Seiko 6119-7480 – another eBay bargain

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 31st, 2008
May 31

I actually bought two watches from the same vendor when I acquired the one I posted about yesterday. The second one was a vibrant blue 6119-7480, with a bit of grunge on the dial and case, but I won the bid on eBay for $25, so I thought it was a good buy. And yes, at that time I was REALLY into finding eBay bargains! :-)


Yes I agree, the cheap brown strap is quite ugly. I didn’t want to spend lots of money, but managed to find a blue oiled leather strap that goes quite nicely with it.

On this watch the dial, movement, and case all matched, no surprise major part replacements here. I’m not sure about the hands, but at this price point it was an “as is” purchase in my mind, along with the other one I posted about yesterday.


I obviously did not dust the crystal before taking that picture, but you can see the dial and the watch in general definitely has wabi.

Today’s lesson for buying vintage watches on eBay … pictures from the vendors are often show the watch in a lot better light than when you see it! Don’t expect it to look just as good as the pictures show.

Today’s lesson #2 – if you want real bargains, buy multiple items from the same vendor at the same time, you’ll usually save lots on shipping (again, read the terms first to be sure).

Still, it’s a bright uplifting blue, as you can only really find in a 1970s watch, runs well, and it’s enjoyable to wear – for $25, no issues on my part!

1970s Seiko automatics, especially the ubiquitous 6119 models, can be had quite often for a real bargain on eBay, if you don’t mind searching. Make sure you read ALL the fine text, and look at the actual feedback quotes for the vendor not just their percentage, before deciding who to buy from. You can always buy from other sources and be sure of what you’re getting, but let’s admit it, part of the attraction of eBay is the whole idea of getting a “deal”. I’ve had issues, but I’ve also had some good deals, and the bottom line is the hunting is part of the enjoyment. It’s like gambling … only spend as much as you can afford to lose, anything more and you’ll probably end up unhappy.

Seiko 6119-7460 FrankenSeiko – eBay buyer beware #2

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 30th, 2008
May 30

On my last post about eBay “surprises”, I mentioned the term FrankenSeiko. That’s a watch you get when somebody cobbles together parts from various watches to make one supposedly genuine vintage Seiko. Although there are some similarities to a “mod“, it’s done for very different reasons. Unfortunately a lot of time these inbred cousin-swapping watches get advertised and sold as “genuine”, and people get surprised.


Yup, me included. This is actually one of the nicest dials, in my opinion, of any of my Seikos. In some light it looks blue, in others purple. It’s not iridescent, but it does catch and play with the light. My pictures do it very poor justice I’m sorry to say, it’s actually a very different hue than any other blue watch I’ve owned or seen. The picture below from the original posting is just as poor but at least shows the purplish color better.


So what’s the problem? Let’s take a closer look at the dial on this 6119 … what’s that printed on the bott0m? 7005!

The movement matches the caseback, so it’s just the dial that’s been replaced.


In this specific case, I never bothered sending it back or complaining. Why? Not only do I like the dial a lot, this watch was one of the cheapest I’ve ever purchased – $10.50! Yes, you read that right, ten dollars and fifty cents! So I have more than enjoyed it for what I paid, and even if it is a FrankenSeiko it’s not too much of one compared to many horrible creations I see on the web, and it’s certainly not an outright fraud (thankfully Seiko has few of those, compared to brands like Rolex and Omega).

Still, it’s another lesson … when you buy a used watch on eBay, it may not be what you think it is. And even the vendor might honestly not realize it. I’ve returned watches before for a refund because of issues, this particular one I kept anyway, it’s just part of what you have to expect when trolling for bargains on the swamp.

Happy buying!

Word Of Mouth conference – Toronto June 12th

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 29th, 2008
May 29

The Canadian Marketing Association is holding a conference on WOM in a few months.


I’m not a great fan of the conference name, I have to admit. However, it looks like an interesting event (David Usher wasn’t who I expected to see on the speaker list, but that may just make it more interesting), so you may see me there.

In the meantime, thanks (or not, depending on what you think of the music! :-) ) to Michael Seaton of The Client Side for this interesting promo video for the event.

Perimeter Institute – Public Lectures & Jazz Concerts

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 28th, 2008
May 28

Most of us geeks like to dabble in science-related stuff. I have an honors degree in biology with minors in chemistry and math (I was accepted into medical school but decided not to become a doctor – looking back I’m not sure if that was a wise decision or not!).

So it’s neat that I work in Waterloo Canada, and just a few blocks away is the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics – basically a think tank for higher-end physics. The sort of place where people pooh-pooh string theory as yesterday’s work. A building where the walls in most rooms (including the restaurant) are all turned into blackboards.


That’s right, free public lectures from some of the top minds in theoretical physics. And did I mention they were free? If you are located in the area, or visiting, these are held offsite at a local high school (not enough space in their building for the size of crowds who attend), the first Wednesday of every month.


And if you’d actually like to visit something at the facility, there are regular Jazz nights, music events, and dinner concerts at the Black Hole Restaurant at their Event Horizon evenings (I know, bad puns), which is actually their staff restaurant during the day. The food is reasonably good, service is good quality bar staff, it’s a small space so the ambiance is nice, and it’s different than where you might normally go. Enjoyable, just expect an older crowd – don’t expect a rave. :-)


More details on their site.

