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Return of the King: The new King Seiko KSK and Caliber 6L35

March 03, 2021 4 min read 5 Comments


SEIKO 6L35 Caliber, Image source: watchprosite

Even though none of us expect much good of this year after 2020 qualified for one of the worst years ever, luckily, the same cannot be applied to the world of wristwatches. But even in the world around us, 2021 still brings hope – and joy, at least for the watch enthusiasts, as this year also marks the 140th anniversary of the birth of Seiko. As long-time fans of this remarkable brand, we’ve secretly hoped for an anniversary surprise but couldn’t really pinpoint what could it be until the official announcement, as Seiko’s history is as deep as you can dig, but we knew it will be the re-release of one of the legendary models. And for this legendary occasion, they’ve decided to re-create the famous King Seiko 44KS officially released in 1965. But let’s first see where the original model comes from.

The original King Seiko

The 1960s were grand for Seiko, in the literal sense of the word, as the first Grand Seiko was introduced in 1960. A year after, Seiko introduced the King Seiko line, which again showcased the company’s ability to produce mechanical watches with extraordinary accuracy for the time. This is known as an extraordinary and rare rivalry under the same brand, as the Grand Seiko was produced in Suwa factory and King Seiko in Daini. The two factories didn’t share knowledge and progress with each other and yet both managed to produce extraordinary timepieces. The design of the first King Seiko followed the interior mechanism, by being worthy of a king. The original King Seiko 44KS was produced from 1964 to 1968.

The original King Seiko KSK 44-9990 (also called King Seiko 44KS)

What powered the original King Seiko KSK was movement 44A with 25 jewels and manual winding, ticking at 18,000 bph. While still not being counted into high-beat movements, its accuracy went through the roof at the time and its design captivated the minds of watch lovers around the world. Even now, the original King Seiko 44KS is one of the favorites among vintage watch lovers. The magnificently looking mechanism is packed into a 36x43.3 mm case, with 19 mm lugs, shaped by the famous Taro Tanaka’s Grammar of design. The watch features a classic Seiko dial in silver color with a sunburst finish. No wonder it still charms.

The King Seiko collection continued to compete with Grand Seiko through the 60s and 70s until both collections were discontinued. While Grand Seiko re-emerged in 1988, the King Seiko collection waited for the right moment to shine again. But so far there are no rumors that the new King Seiko will be followed by the whole collection.

The new King Seiko

The re-created King Seiko - King Seiko KSK SJE083 adapts to its time; hence it has several improvements in terms of both mechanism and design. While the original King Seiko is famous for its smooth contours, the young fella gives a more striking look with its sharper edges and flat surfaces Zaratsu polished to the astonishing mirror finish. The case is fortified with a layer of super-hard coating which protects this handsome boy from scratches. By the look of this watch, you can immediately conclude that the re-creation of this watch managed to bring and elevate the elegance of its roots. The case back features the same “King Seiko” emblem as the King Seiko 44KS, along with the serial number as this magnificent timepiece is produced as a limited edition.

The new King Seiko KSK SJE083, limited edition of 3000 pieces

What powers the youngster, King Seiko KSK is the thin automatic caliber 6L35 previously introduced in 2018 with the Seiko SJE073, or so-called Seiko Presage "Baby Snowflake" Limited Edition (1,881 pieces), keeping the watch only 0.5 mm thicker than the original. The movement 6L35 ticks 28,000 bph, has 26 jewels, 45 hours of power reserves, and is clocked at +15 sec / -10 sec a day. If you can remember, the caliber 6L35 is represented as a level up from caliber 6R15, but its roots also go to calibers 4L25 and 4L75.

The mechanism is packed in a 38.1 x 11.4mm case and has a water resistance of 50 m indicated with a small “w” on the crown. Along with the watch comes a crocodile watch strap with vintage Seiko buckle (the original watch used the KS signed buckles in the 60s).

The re-release, known as the King Seiko KSK SJE083 is available from January 2021. While there are still online markets where you can get the original for a fair price, in case you want one new King Seiko KSK to shine on your wrist, you better hurry up as it is produced in 3000 pieces only and there are no indications the line will be continued. The price of the new King Seiko is around $3,300 and it is sold only through designated Seiko boutiques and shops.

Written by M.H. , images by others as noted 


Continue to read : Seiko Watch Movements Reviews

  • Part 1 - Seiko 4R35 movement
  • Part 2 - Seiko 4R36 movement
  • Part 3 - Seiko 6R15 movement
  • Part 4 - Seiko 6L35 movement
  • Part 5 - Seiko 7S26 movement
  • Part 6 - Seiko 8L35 movement
  • Part 7 - Seiko Automatic vs kinetic vs solar watches
  • Part 8 - Seiko Kinetic movement


Reference & image credit:

5 Responses


May 30, 2023

Hi Arne,
Thanks for the comment
Yes, your Seiko Alpinist spb123j1 can use this : SS201620B130, 20mm Super-JUB II Watch Band compatible with Seiko Alpinist SARB017, 316L Stainless Steel Brushed V-Clasp.

Thank you

Strapcode team

Arne Ø. Vollan
Arne Ø. Vollan

May 30, 2023

Hi. Will my Seiko Alpinist spb123j1 can use this?: SS201620B130
20mm Super-JUB II Watch Band compatible with Seiko Alpinist SARB017, 316L Stainless Steel Brushed V-Clasp. Best regards Arne.

Geoffrey M Chambers@ mail.com
Geoffrey M Chambers@ mail.com

August 23, 2022

I have owned my Grand SEIKO movement for around four years. I am extremely proud and pleased with my Grand SEIKO movement. It looks good and it keeps incredibly good time. Very well done SEIKO.


April 20, 2021

Hi Jason,
Thank you for the comment, however, we don’t have a plan for it. Sorry for disappointing you

Strapcode Team


April 20, 2021

If you can make a bracelet for these things 😍🙏

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