Franck Muller Vanguard Glacier watch hands-on practice

It is true that I have not spent time with best Franck Muller employees seriously for a while. The Swiss watch manufacturer is a modern legend, and the Franck Muller is a series of luxury brands, including other brands such as Backes & Strauss. In the past, the group was larger, including brands such as Rodolphe, Pierre Kunz and Martin Braun. Now, Franck Muller himself and co-founder Vartan Sirmakes continue to make watches at their Swiss “Watchland” headquarters outside Geneva. Today, I will be looking for something different for Franck Muller, which represents the modern side of the brand. This watch is Framulan Vanguard Glacier, from the newer Vanguard series.

Franck Muller was founded in 1991 and is known as a brand for a few things, including their popular Cintrée Curvex case and some very complicated watches. The brand often likes to call itself a “complication master.” This timepiece is relatively simple, only provides time and date, but the design is complex and exquisite, I find it very attractive.

I will soon admit that the Franck Muller Vanguard series is not attractive to me until I see it with my own eyes and wear it on my wrist. In the computer-rendered image, Vanguard looks both plain and unremarkable, but it also seems to be working hard. In a sense, some people might say Franck Muller Cintrée Curvex series watches. Wearing either of these two models yourself on your wrist will give you a completely different experience-at least, I did it.

The Franck Muller Cintrée Curvex series started with a barrel-shaped case. It may be one of the few barrel-shaped cases on the market that I like. Others will include those produced by Richard Mille. This is an ancient design that dates back to the 1920s, but Franck Muller made it hot again. In fact, I can even say that Moulin is the first “fashionable” watch brand in the modern watch era. Just (according to some accounts) become a victim of his own success and face the same problems encountered by most other luxury brands today in marketing and distribution. Compared to others, I think Farmerland has always been quieter and chose to keep a more low profile until they have developed a reliable strategy. At least, they have a lot of interesting timepieces.

I don’t recommend reading the Vanguard series on Franck Muller’s website to understand its point of view, because it won’t tell you much. In fact, this is a good example. This type of text does not have much explanation, but it takes up space on the website of a luxury brand. My opinion of Vanguard is that it is a modern interpretation of design that makes Franck Muller a popular brand. Talk about your opinion of some people who have worn this brand, or that this brand is known for its show off that not everyone likes… But in essence, the core “Franck Muller look” is well done until Now when it comes to their classic Cintrée Curvex look, others have really captured it better.

Therefore, considering that the Franck Muller Vanguard series adopts a classic Art Deco style appearance and makes it more modern. This includes the case and dial-which uses Arabic numerals and the differences in the painted hour markers you see on the more traditional-looking French Moulin timepieces. Then you have a box, which is also a pioneer wine barrel, flatter and more ergonomic than the Curvex box. It fits well on the wrist and creates a bold and elegant appearance with the right color and material selection without sacrificing the legibility of the style. Note the compass marking on the inner flange ring-I will consider its style. Better than another speedometer-that’s for sure.

This special version of Franck Muller Vanguard is the reference model V 45 SC DT AC.GL Vanguard Glacier-famous for its special PVD coating on the steel case and the use of a white rubber strap that matches the dial. Please note that this is a rare steel Vanguard watch (because of the special PVD treatment), but most non-gold watches are made of titanium. The case is made of steel, 44 mm wide, 53.70 mm high, and only 12.8 mm thick. The curved Vanguard case is paired with an integrated rubber strap and can be worn comfortably on the wrist. Visually, the appearance of the strap runs through the case with a clever appearance, making the case look as if the strap is sandwiched in the middle. Compared with straight rubber, in order to obtain a higher-end appearance,

The design is wise, and the overall appearance has a modern “boldness” that will attract some people and repel others. It doesn’t matter, because almost none of the watches made by Franck Muller have universal appeal. For people who like to show off, these watches do a great job… If you don’t like to show off, their watches may not appeal to you. Likewise, before you wear the watch on your wrist, don’t give a full evaluation of any of these watches. I am personally surprised.

These three-hand Müller Vanguard series watches are equipped with an FM 0800 self-winding movement, run at 4Hz (28,800 bph), and have a power reserve of 42 hours. I don’t believe these are internal movements (Franck Muller confirms that these are modified basic Swiss ETA movements), but in other Franck Muller watches, they certainly have their own movements. The movement provides time and date (displayed at 6 o’clock). There is no bottom cover for the exhibition, I think there should be. This is more meaningful than writing “Complex Master” on a watch with a less complicated mechanical structure. Franck Muller Vanguard Glacier itself is not a limited edition, but it is a separately numbered watch with the serial number on the back cover.

Franck Muller has produced different styles for each of their popular timepieces. In addition to offering a range of Vanguard models (from this three-hand automatic mechanical watch to a chronograph and even a few tourbillons), each model also seems to offer a range of versions (most of which are not even on the Franck Muller website), by the way ). This “cautious information” culture is part of the unique characteristics of the brand and one of the reasons for Franck Muller’s poor performance in the information-hungry Internet age.

