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The Seiko 6139 automatic chronograph – a historical movement in its own right, like this full serviced United States Air Force PX-purchased 1972 Seiko 6139-6002 "Cevert" here, with its original box and Andrews AFB paperwork – was one of the first automatic chronographs created and ranks with Zenith’s El Primero and Heuer’s Calibre 11.


The coolest thing about this particular Cevert?  Anyone who collects vintage Seiko knows how rare it is to find one with box and papers - let alone ownership bona fides - but this one has all of this!  This 1972 example includes its original box and completed warranty paperwork, which reveal it's previous owner as Roy C. Barnes, who purchased it in October 1973 at the Andrews Air Force Base PX in Maryland, just outside of Washington, D.C. 


Usually only military members and their families can shop at the PX, so between this, a few articles from the 1950s and 1960s, and a previous USAF Bolling AFB address for Barnes discovered, we assess Barnes was a member of the USAF - a pilot?  We don't know, but its certainly possible!


Back in the 1970’s, Heuer and Zenith had taken hold of the entire sports watch industry by racing to become the first to produce an automatic chronograph.  It has been awidely debated who won, but in the background of the skirmish Seiko quietly created their own, beating the Swiss at their own game – the Seiko Ref. 6139.


During the early months of 1969, Seiko put the final touches on its revolutionary 6139 chronograph - in fact, the Japanese company first began putting the 6139 in automatic chronographs as early as January of the same year.


Seiko published its first advertisement for their new automatic 6139 chronograph in February 1969, easily beating the Swiss - however, the company was concentrating on the release of the world's first quartz watch, the Astron, which would completely disrupt the watch world as it was known at the time (again, much to the chagrin of the Swiss watch industry, we're certain). We possess 6139 dials dating back to November 1968, indicating Seiko beat all other rivals to produce the world's first automatic chronograph.  Period.


Within the Road Rat automotive magazine Autumn/Winter 2018 debut edition, an article was included on the Seiko 6139 automatic chronograph – the first automatic chronograph in the world – and its connection to Formula One (F1) racing legend, François Cevert, marking the first widely(ish) publicized link between the dark blue-dialed 6139 and Cevert.  Hence the moniker "Cevert," which caught on in collector circles quickly.


Of subsequent note, NASA astronaut Colonel Richard Covey wore a Seiko 6139 like this one during his Discovery Space Shuttle STS-51 mission that launched the Advanced Communications Technology Satellite in September 1993. The flight also featured the deployment and retrieval of the SPAS-ORFEUS satellite and its IMAX camera, which captured spectacular footage of Discovery in space.


This Cevert comes with it's original stainless-steel H-link bracelet, nylon grey strap, hard plastic travel case, and springbar tool.

USAF 1972 Seiko 6139-6005 "Cevert" Chronograph w/Original Bracelet, Box & Papers

Out of Stock
  • DIAL: Dark blue Seiko-signed dial, with matching minute, hour and vibrant red chronograph hands.  Day/date - with English/Spanish day variants - at 3 o’clock position works nicely.  Inner tachymeter ring rotates smoothly as designed.  Hour indice lume evince light patina, with the correct sugar cube texture; lume shines following exposure to strong light.


    CASE: 41mm (w/o crown, 42mm with) x 46mm stainless-steel case with "water resist"-signed caseback.  Red and blue “Pepsi” bezel insert remains vibrant, with no fade, and case lines are sharp with no evidence of machine polishing.  The case top brushed finish this Cevert departed the Seiko factory with nearly half a century ago with remains intact.  Case back has been engraved with the previous owner's name and phone number.


    CRYSTAL: Hardlex crystal, no scratches or imperfections.


    BAND: This Cevert comes with its original "tappered" H-link bracelet, which will fit up to an approx. 8.50 inch wrist.  It also comes with a nylon strap.


    MOVEMENT: Seiko 17-jewel 6139B automatic movement, manufactured in December 1972. 


    CROWN: Unsigned stainless-steel crown.


    CHRONOGRAPH PUSHERS: Chronograph pushers depress with satisfying click – no sticking.  Red chronograph main and subdial hands reset as designed to zero. 

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