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The automatic movement within the 5606 Lord-Matic - like the gold 1970's Seiko 5606-7000 here, presented by the President of the Japanese National Railways as an employee achievement award - was considered by Seiko to be such an excellent movement it would be subsequently re-worked and placed within Seiko's legendary (and quite accurate) Grand Seiko’s.


The caseback on this 5606 features Kanji Japanese engravings, indicating this watch was awarded by the President of the Japanese National Railways (JNR) to an employee as an "Efficacy Award Commemoration."  The JNR commonly awarded Citizen and Seiko dress watches to exceptional employees in the 1960s and 1970s, and is was one of these.  Intriguingly, there is no serial number on the caseback, strongly suggesting Seiko custom made these for the JNR.


In 1906, the JNR – Kokuyū Tetsudō (state-owned railway, or Japanese Government Railways) – was founded by the Japanese Government via the nationalization of 17 private companies, with the Ministry of Railways and the Ministry of Transportation and Communications taking control of the network subsequently.


During WWII, many rail lines would be dismantled for their steel, in support of the war effort. In mid-1949, by U.S. General Headquarters, Tokyo order, the JGR was reorganized into the JNR as s a public corporation.  The JNR would go from strength to strength in the years that followed, to include the inauguration of high-speed lines, to include the Shinkansen line (does the film "Bullet Train" ring a bell?)


The JNR was not state-run, and had independent accounting from the Japanese Government national budget.  It began to falter, however, in the early 1980’s, bogged down by rural sections without enough passengers to remain viable – the JNR would begin to close nearly 100 unprofitable local lines in 1983.  It wasn’t enough – by 1987, JNR’s debt was over ¥27 trillion ($442 billion at 2021 exchange rates).  The JNR would again be privatized in the late 1980’s and re-named the Japan Railways Group (or JR Group), with its remaining debt transferred to the national budget's general accounting.


But enough history - on to the Lord Matic line itself, which finds its genesis in the Lord Marvel (first made in 1956), with the LM series eventually positioned beneath the King Seiko, with a very sophisticated new automatic movement and high quality case design and finishing.


By 1968, the LM line had greatly increased in popularity and its movement, the 5606, became one of the most ubiquitous Seiko mechanical movements of the time - the 5606 also formed the basis of higher beat variants fitted to many of the automatic King Seiko and Grand Seiko models of the early to mid 1970’s.


Seiko’s Lord Matic’s were produced at the middle of their lineup, price wise, between 1968 and produced through the 1970’s.  Of unique note, not only does the Lord Matic 5606 have a hacking feature, it can be wound via both its automatic movement and by hand.


This Seiko 5606 comes on a leather strap, and with a nylon strap, springbar tool, and rugged travel case.

Gold Japanese National Railways 1970s Seiko 5606-7000 Lord Matic Automatic

Out of Stock
  • DIAL: Seiko LM-signed silver dial with gold hour indices, day/date at 3 o’clock position works nicely -  which remains intact and functioning as designed - with Kanji Japanese and English day variants.  Matching gold hour, minute, and second hands.


    CASE: Gold mono-bloc case measures 35mm x 41.5mm - thin at a mere 10mm in thickness - with the 5606's automatic movement accessed via the front of this one piece case.  Caselines remain sharp and the brushed finish remains on the case top -  no evidence of machine polish.  Importantly, gold plating remains uniform throughout case.  Kanji Japanese inscription on caseback identifies this 5606 as issued to the Japanese National Railroad to commemorate an "achievment of record."


    CRYSTAL: Domed acrylic crystal.


    BAND: This LM comes on a brown leather strap, with gold hardware; it also comes with a dark blue, white, and orange nylon strap.


    MOVEMENT: Seiko 23-jewel automatic movement.  Of significant note, the day and date quick set functions work as designed.  We have performed a full service on this gold Lord Matic.


    CROWN: Unsigned gold crown, gold plating remains intact.

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