The interesting “shiny bronze” application on the steel case. The combination of PVD ​​surface treatment and white tones makes Franck Muller Vanguard Glacier look interesting and interesting, but there are many other versions to choose from. It is not cheap, but its appearance is very suitable for the Franck Muller brand and the next generation of people interested in this brand. Again, this is not a brand suitable for conservative types at all, but the range of talents that the brand has and their many technical achievements mean that Franck Muller may be a brand worthy of attention again (or for the first time).

Grand Seiko SBGW231 Review: Your elegant stainless steel dress watch

True watch connoisseurs are always looking for high-quality timepieces that are fashionable, promising and reasonably priced, and they often turn to the Japanese brand Grand Seiko. Although often hidden under the spotlight of its incredible parent company Seiko, the brand itself is a well-known watchmaker. Grand Seiko takes its craftsmanship and high-end watches seriously, with the essence of elegance that many other brands cannot match.

One dress watch that stands out among the Grand Seiko products is the Grand Seiko SBGW231. It uses a classic design, the case, dial and strap use simple elements, effortlessly let everyone like it. More importantly, it is also equipped with a manual winding movement made of the best materials-only the most capable luxury watch brands can do this.

Why do many enthusiasts call the Grand Seiko SBGW231 “a real dress watch”? What other noteworthy aspects and characteristics are worthy of attention? Read on to learn more about why the Grand Seiko SBGW231 deserves a place on your must-have watch list.

Grand Seiko SBGW231: The perfect epitome of a classic formal watch

First impression
Immediately, it is easy to see that the Grand Seiko SBGW231 is a high-quality watch. With its simple appearance, it is undeniable that it is one of Grand Seiko’s best products because it perfectly embodies the iconic nine principles of the brand’s “ideal watch”.

SSBGW321 itself is not overly gorgeous, but its simple and professional appearance made of stainless steel is undoubtedly luxurious. After all, if its aesthetics are not impressive, it won’t be part of the Elegance series, right? As far as the first impression is concerned, this watch looks simple in design, from the dial, lugs and strap all the way to the movement, back cover and crown are sturdy and durable.

Seiko SBGW231 review

Now that we have made the first impression, we will now delve into what the Grand Seiko SBGW231 really offers. Here are the magnificent specifications and other important details about this watch that you should pay attention to.

Case: stainless steel
Case size: 37.3mm
Movement: mechanical, manual winding
Power reserve: about 72 hours (3 days)
Water resistance: splash-proof only
The shell size of SBGW231 is 37.3 mm and the thickness is 11.6 mm. Given its large and stylish appearance, most people like to use it as an everyday watch. In addition, the weight of this watch is exactly 61 grams, which is very light for a piece made of high-quality stainless steel. In addition, the same proportion of the case also complements the well-polished lugs. The balanced ratio of the case and 19mm lugs allows you to easily place this Grand Seiko dress watch under the cuffs of a dress shirt.

In other words, what makes this watch replica truly stand out from other competitors is the finishing of the case and lugs. Even without any patterns, gems or other fancy decorations, its shiny mirror finish makes it more attractive. This look can only be achieved with Seiko’s iconic Zaratsu polishing.

The Zaratsu polishing machine uses the front of the rotating disc to polish the watch’s surface, not its side. Extraordinary technology is used to give the case a clear edge and mirror-like appearance. In fact, any wearer can clearly see his face by just looking at the case, without any distortion. Many of you may think that any watchmaker can achieve this look by buying the same machine. However, in reality, not every label can perfectly achieve and perform the same surface treatment, which is why it is now a trademark of the Grand Seiko brand. The polishing process of Zaratsu is so meticulous that it takes at least three years of training for the brand’s craftsmen to master this skill.

In terms of durability, you don’t have to worry because the case is made of strong stainless steel. In addition to being cheaper and easier to purchase, this metal can withstand major scratches, dents and accidental impacts better than titanium and platinum metals. This is why SBGW231 is not only suitable for formal activities, but also for daily commuting. In this case, close contact with people is inevitable. Although it is not as light, rare and precious as titanium and platinum, stainless steel ensures that the movement and other parts of the watch are protected from any type of external threats, such as dust and moisture, which may affect its smooth operation.

Crown, case back and crystal
Another amazing feature of SBGW231 is the crown. Tighten with six screws, which are marked with the official logo of the brand, and have vertical tooth edges for easy grasping. The logo presents a sense of grandeur in the form of the letters “G” and “S” and is the perfect symbol of Grand Seiko’s prestige and excellence. Although it is not protected by any crown guard, the crown is large enough to provide maximum convenience for any wearer. The cheap watch also has a water resistance rating of 30 meters. This number is easy to understand, because SBGW231 is a formal watch after all. Although it can withstand some light splashes and rain, it is not recommended that you take this precious timer to any water sports adventure.

