“History2″ is in stock.

by on Feb.19, 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 Feb.19, 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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“Kampfschwimmer” at Christie’s sale 1401

by on Apr.12, 2014, under Allgemein

Christie’s has a Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” in their Important Watches auction 1401 (LOT 433) on may 12th, 2014. The inner caseback engravings, in combination with the Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1 movement, are matching our database criteria.

Features of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer” (sandwich, anonymous)
Case number: 2604XX
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

Used in Ref. 3646 watches from Type A to Type G, the Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1 movement comes without Incabloc shock protection. Typical for this non-incabloc version is the serif font for the letters A-R (french) and F-S (english) engraved on the regulation device.

The watch comes with an engraved caseback, done in the typical tatooing machine style, which can be found occasionally on similar 3646 watches used by german frogmen. The surrounding text Nahkampflehrer von L.K. 700 (hand-to-hand-fight instructor of Training Commando 700), the first owners’ initials (GF) in the center and the year of service (1945) are giving this watch the grade of being a real tool watch in the 2nd world war.

A historic photo of frogmen during hand-to-hand-fight training can be found in our book “History2″ (page 460). The personal stories of several frogmen of the Lehrkommando 700 (engraved L.K. 700) are described in “History1″ as well as in “History2″ in several chapters.

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]

[Photos with kindly permission / courtesy of www.christies.com]

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One more “Kampfschwimmer” surfaced…

by on Mrz.31, 2014, under Allgemein

New entry in our database, surfaced in the United States. Just recently we were contacted from the owner of a Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” which we added into our steady growing database of today’s existing Vintage Panerai watches.

Features of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer” (sandwich, anonymous)
Case number: 2604XX
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

Even the engraved caseback with the initials of the first owner (“SB”) makes it a very nice and interesting addition in the number group of Type D. Great to see another yet unknown Vintage Panerai watch is matching our database criteria in all its details. Similar watches are featured in our both books “History1″ and “History2″.

[Photos with kindly permission / courtesy of Daniel Bassler]

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A close look at a “Kampfschwimmer” with brass dial

by on Mrz.22, 2014, under Allgemein

Another visit at auctioneer Dr. Crott brought us another new database entry for the Reference 3646 / Type D. The yet unknown watch with the case number 260753 will be up for auction in may, bearing the typical features of the number group 260408 – 260838, representing the Reference 3646 / Type D.

Until today we have recorded sixty existing specimen of this type of 3646 watches in our database, which is one of the larger groups inbetween known watches of Type A to Type G. Only a few number of watches comes with a flat brass dial, easy to identify by the closed “6″ and “9″ which are not cut thru the upper disk (like the sandwich dial construction is done) but embossed from top onto the brass dial, painted black and filled up with luminous material. Both, blued steel hands and brass dial have still the complete luminous material today (see earlier posting on this watch).

The Rolex SA stamp on the inner caseback is one feature aside the Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1 movement with 17 Jewels and no Incabloc shock protection. Typical for this type of movement is the “ROLEX 17 RUBIS” engraving on the center bridge. As usual on movement used in watches of the Reference 3646, the balance cock bears the S-F / A-R regulation device.

The watch comes with the flat version of the bezel, typical on watches with brass dials or the “California Dial” versions. The bezel carries the original Plexiglas, which is today still in good condition. The “neck” of the cushion shaped stainless steel 47 mm case is still existing, on which an onion shaped “Brevet +” crown (Type 11) is screwed down.

The case has not been polished over the last decades and appears today – after 70 years – with a nice patina on case, bezel and caseback.

Especially the individual engraving on the caseback makes it a remarkable watch to us. Done in the typical tatooing machine style, which can be found occasionally on similar 3646 watches used by german frogmen, the surrounding text Marine Kampfschwimmer (navy frogmen), the first owners’ initials (HV) and the year of service (1944) are giving this watch the grade of being a real tool watch in the 2nd world war.

Also the watch comes with the old leather strap, hand stitched and sewn onto the lugs of the case with the rare cromed brass buckle, which has been bent down for comfortable wear, which we have seen on some other Ref. 3646 watches before. The strap has two fixed (sewn on) keepers.

A similar watch is featured in our book “History1″.

