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Seiko Prospex 1968 Re-Creation Hi-Beat 55th Anniversary - Ltd Ed 1100pcs - Ref. SBEX011 (A.k.A SLA039).
Celebrate 55 years of horology with Seiko as the renowned watchmaker from the east, releases its 1965 Diver’s Re-creation this year. Introducing the Seiko Prospex 1968 Re-Creation Hi-Beat Limited Edition Ref. SBEX011, a fine remake of Seiko’s first ever mono-block, Hi-beat dive watch.
|Seiko Prospex 1968 Re-Creation Hi-Beat 55th Anniversary - Ltd Ed 1100pcs Ref. SBEX011 / SLA039
The limited-edition timepiece is powered by a Hi-Beat 8L55 calibre which is a genuine tribute to the legendary caliber 61A, the first high-end and high-beat movement from Seiko . This high-frequency automatic movement is a variant of the Grand Seiko 9S85 movement and is only used in a handful of Prospex dive watches in the past 5 years. Made with the utmost care by Seiko's skilled craftsmen in the Shizuku-ishi Watch Studio in Morioka, Japan, this calibre operates at 36,000 bph (10 beats/sec) and has a power reserve of 55 hours. Built with 37 jewels, this movement is distinguished by its clockwise balance-cock and screw-regulator.
While faithful to the original 1968 6159-7001 Diver 300 design, the greatest advance of the Re-Creation Hi-Beat is the usage of Seiko’s Ever-Brilliant Steel in its mono-bloc case construction. Providing greater corrosion resistance, this case material gets its name from its brilliant white hue which sets it apart from other Seiko timepieces. The Ever-Brilliant, one-piece steel case is unprecedented in the watch industry (as of December 2019) because of the many challenges its usage in the manufacture of watches poses to watchmakers.
|Mono Block Case with Seiko's Zaratsu finishing|
Enhanced by the super-hard coating which allows for greater scratch resistance, this watch case has a PERN value that is 1.7 times higher than that of the steel used in other high-end watches. Armed with years of experience and innovative techniques, the Seiko team overcame the obstacles of using this stainless-steel material to bring a whole new level of durability to dive watches with the Ever-Brilliant Steel case of the Re-Creation Hi-Beat.
The case of this timepiece is analogous to the original 1968 design. Best yet, it features the identical size of 44.8mm, allowing for greater legibility and a truthful wearing experience just like back in the 60s. The faithful Re-Creation Hi-Beat continues a lug to lug length of 51.4mm and a height of 15.7mm. The case back of this dive watch bears the same Seiko emblem sheltered by a horse-shoe engravings just as the 6159-7001 diver. The engravings commemorate the timeless style of this original timepiece and marks the 55th anniversary of Seiko’s, and Japan’s first high-beat 300m dive watch.
|Beating inside, Seiko's Hi-Beat Calibre, 8L55, 36000|
Seiko’s Prospex lines are characterised by the “X” logo, which sometimes, has been regarded as “extra” by some enthusiasts, and possibly a bane of those elite watch collectors. Not a fan of this logo? Fret not! The Re-Creation Hi-Beat flaunts a deep sunburst blue-grey dial that is unique to Seiko’s 55th anniversary line-up, while tributing a clean design of the 6159 diver. Capturing the mystifying beauty of the sea, these cool blue tones hint at the timepiece’s superb functionality, even in the dark depths of the ocean. The subtle ombre of its dial colour is inspired by the gradual fading of light as one dives deeper into the sea. Furthermore, its handset, bezel markings and dial markers are applied with long-lasting Lumibrite which has an ivory green hue under normal lighting conditions and glows green in the dark, allowing for excellent readability.
With a screw-down crown featuring the vintage Seiko logo as well as a bordered and bevelled date display both located at its 3 o’clock, this diver has a water resistance of 300m. The sleek metal trims accentuating the date window as well as the font style and format of its dial reflect the exact essence of the classic 1968 design. Additionally, this timepiece is fitted with a slight domed sapphire crystal which graces the watch with a vintage look.
|Seiko's LumiBrite Luminous|
The Re-Creation Hi-Beat comes with a blue waffle rubber strap that complements the ocean blue hue of its dial. Matching the dive watch perfectly, the athletic look of this silicon rubber strap comes from its unique pyramid-shaped patterns. To top it off, this exquisite diver is encased in a black 55th anniversary box that proudly showcases Seiko’s signature dolphin emblem.
This timepiece is the epitome of Seiko’s dive watches and one of the best recreations of the original 1968 6159-7001 diver. With only 1100 pieces produced, this limited-edition dive watch is a much-anticipated addition to the Prospex collection. This well fabricated timepiece is fully up to date in its specifications and execution which is testament to Seiko’s high standards and customer-centric ethos. Presenting the Re-Creation Hi-Beat, an elegant diver honouring Seiko’s 55 years of history that will find its way into the collections of many dive watch enthusiasts and elite collectors.