Pulsar PK5003X1 meets Flitz

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 27th, 2008
May 27

Another watch I purchased from the SCTF forum is a large Pulsar automatic. It was advertised as “de-blinged”, meaning the original owner had decided it was too shiny and had rubbed down the top of the case (outside the bezel) to more of a satin finish. I won’t go so far as calling this as “mod”, just a non-standard polishing job.


Here’s a pic of a new one from eSwamp just so you can compare…


The hands are really that color by the way, a true blued steel, my own photographs don’t do them justice, you have to be in good light for their color to stand out, in average light they do tend to look black.

I like basic looking GMT watches, butthis was so different from anything else I had – large, sub power reserve, blued steel hands with no luminous, sub second, sub date, original box included, thick stitched leather strap and other than the “mod”it was new. Despite all the complications, it still managed to look fairly elegant, a surprising feat.

It’s not a watch I’ve ever seen often, I had to search for pricing info, found out retail for this watch is $295, and the lowest I’ve seen it on eBay new for $110 + $20 shipping. The price on SCTF was right ($60 for the watch, a huge $4 for shipping to Canada), so mine it became!

Pulsar is a Seiko sub-brand, and this watch is powered by a Seiko automatic movement.


When I received the watch, I was amazed at the size. It’s actually the largest watch I own, and the only one that won’t fit into my watch display box. I was also impressed by the GMT mechanism – pull the crown out one notch, turn one way to set the date, and the other way to set the GMT zone. Then the bezel actually turns with the movement! I did not expect that and was pleased, it’s definitely a “complicated” watch! (poor pun, sorry :-) )

Recently I started looking at the pics of this watch new, and decided I liked the original shiny look that it had started with. Enter a friend with a bottle of Flitz.


I’ve heard about this product for some time, as a metal polishing paste that could be used to shine up tired old stainless steel watch cases (with care, of course, and you’d not want to use something like this on something expensive or historical).

Well, I said sure, and with a bit of care, a small rag, and a tiny bit of polish away he went. Guess what, it worked!


A happy customer, and a product referral for you. If you find yourself with some dinged up bargains from eBay, maybe a bottle of Flitz is the thing for you.

Oh yes, and I’d recommend this watch highly as well … I wear it more than I thought I would, and enjoy it. Definitely an attention getter.

Toronto “New Music” blogs

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 26th, 2008
May 26

Music is a central part of most people’s lives these days. Although I’ve shunned purchasing a iPod (for two reasons – I actually also like silence a lot, especially since it’s so rare these days, and I would much rather discover music I don’t listen to already that just replay my own tired playlists) I still am very much into music.


Perhaps it’s a sign of spring that I’m starting to read some of the old music blogs I used to regularly browse. Here’s a few of my local favorites (which in the Ontario music scene means Toronto), if you’re into discovering music you don’t already know (or is happening in the T.O. scene right now) along with some samples of their posts…


Chromewaves is written by a 33 year old “web monkey” who designs web pages for a Toronto newspaper, and was named after the song “Chrome Waves” by UK band Ride (obviously among his favorite albums and bands).

Now how can you not like someone who admits to liking Gemma Hayes? :-)


Second up is For The Records, a music blog from Michael who is a government social services case worker by day.


Not nearly as many pictures, using a very plain BlogSpot look, but lots of content and a nice listing of local Toronto concerts…


Listen up.

Social Media Metrics

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 25th, 2008
May 25

Thanks to Michael of Britopian (who passes along his own thanks in his post) to making me aware of this.



What is it? A nicely summarized list of common social media metrics from Rachel at The Social Organization.


Activity metrics, survey metrics, ROI measurements, individual metrics, and a few oddball general tracking numbers … well organized!

Seiko 6309 diver – eBay buyer beware #1

Posted by Harry Bishop on May 24th, 2008
May 24

Sometimes you can get great bargains on eBay. But sometimes you have to look twice to find out that it’s not quite as great a bargain as you think.


Looks nice, doesn’t it. A good condition vintage Seiko 6309 diver. And it must be, right? After all, the vendor said “genuine”!

Let’s take a closer look, shall we…


Oops, what’s this … lume does not look like it should. Whoops, it’s an example of the well-known “Hong Ko” early knock-off dial, a non-Seiko aftermarket replacement dial. Not genuine.

Looking on the back, the model number on the case is 6309-729A … looking on the diver’s reference page, this should be a Pepsi (blue/red bezel) model. Obviously the bezel and dial have been replaced with aftermarket knock-offs, and probably the hands as well, since they all look too new, and the lume is not built up as you would expect on a 6309.

This was one of my earlier purchases on eBay, before I became wise to the games being played there, and I didn’t realize until too late that it’s not completely genuine.

Now don’t misunderstand me, the movement and case are both genuine, and I really like this watch, and wear it reasonably often. It’s not a Feiko (non-Seiko ripoff) or even a Frankenseiko (a mix of Seiko and non-Seiko parts from various watches). I paid $79 for it, which is a lot less than I would otherwise have, and I’m enjoying owning it. But it’s a lesson learned – don’t believe most of what you read on eBay, make sure you deal with reputable dealers, and if you really want something to be what you expect for sure then buy somewhere else.

For now, I’ll keep this, and decide when my budget catches up to me if I get a “real” vintage 6309, or a new SXK007. Or both!

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