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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Another piece in the puzzle added…

by on Mrz.20, 2014, under Allgemein

The Vintage Panerai watches keep on surfacing. Just in these days, another Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” with rare brass dial and engraved caseback bearing the initials of the first owner and the year of his service as frogmen (1944), came to our attention. We received an invitation for a “first look” from auctioneer Dr. Crott, who received this watch for their upcoming 89th auction on may, 10th 2014, from the family of the former german frogmen veteran.

Great to see another yet unknown Vintage Panerai watch is matching our database criteria in all its details.

Features of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer”  (painted brass, anonymous)
Case number: 260753
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

A detailled report on the details of the watch, such as movement, engraved caseback and historic strap and buckle will be follow up here soon. Stay tuned!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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The Köneke Radiomir featured at watchtime.net

by on Feb.18, 2014, under Allgemein

The german watch portal www.watchtime.net featured the Vintage Panerai Ref. 3646 / Type D“The Köneke Radiomir”– with an overview about the details of the watch and the history behind its first two owners, german frogmen Siegfried Köneke and Jochen Burnus.

“The Köneke Radiomir” is fully described in our book “History2″ in Chapter V on 112 pages with 67 photos and 4 technical illustrations. Thanks to www.watchtime.net for putting a spotlight onto Panerai’s DNA. [Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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Vintage 6152/1 featured in “Chronos Spezial” magazine 1/2014

by on Jan.27, 2014, under Allgemein

The german watch magazine “Chronos” featured the Vintage Panerai Ref. 6152/1 – “The Arillo Luminor”– with an overview (page 64-69) about the details of the watch and the history behind its first owner, italian commander of the submarine “Ambra”, Mario Arillo (M.O.V.M.). The february-april issue “Chronos Spezial” is entirely about Panerai’s roots and history with a review from the past until today, including tests, movements and milestone models.

“The Arillo Luminor” is fully described in our book “History1″ in Chapter IV on 165 pages with 106 photos and 7 technical illustrations. The book “History1″ is in stock. It can be ordered directly in our bookstore.

Get your copy of the “Chronos Spezial” 1/2014 now at the newspaper stores across europe. Find more info at www.watchtime.net [Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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SIHH 2014 – the DNA lives on in gold and complications

by on Jan.26, 2014, under Allgemein

Returned from the SIHH 2014 in Geneva, took home lots of impressions and input on the new released Panerai models, which represent the future of the brand.

Impressive to enter the Panerai booth first: every visitor comes along the “legends”, walking inside is guided by historic models and instruments which carry the Panerai DNA: left and right, the entrance was equipped with Vintage Panerai models 3646, 6152, 6152/1 Angelus, 6152/1 Lefty, Mare Nostrum, compass and depth gauge as well as the famous PreVendome 5218-202/A . So, before you get know the future, you got to know the past – where the brand has its origins and where all the models got their shape from. Other brands of the Richemont family carry their guests into created worlds, themes and visions while Panerai keeps his roots clearly visible – at their booth and in the displays that presented the new models.

On a side note during the past days it seems that in the Panerai collectors world it has become a “tradition” to criticize whatever announced new and modern, which let me – as a long term “paneristi” (who got in touch with Panerai in 1998) wonder if there are some collectors around which would be ever satisfied with any of the watches Panerai introduces to their customers… How could Panerai exist if they would build only Base or Marina models in steel? Years ago the inhouse movements were a big step into the right direction – to survive in the world of luxury brands, trying to stay attractive in the market and under an endless number of competitors. Panerai is going without doubt its own way, which has been a successful one in past and hopefully becomes an ongoing and successful one in the future.

Inbetween all this, we can obviously take notice of watch collectors which decided to go another way, maybe just recently or maybe already years ago. They seem to enjoy coming back to places they once joined with pleasure sharing the passion for the same brand, but this time – since years when at the SIHH new models are presented - they throw mud over the pond to underline how much they dislike the new models. [Note to myself: if I ever would quit with Panerai for whatever reason - the last thing I would do is come back and express my negative comments.] We all know how easy it is to talk and write something bad, and how much more it takes to even try to understand the way which Panerai decided to go into the future.

