There are many vintage Seiko divers popular with collectors, and the legendary 7S26 – like this all original 2001 example here – is one of these. With good reason, Seiko was able to build a tremendous cult following around the SKX - of significant note, Seiko unwisely discontinued these legendary divers in 2018.
The design of this 7S26 is classic and simple, with immediate evidence of those that came before it, namely the instantly recognizable Seiko 7002 automatic, 7548 quartz, and even the famous 6309 diver. Its automatic movement is tough and reliable – during its heyday, it was also popular with various armed forces for this same reason, despite the widely held (false) assumption that military personnel only wear military watches issued to them.
Seiko’s 7S26 is a logical step in its mechanical movement line, which debuted in 1996 to replace the 7002 in Seiko’s popular dive watch line, and incorporates quickset day and date displays, and automatic bi-directional winding via Seiko’s patented Magic Lever system.
The orange dial variant was first released in the mid-1990s as the SKX011K, and was likely targeted at the South East Asian market - Seiko discontinued, for unclear reasons, the SKX011K in favor of its successor, the SKX011J, and like other 7S-calibre Seiko watches with the "J" suffix, the SKX011J was mainly sold in Middle East countries, like Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, etc, where the population mainly speaks Arabic.
This Seiko diver comes with two NATO straps, Pelican travel case, and springbar tool. Of note, this orange-dialed diver also comes with the Seiko 7S26 manual.
2001 Seiko 7S26-0020 (SKX011J) Automatic Dive Watch, w/7S26 Manual
DIAL: Brilliant original orange dial, Arabic/English variant day and date, and original hands. Lume remains bright, following exposure to strong light.
BEZEL: Original bezel insert on this SKX - the SKX011K/J inserts had gold accents, and many a Seiko mod aficionado swapped these for original Seiko SKX007 inserts (which didn't have the gold). But not this one! Bezel ratchets counterclockwise as designed with a solid click.
CASE: Original 42.5mm (w/o crown, 44.5mm with) x 45mm stainless steel case in great condition. Matching original signed caseback.
CRYSTAL: Hardlex crystal, almost entirely scratch-free, with a single small scratch near the two o'clock position.
BAND: Black 22mm nylon NATO strap, with stainless-steel hardware. This 7S26 also comes with a light blue and orange NATO, also with stainless-steel hardware. These straps are paired with extra secure "fat boy" springbars
MOVEMENT: Original 21-jewel Seiko 7S26 mechanical automatic movement, manufactured in December 2001.
CROWN: Original unsigned stainless steel screwed-down crown.