Within the world of vintage Seiko, Grand Seiko – distinguished by the “GS” on dial/crown and gold medallion on its caseback, like on this 1971 GS 5646-7010 here – inhabits the top of the food chain, simple as that. Grand Seiko – with 51 different models – were simply the most painstakingly designed and exquisite watches made by Seiko, produced by both the Dani and Suwa factories, including the 56GS line here.
The 56GS series, often referred to as “Ultra Thin,” included 18 variations - and transitioned from manual wind to automatic beginning in the 1970s. That said, precision level suffered as a result, but reliability level increased with its balance of maintenance, reliability and precision.
The Grand Seiko 5646 is the final Grand Seiko model Seiko produced before production ceased in 1976, a self-inflicted fatality of the quartz crisis. These were produced from mid/late 1970 through circa early 1976. Based upon the serial number, this is an earlier model produced in mid-Aug 1971. This is the first GS model that featured largely automated – rather than hand built – construction, and the 5646 is regarded as one of the best combinations of reliability, precision, and maintenance within the original GS lineup.
Of note, its relatively uncomplicated to get parts for the 56GS - 50 years after its production. A slightly less fine-tuned calibre 56 movement was also used in King Seiko and Lordmatics. Make no mistake, the GS marked, and still marks, the very best Seiko has to offer, easily on par with the vast majority of what Switzerland has to offer by way of competition.
This Grand Seiko comes with a leather strap, NATO strap, Pelican travel case, and springbar tool.
Hi-Beat 1971 Grand Seiko 5646-7010 "Special" Automatic Watch
DIAL: Brilliant original Grand Seiko-signed dial; original hour, minute, and second hands.
CASE: Original 37.5mm x 42mm stainless steel case. Gold Grand Seiko eblem on caseback is in great condition - these are frequently quite worn from wearer's sweat over the decades.
CRYSTAL: Original crystal, in good condition.
MOVEMENT: Original hi-beat 5646A automatic movement - 25 jewel movement beats at 28,800 bph and produced in June 1971 in Seiko’s Suwa factory.
CROWN: Original “GS” signed crown.