Casio G-Shock are famous for producing a huge range of different exciting timepieces, in varying styles, sizes and prices. We have seen things like an 18k Gold G-Shock at the most premium end of the spectrum, and then the Carbon Core Guard as a much more accessible level! This does not speak for the watches quality, as anyone that has owned a G-Shock will be able to tell you of it’s reliability, accuracy and durability. This latest model, the G-Shock MRG Gassan is an intriguing one. Most definitely placed at the premium end of the spectrum, this model is somewhat new territory for G-Shock.
We have seen the Casio brand use a whole range of different techniques and materials in production. We have also seen them take inspiration from all kinds of cultural areas for their designs, such as the Seven Lucky Gods series. However, for the G-Shock MRG Gassan, they have combined everything possible. Not only do we have the historically inspired design, but we also get the combination of modern and traditional manufacturing techniques, as well as the most recent, powerful movement inside!
The MRG-2000GA-1ADR is a highly anticipated model, and it is clear to see why. With a price tag of £6,500 and limited to only 3,000 pieces, this watch is a collectors dream!
This premium MR-G watch finds it’s inspiration in the world of traditional Japanese swordsmanship. A craft that is becoming more and more rare, the techniques used in this watch are truly special. Known for bringing together the timeless strength and sensibilities of Japan, this model is hand finished by a master craftsman in the world renowned Gassan tradition of Japanese swordsmiths.
The G-Shock MRG Gassan
This is a watch that has been designed to reflect everything that is sacred and special about the art of swordmaking. Each and every detail has been intensely detailed, and specialist attention has been paid to every area. This is a completely different timepiece to any G-Shock’s we have seen before, a genuine 1 of a kind. Well 300 of a kind, but you get the idea!
To start with, the case is made from titanium, but not just any titanium, recrystallised titanium. This gives the case a sparkling appearance, resembling the crystal formation of the temper line on the blade of Japanese swords. We did say that every detail has been considered! This case is paired with an Arc Ion Plating (AIP) treatment. This treatment is applied to the watch in the Koki-Murasaki (deep purple) that has been traditionally associated with nobility in Japan. So not only are you getting a traditionally Japanese designed G-Shock watch, but one of high nobility too! The case construction is completed with the bezel. Made from Cobarian, the bezel is bevelled in a unique way to reflect the blade tip of the Japanese sword!
Inside this case sits one of Casio’s most popular and powerful movements. A GPS and Bluetooth, and radio controlled movement keeps the watch ticking on time at all times. Using radio wave time-calibration signals, this MR-G supports time zone changes around the world, as well as daylight savings time!
The special design of this watch continues past the case and movement, and is carried through the bracelet and clasp too. The centre band of the G-Shock MRG Gassan has been finished with a pattern, that is modeled after the pattern used in the renowned Gassan tradition of swordsmiths. This pattern is applied by hand to each link by Sabanobu Gasson, who is in line to succeed the 800 year old Gassan tradition. Find out more about him below!
The second link down in the bracelet has been chosen to hold a special inscription, hand engraved by the master. It has been inscribed with the kanji character ‘鍛’, from the saying tanto hitosuji (“a singular dedication to forging”) that is embraced by the Gassan tradition.
The whole watch, from case to clasp, and dial too, incorporates design elements inspired by Japanese swords. From the Yasuri-Me (Rasp Marks) on the Nakago (Tang) which can be seen in the metal areas of the watch, to the crystal formation of the Hamon (Temper Line) and the Kissaki (Blade Tip). It is impressive how much detail the designers have managed to include in this watch, and is a true testament to the Gassan, and Casio G-Shock.
One of the minds behind the creation of this fantastic watch is Sadanobu Gassan. Born into the famous Gassan family in 1979, his future was always destined to follow those before him, leading in to the world of swordsmiths. He was exposed to this world, and the craft at a very young age, and took to it very well.
In 1998, he first began training with Sadatoshi Gassan, his father, where he was able to develop his craft, and truly learn about this tradition. 8 years later, in 2006, he was recognized as a swordsmith by the Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs, an honor and milestone for Gassan.
Since then he has gone on to perfect his craft, and become one of the best swordsmiths around. Constantly challenge himself in new areas, he has developed his work in to new styles, yet remains dedicated to carrying forth the traditions of the past. He was been victorious in many competitions, winning prizes and accolades throughout his years. As the sixth in the Gassan line from Osaka, he carries the honour of the next generation of Japanese swords.
Sadanobu Gassan currently serves as a director for the All Japan Swordsmith Association.