Seiko Vintage 6117-6400 World Time GMT Automatic Error Dial Bracelet 41mm

$1,395.00

In stock

SKU: 275072482923 Categories: ,

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All the watch world loves a mistake, from the tiny spacing error on a Rolex Daytona that creates a so-called “APH” dial and dramatically inflates the value to sloppy quality control on a brand’s press sample that makes us collectively roll our eyes and wonder how on earth they missed it. Mistakes, whether in the watch itself or in the marketing fluff that accompanies it, allow us to flex our superior knowledge or eye for detail and generally feel smug. 

But not all mistakes are what they seem. Take, for example, Seiko’s 6117 line of world timers, produced in 1968 to replace the ref 6217 that celebrated the Tokyo Olympics of 1964. They work on the basis of a revolving city ring around the outside of the dial and a fixed 24-hour hand. Placing the desired city at 12 o’clock will allow you to read off the related time on the charmingly shaped red “dog-leg” hand. I own one of these, and a great watch it is too, but when I began my search I came across two versions of the watch. One has GMT aligned with London, as you might expect, and the other, often referred to as an “error dial”, has London aligned with Paris an hour ahead. Not being able to live with such an anomaly, I chose the more expected alignment, but the alternative always puzzled me. It was a big “error” to make across a lot of watches. Granted, the world of the late 1960s was not as connected as it is now, but surely a nation as developed as Japan should know what time it is in London?

Thing is, minor quirks of history can easily get lost in the passage of time. Back in 1968, the UK government, under pressure from the road safely lobby, held an experiment whereby the clock went forwards in March and did not turn back until October 1971. For three years we had permanent British Summer Time (GMT +1). Despite an 11.7 per cent fall in road fatalities during this time, the experiment was shelved and forgotten. Mention 1968 and people may recall the Prague Spring or the assassination of Martin Luther King, but three years of BST doesn’t register. 

For a watch launched in 1968, Seiko had to accurately reflect the world time zones as they were. We should congratulate them for even being aware of this domestic aberration, and, of course, post-1971 the city rings of the 6117 went back to their familiar pattern. The “error dial” should rather be termed a “historic dial”, reminding us of a part of our past that we have now forgotten. The 6117 is a fantastic series to collect, including classic GMT styles as well as world timers.

Fantastic Example of the “ERROR DIAL” – Unpolished, all original (Case, Hands, Dial, Movement) – The Bracelet is a period correct Vintage Seiko Bracelet (not the original)

BRAND: Seiko

MODEL: 6117-6400

MOVEMENT: Japanese AUTOMATIC World Time GMT

CASE: Stainless Steel

CROWN: Push/Pull Crown

SIZE: 41mm

LUGS: 20mm

DIAL: White Dial 

BEZEL: Non-rotating

CONDITION: Pre-owned – Vintage Circa 1968-1969

BOXES/PAPERS: Watch with Seiko Service case!

WATER RESISTANCE: – 50m

STRAP/BRACELET: – Seiko Vintage Stainless Steel bracelet with all links (period correct)

 

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