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The Seiko 1972 Luxury Watch Catalogue for Men and Women
For the benefit of those subscribers who have signed up recently, each Tuesday or Wednesday I publish an article featuring scans of vintage Grand Seikos that appeared in the Seiko catalogues of the 1960’s and 1970’s.
Although based on the articles originally published on TGSG website, these articles will be updated where appropriate with additional knowledge gained in the three or so years since they were first made available.
Additionally, since I now have the complete set of the catalogues, I am able to publish these articles in the correct chronological order - something that wasn’t possible when posting to the main website since, when starting out documenting the catalogues, I hadn’t completed my collection of them.
You can view the previously published newsletters in this series here.
The Seiko 1972 Luxury Watch Catalogue for Men and Women
Although - as detailed in last week’s newsletter - there was only one “regular” catalogue issued in 1972 (with additional loose-leaf inserts circulated at some point in the year), there were two other catalogues published that year, the first of which is the subject of this week’s newsletter.
Regular readers of this newsletter will be aware that in 1969, Seiko introduced their “Special Luxury Catalogue” (“SLC” for brevity), that featured references from the upper echelons of the Seiko range, such as the Grand Seiko VFA’s.
Just over a year ago, I managed to acquire a copy of the catalogue pictured above, and indeed it is the only copy I have ever seen.
Presented in a similar format to the first two Special Luxury Catalogues, the Japanese script under the title translates to “Luxury Watches for Men and Women”. Thus, it would appear to be a “second tier” catalogue, perhaps featuring the top of the range watches for retailers who did not carry the watches presented in the SLC’s. Notably, there is no overlap in the content of this Luxury Catalogue, and the Special Luxury Catalogue of the same year.
Whilst the catalogue is undated, it can be inferred from the watches featured on its pages that it dates from 1972 - more on this in the text accompanying the scans below.
Whilst there are no new watches appearing here, given the seeming uniqueness of the publication - I have not seen an equivalent to this for any other year - it’s worth going through the Grand Seikos that feature on its pages, and at the end of the article, I will provide scans of the entire catalogue.
As can be seen from the lead photo in this article, the front cover features one reference each from the Grand and King Seiko ranges.
On turning the cover page, we are presented with two pages featuring seven Grand Seikos.
The introductory text at the top of the page provides an overview of the Grand Seiko ethos, highlighting the 360 hours (15 days) of testing that each watch undergoes to ensure its accuracy.
The first three watches to be shown are from the “Special” range that debuted in the first 1971 catalogue. Shown, from top to bottom, are the 6156-8010, with its HSS case and faceted crystal; the 6155-8000 (which holds the distinction of being the only example of a vintage men’s Grand Seiko whose movement was only ever used in a single reference); and the cap-gold 6156-8020.
The inclusion of the 6156-8020, which made its first appearance in the January 1972 issue of Seiko Sales (a monthly newsletter sent to Seiko retailers), and its first full catalogue appearance in the 1972 catalogue, allows us to date this publication to no earlier than 1972.
The right hand page shows four references from the 56GS series. From top to bottom, they are – the 5646-7010 in cap gold; the 5646-7010 in steel, with sunburst finished silver dial; the blue dialed 5646-8000 on a bracelet; and finally the blue dialed 5646-7010.
Whilst the cap gold 5646-7010 first debuted in the first volume of the 1971 catalogue, the other three watches all make their first main catalogue appearance in 1972. Once again, this provides more evidence for this luxury catalogue being dated no earlier than 1972, but crucially, two of the watches featured on this page – the silver dialed 5646-7010 and the blue dialed 5646-8000 make their sole appearance in a main Seiko catalogue in 1972’s edition.
Turning the page once more, we are presented on the left-hand page with the final four Grand Seikos to be featured in the catalogue.
Here we see three more references from the 56GS series, and one ladies watch from the 19GS series.
From top to bottom, they are – 5645-8000 with silver dial; 5641-7000; 5645-7010 white dial; and the 1964-0010 with PMP (platinum plated steel) case.
Confusingly, there are actually two references that share both the catalogue code of 19GS-R100 and the movement-case serial code of 1964-0010. One is the PMP cased version seen here, and the other has a regular stainless steel case. We can identify that the watch featured here is the former in two ways. Firstly, the price listed is 40,000 Yen (the steel cased watch was priced at 36,000 Yen), and secondly, the platinum plated cased reference dropped the “36000” text from the dial.
I will be covering all the catalogue appearances of the vintage Grand Seiko ladies’ watches in a separate article at the end of this series.
As with example on the previous page, additional support is provided for the dating of this publication to 1972 by the fact that the 5645-8000 pictured on this page only made a single appearance in the regular catalogues, in 1972.
Presented below is a gallery featuring scans of all (very colourful!) pages from the 1972’s Seiko Luxury Watch Catalogue.