Introducing the “actors” of our book “History1″ (part 3/4)

by on Nov.09, 2012, under General


CHAPTER III – “Karl-Heinz Kiefer”
(55 pages, 39 photos, 3 technical illustrations)

The story of Karl-Heinz Kiefer, who received fast-track training in the last months of the 2nd world war, already provided proof in the first edition of this book (2007) about period of use of the rare watch-face version of his Panerai watch, which for a long time had been ascribed to an earlier date. Now, his winter training in a toughening-up camp at the Baltic Sea is described in more detail.

CHAPTER III.I – “The Kiefer-Radiomir”
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer” (painted brass, anonymous)
Case number: 260560
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

More info on the third chapter of the book “History1″ can be found here.
The book “History1″ is in stock. It can be ordered directly in our bookstore.

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Just because… “volcano dome”

by on Sep.12, 2014, under Allgemein

Captured the domed shape of the plexi on this Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer”. Slightly above the bezel, the “volcano dome” starts its smooth rounded shape from the lower outside to the higher center. Ref. 3646 watches have been produced over several years with different shaped plexi glasses. Another known shape is the flat centered version with a stronger curved outside area (see this Ref. 3646 / Type C “Radiomir Panerai” to compare / see this Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” to compare).

As the plexiglass was, aside the onion shaped or tubular shaped winding crown, one of the most damaged and naturally worn off part of these watches, spare plexi glasses replaced the initial plexi glasses. Its great to see another watch which comes still with its original “volcano dome”.

Another Vintage Panerai Ref. 3646 / Type D with a similar plexi is featured in our book “History2″ on page 632 / chapter VI.

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“History2″ is in stock.

by on Sep.09, 2014, under General, Watch Point

Our book “History2″ is in stock. It can be ordered directly at our bookstore. “History2″ comes in a solid slipcase (on the right in the photo) which has been constructed to protect the hardcover book and keep it in perfect shape when stored in a bookshelf upright. The size of the book is 26 x 26 cm, 480 pages, trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book).

Both together, the hardcover book with 480 pages and the slipcase, are weighing more than 3 kilos. Further photos can be found in our bookstore’s gallery.

The five chapters of our book “History2″ are introduced below:
Chapter V / Chapter VI / Chapter VII / Chapter VIII / Chapter IX

The Vintage Panerai watches featured in the book “History2″ can be found here:
“The Köneke Radiomir” / “The Kaufhold Radiomir” /
“The Lewandowski Radiomir” / “The Rösel Radiomir”

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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“History1″ is in stock.

by on Sep.09, 2014, under General, Watch Point

Our book “History1″ is in stock. It can be ordered directly at our bookstore. “History1″ comes in a solid slipcase (on the right in the photo) which has been constructed to protect the hardcover book and keep it in perfect shape when stored in a bookshelf upright.

Both together, the hardcover book and the slipcase, are weighing more than 3 kilos. The size of the book is 26 x 26 cm, 420 pages, trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book). Further photos can be found in our bookstore’s gallery.

The four chapters of our book “History1″ are introduced below:
Chapter I / Chapter II / Chapter III / Chapter IV

The four watches featured in the book “History1″ can be found here:
The Lehmann Radiomir / The Pape RadiomirThe Kiefer Radiomir / The Arillo Luminor

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Sneak Preview of a Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer”

by on Sep.06, 2014, under Allgemein

Got the chance to stop by at auctioneer Dr. Crott in Mannheim / Germany for taking a close look at yet surfaced Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer”, which will be auctioned on saturday, november 15th in Frankfurt.

The watch is filling another place of a piece in the big Vintage Panerai puzzle, matching our database criteria in the group of the watches of the Reference 3646 / Type D. It has been recently delivered to the auctioneer being a heirloom of a german watchmaker’s family.

The front view shows the anonymous “Kampfschwimmer” sandwich dial and the bright blue steel hands with their original luminous material (partially off). Small cracks in the plexi are proof of age of the “volcano dome” shaped plexi.

Also the aged numbers and markers of the dial in different colors (from yellow to light orange / amber) are a typical feature of 3646 / Type D watches and can be found on many others. The screw-down caseback of the watch is plain (without individual engravings).

The inner caseback shows the – typical for the Ref. 3646 / Type D criteria – Rolex SA stamp, reference number and case number and has a fully decorated finish. The engine of the watch is the Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1 movement.

Typical for this type of movement is the “ROLEX 17 RUBIS” engraving on the center bridge. As usual on Rolex Cal. 618 movements used in watches of the Reference 3646, the balance cock bears the S-F / A-R regulation device.

Features of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer”  (sandwich, engraved)
Case number: 2606XX
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

The new owner of this watch may decide to change the actual non-screw-down replacement crown with tubular shaped “Oyster Patent” crown (Type 13) or – with some luck – with an onion shaped “Brevet +” crown (Type 11). The “neck” of the cushion shaped case still exists and a good watchmaker should be able to place a tube into it to get a screw-down crown from Rolex on it.

Similar watches of this type with anonymous “Kampfschwimmer” sandwich dials are featured in our books “History1″ (chapter II) and “History2″ (chapter V and chapter VII).

