We love the Seiko Flightmaster because it reminds us of the Navitimer? But is it the best homage for 2021?
Spoiler alert: we are fanboys of the Flightmaster, not just for its likeness to the Breitling, its a great watch for those wanting acquire their first low-cost pilot watch.
Very few watches out there command attention like the Seiko Master and the Omega Speedmaster, and guess what? The all amazing Seiko Flightmaster is set to join the ranks and for the right reasons.
For starters, the Seiko Flightmaster stands out as one of those tool watches that will leave you breathless, thanks to its impeccable performance. As one of the finest tools watches yet, the Seiko Flightmaster or Seiko SNA411, as many have come to call it, is popular among EMS professionals and pilots.
For Seiko fanatics who have always wanted to wear a Breitling Navitimer homage, this is your opportunity to grab the Seiko Flighmaster.
But what makes the Seiko SNA411 model such a prized possession? Read on to learn more about the Seiko Flightmaster in today’s review.
History of the Flightmaster
The Seiko story began from a small shop at the Kyobashi district in Tokyo, where their 21-year-old founder would typically sit to repair and build watches and clocks. Today, the Seiko brand has metamorphosed into one of the most globally recognized watch brands with many popular timepieces to its name.
But they didn’t just rise out of nowhere. Like every company, Seiko started small and has grown to become a brand to contend with.
The company’s fortunes changed when Kintaro Hattori partnered with Tsurihiko Yoshikawa, a famous engineer of his time. Together they set up the Seikosha watch factory in 1892. It was here that the company built countless wall clocks.
Ridding on the success of their wall clocks, the company launched its very first pocket watch, the Timekeeper, in 1895. The Timekeeper became an instant hit and shot the company into the limelight in Japan and beyond.
In 1913, the company decided it was time to test the water with wristwatches. This spurred the company to release its first-ever wristwatch, the Laurel. Amazingly, the Laurel was the first-ever wristwatch to carry the Seiko logo.
After many years in the watch industry, the company has remained consistent and has continued to keep pace with some big brands at the top. Today, the brand has a cult following, just like many luxury watch brands out there.
The Seiko Flighmaster is carefully designed with durability in mind. Fitted with Japanese Quartz movement, the accuracy of this timepiece is not in doubt. Plus, when it comes to hand progression, we are happy to inform you that it comes with little noise.
Like many Seiko watches, the Seiko Flightmaster features the company’s very own Hardlex Crystal window. More so, the dial is more sturdy than mineral crystal. For people prone to dropping their watches, you’ll most likely love the impact resistance that Hardlex offers.
Additionally, this Chronograph timepiece is carefully made from stainless steel and measures 42mm in diameter. Also, it has a thickness profile of 13mm. While the casing is relatively smaller than many watches out there, we are happy to inform you that it performs excellently and packs a punch.
Its stainless steel linked bracelet is famous for polished and brushed finishes. More so, it has a fold-over push-button clasp along with a safety closure for extra security.
Hands and Chronograph
The Seiko Flightmaster features unique hour and minute hands with a particularly unique Obelisque style.
Because of the vibrant yellow of the Chronograph hand, it’s easy to understand why it stands out from others, even as it makes for easy timing. Thanks to being shaped like an arrow, the Chronograph appears like it is shot straight from a bow.
Unlike most Chronographs we have come across, this one sweeps at an insanely smooth five times per second. For a quartz-powered watch, this is pretty unique and commendable.
The smooth sweep of the Seiko Flightmaster SNA411 makes it a favorite among pilots, military personnel, EMS, and medical professionals for timing respiration, pulses, and other cardiac functions with utmost precision.
The Seiko Flightmaster SNA411 and Seiko Flightmaster SNA413 feature a brilliant dial with a unique and breathtaking arrangement. Unlike other Seiko watches, this one features a chapter ring that extends onto the dial face. Plus, it has round indices with lumbrite and other reflective chrome.
Though this watch is primarily designed to be a pilot’s watch, it also doubles as a dive watch as it is water-resistant up to 200m. But just before you take it for a dive, make sure you screw down the chronograph pushers for extra security.
Though the dial may look somewhat busy for some watch lovers, for true Seiko Flighmaster fanatics, the dial is an incredible piece of art. More so, the complexity of its arrangement keeps users guessing.
Like many Seiko watches, the Seiko SNA411 features a Quartz battery-powered caliber 7T62 movement. Also, it comes with a highly reliable Quartz Seiko chronograph movement highlighted by a sweeping chronograph seconds hand together with an alarm/dual-time complication, which sits at the 6 o’clock subdial.
Long-time users of this timepiece have reported an accuracy of +/- 2 seconds, which is super impressive.
Like many cheap Seiko watches, the Seiko Flightmaster strap is regarded as its weakest. To this end, you may be forced to replace it with a leather strap for more durability. This is not to say the bracelet isn’t functional, as many Seiko Flightmaster users have reportedly used theirs for many years without complaint.
- Impressive chronograph
- Super affordable
- Accurate movement
- Water-resistant up to 200m
- Lots of incredible features
- Very durable
- The bracelet is its weakest link
- The dial is cluttered
- It is complicated to use
Frequently asked questions
How much does the Seiko Flightmaster cost?
The Seiko Flightmaster is one of the most affordable tool watches you’ll ever come across. As per pricing, this timepiece costs only $274.98, which is a fantastic deal if you consider other similar watches on the market.
Is the Seiko FlightMaster a good watch?
Given its impeccable performance, brilliant Japanese Quartz movement, and impressive accuracy, the Seiko SNA411 Flightmaster is a beast. Plus, the Hardlex crystal protecting its superb dial makes it even more sophisticated.
Is the Seiko FlightMaster discontinued?
Even though there are rumors that the Seiko Flighmaster has been discontinued, you can still find decent models in excellent condition.
The Seiko Flightmaster is one of the most exciting tool watches we have seen in a long time. From its impeccable movement to superb dial and unrivaled performance, this wonderful timepiece has proven to be a highly reliable watch.