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 Post subject: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2016 6:36 pm 
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Hi Folks,

I was wondering whether anybody could provide any insight into this gold seiko watch that was passed down to me by family. It's 14 carat, 21 jewell and hasn't been worn (in fact it still works). I believe it was bought in the 70's but after hours and searching google images I can't seem to find this watch anywhere so I think it may be fairly rare. No. 66 out 1001 made is my guess?

Any knowledge of the history of this watch would be greatly appreciated!


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 6:53 pm 
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I suspect I'm not going to be much help on this one ...

1. I notice that the dial says 21 jewels (which usually indicates a mechanical movement), but in your 1st shot, there is a label/tag indicating "Quartz". While better-quality analog quartz movements were often jewelled, 21 sounds a bit high. So ... is it a mechanical hand-wind movement OR is it quartz?? Until I know that for sure, I can't really say much about yours. I don't collect or study the Quartz models.

2. Some of the case-back numbers have me puzzled. The bottom set (705541) looks like a legitimate "modern" Seiko serial#. By "modern" I mean anything after about the mid/late '60s when Seiko switched from 7-digit to 6-digit serial#s. In either case, the 1st digit is supposed to indicate the year (within an unspecified decade - to know the decade, you have to know which movement calibre is in the watch & then from other sources you'd find out which decade(S) the movement was produced in) in which the watch was manufactured, while the 2nd "digit" was supposed to be the month (1 - 9 are Jan thru Sep; "O" is Oct; "N" is Nov; and "D" is Dec). But, the numbers above that, which you interpret as a "xxth out of a total of xxxx" is not something I'm used to seeing on the Seikos I study. Normally there is a case-code number. After the early/mid '60s they were in the form of "nnnn-xxxx" where "nnnn" was the movement calibre number. So, not sure how to interpret what I see there (of course, there is some case wear that may have obscured some character in the middle of that string.

The case-back markings look quite different from what I'm used to seeing in the Seikos I normally study. Sorry!


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2016 12:07 am 
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Hey Ninja

Thanks for the reply. It's definitely a mechanical hand wide watch and is still working well. Very hard to find much info on this watch on the net so I can only assume it's a fairly rare model.


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2016 3:47 pm 
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pburrows wrote:
Hey Ninja

... Very hard to find much info on this watch on the net so I can only assume it's a fairly rare model.


OK, at least I know it's mechanical, I'll see if I can dig up anything...

One thing that would help ... please tell me the "dial codes" that are found at the very bottom of the dial (I can see them in your picture of the dial, but they are too small/indistinct to read).

BUT: that case-back has me somewhat puzzled. I hate to say it, but some aspects of it make it seem non-authentic as well...

I would add that lack of info on the net does not automatically mean "rare" ... knowing the Seiko collector community this is something that typically is not among their collecting interests/goals. Especially if it's a woman's or unisex model ... most collectors are guys & have no interest in the women's (i.e. smaller size) models - sorry to say.


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Sat Apr 09, 2016 5:54 pm 
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66 - 1001 is the model of the watch. It was made by Seiko approx 1968-1971 - not sure how many were made.

the value is very high due to the gold. approx 1200-1300 in gold.

It is a desirable Seiko, rare? debatable but not common.

Hope this helps.


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 Post subject: Re: Possible answer?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2016 3:33 pm 
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watchrules4me2 wrote:
66 - 1001 is the model of the watch. It was made by Seiko approx 1968-1971 - not sure how many were made...


Well, "66-1001" is a legitimate style of case code# for that time period. Just one wrinkle ... the Seiko movement table shows the 66A & 66B only coming in a 17j variant, the pictures posted here show 21j on the dial. The only related calibre (hand-wind) with 21j is shown as the 6660A, but then a "66-" case code does not make sense. Here's the entry from the table for the "66" calibre with jewel count underlined:

66A,B Hand wind Sportsman 17
SMS 17 1960 S 10

If there are jewel count variants, the table shows the range. BUT: The table could be wrong, I don't guarantee it's accuracy.

In web searches, I did find a link that supposedly shows a 66-1001. Unfortunately, I'm not a member of the forum the link is on, so I can't view the posted images. If you're interested, you can likely join & see if the "66-1001" pictures shown look like what you have:

http://www.thewatchsite.com/21-japanese-watch-discussion-forum/38768-what-s-top-10-rarest-valuable-most-desired-seikos.html

Look for the entry by "uswatchguy" in the thread with the following text & the images posted:

"Here's two you probably never heard of, because there are two (repeat 2) only known examples in the world. They are the 66-1001 models. One is a 14k yellow gold case and bracelet mechanical watch and the other is 14k white gold case and bracelet automatic watch. Both were produced in the late 1960's by Seiko."

By the way, what "uswatchguy" says about the 2nd example (being automatic) makes little sense to me ... the "66" only came in manual wind. There are derivative calibres in the "66" family (like the 6601A) which are automatic, but then Seiko would likely have a different case style#! So, I'd be a little cautious about his statements! Too bad I can't view the pics ;)


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2016 6:45 pm 
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I have seen many watches with 21j on a dial and a 17j movement. Also, this could be a newer movement. Can you get into it?

and... regardless - great watch.


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 Post subject: Seiko or Feiko?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2016 4:46 pm 
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watchrules4me2 wrote:
I have seen many watches with 21j on a dial and a 17j movement. Also, this could be a newer movement. Can you get into it?...


:lol:

Well, that is not a typical "Operating method" for Seiko... if they did "upgrade" to a different (higher jeweled, in this case) they would have modified the case style# and the dial codes would reflect the different calibre#. From what I've seen around, the calibre 66 (which is implied in the "66-1001" case style# in the shot) never did have a 21j variant. It would be quite revealing if the owner could post shots of the movement inside!