After all, Grand Seiko uses a transparent sapphire crystal, almost as clear as water, allowing the wearer to see and appreciate how the beautiful manual winding mechanical movement of SBGW231 beats under its surface. This exhibition-style back cover is only used by popular luxury watch brands. This just shows how passionate Grand Seiko is in providing everyone with an unforgettable and unparalleled timing experience.

Sapphire crystal is also used to protect the dial of SBGW231. Sapphire crystal is the first choice for luxury brands because it is strong enough to withstand all kinds of scratches and impacts. In addition, compared with the acrylic glass mirror, the sapphire crystal mirror also has an original and clear appearance, while the latter has a more faded and retro atmosphere. You just need to remember that if your sapphire crystal is damaged, your only option is to completely replace it with a new one, which can be very expensive.


The classic dial of the Grand Seiko SBGW231 uses a delicate cream color. It has baton-style hour markers and Prince Princess hour and minute hands, all made of pure stainless steel, matching the silver case and lugs of the watch. More importantly, the hour markers and hands have been polished by Zaratsu for a cohesive and consistent appearance. Polishing gives the hour markers and hands a unique mirr0r-like luster. Although this timepiece does not have any luminous elements, it still has excellent contrast and legibility.

You may not notice it immediately, but the rectangular hour markers are not simply placed around the dial. The 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock, 9 o’clock and 12 o’clock marks have double baton marks to improve clarity. They also extend to provide a balanced minute mark. This design follows the design of 44GS, which is the first watch in the style of Grand Seiko. The brand further enhanced the appearance of the dial by adding a rod-shaped stainless steel second hand. The end of the second hand bends down, almost touching the dial, which is a beautiful and interesting touch.

As a simple timer, SBGW231 does not have any fancy complicated functions. On the contrary, it has a simple style, with only a Grand Seiko logo below the 12 o’clock position mark to increase the noble aura of the watch. In addition to the medium size, the exquisite logo engraving and the text below are visually pleasing, enough to steal anyone’s heart in a second.


In addition to the wonderful Zaratsu polishing and lovely dial layout, another highlight of the Grand Seiko SBGW231 is its powerful movement. SBGW231 specially uses 24 jewels manual winding mechanical movement, called 9S64 movement. The brand’s other multifunctional and more expensive formal watches also use the same mechanism, such as SBGW235, SBGW262 and SBGW263. The face of the 9S64 movement proudly presents the Grand Seiko logo on the top, and all its components, from hairspring and catch The vertical wheel, the splint and the balance wheel, are all carefully crafted internally using various innovative technologies. Calibre 9S64 proves that it is indeed an extraordinary engine. It is one of the few hand-wound movements of the brand and an ode to its observatory-certified predecessor, Calibre 3180.

In terms of technology, the 9S64 movement introduced in several Grand Seiko models in 2011 beats at a frequency of approximately 28,800 vph and has an amazing power reserve of approximately 72 hours. More importantly, it is equipped with a thin mainspring made of Seiko’s own antimagnetic alloy material SPRON510, and has an excellent accuracy level of -1 to +10 seconds per day. However, when the timepiece is at rest, the movement can be adjusted to six different positions, with an accuracy of 3 to +5 seconds per day, which is still impressive. This precision effortlessly surpasses the standards of other major watch brands and is enough to satisfy the mechanical watch lovers there. For a reasonably priced mechanical watch, these details are indeed


We have given a lot of praise to the Grand Seiko SBGW231 for its round surface, exquisite dial and powerful movement, but unfortunately, there is not much to say about its strap. It is a simple, typical alligator leather strap, a typical attribute of many luxury watches. Since the strap and the stitching on both sides are made of cool black, you can easily match this timer whether it is casual wear, formal wear or business-themed wear. The sturdy pin buckle is made of stainless steel and also ensures that the watch sticks to the wrist all day.

You can indeed choose to replace the strap with something more elegant and sweet, such as a stainless steel bracelet. However, finding the perfect replacement can be a challenge, because the width of the lugs of the Seiko SBGW231 is 19 mm, and there are not many 19 mm straps available on the market. That is to say, if you do find a strap design that perfectly suits your lifestyle and personality, please make sure to seek the help of authorized service personnel when replacing the SBGW231 strap to avoid damaging the watch in the process.

Should you buy a Grand Seiko SBGW231?
If you are looking for an entry-level luxury, or you like a three-hand watch with no fancy complications on the dial, then the Grand Seiko SBGW231 should be your first choice. This is a very suitable luxury watch to carry and use, especially if you are new to the world of Grand Seiko watches. There is no doubt that once you buy this watch, you will become the center of the watch dialogue. Not to mention, with its powerful movement and exquisite Zaratsu finishing, you will get huge benefits.