In celebration of the arrival of the new Grand Seiko 44GS Manual Wind Limited Editions, we present one of the rarest LE’s to come out this year, the SBGW044. The SBGW044 is identical to the SBGW047 (stainless steel model) we reviewed yesterday, but with a beautiful 18kt yellow gold case.
The first variation of the 44GS debuted in 1967 and was the founding of what is known today as “Seiko Style”. Seiko Style is a very specific design element that takes traditional Japanese aesthetics and implements them to the watches design in numerous ways. The basic Seiko Style includes attributes like multifaceted-cut hands and indexes, an elegantly curved side line of the case, and super mirror polished surfaces.
The super mirror polish utilized is known as Zaratsu. This painstaking art form is a hand finish that originally derived from the katana blade. This 3 stage process provides a a distortion free finish that is quickly becoming known as one of the finest in the watch industry. There are only a small amount of highly experienced craftsmen capable of applying this finish to Grand Seiko.
To compliment the beauty of the exterior, and remain reminiscent of the original from 1967, Seiko uses their in house manufactured 9S64 caliber. In yesterdays review, I discussed the Spron 510 mainspring which provides the piece a 72 hour power reserve of only one barrel. Today, I would like to discuss the Spron 610 alloy, which is utilized for the hairspring.
The Spron 610 alloy is also manufactured in house by Seiko and is essentially made of the same materials as the 510. The hairspring is one of the most sensitive parts in any mechanical watch. The goal of the Spron 610 was to make a hairspring that was more durable, more shock resistant, longer lasting, and a less effected by temperature fluctuation, and Seiko did exactly that. The resilience of the 610 alloy is incredible and has already proven it can take a beating (no pun intended) and still perform like new after numerous years of use.
With such an elegant retro design and an incredible fit and finish the 44GS in 18k yellow gold is truly exquisite. This incredibly rare model is limited to only 70 pieces for the entire world only one of which came to the US. We are proud to say, this model (as well as the other 2 versions of 18k gold) are exclusively sold at AZ Fine Time in the US market.
The MSRP on the Grand Seiko 44GS Historical Collection Manual Wind SBGW044 is $17,500. Considering the case is solid 18k gold, and the movement has one of the most strict accuracy ratings in the world, this 44GS is actually very reasonably priced and well worth every penny. If you have any questions, please feel free to call us at 1-800-486-3996 and check us out on AZFineTime.com.
Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for our review tomorrow on the 18k Pink Gold 44GS, SBGW046.
See our video review below…
See more pictures below…