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Discussion Starter #1
Lurker, first time poster. I am considering a Seiko Kinetic as a gift for my future father in law. I've read the two mega threads here regarding the Kinetics as well as a few articles elsewhere.
https://www.watchuseek.com/f2/reliability-kinetics-457381.html
https://www.watchuseek.com/f21/seiko-kinetic-failed-technology-878814.html
http://quartzimodo.com/the-seiko-kinetic-boon-or-bane/

The person this is intended for is in a village in China so battery replacement isn't an option and I've always liked the idea and look of the Kinetics (never owned one)... so I am pretty set on one unless it is just a bad idea.
From what I've read, this watch will need to be worn, or wound. This won't be a problem for the guy I'm getting this for, he'll be VERY attentive to any need the watch requires... this is just his nature.

No to my questions. I know I need a model with a LiON, from what I can tell, anything I buy new at this time will be LiON, is this correct? I've also read about the models that allow the watch to be put into sleep mode, and be wound. I've seen people mention that these enhancements came after specific movement numbers, but I have no idea how to identify which watch has what desirable/undesirable features. Finally, I know these watches shouldn't be allowed to hit zero charge... should I be concerned about buying online? Should I assume the watch has most likely been stored for a year or so if I'm looking in the $100-$200 dollar range?

Here are a few that I've got bookmarked. And THANKYOU for any advice you may have.
 

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I've got two Seiko kinetics so can chip in a bit from my experience.



If you think your father in law might like a diver I strongly recommend the SKX371, very quality watch with a nice bracelet and feels very solid.
My SKA555 is the same as the SKA553 you posted but with blue highlights, it is a fine watch too, same movement. But feels a little cheaper overall than the SKX371.

out of the three you posted I like the SKA515 the best, seems like it can be dressed down or dressed up depending on the occasion.

I bought both of mine online, no problems. the BFK used through WUS and the SKA555 on ebay for around $100 new. Both came in the mail and were ticking - though at the battery saving mode with one double tick every two seconds. It took some shaking per the Seiko instruction for an hour maybe (i just did it while watching tv or a movie) to get both batteries up to the 10second battery level mark. But since then Just my daily wear once or twice a week each has been enough to maintain the charge fine.

the batteries in the newer kinetics are should be fine, any of these models. they will likely have to be replaced 10-20 years down the road but I wouldn't worry too much about it for now. it's true the older kinetic technology was not as good but they have more or less ironed it all out.

perhaps look into some of the Citizen eco drive models, sunlight is an even easier way to charge. but even with those a battery change will need to happen down the road, yet you don't see too many people worrying about that.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
OK great, I will not worry about the batteries than. The person getting this watch will have more to worry about in 10 years than a battery.
I also liked the SKA515 because it has the same bracelet that my Seiko which I think it's really nice looking. (scratches easy though)
The watch is going to a small village in China and from what I understand it's a situation where he'll take it off to show his friends his nice gift... so I was thinking the Kinetics plexiglass rear would give him something else to talk about and show off.
Any other models in that range that you think I may want to look at would be appreciated.
 

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The choice of model is up to you, the ones you linked seem fine to me for general wear. All look like 5M62/63 which do not have sleep mode or direct drive but that will not matter if the watch will be worn regularly. As you suspect it is a bit of a risk getting a very low charged or dead one when buying online, which could affect the health of the battery, or at the very least, be a pain in the butt to get to full charge. Perhaps you could just ask the seller to check the charge before posting. Easy for him to do via the top pusher and maybe ask that he only send one with 75%+ charge.
 

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Is the future owner of the watch a local Chinese? If he is I might not want to gift him with a Japanese watch. A certain percentage of the population are still anti Japanese due to what happened in WW2. This sentiment might be stronger in villages and small towns. Seriously man, I got Chinese friends in China that will never buy or use any Japanese branded product. Just saying.

Sent from my Hongmi
 

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I'd consider solar. I actually like kinetic and currently own one, but I think it's better in a Chinese village to have a solar that requires very little thinking at all. You just wear it.
+1 a citizen ecodrive is just easier. but the japanese stigma may remain...
 

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Check to see if there is any anti Japanese feeling because like others have said he might not appreciate a Seiko. If he's O.K. with it just buy the one you like. The only condition that I would suggest is that if possible you buy from somewhere with a high throughput of watches. That way you stand a much better chance of getting one that is still running - Kinetics don't like it when the battery is allowed to go flat.
 

