Takuma Kawauchiya: Grand Seiko movement designer
Q.1 Please tell me about your current job and your career.
A.1 In 2010, I joined Seiko Instruments Inc. from watchmaking school and was assigned to the R & D Center. I have developed elements of Caliber 9SA5 and some of the complex mechanisms within. Since 2018, I have been in the Watch Design Department, where I have worked on the detailed design of the 9SA5, the development and design of the concept movement T0, and the caliber 9ST1, Kodo. For Caliber 9ST1, I am also in charge of assembly.
Q.2 Could you explain what is most challenging and most enjoyable about your job?
A.2 Because the T0, equipped with a complex mechanism, was the first caliber I designed, I had to learn everything from 3D computer design to how to design a movement. Although it was a long journey to create caliber 9ST1, once I heard the market’s reaction after the press release of Kodo, I was really glad that I had been working so hard on it.
Q.3 Please tell me a Grand Seiko that you are fond of.
A.3 As expected, it is SLGT003, the Kodo Constant-Force Tourbillon. For ten years, I put everything I had into its development, and I feel as if it were my alter ego. Besides Kodo, I have been involved in the development of the caliber 95A5 since I joined the company, so I also have a deep affection for the model equipped with that movement. As a member of the design team, I am delighted that SLGH005, the White Birch Dial, has received such high praise.
Q.4 Please tell me which Grand Seiko you think you want the most now.
A.4 That is, of course, SLGT003, the Kodo Constant Force Tourbillon. I can never buy it, though.
The sad thing about developing such a complex mechanism is that you develop it with a passion of “I wish I had a watch like this!” and end up with a product that you can never buy yourself. As a more realistic model, I want Grand Seiko equipped with 9SA5, in which I was involved in the design.