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Forum Home > Non-Seiko 7Axx Discussion Area (Re-branded mvmt's) > My newest incoming J39908-70 - Variations on a theme: Part V

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

Harking back to this vague statement included in an email reply which I received from the Orient Watch Co., back in February 2010:

 

We had several type of J39 chronograph models until 1990 year, but it is regret to say that we do not have such records in hand now.


.... You've gotta wonder just exactly how many different variations of J39 they produced. Or at least I do, anyway. 

Particularly when you start adding the Racer branded versions and looking at different dial / colour combinations. 


Just to give you a little background ....

I've already written a couple of topics covering the subject of the dressy J39908-70 model in this forum section, notably this one:

http://www.seiko7a38.com/apps/forums/topics/show/8404123-my-newest-incoming-orient-j39-nos-but-more-disappointment

I also made further mention of it in the Racer J39 by Orient Watch Co. thread. Between the two brands I'd found 4 variations so far:




Two of which shared the same basic dial layout; one is branded Racer, the other Orient.




After Lawrence's disparaging comments about the light green dialed version, I'd written 'tongue in cheek': Set collector ? Moi ? :D

So the last thing I really ever expected was to find another dial colour variation of J39908-70.

Which is one reason why I thought this one deserved a separate new topic of its own .... ;)


April 14, 2014 at 9:27 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

It certainly looked very blue in the seller's photo. :D



April 14, 2014 at 9:36 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

I spotted this J39908-70 when I was searching on eBay Italy at the beginning of April. The listing was simply titled Crono Orient.


http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/271435627381



I placed an opening bid, then messaged the seller asking if he was prepared to post it to England, if I won the auction.

His first reply was something like: Qual'é la procedura? - which roughly translates from Italian as 'How do I do that ?' :roll:

I followed up by sending him a link to: Poste Italiane's Posta Raccomandata Internazionale service but received no reply after 2 days.

At which point, I started panicking as the auction was ending in another two days or so. Then there was the method of payment ....

No PayPal option - only Bank Transfer. So I enlisted the help of Italian forum member Fabio (fmc000) to bid on it on my behalf.

As you can see from the screen print above, the auction was ending on Saturday afternoon - a busy time for most people.

So I suggested to Fabio that he used Auctionsniper to make a last 5 second 'killer bid' and sent him an invitation to sign up for it.

As it turned out it wasn't needed - nobody else bid on it. :)

April 14, 2014 at 9:45 AM Flag Quote & Reply

fmc000
Member
Posts: 54

And here I am. The watch arrived today at my office place. I took some quick-and-dirty pictures on the train whilst on my way back home tonight and tomorrow I should be able to ship the watch to England. Sorry for the under-par quality pics.

I tested the chronograph and the day-date quickset and they work fine (btw, it's an English-German daywheel watch).

The caseback is reasonably clear and the reference is clearly visible.


The pushers are not perfect, as expected...

and so is the crystal...

Finally, the strap is a surprise for me: it may well be the original one, at least it's a Seiko original piece with matching buckle.

--

My Seiko chronos: SPV002 - SDX008J1 - SFA005J1 - PSZ006P1

April 14, 2014 at 1:31 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

Cheers, Fabio. 

Except it doesn't look quite so blue in your Q&D photos (compared  to the seller's pic). 

No surprises at the corroded plating of the pushers or the scratched crystal. Though I don't think the strap is original to this watch.

It looks like a 20mm squeezed to fit the 19mm lug width. Besides, it would have been branded Orient, rather than Seiko, like these:




April 14, 2014 at 1:46 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

That'll teach me to start a thread before I've actually got the watch in my hands. :roll:

I've had some time to reflect and have since amended the latter part of my original topic title (E 'molto azzurro !) accordingly. :P

Whereas the watch did appear very blue in the eBay seller's only photo, it's quite clear from Fabio's Q&D pics that the dial is actually predominantly black. I'm not quite sure how the Italian eBay seller achieved this effect, possibly by accident, particularly when the day wheel is showing SAT in blue on a white-ish background.




But last night I had a look at his other listings (something I hadn't thought to do before) and found this:


http://www.ebay.it/itm/271449380352 - the listing titled merely orologio Camy




Oddly enough another blue dialed watch. But the round black leather(ette) padded box it's displayed in is obviously one and the same.