All the more reason to suspect this is (like some old Hamiltons) a "jewelers cased" ( meaning, case made by some independent company not necessarily authorized by Seiko itself) Seiko movement. Further, if there is a mismatch between the "66" in the case style# on the back & whatever is stated within the dial codes, there is also the possibility of cobbling (like a dial from one factory model & other casing parts from a different one). I would be very interested what the owner says the dial codes are. We do see that a lot in the Seiko collector community.

Going back to the statement on the other forum about this case style, "One is a 14k yellow gold case and bracelet mechanical watch and the other is a 14k white gold case and bracelet automatic watch." - just the fact that sees two examples with the SAME case style - one being hand-wind and the other being auto would lead a knowledgeable Seiko collector/researcher to conclude this is NOT a "factory authorized" case style. Further, his statement that these are the "only known examples in the world" would lead more credence to the suspicion that these are creations of some entity other that Hattori Corp. [Seiko corporate name during that time].

Sure, they are great looking watches .. and hopefully the gold content stands up to what is stated on the back. And, like my own Hamilton "jewelers cased" cal. 982 - lovely specimen! Just not a "factory" model that the purists tend to collect.


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2016 7:16 pm 
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Here are some pics of the two watches from uswatchguy in the other forum. Looks like my watch is a hybrid of the two!


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2016 5:56 pm 
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@ pburrows:

OK, thanks for re-posting those pics here.

Well, the more I think this through, the more I suspect that what you have (& what that other guy has) is ... some kind of 3rd-Party casing that was done with Seiko dial/hands & (likely) movement inside. It was not any kind of expected practice from Hattori Corp [i.e. Seiko] to use the same case style # for cases that were made differently from each other. They would have made separate case style #s for each of the variants we see from the pics (yours & the ones from the other forum). You can check out various sources online and in books to see that Seiko made a lot of different variants (speaking of casing) using the same movement. In those cases, I've never seen those sources "re-use" a case style# for even 2 very similar looking cases. Sometimes, however, a different dial variant was used in the same case. In those instances, the case style# did stay the same, but if the dial had a different design (as opposed to just being the exact same design, just in a different color scheme), the dial codes were changed.

In addition, if it is a cal. 66A or 66B inside (as indicated by the "66" leading the style#) Seiko was not known for misleading it's customers about the jewel count. My sources only show 17j for the 66. Now, there was a hand-wind 21j movement within that basic family, the 6660A. But again, if that is used inside yours, then the case style# AND the dial codes would reflect that by specifically having "6660" rather than just "66" in them.

Again, if you can, please post the dial codes here (I really can't read them from your dial shot) ... and if you can get the case opened and a shot of the movement itself, please post that. Both pieces of info (dial codes + shot of movement) can help in further identifying what you indeed have there.

I will also say that there are known examples of "fake" Seikos (even decades old). Yes, people did indeed fake Seikos & the Seiko collector communities uses the humorous term of "Feikos" to "brand" those. A good number were made in India. There is some possibility these 66-1001 examples are "Feikos" someone made in very limited quantity decades ago. That would be analogous to the "jewelers cased" Hamiltons (usually with a solid-gold case, a diamond marker dial, and a real Hamilton cal. 980 inside). Usually they have good workmanship, they just were not made by Hamilton (other than the movement) and not sanctioned by that company.


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2016 12:08 pm 
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To set the record straight:

pburrows has posted a yellow gold "Seiko 66-1001" using the 14k white gold case back
from the original 14k white gold 66-1001 (as shown in the additional pictures) as his own.

I own the original yellow gold Seiko 66-1001 as shown in the additional picture.

I mentioned on another forum that the White Gold one was an automatic. As I do not
own that one, I took the information for it from the original owner, however something
may have been lost in the translation.

I can attest that mine is an original Seiko. To the best of my knowledge and as reported
to me, there were only two Seiko 66-1001's ever produced.

Best regards


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 Post subject: Re: 14 Carat Gold Seiko Watch
PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2016 3:30 pm 
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Hi uswatchguy!

OK, thanks for updating us ... "I own the original yellow gold Seiko 66-1001 ... I can attest that mine is an original Seiko."

Does that mean you are the original owner & that you got it from some kind of "authorized dealer" or other "authorized" sales channel?

I have seen various kinds of "unique" vintage Seikos, in some cases they were company-created "specials", usually involving some personal engraving. I also saw one with a quite unique dial where the dial numerals were replaced by letters spelling out the owners name (though I do not know if Seiko ... meaning Hattori Corp. ... did the work or if he had gotten it done by some other means; it was being sold off as part of his estate by an eBay dealer here, so he would not know the history unfortunately).

I don't say it's impossible that Seiko / Hattori did make some kind of "bespoke" model in those days [which would account for the known population of 2 of these, one yellow and the other white]. But, I've heard of no other cases like this from the ti me period. Some kind of actual documentation of these would be quite helpful in establishing the provenance/history of yours (and the other white gold example). What can you say about their "backstory", why would a rather common, low/mid-grade movement of that era be used in a clearly "luxury, solid-gold, extremely limited production" model in that time?? Why not a better grade movement from Seiko if one were going to all the trouble/expense of having a "unique" bespoke item crafted for them?

But, the more I (and other collectors) study Seiko/Hattori in the "old days" the more we find that there are exceptions to the rule, and exceptions to the exceptions :lol:

I do think it is a very beautiful piece, and if indeed both examples are hand-wind ... as they should be, given the case/calibre number ... then it leads more credence to them being some kind of "legitimate" Seiko/Hattori product (even if Seiko/Hattori) went outside to have the cases made. And as I remember, each case shown did have some differing design details. That is unusual in itself when sharing the same case style # ... again, another puzzle. 8-)


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