Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Citizen 7 Eagle Automatic Day/Date 21 Jewel Vintage - Value for Money, A Review

Vintage watches are usually not my thing. I like new and modern designs. However, I made an exception for this particular specimen. With a reference "4-286740 KT 60600988 GN-4-S Japan" this Citizen is though to have been manufactured in the 1970s.

How I got the watch is also interesting. This is the first time I used eBay to make an acquisition. Although I have been a member of eBay since 2005, I never have gotten the fear of facing problems when making purchases. After getting through this barrier, I decided to get something small first. The Citizen 7 was the first that caught my eye.

The seller was from United Kingdom and I was able to get it for just GBP25 all in (or RM141.71) on 3 January 2014. After waiting for two weeks, I got the package as pictured below.

In it was a simple printout (coloured though) from the seller.

The packaging is not particularly elegant but I guess does the job it is intended for. Wrapped in Styrofoam and taped tight.

The Citizen that I got came from a sub-family called the Citizen 7 (or Eagle 7 to some). This is supposed to be a direct competitor to the Seiko 5. These watches generally use the Citizen Miyota 8200 automatic movement. Like the Seiko 5, they were pretty inexpensive. The specifications of the watch are very similar to the Seiko 5 complete with Day/Date and a 21 jewel auto movement. However unlike the 7S26 Seiko movement you can wind the watch manually.

Unfortunately I cannot get the actual model number of this watch. Even the seller was not able to get me the information. What I know about the watch is that it is 34 mm across (excluding crown). The dial is black with lumes on the markers and hands having deteriorated. The crystal appears to be mineral glass.

The day/date window is at 3 o'clock as with the crown. Meanwhile the case-back is solid and screw-down. Unfortunately, the original bracelet is missing.

The seller this mentioned that the watch has been serviced and kept excellent time. After wearing it for a couple of days and keeping it on my watch winder over the weekend, I found the accuracy to be great. Very surprising. All the other functions such as the day and date work.

Although small in today's standard, the watch still sits nicely on my wrist. In fact, it does not look old or out of place at all. It is comfortable to wear and can be used in all occasions.

If I was to flip this piece to someone, I should be able to get a nice profit. Although I can get the dial refurbished i.e. cleaned (or replaced with a new one) and it re-lumed, I was advised against it as it will destroy the vintage feel to the watch and hence its intrinsic value. Honestly, I can't stand the level of deterioration on the watch, I would like it to be refreshed. Anyway, let's wait a while before I decide what to do with it.

Overall, value for money.

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