When I first started seriously collecting watches, one thing I couldn’t fathom (excuse the pun) was the love I was seeing in others for the old Seiko divers with their big cushion cases and asymmetric shapes. It took me some time to understand what the allure was, and the one reference that I set my heart on was the 6105.
Procuced between 1968 and 1977, Seiko made 2 series of 6105 divers. The 6105-8000 and 6105-8009 models use the cal. 6105A movement and have symmetrical cushion cases, whilst he 6105-8110 and 6105-8119 models come later and use the cal. 6105B movement within larger asymmetical cushion cases. They are both 17J and run at 21,600 bph and both have a quickset date-only calendar mechanism.
Although not a “military issue” watch, Seiko 6105s were very popular with American GIs in Vietnam, as the watch had a reputation for ruggedness and durability in the harsh Vietnamese combat environment. Indeed, for anyone who’s seen the movie Apocolypse Now (which is actually my very favourite movie of all time – bar none) Martin Sheen wore a 6105 playing captain Willard; since then, of course, the watch has become one of the all-time cult classics.
This one, another that I picked up on my visit to Stockholm, is an absolute beauty – all original and with just a little wabi to hint at it’s roots. Truth be told, it’s not the most beautiful watch you’ll ever wear… but my god, it has some character!