Seiko 7A38 - by the numbers



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Forum Home > 7A38-xxxx Model Specific Area > 7A38-728B SAA136J Two-Tone (UEFA EURO 88 Limited Edition)

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Posts: 9790

I suppose I should start this thread with an apology - for the fact that I still haven't yet written up a single 7A38-xxxx model specific topic on any of the other far more common 'basic' 7A38-728x models viz: the 7A38-7280, 7A38-7289 and 7A38-728A variants (let alone the 7A38-7285 ZFM model). A couple of recent appearances on eBay, of this somewhat rarer 7A38-727B prompted a session of keyboard bashing.

I'll follow that first paragraph by openly stating that I am not a fan of the so-called 'beautiful' game of English Football (Soccer) and especially not of the ludicrously overpaid primadonnas that play it and the morons that follow it so slavishly. 

However, I was already aware of Seiko's association with the European Football Championship in the 1980's, from their various period adverts, which featured a couple of 7A38 models.

There's more information about those two Seiko adverts in this other thread.

Strange then, although Seiko appeared to be promoting the two-tone 7A38-6080 SAA088J in 1988, that they should appear to have chosen to produce another commerative version based instead on the two-tone 7A38-7280 SAA120J. :/

You may have noticed that I've titled this thread as: 7A38-728B SAA136J. As yet, I haven't seen any firm evidence connecting this particular 7A38-728B to that SAA sales code. That said, there is only one 7A38-728B documented on Seiko's database: SAA136J. I stumbled across it many years ago, when I was interrogating their database to build my Excel spreadsheet version. I can remember looking at it and trying to figure out the difference between this and the 'normal' two-tone 7A38-7280 SAA120J. Here's the relevant rows from my Excel spreadsheet.

Now, I'd long held my suspicions that the black / gold Tachymeter ring shown in the parts list was an error. (It's Seiko p/n 84311025 - same as you'll find in the black chrome 7A38-7180). Frankly it just wouldn't match the dial and there's absolutely no reason for Seiko to have used it. Plus I've never seen anything like that in nearly 10 years of looking (other than the odd Franken). Of course, the only other difference between the two models' bills of materials are their case-backs, Seiko p/n's 7A387280 versus this 7A38728B.

So I think I've figured it out (at last). 8)

March 13, 2018 at 8:40 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Site Owner
Posts: 9790

The first 7A38-728B (that I can ever remember seeing) came up in my saved eBay favourite seach notifications at the end of November last year. It was listed by a German eBay seller, with a ludicrous 'pie-in-the-sky' Buy-it-Now price of 490 Euros. It's been re-listed 3 times so far (for 30 days at a time). Below is a screen print of the current re-listing. The seller had used eBay hosting for 3 of the photos, with a dozen or so more (mostly of the case-back) embedded in the listing description. I couldn't be bothered to sort through them so have just uploaded them en masse (hopefully without any duplication).

Absolute Rarität

Seiko Armbanduhr 7A38 - 728 B

Limited Edition:


Die Endrunde der 8. Fußball-Europameisterschaft wurde vom 10. bis zum 25. Juni 1988 in der Bundesrepublik Deutschland ausgetragen. Europameister wurden die Niederlande im Finale in München gegen die Sowjetunion.

Datum-Wochentag-anzeige, zweimal Sekunde,1/10 Sekunde etc.

Edelstahl - Armband / Gehäuse

Neue Batterie

Minimale Gebrauchsspuren,

Funktioniert einwandfrei.

Siehe Bilder.

Privatverkauf, Garantie. Gewährleistung und Rücknahme ausgeschlossen,

Es sei denn es fehlen die zugesicherten Eigenschaften.

Worldwide shipping, ask shipping cost.

March 13, 2018 at 10:11 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Site Owner
Posts: 9790

So, apart from the unique 7A38-727B model number and the bold UEFA EURO 88 case-back stamping, what makes this 'rare' variant any more desirable (or collectable) than say your common-or-garden two-tone 7A38-7280 SAA120J ?

This is my own almost mint example, which if memory serves me, I paid $120 for, although admittedly it was a few years ago. It has the same watch case; same p/n B1627C bracelet; same light grey p/n 710LXN18 dial. As I've now established, the only difference is in their case-backs. They crop up on eBay fairly regularly, with well-worn examples usually selling for less than 100 Euros.

March 13, 2018 at 10:25 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Site Owner
Posts: 9790

The first couple of times the German eBay seller (re)listed his 'rare' 7A38-727B, I made him deliberately lowball offers of 49 Euros.  I got fed up of the silly game and haven't bothered this time; just added the latest re-listing to my Watching list - and I had almost forgotten about it. Until yesterday evening, when another one appeared, listed by a Peruvian eBay seller ! :o

It's been listed as a 7-day auction, with an opening bid of only $0.99. But there's a reserve price set. So if the Peruvian eBay seller has done his homework, no doubt he's already spotted the German eBay seller's asking price (490 Euros) and set his reserve accordingly. Like the German seller, the Peruvian has embedded loads of photos in his description. Many are very similar, so I've only bothered to upload a dozen or so, in the interests of page loading times.

Ignore all the 'authentic and original' bnllsh!t in the flowery description and study the seller's photos very carefully. Especially the dial, which from the bleeding of ink around the sub-dial markings (particularly the 30 minute counter), I would suspect has suffered moisture ingress at some point. It's difficult to avoid noticing the wear on the crown and the gold-plated inner bracelet links. This is, in truth (apart from the UEFA EURO 88 case-back stampings) nothing more than just another typical tired 7A38-728x - the kind that regulary sell on eBay for between $50 and $100.

March 13, 2018 at 10:46 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Site Owner
Posts: 9790

One last point (for the time being): both the German and Peruvian sellers claim this watch is a 'Limited Edition'. There's no evidence to support that, in the form of any kind of 'number xxxx of quantity xxxx' stamped on the case-backs. Interesting to note, however, the closeness of their two (December 1987 production) case-back serial numbers: 7D1996 and 7D1999. Possibly just a coincidence. :/

March 13, 2018 at 3:11 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Site Owner
Posts: 9790

The Peruvian seller's eBay auction for a UEFA EURO 88 stamped 7A38-728B ended a few moments ago, with bidding @ $68.89 after 25 bids - just shy of £50 Quid. There was no last minute snipe-fest and no great surprise (at least to me), the reserve price was not met - far from it. :roll:

I'll confess to having placed a good number of those bids (17 in deliberately small increments). My purpose was to show the futility of having a $0.99 opening bid when the 'pie-in-the-sky' reserve price is set so much higher. How much higher ? :| Well I had to ask the question, purely out of curiosity, didn't I ? :P

So any football fans out there fancy coughing up $420 for a tired old Seiko ? 

March 19, 2018 at 3:35 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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