this watch was as good as I hoped it was going to be, then it was going to be a keeper. I absolutely loved its looks. The clean steel gray dial, the orange second hand, the bezel insert in Tungsten. I still love its looks. As a matter of fact I love it so much that looking back on my old pictures of it just makes me want to go and buy a new one immediately! But then, to wake me up from my daydreaming, reality hits me hard in the face. How could I forget? 

Almost everything that disappointed me about the D2 had been fixed with the D1. The D1 felt much more solid in a whole other way. It was just one minor detail that still wasn’t perfect. The lume (in fact a rather major detail in my book). This time the lume was actually there but the glow wasn’t nearly as strong as I’d been hoping it to be. Why? WHY?! The product specification says super luminova and perhaps it is but in a very thin layer. I wore the watch for a while but it was a love/hate relationship. My perfect watch wasn’t perfect and it simply didn’t work out.


Last year at one of Sjöö Sandström’s pleasant events they sometimes host at their workshop I couldn’t help bringing up the topic regarding the lume for discussion. How else would I ever receive an answer to this big mystery? The explanation I got from Kristofer Johansson (sales director and partner at Sjöö Sandström) caught me a little off guard. He told me that they were well aware of this and that it was an intended design. They didn’t want the lume to glow too bright. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. It wasn't a design flaw. They were doing this on purpose! It contradicted all my own thoughts about which criteria’s a dive watch must fulfill. Anyhow, I was pleased by the honest and detailed answer I was given, even though I didn't agree with him, and I also felt he took the opinions I shared in the matter with great seriousness. Will it lead somewhere? Hopefully but probably not.


Giving critique it’s nothing I do because I like to be mean. I do it because I think it’s important and fair. A company that manufactures great products can only benefit from listening to their customers opinions and hopefully it will lead to even better products in the future. I really value the Landsort highly and I would even go as far as praising it as one of the coolest and unique dive watches made of all time BUT, not until it has been given what it deserves; a proper lume treatment. I keep imagining the Landsort to light up like the Grands Fonds from ZRC. Just the thought of it gives me goosebumps. A Landsort like that would just kill.


2016 was the year of Sjöö Sandström’s 30th anniversary and they announced that three new watches were going to be released during that year. I’d been picking up bits and pieces from different rumors and I was sure that one of those new watches was going to be a dive watch. I wasn’t sure if it was going to be an updated version of the Landsort or a new creation but it didn’t matter because I knew it was going to be exciting either way. But no new dive watch was ever released during the last year. Huge disappointment! I can only hope that they’re planning something really good to come and I know that once a new dive watch will be announced I’m going to be super thrilled.



© All pictures by a Watch Flipper's Diary unless noted.

2017-03-22

No 248 - Le Jour Chronograph

“I feel the need, the need for speed.” You know how it is being a watch maniac constantly looking on peoples wrists. Tom Cruise’s black chronograph sure doesn’t go unnoticed in the classic Top Gun from 1986; one of his best movies ever.  After a quick research you learn that it probably is an Orfina Porsche Design chronograph with the Lemania 5100 movement. You also learn that there are tons of watches from different manufactures from the very same era that pretty much look the same and that the prices can vary a lot. I’m not really sure which the true original is but have been assuming it’s the Heuer Pasadena that all the others derive from (read more here) but I'm not sure at all. The newer ones are usually equipped with the Valjoux 7750 movement instead of the Lemania and are often cheaper. The used Orfina's you find are usually quite expensive and are also very often quite worn. I would of course have preferred the real deal from the start but I felt there was so much to learn about all the different models that I barely had begun to scratch the surface. I instead decided to go for one of the cheaper versions just to quickly get that Maverick vibe going.

#248 - The Le Jour chronograph. Not entirely sure about the correct reference.



I found my Le Jour head only to a decent price but in the need of service because its 7750 movement had a loose rotor and wouldn’t self-wind. After the service it was fine though and worked perfectly. I quickly realized that one of the hardest parts when you purchase one of those old PVD military style chronographs is to source a good bracelet for it. Usually all used watches are sold on some ugly leather bund strap (I can't stand them!). I searched forever and ever after a suitable vintage bracelet but finally settled for an oyster type bracelet from Hadley Roma that seemed to be of a rather decent quality. I had plans on making the bracelet look a little more vintage to match the worn surface of the watch case but instead I switched it for a Bonetto Cinturini 295 rubber which also gave a good vintage feel to it. 

With the Bonetto Cinturini 295 rubber.


OK. So maybe I didn't became as cool as Maverick with my Le Jour but it really opened up my eyes for chronographs even more just like the Tutima and the Tudor's did and I can honestly say that my venturing among the 80's and 90's Lemania and 7750 chronos is far from over.


© All pictures by a Watch Flipper's Diary unless noted.