Which Seiko Watch I Can Modify?

Jurica Krajacic
Jurica Krajacic
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Finding a decent watch isn’t enough for a moddable look. There are excellent, moddable watches out there — we’ll speak about some of them shortly — but remember, not every good watch is conveniently moddable.

To readily modify a watch, aftermarket components must be freely available. As long as the case of the watch and movement are the same, you may typically mix and change bezels, dials, and other elements. So Seiko is an excellent modder brand.

When looking at the most often modified Seiko watches, we saw that the SKX007 and Turtle are popular choices for the Seiko mod.

Today, we will look at the best watches for the Seiko mod.

8. Seiko SKX007

Photo Credit: Watchreviewblog.com

Seiko introduced the SKX007 in 1996 as an updated version of their 1960s Seiko 5 diving watch. After a hiatus in the 2000s, it has been back in production since 2011.

The SKX007 is one of the most recognizable diving watches on the market, providing you don’t mix it up with other Seiko 5 watches. It’s decently priced, considering Seiko’s quality.

Big dots represent the 5-minute marks and a smaller outside ring. An oval at 6 and 9 o’clock is more extended, and a day/date window is 3 o’clock. It’s an inverted triangle.

The case measures 42.5mm wide and 46mm long lug-to-lug. This makes it big enough for most people. The 13.25mm thick case is typical of Seiko models. The simple 7S26 movement’s low weight of little under 10 ounces astounded me.

A tiny bevel between the case and bezel extends over the lugs, increasing the visible dial size while reducing the overall profile. There’s a 60-minute scale on the bezel with a large triangle at 12. The crystal is Hardlex, a mineralized glass.

7. Seiko SKX009

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The SKX009 is an SKX007 variant. It’s based on the same 1960s 5-series. It was also released in 1996, with one notable change. The bezel is a Seiko classic with deep blue from 4 to 12 and crimson from noon to 4 o’clock.

This watch, like other Seiko timepieces on our list, fits this requirement. Beyond 150m water resistance, an ISO-rated diving watch meets several different fundamental needs such as:

5-minute markings and one pre-selection indicator this unidirectional bezel ensure fast return to the surface if it is accidentally turned.

25cm vision in total darkness, allowing usage of the watch underwater.

A bright second hand or other indicators that the watch is still working.

Magnetism defense. The watch retains accuracy in under 30 seconds.

6. Seiko SKX011

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In 1996, it joined the 007 and 009. The SKX011J is Japanese, whereas the SKX011K is Korean.

On the SKX007/SKX009, the 7S26 movement is used. It is a reliable workhorse movement that does not hack or wind. It won’t win any awards, but it’s a typical movement that’s easy to replace and suits the needs of most. With a 42-hour battery backup, you can keep it in your dresser drawer for a few days.

42mm case diameter, 45.5mm lug to lug It is slimmer than the 009 and 007. But at 3.68 ounces, it’s a decent option for those seeking a lightweight watch. The 4 o’clock dive crown is still ISO-rated.

An orange pumpkin face and large white dots highlight the 5-minute marks that make this dial attractive. With a needle-like second hand and a brilliant dot at the back. The date window is at 3 o’clock, as before.

5. Seiko 5 SNK809

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The Seiko 5 SNK809 is the newest version of the Seiko 5, which has been in continuous manufacture since the 1960s with slight modifications. In the beginning, the watch had to include five features: an automatic movement, a day and date display, a 4-o’clock crown, and a robust design. All of these characteristics remain on modern Seiko 5 watches.

Their faces distinguish the SNK809 and SKX series. Unlike the SKX, the SNK809 features a more beautiful dial. Both rings have subdued Arabic numerals for hours, and the outer one has 60 minutes and a 5-minute display. The hands are fashioned like elongated diamonds with a luminescent finish. Despite their modest size, the scale and numerals are lighted. The seconds hand has a red color tip and is easily visible. A day/date window at 3 o’clock completes the image.

This 7S26 watch has a 4 o’clock crown which unlike a 3 o’clock crown, it doesn’t press into your wrist when you bend your arm.

4. Seiko 5 SNZF15

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The Seiko 5 SNZF15 is a Seiko 5 variation that uses an improved 7S36 movement rather than the basic 7S26. Traditional training with a crown at 3 o’clock, +40/-20 seconds each day. However, it is fussy and can be wrong by up to a minute every day. You should wear it for a few days before letting it rest till the 40-hour battery runs out. Rewind it, and it should usually work. This movement has a “magic lever” that allows you to rotate the crown in any way.

There’s a “Pepsi style” angle on the watch face, exactly like on the SKX009 watch we previously examined, which is not only appealing but also makes it possible to set a 20-minute timer quickly and easily. While the SNZF15 has a uni-directional bezel and is only certified for 100 meters making it is not suitable for diving. It does include huge, high-visibility 5-minute dots and wide, easy-to-read minute and hour hands, though.

The 42mm casing is 13mm thick and has a scratch- and shatter-resistant Hardlex mineral crystal.

3. SKX013

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At first sight, the SKX007 may appear identical to the SKX013. With the same dial, hands, and bezel insert, it’s easy to see the similarities.

On closer inspection, the most significant distinction is its size. The SKX013 sports a 38mm case with a 13mm rim and is 5mm smaller than the SKX007. It’s difficult to see in photographs, but the SKX013 is the little brother of the SKX007.

The Seiko SKX013 may be your best choice if you want a high-quality diving watch that fits smaller wrists. Although not as renowned as the SKX007, it appears that smaller watches are becoming more popular.

Like the SKX007, the SKX013 has an extensive aftermarket. 

2. SRP Turtle

Photo Credit: Namokimods.com

The Seiko Turtle is a 44mm watch. Turtle’s square-ish cushion-case shape and short, hefty lugs make it appropriate for most wrists save the tiniest..

The 4R36 movement in the Seiko Turtle is a hand-winding and hacking improvement over the basic 7S26 movement featured in most of Seiko’s more inexpensive products.

It’s still an entry-level Seiko movement. Despite this, it works admirably for an entry-level automated timepiece. While both 7S26 and 4R36 movements are fantastic, the ability to halt the second hand while setting the time (called hacking)is essential for precise timekeeping. It’s a little touch that elevates the Seiko Turtle to automatic watch status.

Are you looking for a watch with excellent movement right out of the box? Then look no farther than the Turtle.

1. SEA URCHIN

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The SNZF17 Seiko 5 Sea Urchin is a beautiful and affordable watch. It is strong, durable, and ageless.

The Sea Urchin’s popularity stems from its size. It has a 41mm case diameter. This casing size is ideal for most individuals, as it is neither too large nor too tiny. The Seiko Sea Urchin is a precisely balanced and proportioned Seiko 5.

The Seiko Sea Urchin’s traditional dive watch design is a popular base for Submariner or Black Bay type watch builds.

The SNZF17 Seiko 5 is a fantastic watch and one of the most excellent Seiko sports watches available at this price point.

Lastly, decide on the watch construction you want, then work deeper to find the model that best suits your needs.

The SKX007 is a popular watch with several suitable mod components. The best Seiko mod watches based on aftermarket support would be the SKX007/009.

The main disadvantages of alternative options are their restricted selection of mod components compared to the SKX007. The market for non-SKX007 Seiko mod parts is also expanding.

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