So Yes, as I have a penchant for deep blue coloured dials I'm understandably a little disappointed; but thanks to Fabio's more realistic photos I'll know exactly what to expect when it arrives. Having said that I'd have bought in a flash, just the same - even if it had looked like a black dial in the seller's listing. ;)


April 15, 2014 at 4:00 AM Flag Quote & Reply

fmc000
Member
Posts: 54

Well, Paul, the watch is on its way to England, so you should be able to appreciate the color by yourself in about a week, more or less. :)

--

My Seiko chronos: SPV002 - SDX008J1 - SFA005J1 - PSZ006P1

April 15, 2014 at 7:46 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
Site Owner
Posts: 9119

Thanks, Fabio. ;) Just as you predicted, the watch arrived safely in England yesterday. Your Q&D photos indeed showed the watch in its true colours. Its dial is undoubtedly predominantly pure black - with not the slightest hint of blue (per the eBay seller's photo). :roll:

To prove the point, I delved into the deepest dark recesses of my wardrobe and dug out the darkest midnight blue shirt I could find:



April 23, 2014 at 8:37 AM Flag Quote & Reply

fmc000
Member
Posts: 54

Looks good, I'm glad you like it and that my pics were of some help.

--

My Seiko chronos: SPV002 - SDX008J1 - SFA005J1 - PSZ006P1

April 27, 2014 at 4:50 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
Site Owner
Posts: 9119

Thanks again for your help, Fabio. 


Earlier today, I gave this latest J39908-70 a cursory strip down and clean. The Orient J3920 stamped 7A38 movement was spotless:




There's actually a lot more dark grey to the 'black' dial, once it's out of the case:




The dial part number markings (also hidden beneath the Tachymeter ring) were as I'd come to expect on this case model: J392 9087.


One reason I stripped it was to see the extent of the corrosion on the pushers and to lube them, as they were a bit sticky. As removed:



April 27, 2014 at 12:30 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
Site Owner
Posts: 9119

The other reason was that I wanted to do a quick sanity check on the thickness of the original Orient crystal. See this other thread.

It has a pronounced polished bevel edge and sits well proud of the watch case:




But, as I'd correctly remembered, it's only 1.30mm thick. (Here I'm using an 8.00mm thick nylon case-back die as a measuring aid):




Now I need to source a suitable replacement. :/


April 27, 2014 at 12:38 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

My newest incoming J39908-70 - Variations on a theme: Part V

Erm better make that that Part VI - 'cos I've just bought myself another one. :roll:


Most of the Orient / Racer J39's that I've found on eBay over the years have been the results of manual searching. However, a couple of years ago I did set up a two saved favourite searches, one of which was a 'catch all J39's' *Wild Card* search (but, as you can see, tweaked to exclude other unwanted crap that it was returning at the time). Yesterday morning it actually found one:


My other wider saved search (which usually mostly returns lots of other crap results) also found it:


As you can see, it also turned up quite an attractive (if somewhat optimistically priced Orient 7T32 - a.k.a HFA000).

But oddly, this Orient J39 didn't come up in any of of my various Seiko 7A38 *Wild Card* searches at the time - of more anon. ;)

Here's screen prints of the Romanian seller's listing and description:


http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/321452569763                                            

July 6, 2014 at 6:59 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

Here's most of the seller's photos - I've only uploaded 7 of the 11, because a few of them were quite similar:




Obviously it's in far from pristine condition. :/ Apart from the wear to the gold plating, there also appears to be some moisture damage to the dial paint, around the edges of all three sub-dials. :( Still at least the case doesn't appear to be corroded through to the resin. 

And hopefully this one actually has a blue dial ! :lol:


July 6, 2014 at 7:46 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

If you click on the link to the auction, you'll see that it has since been ended early because of one of the usual excuses ....


http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/321452569763


'Twas I who back-doored it. 

Not that I need to justify my actions to anybody (as it happens all the time on eBay), but there was an 'error' (of sorts) in the listing.

After he'd set it up the auction on Friday, the seller made a number of revisions - mostly tweaking / enhancing his description:


http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItemRevisionDetails&item=321452569763



But it was the last tweak he made on Saturday morning which caused me some mild consternation.

