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Thread: Fathers "vintage" Seiko 5 Sport - what shall I do?

  1. #1
    Craftsman
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    Fathers "vintage" Seiko 5 Sport - what shall I do?

    My father was never really fond of watches, in recent years he had an ex MoD G10 on his wrist, that I gave him as a birthday present years ago.
    When he passed away recently, I got the G10 back as well as finding a "vintage" Seiko 5 Sport in his drawer.





    According to the serial number calculator that I found online, it should have been made in March 1976, or?

    The watch runs very nice, does not loose or gain much and I want to ask you what shall I do:

    Continue to wear it as is or send it away for a service?

    I dont want to polish the case or try to remove the dings, since this is a memory of my father, but I am afraid that I damage it if I continue to wear it without having done a service.

    Maybe a scratchfree plastic glass would be nice. But that is probably hard to find due to its prismn structure, or?
    Last edited by bmwrover; 5th November 2019 at 14:43. Reason: to be a little bit clearer

  2. #2
    Journeyman
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    Leave it as is!

    Might be controversial but personally I donít use watches to tell the time. I like how they look, feel, what they remind me of, what they might say about me.

    Iíd wear a broken watch, itíll be right at least twice a day in any case


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  3. #3
    Craftsman
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    Personally I'd have the movement serviced (if parts are available) to ensure it runs correctly but leave the aesthetics alone. My father was never 'into' watches but what few he did have (all quartz) will get a battery and a movement service and that's it.

  4. #4
    Master
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    The crystal should clean up nicely with a bit of metal polish and a soft cloth, unless there are very heavy scratches (or cracks). Nice old watch.

  5. #5
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    As above, leave pretty much as it, Polywatch might get rid of some of the lighter swirls on the glass.

    Personally I'd service it if it was keeping bad time, in the short term I'd wear it and see how it goes.

  6. #6
    Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozzyb123 View Post
    Leave it as is!

    Might be controversial but personally I donít use watches to tell the time. I like how they look, feel, what they remind me of, what they might say about me.

    Iíd wear a broken watch, itíll be right at least twice a day in any case


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    But why not have the movement serviced and get the thing running properly?

    A watch can have its water resistance restored and it's movement serviced without 'spoiling' its history in any way, thus rendering it useful and fit for purpose again.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by monogroover View Post
    The crystal should clean up nicely with a bit of metal polish and a soft cloth, unless there are very heavy scratches (or cracks). Nice old watch.
    Old crystals are better off replaced with new. The only exception is where a suitable replacement can`t be sourced.

    It's surprising how a new crystal can (aesthetically) bring a watch back to life.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    But why not have the movement serviced and get the thing running properly?

    A watch can have its water resistance restored and it's movement serviced without 'spoiling' its history in any way, thus rendering it useful and fit for purpose again.
    If service involved a little recalibration and some oil that would be fine

    New parts start to change the watch

    Iím not preaching in any way, thatís just how I feel


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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by AberBoy View Post

    Personally I'd service it if it was keeping bad time, in the short term I'd wear it and see how it goes.
    The watch is old and would definitely benefit from being serviced. It won`t be me that's doing it, but that's what I`d recommend. The lubrication will be non-existent in the important areas, the watch will be running dry and that's not good for it.

    As I`ve said many times on here, I don`t make this stuff up.

  10. #10
    Cal 6119 so barrel arbor pivot holes could be worn, a service is a very good idea IMHO.
    These calibers run very nicely and are accurate when regulated correctly.

  11. #11
    Grand Master Der Amf's Avatar
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    I hadn't realised they were doing that style of dial as late as 1976, very nice. Is it Bodo who is the member here who would be the specialist for servicing 70s Seikos? The crystal isn't interfering with the view too much - I would only have it replaced if an exact replacement could be found, or if it was getting dangerously brittle - with such a good strong design it would be a shame to have the wrong shape crystal unnecessarily.

  12. #12
    Iím sorry for your loss OP. Iíd get the Seiko serviced and see if a quick rub with some polywatch cleaned up the crystal. Then Iíd wear that piece on special days.

  13. #13
    Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by ozzyb123 View Post
    If service involved a little recalibration and some oil that would be fine

    New parts start to change the watch

    Iím not preaching in any way, thatís just how I feel


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Service means strip the watch down, thoroughly clean all parts, replace parts that are worn out and will compromise the running of the watch, then rebuild the movement and lubricate. There's really no 'halfway house', anything less is simply cutting corners. The end result is a watch that runs reliably, with further wear to the parts being minimised because it's now lubricated correctly.

    Don`t misunderstand me, I`m an avid watch collector and I respect originality, but I don`t allow that to over-ride my technical judgement where old watches are concerned.

    If the crystal is special to the watch and a direct replacement can`t be sourced (or a generic that'll work) the only option is to retain the original. Sometimes they can be cleaned up and refinished but all too often an old acrylic crystal will have fine cracks that aren`t immediately obvious. These cracks can propagate if the watch gets a knock and the crystal can turn to crazy-paving, once they're cracked they need replacing. Shrinkage is another issue, sometimes an old acrylic won't fit properly and it's liable to drop out.

    Refinishing an old acrylic crystal is feasible but it needs doing by someone who knows what he's doing, and trust me it'll need a bit more than polywatch!

    Bodo is probably the best guy to send this one to, he's got form for fixing old Seikos.

