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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I just recently purchased a vintage King Seiko which is from the 70s. It looks mint from the photos. I am curious to know for anybody that has shopped for a King Seiko on the used/vintage market, what is considered a good price, below what dollar amount? Also I know like many of us, we are a bit addicted to watches. This was an impulse buy because I was really enjoying the way the vintage KS/GS look and wanted one. But I own a Sarb035 and I hope I am not just taking up space in the inventory. They seem quite similar.

So what are your opinions on vintage King Seiko/Grand Seiko/Lord Marvel lines and post some photos if you have.

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I can't wait till it arrives. I cannot swing a modern GS so this is kind of cool to have vintage GS quality.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The Hi-beat is a far better movement than the sarb. Of course servicing on it will be higher as well.
I truly hope I do not have any issues with the movement anytime soon because I would not even know where to service the movement around here.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Mike. The addiction is real! I really should not have bought this watch because I had to return a old Christmas gift watch and got the money back which I am going to be picking up a new one of the same model soon.. I spent that money. So now I bought this knowing I am about to buy another watch. Dang! Watches are a serious problem.
 

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Congrats on the pickup; I was eyeing that one as well, and all of the GS' they have too. Please post updates when it arrives as I'm curious how it lives up to the photos IRL!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
No problem, will do. It is crazy to think we were bidding on the same items. Lost one about 2 days ago and I was pissed because it said I was winning and as I watched the count down, I was winning until it ended and it stated I loss. This time I paid a bit more than the one that got away. I wonder what is the norm for these things, price wise?
 

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That looks like a gorgeous watch! I've got a similar one (5626-7111) and it's great. Mine is +6 s/day on a timegrapher, but it has been serviced within the last couple of years. These movements have one weak spot: the day/date quick set wheel easily breaks, so please be gentle with that! Make sure you don't try to adjust the date near midnight. I usually set the watch to 6:00 and then set the date only. I paid about $200 for mine, but it was not anywhere near the condition yours is (I'm assuming that dial is original, untouched one). I also had to buy a replacement crystal (that are really hard to find) for about $70.

The movement is really accurate, some of them were certified as chronometer. In that case it says so on the dial though and when you open the back (well, yours is an "open-thru-glass" model), the movement has a serial number as well. Mine is unmarked non-chronometer movement, but really accurate anyhow.

One thing I noticed: your watch has an after market strap without the original buckle. The King Seiko buckle itself is worth almost $100, which I presume is a reason why many are sold separately (Japanese Yahoo has a lot of them, sometimes ebay as well). The size of the KS buckle is 15 mm, so you'll need to find a bit unusual 18/15 mm strap if you have the original KS buckle. I ordered myself one of those Vietnamese made-to-order straps from black crocodile for my watch.

In any case, really beautiful KS, enjoy it!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hey Olli, thanks for the info. Very helpful. I am glad to hear you have had a good experience with yours. I always change my dates surrounding 9 to 3 though usually just aim for between 4 to 7 most of the time. I got this one for $425 after shipping. A bit high compared to some comparable bids but if it falls within the norm for the condition, I guess that is fine. Still need to receive in hand to see if the actual live up to the photos. I doubt I will go buckle hunting at the price you mentioned. This really looks to be a quality time piece that brings that feel of past luxury and great heritage. I cant wait.
 

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In case you need to get it serviced, there are few good people who service Seikos. Not sure if you're a member on the other two watch forums that are more focused on the Japanese watches, but you'll be able to get in contact with the people there (maybe here as well?). Anyway, fingers crossed that the movement is as nice as the case is in which case it might not need service in a good while! If you can put it into a timegrapher it will tell a lot about the condition right away. I think the price you paid was fair, if it indeed is as good as it looks in the photos.
 

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Looks like to me it could be a dial refinish. Very hard to find a true black original. Also some sellers do put reproduction gold medallions on , another thing to look out for. Still a great looking watch . I love King Seikos, great case design with cool little features . My 5246-6000 says hello IMG_0300.JPG
 

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Looks like to me it could be a dial refinish. Very hard to find a true black original. Also some sellers do put reproduction gold medallions on , another thing to look out for.
That seller does use refinished dials, though he usually states it in the description. I believe he also uses incorrect dials from time to time, and the watches are generally refurbished. Not saying there's anything wrong with a refurbished watch, even with a mismatched dial, but anybody who is looking for a true original vintage piece, study the watch and description carefully before you buy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Looks like to me it could be a dial refinish. Very hard to find a true black original. Also some sellers do put reproduction gold medallions on , another thing to look out for. Still a great looking watch . I love King Seikos, great case design with cool little features . My 5246-6000 says hello View attachment 12415981
Nice KS. I will be part of the club probably by tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hey Joe, thanks for the info. I really am new to vintage Seiko so I do not know a lot of what to look for. I have a few modern Seikos and I like the brand. So I had an interest to get one of their higher end vintage watches because the modern ones cost too much. So I guess all I can do is enjoy it for what it is, it looks nice. So when you say redial, this means replacing the original with another official dial or a 3rd party dial or does this just mean dial cleaning? I hope the polishing is not considered heavy polishing, though I really do not know much about this all.
 

