Seiko's 6139 automatic chronograph - like the all original early 1974 gold 6139-6015 for sale here, with its original "railroad" bracelet - was one of the first automatic chronograph movements created, and rightly counts itself within the ranks of the first automatic chronographs, like Heuer's Calibre 11 and Zenith/Movado’s El Primero movements. Seiko really did their homework when they designed their 6139 dials, and pictures do not do justice - these dials are amazing to behold in person.
Back in the late 1960'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 a feat debated who won, but in the background of this skirmish, Seiko quietly created their own at the same time, likely beating the Swiss at their own game – the Seiko 6139.
The 6139 was the first chronograph to have a vertical clutch, a feature considered by many to be one of the hallmarks of a superior automatic chronograph movement. The 6139 also features an automatic column wheel timing control, vertical coupling mechanism, and is an integrated chronograph – the first in the world – which means the entire 6139 movement was designed and built to be a chronograph, vice being an automatic movement with a mere timing module added (**cough cough** the Calibre 11).
With this movement, Seiko set the standard, which was followed by the Swiss watch industries 20 years later. The same movement configuration was adopted by Rolex when it made its own in-house movement for the Daytona in 2000, 30 years after Seiko released the caliber 6139 and 6138. This particular Seiko 6139, the 7002 variant, represents yet another variant of Seiko's famed 6139 automatic chronograph line.
This 6139 comes with its original Seiko-signed gold-plated "railroad" bracelet, NATO strap, Pelican travel case, and springbar tool.
Gold 1974 Seiko 6139-6015 Automatic Chronograph
DIAL: Original Suwa-signed gold dial, with original minute, hour, and chronograph hands; lume shines (per picture, following exposure to light). Day/date at 3 o'clock position work as designed, with Spanish/English day variants.
CASE: Original 40mm x 43.5mm stainless-steel gold-plated case, with original caseback. Importantly, no wear on underside of case, per pictures, which is often seen on these due to exposure to sweat from wearer.
CRYSTAL: Orginal domed Hardlex crystal, no scratches or chips.
BAND: Original Seiko-signed gold-plated stainless steel bracelet - wear on bracelet not evident when worn. Also accompanying this gold 6139 is a black nylon NATO strap, with stainless-steel hardware.
MOVEMENT: Original Seiko 17-jewel 6139B automatic movement, manufactured in March 1974.
CROWN: Recessed unsigned crown.
CHRONOGRAPH PUSHERS: Chronograph pushers depress with satisfying click, no stick. Black chronograph main and subdial hands reset as designed to 0 with no issue.