Up Close With Grand Seiko's New Omiwatari Spring Drive

Name a brand that makes more interesting dials.

Watches
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If anyone doubted Grand Seiko‘s ownership of the textured dial, the new Omiwatari Spring Drive is the watch to clear up any confusion once and for all.

The subtle undulating texture on the crisp, ice blue dial represents the mysterious Omiwatari ice ridges that appear when Lake Suwa, near Grand Seiko’s Shinshu Watch Studio, freezes each winter. The effect is achieved using a hand-hammered stamp.

By contrast to the organic feel of the dial, the watch’s hands and applied hour markers are highly polished, with crisp edges.

Stamped Dial Texture Reflects The Ice Ridges Found on Lake Suwa

Timekeeping comes courtesy of the manually wound Calibre 9R31, Grand Seiko’s Spring Drive mechanical/quartz hybrid that achieves a 72-hour power reserve from twin barrels, accuracy of +/- 1 second per day and the smoothest second hand sweep you’ll find anywhere.

Grand Seiko’s formidable levels of movement finishing, which includes mirror polished countersinks and thermally blued screws can be viewed through an exhibition caseback, which also reveals the power reserve indicator.

The 38.5mm SBGY007 drops early next month via Grand Seiko retailers, priced $8,300 USD.

Elsewhere in watches, Rolls-Royce uses a pair of unique tourbillons for a $28m USD custom-built car.

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