Seiko 0439-5009

Seiko 0439-5009

Seiko’s really early LCDs are some of their finest in terms of styling.

Some are essentially unobtainable, namely the few that were produced for the Japanese domestic market only, 05LC, 05LCA and 06LC models. Of those that can be (relative) easily found, as long as you have deep pockets, are the 0624-5009 and this, the 0439-5009.

I had a couple of 0439’s 10 years ago and sold them on because they were the gold version and I prefer silver but always liked the module and it was a ‘keep in the back of your mind’ kinds of watches for me in case one ever appeared.

The 0439 was made in 1976 so it’s going to be 40 next year, and is still one of the nicest Seikos to wear with its large case, simple styling, great proportions and more.

This particular one turned up in a lot of watches on a local auction site and had 40 years of scratches, non-working module, stuck buttons, filthy innards and no crystal gasket.

First to the case and bracelet that were introduced to Scotchbrite and wire wheels on the bench polisher. A new crystal from eBay and a crystal gasket from the ever-helpful SeikoKid and this is the end result.

Simple time and date functionality (set button is at 7 o’clock) and light was pretty much all you could expect in the mid-1970s.

It oozes class and even has a random James Bond tie-in, being seen in the Rio Mountain scene in Moonraker.

If you’re looking for an early Seiko LCD, you will pick one of these up for a better price than the ‘lemon face’ 0624.

NB If you ever restore any kind of watch and have the option to replace the crystal, do it. They can seem a bit pricey for a piece of glass (USD20+ and shipping) but it’s the one thing that needs to be perfect. Once you see how good a watch looks with a new crystal you’ll never settle for the scratched one again, regardless of how OK the original looks.

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