We hope the watch will find a good new home and that it remain surfaced in the Vintage Panerai collectors world.
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Follow us on facebook… thanks for more than 1100 likes!

by on Aug.29, 2014, under General

Keep in touch with the latest news and activities on Vintage Panerai. Like us:
https://www.facebook.com/VintagePanerai

[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Spot on: chapter IX of “History2″

by on Aug.22, 2014, under Allgemein

CHAPTER IX – “Helmut Rösel”
(98 pages, 63 photos, 4 technical illustrations)

The collectible items of the former combat swimmer Helmut Rösel, which was submitted for auction to the auctioneer Dr. Crott, contains not only his Panerai watch but also some documents from his time as a combat swimmer, some of which are extremely rare in this day and age. They give precise information about the stages of his training and his successful missions at the western and eastern fronts. The German Federal Cross of Merit, which was awarded to him in 1983 provided new insights, following our enquires at the Office of the Federal President, into his professional career in the Protestant Church, in which he was a pastor from 1961 and a military chaplain for the Bundeswehr from 1971. Letters written personally by him and a 1994 jewellery certificate for his Panerai watch are precious pieces of evidence are just as difficult to find in this day and age as the historic Panerai watches themselves.

Vintage Panerai “History2″
26 x 26 cm, 480 pages,
trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book),
hardback jacket, slipcase.

“History2″ is in stock and can be ordered directly at our bookstore.

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Spot on: chapter VIII of “History2″

by on Aug.15, 2014, under Allgemein

CHAPTER VIII – “Walter Lewandowski”
(72 pages, 48 photos, 4 technical illustrations)

Walter Lewandowski also followed an unusual path in the Second World War. In 1943 he was initially with the Luftwaffe as a paratrooper and pilot of a transport glider in “Battle Squadron 200”, then posted to the Navy, and immediately afterwards trained as a combat swimmer in Valdagno and in the Lagoon of Venice. After a failed mission on the Adriatic coast, where he managed to find his way back to his own lines overland after many days, he was then sent back to the Eastern Front in Germany for the last weeks of the war. There, as a member of the “Einsatzgruppe Keller”, he carried out a number of missions against the Soviet pontoon bridges. He first escaped captivity by the Soviet troops, who were advancing on Berlin with immense superiority of strength, but then on the island of Sylt he shared the fate of many other combat swimmers and was a British prisoner of war until 1946.

Vintage Panerai “History2″
26 x 26 cm, 480 pages,
trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book),
hardback jacket, slipcase.

“History2″ is in stock and can be ordered directly at our bookstore.

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Spot on: chapter VII of “History2″

by on Aug.08, 2014, under Allgemein

CHAPTER VII – “Hanns-Martin Kaufhold”
(70 pages, 58 photos, 6 technical illustrations)

The chapter about Hanns-Martin Kaufhold shows comprehensively just how helpful a collection of field post letters has been when researching this member of the “Einsatzgruppe Keller”. His correspondence with his then-girlfriend, which lasted more than three years from his entry into the Navy in 1942 until the end of his imprisonment in July 1945, provides information about the stages of his time as a trainee officer and combat swimmer. These rare documents, including identification papers and travel documents issued in Venice, allow us to reconstruct the route he took to the mission grounds at the Eastern Front. A mission report written by Hanns-Martin Kaufhold on April 3rd, 1945 – an unique and extremely rare document – describes a mission carried out by him and four comrades in the “Einsatzgruppe Keller”.

Vintage Panerai “History2″
26 x 26 cm, 480 pages,
trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book),
hardback jacket, slipcase.

“History2″ is in stock and can be ordered directly at our bookstore.

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Spot on: chapter VI of “History2″

by on Aug.01, 2014, under Allgemein

CHAPTER VI – “Manfred Lau”
(82 pages, 39 photos)

The chapter about the contemporary witness and author of the book “Schiffssterben vor Algier”, Manfred Lau, with whom we have been friendly since 2003, is a very special one. It is the “chapter without a watch”. Nevertheless, precisely his personal story is of great interest to us, as he is a veteran of the “Lehmann pig group”, who were trained for deployments with two-man torpedoes (SLC and SSB devices) on the island of Le Vignole in the Lagoon of Venice. In impressive and precise detail he describes the difficult journey from Hamburg through a Germany that was, by the autumn of 1944, severely marked by the scars of war, and down to northern Italy, where the secret training centre of the combat swimmers was located. The detailed memories of his training period to become a pilot of the two-man torpedoes, almost 70 years ago, and supplemented with historical maps and pictures, take the reader on a journey to the Adriatic coast. There the midshipman ended his time as a sea fighter with a march into captivity, from which he returned to Germany in 1948.

Vintage Panerai “History2″
26 x 26 cm, 480 pages,
trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book),
hardback jacket, slipcase.

“History2″ is in stock and can be ordered directly at our bookstore.

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Spot on: chapter V of “History2″

by on Jul.25, 2014, under Allgemein

CHAPTER V – “Jochen Burnus”
(112 pages, 67 photos, 4 technical illustrations)

The chapter on Jochen Burnus describes his period of duty as a combat swimmer, from his posting away from Yugoslavia in 1944 and his training in northern Italy to his missions at the Elbe, where he ended up in American captivity on April 20th, 1945. After his release he worked in Hamburg Harbour as a recovery diver, together with other former combat swimmers, including Siegfried Köneke, who also belonged to the “Einsatzgruppe Keller” in the Second World War. Burnus later received his friend’s Panerai watch (Ref. 3646 / Type D) from Köneke’s parents, after Sigi was killed at the age of 28 in tragic circumstances while working in Hamburg Harbour on March 14th, 1949. Thus the stories of two combat swimmers merge inseparably and allow us to trace the journey of a combat swimmer watch and its earlier owners from 1944 to the present day.

Vintage Panerai “History2″
26 x 26 cm, 480 pages,
trilingual (= german, italian and english language in one book),
hardback jacket, slipcase.

“History2″ is in stock and can be ordered directly at our bookstore.

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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