The AD dial variant of the Grand Seiko “First” is extremely rare, with very limited production dating from 1963.
To date, we have come across fewer than 10 examples, dating from April (1 example), May (3 examples), and August (4 examples) of that year.
Produced alongside the regular SD dials, we are not certain as to the reason for the AD dial existing.
When a dial is marked with the AD logo (seen in the image above, below the “Diashock 25 Jewels” text), it indicates that the hour markers are made from a gold plated base metal, rather than solid gold as found on dials marked SD.
Given the extreme rarity of these watches, it seems unlikely that they were produced as a cost saving measure. They differ markedly from the more common SD dials in that they are finished with a radiating “sunburst” pattern, and the font used for the “Diashock” text is very different to that found on all other dial variants.
The dial code for these watches is GSJ14H156 AD, with the “Japan” text and dial code laid out very differently to how they are seen on other dials.
Interestingly the 57GS 43999, which commenced production in August 1963, also has a sunburst finish to its dial – possibly the AD dialed “Firsts” were used to test the market for this different finishing.
We currently have examples of this reference available for sale, which can be found at the following links –