When starting a Seiko mod project, watch lovers often focus on showy parts like dials, hands, and bezels. But one important piece that's often forgotten is the simple crown. This small but key part is vital for how the watch works and looks, quietly shaping the overall feel of your custom watch.

While it might not be the first thing people notice, picking the right crown can subtly make your watch build much better. A well-chosen crown can improve the watch's shape, make it easier to use, and add that final touch of quality to your carefully made mod. As the part that connects you to the movement, aka the watch’s heart, you should put some thought into choosing the perfect crown for your mod!



In this article, we'll look at the main things to think about when choosing a crown for your Seiko mod. We'll show how this often overlooked part can make a big difference in how good your watch looks and works.

Crown Size

Size definitely matters when choosing a crown for your Seiko mod. The crown's width and length can change how your watch looks and feels. A bulkier crown is easier to grip and turn, which is good for diving watches as it will match the aesthetics of the usually oversized components of it. This doesn’t make it okay to adjust your crown underwater though - that’s water damage waiting to happen!



Also, if the dive case you are using features crown guards, make sure to check the diameter of the crown and see that it is not too oversized to avoid fitment issues.

Smaller crowns are preferable for dress watches as they look sleeker, albeit harder to use. Our dress watches like the NMK940 GS-inspired case or the NMK936 Explorer-inspired case already come with a custom crown bundled with it that has the perfect proportions to match the case, so you don’t have to guess which crown you need to pair with it.

Crown Style

Crown style isn't just about looks - it greatly affects how your watch works and feels. Flat crowns offer a simple, clean look that works well with sleeker watch designs. They sit close to the case, which minimizes the impact on the watch’s visual balance. Domed crowns, on the other hand, add a bit of visual interest and can be easier to grip, though they’re not really as common.



The crown's surface texture is another important factor, and modders like to usually match it with the pattern on the bezel. Knurled crowns or coin edge have small grooves or patterns cut into them, providing excellent grip. This is especially useful for divers or those who often adjust their watch with wet hands. Smoother crowns give a more elegant, refined look but can be harder to grasp. 

Crowns may come "signed" with a logo or design. This can be a great way to add a unique touch to your mod or pay homage to your inspiration watch brand. Unsigned crowns offer a clean, minimalist look that won't distract from other design elements.


Crown Operation

The way your crown operates is crucial for both functionality and water resistance. There are two main types: screw-down and push-pull crowns.

Screw-down crowns are designed for better water resistance. They literally screw into the case, creating a tight seal. This makes them ideal for dive watches or any timepiece that might get wet often. However, they require an extra step to use – you need to unscrew the crown before adjusting the time or date. You will usually find these paired with SKX-style cases.

Push-pull crowns are simpler to use. You just pull them out to adjust the watch. They're common in dress watches and everyday timepieces and are more commonly used with the Seiko 5 Sports line. While they're not as water-resistant as screw-down crowns, many can still handle splashes or rain.

These crowns are often not interchangeable so be sure to get the right one for your watch!


For Specific Builds

Dive Watch


The crown is not usually one of the first things being chosen when planning out a mod, and that only makes sense; it should follow the look of the case after all. As mentioned above, larger finishes with patterns and finishes that allow for better grip are preferred. Some homage builds may call for specific crown choices as well. If you’re making an SKX007 style mod for example, you’d want to use the coin edge crown that Seiko commonly uses for this line. For Submariner-inspired builds, your best choice is a “chunky crown” which has ridges that are more spaced apart. A Black Bay mod calls for another custom crown that is shorter than your usual crown, with a specific pattern that matches its bezel. 

Pilot Watch


Flieger-style watches are known for their oversized crowns, aka “onion crowns,” nicknamed due to their characteristic shape. They are designed this way since pilots usually get subjected to extreme cold, needing gloves to keep warm. To be able to operate crowns without removing the gloves, the crown was designed as such.

Dress Watches


Dress watches for special occasions must be small enough to fit flawlessly under sleeves and often range in the 36-38mm case width. The smaller case calls for a proportional crown, and this is usually not a one size fits all situation, which is why most of the dress watches you can find on our store come with custom crowns that perfectly match the size and finish of the watch.

Wrap Up

The crown may be small, but it's a crucial part of your Seiko mod. It's not just about looks - it affects how your watch works and feels. The right crown can make your mod easier to use and more visually appealing. By paying attention to this often-overlooked detail, you can take your mod from good to great. Remember, in watch modding, every small choice counts - and the crown is no exception.

For high quality Seiko mod crowns, check out our catalog. We have ones for the SKX007/013, SRPD/SRPE, and the SRP Turtle. Aside from crowns, we also have all other parts that you may need for your build. Our Seiko mod parts are trusted by professionals for their commissioned builds, so you can be sure of their quality! View our catalog of hundreds of high quality mod parts here.

Happy modding!

June 25, 2024 — Jeremiah A

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