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Japannings: A look at watches from Japan

by Michael Weare
30 October, 2012
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About the author

Michael Weare has been a professional writer for 30 years, writing about Japanese technology, German and Italian cars, British tailoring and Swiss watches. Michael manages the editorial content of Click Tempus and will be keeping the magazine fresh and informative with regular features, as well as bringing great writers to the magazine. Email: michael@clicktempus.com

Japannings

Japannings is a look at some cool and unusual watches which are hard, but not impossible, to find outside of Japan. Japan has long kept some of its best watch models to itself, however that is beginning to change thanks to the internet. Here is a selection of watches you simply won’t find in your average high street store in Europe or the States.

Citizen Eco Drive CA0160-57H

Citizen Eco Drive

This is a 42mm Japan Domestic Market CITIZEN Collection Eco Drive Chronograph Men’s Watch CA0160-57H, which is hard to find outside of Japan. But trusty Rakuten, the Japanese Global Market website, stocks it and makes it available to the watch loving world. Although in truth, it’s getting harder and harder to find Japan only watches, because so many sites, including Amazon, are starting to sell Japanese watches which were previously never exported.

Specifications for this Eco Drive (Solar Power) include a stainless steel watch with water resistance to 200m, a second hand stopping function, up to 7 months running life when fully charged, and a Low Power Warning Overcharge Prevention 1/5 second 60 minutes Chronograph, 24 hour display, Lumibright Accuracy: +/-15 seconds per month (when non-reception). The watch comes with 1 year Japan warranty and Japanese manual.

Alba Prestige

Alba Presitge

Just as Tudor is a sub brand of Rolex, Alba is a sub-brand of Seiko. A Seiko wannabe brand created in 1979 – ten years after Tudor was introduced. Alba was originally developed for a younger audience or for markets where consumers could not yet afford the cost of a Seiko. Alba’s main area of focus has always been South East Asia and the Middle East, and although many of the watches are made on a budget, they all retain superior Seiko quartz reliability, and a wide and contemporary array of designs, including the popular Prestige range for men.

Seiko Marvel Ma Bell

Seiko Marvel

This is a beautiful vintage Seiko dating from 1957. Hard to get hold of outside of Japan. Even the Poor Man’s Watch Forum fails to feature it. The interesting point to note is the missing k on the word Anti shock on the dial – on some other models the ‘k’ is included. This model features a 19 jewel red gilt hand-wound movement and the watch is definitely a superior model as the case is in 18 gold. The watch is a classic 39mm, a little small by today’s standards, but the typical size for a watch of the era. This beautiful gold watch is available on Rakuten for around $1,250.

G-Shock MTG-1500-9AJF

G-Shock MTG-1500-9AJF

For just $100 more you could acquire one of the latest G-Shocks, the G-Shock MTG-1500-9AJF. Known as a Neo Brightman the watch is solar powered, get it fully stoked with its share of sunshine and it will run for days, even if you hibernate in your man cave. It also has a world timer function with no less than 29 time zones. An electric signal fed from transmitters keeps the watch bang on time via regular updates around 6 times a day. You will never be more than a millisecond +/-. The perpetual calendar will stay accurate till long after time ceases to have any significance for you.

Michael Weare | Website

Michael Weare has been a professional writer for 30 years, writing about Japanese technology, German and Italian cars, British tailoring and Swiss watches. Michael manages the editorial content of Click Tempus and will be keeping the magazine fresh and informative with regular features, as well as bringing great writers to the magazine. Email: michael@clicktempus.com

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