  14. #14
    Master Thewatchbloke's Avatar
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    As has been said, accurate running is no indicator of the health of the movement, it's always worth getting a sentimental piece like this properly serviced imho. The correct faceted crystal for your particular watch can still be sourced.

  15. #15
    Craftsman
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    Thanks for all your valued input. I made up my mind:
    Yes I would love to replace the crystal, but only with the correct one.
    According to my research, the facette shaped crystal, correct for my fathers watch is: 310T32ACSG
    It says no longer available from Seiko and I havnt seen a NOS for sale :-(
    If I find one, I would send the watch for a crystal replacement and a service and then wear it on special occasions.

    Once again, thanks and if you come across the 310T32ACSG crystal, please give me a shout. Cheers.

  16. #16
    Grand Master JasonM's Avatar
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    Your best bet is to PM Duncan, Thewatchbloke in the post before yours for the crystal and service.
    Cheers..
    Jase

  17. #17
    Grand Master Der Amf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonM View Post
    Your best bet is to PM Duncan, Thewatchbloke in the post before yours for the crystal and service.
    That would be ideal, but looking here...

    https://thewatchbloke.co.uk/prices/

    ...it says "I still have a halt on accepting any new customers Iím afraid, I think I seriously underestimated the length of the service backlog. As soon as I get it down to an acceptable level youíll hear it here first."

  18. #18
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    Very sorry for your loss. That is a lovely old Seiko, I agree with keeping it looking as it is except for a fine polish to the crystal if it's not cracked, any deep scratches I'd live with if it's not replaceable. However, I would definitely be looking at a full service and reseal to protect it for the future and make it every day practical. Doesn't matter if it ends up costing £300 on a £100 watch (both sums a total guess on my part), you'll never replace that one and I think it'll be a no brainer.

  19. #19
    Master dejjl's Avatar
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    I have had several of this type of Seiko and Duncan has brought them all back to life. I have never used Paul, but he gets excellent feedback on here too.

    I had my Grandfather's watch serviced and had the crystal replaced. I now wear it with confidence and pride.

  20. #20
    Agree with the others above... I have had many vintage Seikos (and still do have!) over the years and they always benefit from a service and a new crystal. The case and dial/hands will always show their patina, a fresh crystal won't take away from that!
    Enjoy!

  21. #21
    Craftsman Murdoc's Avatar
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    When I was a kid I remember my dad used to wear an automatic Seiko with a distinctive faceted crystal. He lost it a few years ago but seeing the pictures in the OP itís the same as my dadís watch!

    Whatís the model number of your fatherís watch? Iíd like to keep an eye out for one and maybe replace my dadís lost one one day.

  22. #22
    Grand Master JasonM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murdoc View Post
    When I was a kid I remember my dad used to wear an automatic Seiko with a distinctive faceted crystal. He lost it a few years ago but seeing the pictures in the OP itís the same as my dadís watch!

    Whatís the model number of your fatherís watch? Iíd like to keep an eye out for one and maybe replace my dadís lost one one day.

    If I can make out the casebook correctly, its a 6119 8570.
    Cheers..
    Jase

  23. #23
    Grand Master oldoakknives's Avatar
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    I think you've already decided, but my twopenneth is, I'd wear the Seiko 5 as is, with the patina it gathered whilst being worn by your father. Every little scratch is related to him. If it needs a service then 'movement only please' !
    Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.

  24. #24
    Craftsman Murdoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasonM View Post
    If I can make out the casebook correctly, its a 6119 8570.
    Brilliant, thank you

  25. #25
    Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldoakknives View Post
    I think you've already decided, but my twopenneth is, I'd wear the Seiko 5 as is, with the patina it gathered whilst being worn by your father. Every little scratch is related to him. If it needs a service then 'movement only please' !
    The alternative view is to have the watch restored and refinished to replicate the experience the OPs father had when he originally bought the watch. Taking this path also provides the OP with a very smart watch thatíll be a pleasure to wear.

  26. #26
    Craftsman
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    A little service and a polish of the crystal would be my advice


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  27. #27
    Master
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    Thatís a nice thing to find.

    I have polished one of those faceted crystals with a sponge nail block and some polywatch. It came up a pretty well, not perfect but it was a mess before. I was careful although it didnít take long. The facets are internal in case anyone didnít realise so you are just polishing a domed crystal.

    Iím with Paul on cleaning up or replacing a crystal on an old watch, but the rest of the appearance I would leave alone as others have said.


  28. #28
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    I think I'd be looking at getting it serviced but agree with a few on here. I'd leave it looking as is.

  29. #29
    Craftsman
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    Watch will be on its way to Duncan aka watchbloke after a very nice email correspondence.

    Main reason is indeed the fact that Duncan is able to source the facette crystal, as the original fitted one does have two cracks (not visible in the original post pictures).
    Rest of the watch will remain as is, except getting an internal service just to be sure the movement its not excessively wearing out on dried up lubrication, despite running nicely.
    Last but not least, hopefully one additional link on the steel bracelet as it is tight at the moment.

    Looking forward to the result. Will show it of course in due time :-)

  30. #30
    Master
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    Sounds great, looking forward to the pictures.

  31. #31
    Journeyman
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    That sounds absolutely perfect ,new original crystal, serviced movement, and everything else as is, fabulous.

  32. #32
    nice watch, and a nice memory of your father.

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