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Seiko 6309

The hands on the 6309 are quintessential Seiko, and they have continued to use variations on these hands to this day. They are large with large luminous plots and the minute hand has a big arrowhead at the tip. The second hand has a large lume filled ‘lollipop’ for easy reading. They are polished steel that is quite flat with nice sharp edges. Again, aftermarket hands are everywhere, and are usually fairly easy to distinguish from the originals in that they have a more rounded edge to them and appear more ‘3D’.

The Seiko caliber 6309 movement is a 17 jewel automatic, it is a true workhorse. There are many stories and examples of people acquiring a 6309 that is 30+ years old that have never been serviced and yet continue to work perfectly with a strong power reserve and keeping excellent time. It’s a true tribute to the folks who designed these movements. The 6309 is automatic, but does not hand wind or hack. Like most Seiko’s the day/date has a quickset mechanism used by pulling the crown out one notch and turning it one way to advance the day, then the other way to advance the date.

The 6309 line. This is a basic movement and was launched in 1976 and discontinued in 1988. It was designed to fit inside the cushion case of the 6309 line of divers but also appeared in the Seiko Sport 5 line that was less water resistant.

The movement has 17 jewels and is completely automatic with a half rotor taking up most of the visible surface and a non-hacking day/date movement.

You’re probably saying what the hell are you talking about? Here’s a quick explanation. The 6309 movement is a base movement with a rotor, the little thing that spins when the watch is in motion. It drives the mainspring which in turn drives the balance wheel. This drives the hands and the day/date mechanism. This movement has 17 jewels, tiny rubies that reduce friction within the system. Because this is a mass-market movement Seiko focused on durability and not on aesthetics. The movement is so plain as to be boring, but up close if you dare open the case, it’s quite striking.

In short, the 6309 is the Honda Civic or old Volvo of the watch world. The 6309 is a direct ancestor of the the modern Orange Monster.