While the Rolex Submariner is a quintessential modern dive watch in the luxury watch market, the Seiko SKX007 is one of the most iconic budget divers ever made.

First launched in 1996, the Seiko SKX has a cult following that made it one of the most popular dive watches in history. It was cheap, durable, and carried a world-class workhouse movement. 

 

A very charming timepiece indeed. Source: the.watch.bro on IG

 

The watch’s look is something along the lines of a Rolex Submariner or Omega Seamaster. However, Seiko also added its own unique touches - like the crown at 4 o'clock, and the grippy bezel. An SKX007 is an exercise in functional minimalism with nothing extraneous about any aspect of the watch. 

The SKX series from Seiko was so popular that almost anyone that entered the world of automatic watches knew it as an amazing value. To be sure - an SKX was an incredible value - but things change. 

Today, the entire SKX range is discontinued - and prices for the watch are rising. This makes it a harder watch to justify modding. Let’s take a look at why more SKX lovers are thinking that modding an original SKX just isn’t the way to go.


Already Discontinued

The SKX line being discontinued in 2019 marks the end of an era in Seiko’s history. The Japanese watchmaker thought it was time for an upgrade - although the SKX007 had been around for 23 years and had plenty of fans, and a few tweaks to make the watch more modern is all the fans asked for. Instead, the manufacturing lines for the SKX were repurposed for production of the SRPD, aka the 5KX.

Since Seiko isn’t making this series anymore, it has become something of a collector’s item if you can find one that has not yet been turned into a frankenwatch. As the remaining supply slowly dwindles, prices have steadily gone up. It’s just plain supply and demand at work.

 

A proper frankenwatch. Source: @suretimemods on IG

 

In addition to being more expensive, a bunch of replicas are infiltrating the market. With fakes out there, it is harder to ensure the Seiko quality of a SKX007 - even if you trust the dealer and even if the unit looks particularly convincing.

Although some great Seiko models have followed the SKX007, many people that are new to the scene are still falling in love with this traditional dive watch. If you happen to bag yourself an SKX007 with all-OEM parts and in great condition - hold on to it and keep it as it is.


Outdated Parts

There’s a lot to be said about how awesome the Seiko 7S26 is - and why it has remained an enduring favorite in the watch world. Taking these advantages as a given, the SKX was basically unchanged for decades, and uses old watchmaking technology.  

The 7S26 movement is no prize. Its main flaw is its inconsistent quality. Its specifications say it will run around +/-25 seconds per day meaning it can be ahead or behind by 25 seconds at the end of the day.

 

 The 7S26 is reliable albeit outdated and missing some essential features.

 

You won’t be able to hack or handwind a stock SKX either. Like we said, the 7S26 isn’t a state of the art movement - even by budget standards. 

The bracelet of Seiko SKX007 is another downside for many people. The steel jubilee model feels delicate, and some would even go so far as to describe it as flimsy, while the rubber strap really is for divers and may feel uncomfortable for people just wearing it on the day to day. While there are few reports of real problems emerging from these options, neither is great when compared to what now exists in the aftermarket. 

 

The Seiko Hardlex crystal is by all means a good one, but it pales in comparison to a more modern Sapphire crystal. Source: The Watch Company

 

The hardlex crystal on an SKX is a special Seiko proprietary mineral crystal. However, many customers have noticed that some watches around the SKX007’s price point are starting to include sapphire crystals, which are more scratch-resistant, and have improved clarity. 

Overall, while the SKX was an outstanding value for decades, the idea of modding an original SKX seems to be less practical as time goes on. 


Should You Mod Your Seiko SKX007?

When you look for a diver watch to add to your collection, a Seiko SKX007 may be a watch you consider. It is a classic, and it is likely to rise a bit in price from here. 

If you are buying the watch to mod, you should really take a step back, and think about what you really want. There are a variety of SKX007 mod parts available on the market, but modifying a Seiko SKX007 looks like a good way to destroy the value of a collectable, classic watch. 

 

In the end, what you do with your watch is up to you. Source: The Time Teller

 

In addition to allowing you to add your personality and build the watch of your dreams, watch modding also allows you to replace original watch parts with new upgrades. However, with the prices that SKX’s are demanding, it is a good alternative to just use all aftermarket parts. 

Modding a Seiko SKX007 can be very fun and rewarding, but have a look at our parts catalog before you opt to open up an SKX and start swapping out the parts. 

You can use an SKX007-style case that is completely aftermarket but with the same look and finish and slightly improved specs. We also offer cases that look like other popular watches like the Seiko Samurai, or the Omega Seamaster, but are completely compatible with all SKX007 parts, giving you access to a wide selection of watch mod options.

Anything you will need to build a complete watch is available on our store, from the case to the crystal, to the movement that powers the watch and the tools you’ll need to put it all together. There’s just way more flexibility with mods!


Mod Happy With namokiMODS

If you are sitting on a brand new SKX in mint condition - it might be a good idea to keep it in its present state. Don’t worry, we have exactly what you need if you want a fully customized SKX style watch. 

Seiko Mod Watches are getting more popular all the time. Watch mods are amazing, and we love to see what our clients do with the top tier watch mod parts we sell. Just take a look at our Instagram to see what our customers are coming up with!

While SKXs are getting harder to find, SKX007 Parts are simple to get your hands on. Please take a look at our site, and browse all the great parts we offer. No matter if you need OEM Seiko spare parts, or watch spare parts, namokiMODS should be the first place you think about visiting. 

June 06, 2022 — Jeremiah A

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