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Well, an impulse buy and all these questions after the fact... it is what it is.

Anyway, it will be easier to say more when we can see some real world photos, without all the visual effects on them.
 

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Yeah I was going to say, I have almost bought from that seller before, but the fancy photography puts me off. It looks more like it's trying to hide something. That kind of lighting doesn't exactly highlight scratches, and it's kind of difficult to see what the case lines are like. The OP's watch watch is probably fine, and if it's been refurbished there probably aren't many marks anyway. But photography like that can cover up things like pitting, especially on the medallion.

So when you say redial, this means replacing the original with another official dial or a 3rd party dial or does this just mean dial cleaning? I hope the polishing is not considered heavy polishing, though I really do not know much about this all.
Usually it would mean either repainting an original dial, (that seller often advertises "Beautifully restored"), or using a genuine dial that may not necessarily be correct to that model. As for polishing, the most important thing to me when finding a vintage Seiko is the case lines being intact. Seiko has always used wonderfully sharp case finishing, which to me captures what their watches are all about. A bad polishing job can remove those sharp lines and ruin the watch for me. Yours looks fine from the pictures though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So it arrived today. I taken some basic photos with my phone but here is what I will point out about what I have noticed. I do not know if this has to do with it being a 70s watch (if it was built this way back in those days), but it feels very light. It is a thin watch so maybe it is suppose to be this way. The indices I thought were solid metal indices but upon arriving, I see they have a center filling like lume but it is not lume. The crown feels a bit rough to wind and is a bit lopsided. In the photos you can see 2 images of the crown out, look at its position relative to the non-crown guard casing. Oh and let me not forget the medallion on the back. It feels cheap like those aluminum stickers that seal a chocolate box, and it spins a little and is loose to the touch, though it does not appear it is going to fall off. I just do not know how to feel. If all are normally like this because they are from the 70s, I will easily get over it. But if this is my particular item, that would be disappointing. One major positive is everything looks very clean, no marks at all. I have read before about somebody's medallion falling off before so maybe that is with all models.

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Hmmm....


I have seen several KS and GS with missing medallions, so it maybe that they are attached with a sticky substance?


The crown/stem being bent is not something I would accept.


The white on the indices is not lume but paint to add contrast on the metallic surface so you can read it better.


I just actually bought a King Seiko. It is a King Seiko with the 4502 movement in it. It was bought from a seller here on WUS whom I have bought watches before from and trust and it should arrive next week.


This is my second KS. My first is a first Gen KS


The seller was selling it for parts even though he said it ran very well and kept great time and also had a great power reserve. He was basing this on the fact that the date did not work and the dial had some wear to it. To me this means that watch was worn as a daily watch instead of a safe queen with occasional wear. The day wheel mechanism on the 4502 is very robust (unlike on the 56XX movements) but because it is a instantaneous date change at 12am(right at 12am there is a snap and the date changes) the springs can get off kilter. That does not bother me as it is a easy fix (my watch maker says) so I will have it done when I finally get it serviced since the watch has to be disassembled anyway) until then I will enjoy it as is.


As a person that has had many non quickset date watches over the years, I no longer bother setting dates on watches (except on quartz)
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Journeyforce, are you indices painted also? It does not look like it, they look like solid metal. Also, so your thoughts are the crown issue is enough to return it? It still winds, it is a tough wind at times but it winds. But could any of this simply be due to age?
 

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I've checked out King Seiko's by that seller numerous times and was always put off by the obviously edited photographs. I once got burned by similar.

I have purchased 2 King Seikos from other sellers.

One was a fantastic bargain - a KS5625-7000 that was listed as damaged, due to a minor cosmetic issue (barely noticeable crack in the bezel). I got it for around $150US. The watch when received had pristine dial, pristine movement, original (or NOS) crystal in good condition, very minor scratches, and had never been re-polished!

The other was a KS4502-7000 with a listing similar to yours. The watch had very "hobby photographer" looking photos in the listing and was described as meticulously restored. When received, the dial had some discolouration that was obscured by shadow in the photos, and the case was significantly overpolished, the gold medallion corroded, and the crystal had also been replaced with a high domed sapphire... I paid about 500US for that one.

I think that most vintage pieces are likely to have something wrong with them. The trick is to find something for cheap, because it has a problem that can be fixed, or a dodgy part that you can find original replacements for. Try to steer clear on the ones where the seller appears to be hiding the flaws, or uses vague terms like "wonderfully restored".

I think yours is initially disappointing but redeemable with effort. The dial looks original to me. If it is a repaint, I doesn't show any major red flags. The gold medallion probably just needs to be glued down, and then you'll never notice it again. The winding stem almost certainly needs to be replaced. BUT if the case is in as good condition as it appears, I think that outweighs any other issues.
New stem, bit of glue for the medallion, a service... Then you'll have something you can be proud of.
 
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