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+1 on the anti-japan sentiment. Funny this came up in a convo with a coworker today. Would check but even with the hate japanese watches seem to transcend that easier. I would think the deeper inland the less they may care.

For a kinetic i think the bfk is the only one worth getting.

But autos i feel are held at a higher regard over other tech particularly with the old timers.

Cant imagine finding a swiss auto at your price range.

May be better off just getting a flat panel tv with a dvd player plus he'll have the reverse dowry.

Sent from my HTCEVOV4G using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hey guys, thanks for all the advice. If I do pull the trigger on this I'll try to get ahold of the seller and look for high volume guys.

The watch is for my fiances grandfather. I asked her about any possible issues with the Japanese stigma and she says that it will not be a problem. He's in his early 80's and definitely has feelings towards Japanese but because it's coming from me and her from America, it's acceptable.

This actually isn't the only Seiko watch we're taking as a gift, my fiances friends husband picked one out and asked us to buy it for him... of course the one he chose is terrible because they didn't involve me and watchuseek forums!!

I wouldn't mind getting him something that didn't say JAPAN on the face, but I've known the Seikos to just work and the truth is that it's a lot of watch for $120.

If anyone has any models/places to buy in the $200 range, let me know.

BTW - Here is my Seiko, it's going on 10 years old. Had the guts entirely replaced after water seeped in during a scalloping dive free of charge by Seiko and 1 bracelet replacement.
https://www.watchuseek.com/attachme...g-timer-premier-perpetual-img_5390-large-.jpg
 

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I'd consider solar. I actually like kinetic and currently own one, but I think it's better in a Chinese village to have a solar that requires very little thinking at all. You just wear it.
I am going to look at the solars tonight. Mainly I'm looking for longevity... not really concerned about the upkeep. If we tell him he needs to wear it once a day between 4 and 5 while standing on his head... he'll do it.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
+1 on the anti-japan sentiment. Funny this came up in a convo with a coworker today. Would check but even with the hate japanese watches seem to transcend that easier. I would think the deeper inland the less they may care.

For a kinetic i think the bfk is the only one worth getting.

But autos i feel are held at a higher regard over other tech particularly with the old timers.

Cant imagine finding a swiss auto at your price range.

May be better off just getting a flat panel tv with a dvd player plus he'll have the reverse dowry.

Sent from my HTCEVOV4G using Tapatalk
I've never seen the BFK in person but I'm assuming it's at least as large as the one I have (posted above). Do you think the size is suitable for an older slender gentleman? Where can I read more about the BFK, is it build on the direct drive frame?

Speaking of the BFK... just found this. Bad ass. Boiled, frozen, crushed... still ticks!!
http://toughwatches.net/legendary-seiko-bfk-ska371/
 

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love my bfk, but yea, it may not be for a chinese grandfather
 
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Grandpa? tough yeah go smaller.

How about an orient with an open heart? that would look cool, is light, and I see one for $150.

I would suggest leather strap but SS has more of an effect.
 

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I would be hesitant to gift a Japanese watch to my Chinese in-law to be. That being said, if i were to go Japanese and wanted the most maintenance free battery option, I would choose a citizen eco-drive over a Seiko kinetic.

Also, are you sure you want a watch on a bracelet? It does not sound like there will be anyone there to size it for him.
 

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Grandpa? tough yeah go smaller.

How about an orient with an open heart? that would look cool, is light, and I see one for $150.

I would suggest leather strap but SS has more of an effect.
Wow, these Orients are really sharp watches and I'd almost think they'd be more his style than the sport/dive Seiko/Citizen... my life just got harder. Is there a consensus on a trusted place to order the Orients? I'm seeing a lot of options on IslandWAtch.com
 

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Wow, these Orients are really sharp watches and I'd almost think they'd be more his style than the sport/dive Seiko/Citizen... my life just got harder. Is there a consensus on a trusted place to order the Orients? I'm seeing a lot of options on IslandWAtch.com
I think islandwatch is the goto for them around here but wouldnt discouraged from using amazon and the bay for thse if you find a much better deal. And orient usa has coupons all the time for big (like 50%) and thatd be direct.

Orient has in house movmts and design but got bought out by seiko.


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