It’s October and that means it’s #Seikoctober for those of you who play along on Instagram. When I write this, Robert-Jan happens to be in Japan checking out all things Seiko simultaneously. Accordingly, what better than to talk a little about one of the brand’s most famous pieces: the Seiko 6159 Tuna.
Welcome to what we’ll call a “#TBT extra” on Fratello Watches. Every so constantly, a reader writes into us with an interesting story or question on a vintage watch. From time to time, it even results in me hurting my account! Today’s brief account, although, is actually about a reader who asked some questions on where to service a Seiko icon, the 6159-7019 original “ Grandfather Tuna”. We had a much longer review on this watch earlier this year, but felt you’d like to see pictures and hear the story of an original owner piece.
Now, we discuss how the watch came into production, any technical innovations and why it was created. What we continually miss, since the information rarely exists, are the firsthand perceptions that existed about a brand or model during its actual production date. If I had a time machine, in addition to buy everything (and of course altering the time-space continuum), I’d love to see how certain brands were marketed, how they compared to others, etc., etc. While it’s likely a gross overstatement, some of the watches we actually fawn over may have been seen as the equivalent of today’s Michael Kors pieces! Absolutely, yes, I get excited about talking to people about the past and why they chose certain watches. Moving on…
From somehow,we found Paul Sullivan‘s answer with a question on where to service his “ur-Tuna” and we struck up a back-and-forth chat that ultimately led to the brief comments on his buying and using experience and a few pictures.
Why did you buy the Seiko 6159 Tuna?
PS: I bought this watch as a replacement for my first, cheap, dive watch that quit on me the day before leaving for a dive trip to Hawaii.
Was it expensive? I’ve read that it definitely wasn’t cheap.
It cost $500 in 1976, a lot, but I was doing a lot of diving and assisting my former instructor and friend in teaching his certification classes. So, I figured I would get something to last but not as expensive as a Rolex.
Where did you get your Seiko 6159 Tuna? Did they have to “sell” you on the watch or did you know about it beforehand?
Went shopping and saw it in the window in a watch shop in the Fox Hills Mall in Culver City, CA. No one sold me, I could tell it was good and Seiko was a very big brand at the time.