He added a link to the Orient J3920 .pdf hosted on this site: http://www.seiko7a38.com/J3920Techmanual.pdf

I don't think he'd actually quite made the Seiko 7A38 = Orient J3920 connection, but it was that action - as I later found when I ran a couple of manual searches on eBay on Seiko 7A38 (included in title and description) which made his listing belatedly appear in those search results. Previously, I'd have happily let it run the 7 days and likely still been the sole interested party, but now there was more chance it might attract unwanted attention from other bidders. So after initially politely asking the seller to remove the link to my site - which he would have done, I elected to make him an offer off eBay, for not much more than the opening bid price - he accepted. :)


July 6, 2014 at 8:44 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
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Posts: 9119

Although one year on, I still haven't got around to taking another updated 'group shot' of all my J39908-70's together, readers of the foregoing posts will be aware I've now acquired 6 of them, branded Orient and Racer in both dial designs in various colours.

But I knew there had to be even more out there. Remember I wrote in my initial post ?


.... You've gotta wonder just exactly how many different variations of J39 they produced. Or at least I do, anyway. 

Particularly when you start adding the Racer branded versions and looking at different dial / colour combinations. 


I was idly googling Orient J39 earlier today (as you do) and spotted this recent blog article by an Italian collector:


http://www.dotticontra.org/watches/orient_j39.html


It's difficult to discern from Alessandro's small included photo:



But it appears to have a Cream painted outer dial with Dark Blue baton infills and minute numbers. Presumably the Tachymeter scale printing is in Black or matching Dark Blue (rather than Green of my similar Orient / Racer J39908-70's). :/


September 27, 2015 at 8:46 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
Site Owner
Posts: 9119

I contacted the blog owner Alessandro Dotti Contra (Alex) and we exchanged a few emails. He's since made a couple of minor amendments / corrections to his Orient J39 page - notably about the (resin) watch case construction. ;)

Alex also kindly emailed me a couple of high resolution photos of his J39908-70, which confirmed my suspicions about the dial colours.




Cheers, Alex. 


PS - Wondering if I'd missed it being listed on eBay, I had to ask the question. Turn's out that Alex's father found it at a flea market.


September 29, 2015 at 5:44 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
Site Owner
Posts: 9119

I wouldn't exactly say that I coveted it, but ever since I saw Alessandro's cream-dialed J39908-70, it's bugged me that I didn't have this particular dial colour variation in my collection. So I've kept on scouring eBay in the hope of eventually finding one. 

I still haven't, but last week I came across a J39908-70 in reasonable cosmetic condition listed on eBay Italy.


http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/121889930531



In ottime condizioni, manca solo il cinturino. numero diserie J39908-70 cs. water resistant g.p. stainless steel back. Orient watch co,ltd., Japan.


Needless to say, at that relative giveaway opening bid price of under 20 Quid, I couldn't resist and nailed it (twice for good measure).


It's actually the same plain white dialed J39908-70 variant that I already have in my collection - which I'd picked up NOS (again from eBay Italy) back in December 2012, shown in a couple of the photos at the top of this page and in the other linked thread.

But what the heck. :P


February 20, 2016 at 8:46 AM Flag Quote & Reply

donwatch
Member
Posts: 511

Good catch Paul-- and I don't see any ducks   :P

February 20, 2016 at 10:01 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Seiko7A38
Site Owner
Posts: 9119

Nah. More like sausages in this case, Don. :P


That  'cheapie' Orient J39908-70 arrived in yesterday's post. Not quite in as 'optimal condition' as the seller might have stated in his description, but I've seen (and purchased) a lot worse - for double the price I paid. The battery was as flat as a pancake and had just started to leak, but the J3920 movement was still gleaming and completely unharmed. I gave it a cursory external clean this morning (without doing a proper strip down). The artificially lit shot below shows the watch in its worst light. The myriad light scratches on the crystal are barely visible to the naked eye. The plating on a couple of the pusher buttons has suffered from the usual electrolytic corrosion, but the watch case plating is pretty good compared to some others in my collection.




As you can see from the listing, it was supplied without a strap. For the time being at least, I've fitted a used 19mm Orient mock-croc strap - of almost correct vintage (and the usual soggy cardboard consistency) - donated by an Orient HFA (7T32) restoration project.



Suits it quite well, methinks. :)


Couple of Q&D wrist shots I rattled off this morning:


February 23, 2016 at 6:22 AM Flag Quote & Reply

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