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Citizen is the world’s largest watch manufacturer and looking at their well-designed watches – like this 1964 Citizen Diamond Flake Calibre 700 dress mechanical here – and one can easily see why.  The Diamond Flake combines classic dress watch design with affordability and a dynamite manual-wound mechanical movement, leaving us with great designs like the one here.


Much like Seiko and its legendary Grand and King Seiko lines, Citizen produced a wide-ish range of high-end dress watches throughout the 1960s and 1970s – a few were/are relatively well known, but others are not and aren’t commonly seen, like its Jet and Diamond Flake series.  The Diamond Flake label (two colliding arrow heads, similar to the Citizen advertisement in the pictures) are used only for this model range – most vintage Citizen watches lack a label accompanying their model name.


The Diamond Flake is an elegant watch, akin to Seiko’s Goldfeather, and after its launch, Citizen followed with a date model (the Diamond Flake Date) and a slightly lower spec model (titled simply, Flake), and all three came in both stainless-steel and gold variants; it also came in 25 or 31 jeweled mechanical movements.


First introduced by Citizen in 1962, the Diamond Flake was Citizen’s entry into the high-end arena, competing with other ultra-flat watches with its Calibre 700 manual-wound mechanical movement.


The Calibre 700 movement is a work of art - at the time the race for slimmer watches was on, following the fashion for ever slimmer dress watches.  Possessing the thinnest watch movement was a huge marketing bragging point.  At the time of introduction, the 700 was the thinnest three hand calibre in the world, with a thickness of a mere 2.7mm (beating out Seiko’s closest by only 0.25mm).


Vintage Citizen watches are a little like discovering watches all over again. There’s much to learn - unlike vintage Seiko, Citizen has its own ecosystem and a (lot) less rabid following, and it’s quite under the radar (at least for now).


This Citizen Diamond Flake comes on a stainless-steel bracelet, and with nylon strap, rugged travel case, and springbar tool.

1964 Citizen Diamond Flake Calibre 700 Dress Watch

  • DIAL: Silver starburst Citizen Diamond Flake-signed dial, with contrasting cursive black and blue script; correct dauphin hour, minute, and second hands.  Hour markers are applied and both these markers and the hands are polished without luminous material.  At the six o’clock position is the “Parashock” branding, Citizen’s answer to Seiko’s “Diashock” shock absorber system.



    CASE: Stainless-steel case measures 38mm (40mm w/crown) x 46mm stainless steel case.


    BAND: This Diamond Flake comes on a vintage 1960s Flexon stainless-steel bracelet, which will fit up to an approx. 8.5 inch wrist; this Citizen also comes with a black and greyish-blue nylon strap.


    CRYSTAL: Domed acrylic crystal – no scratches or cracks.


    MOVEMENT: Engraved rhodium-plated gold Citizen 25-jewel manual-wound movement, produced in April 1964, which beats at 18,000 beats per hour.


    CROWN: Unsigned stainless-steel crown.

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