This year’s new Radiomir 1940 chronographs are quite special and limited (50 pices each). Yes, they are expensive, they are made of precious metals – platinum (PAM518), pink gold (PAM519) and white gold (PAM520). Not watches for the “average paneristi” in regards of price and availability, but for sure these watches will find a lot of attraction around the world. On the wrist they appear huge and heavy but als comfortable to wear. The 45 mm cased bicompax chronographs in the new released “Radiomir 1940″ case are powered with the hand-wound Panerai OPXXV movement. The dial, subdials and hands of the watch remind me on the legedary “Mare Nostrum” chronograph from the 1940s. I wonder if and when I will see one of these three references “in real” on a wrist of a Panerai collector.

New Luminor Base models (PAM560, PAM561 and PAM562) as well as new Luminor Marina models (PAM563, PAM564) in steel with white or black dial and also titanium cases with tobacco dials – all with the new inhouse P.5000 movement, entirely executed by Panerai. History repeating – once more in the Panerai history, 8-day-movements replacing movements with less power reserve, just like it happened with the Angelus movements many decades ago.

Another 44 mm Panerai will come with this P.5000 movement – the PAM590. First exclusively for the north american market, the watch bears the legendary 8 GIORNI BREVETTATO logo on its dial. In the first moment a bit “untypical” because of the missing “3″ on the right side of the dial, it looks quite special and could be a quick selling piece.

Another unique edition chrono (300 pieces) is the 1950 Chrono Monopulsante left-handed 8 Days Titanio (long name!) – PAM579. The hand-wound P.2004/9 movement from Panerai is a fast runner (28.000 a/h), fitted into the 47 mm Luminor case. The single-button chronograph’s counters are placed in the center of the dial. Ecru and Tobacco are giving the face of the watch a warm appearance, matching the titanium case and titanium chrono button. A display back let the owner see the power reserve indicator. Another complication combined in a historic case – future meets history left-handed.  Another left-handed legend surfaced in the shape of the PAM557. Regular production PAM372 got a brother in shape of this historic icon, powered with the P.3000 movement in stainless steel. If this isnt a watch which paneristi were waiting for a long time, I don’t know what els to say than “finally a 47 mm Destro in steel!”

Panerai added two huge and heavy pocket watches into their portfolio in 2014. Unique editions PAM529 (white gold) and PAM447 (pink gold) in 50 mm (50 pieces each) with P.3001/10 inhouse movement. With hinged cover and chain, Panerai offers these traditional timekeepers to their customers.

Last but not least, a Pendulum Clock (PAM500) rounds up the new releases in 2014. Inspired by Galileo’s discovery in the 17th century, the “measure of time” beats again in a creation from Officine Panerai. The pendulum of Galileo Gallilei, device for measuring time which marked a turning point in horology because it opened the doors of the modern era. The law of isochronism of the pendulum says: “The period of each swing of a simple pendulum, that is, one with a weight attached by an inelastic thread to a fixed support, is independent of the amplitude of the swing.” (Galileo Galilei)

The Panerai Pendulum Clock is a faithful reproduction of the instrument designed by the Tuscan genius. The PAM500 is based on the model made by the Florentine clockmaker Eustachio Porcellotti in 1887. It is an almost exact interpretation of Porcellotti’s work which was once published in the very first Panerai brochures in the late 1990s (see the Panerai book, written by Negretti in 1997/1998, page 15). The Art of Timekeeping comes in shape of a key wound mechanical movement, a power reserve of 8 days, with one barrel. It shows hours and minutes on a sandblasted glass with roman numerals. The Pendulum Clock is placed in a aluminium framed glass on a mahagony base, personalised with PANERAI.

May the new models from the SIHH 2014 not pleased every Panerai collector, at least – as an enthusiast of the brand’s history – I was pleased. Why? Because when I left the Panerai booth, I passed the “legends” again – historic watches and instruments, of which I was able to see many details in the new models – even in gold and complications… [Volker Wiegmann]

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“under pressure” Vintage Panerai depth gauge (Video)

by on Jan.17, 2014, under Allgemein

Still working… a vintage “Luminor Panerai” depht gauge, calibrated for 16 meters, has been tested successfully for its functionality inside a pressure chamber. Due to the limited space, the GPF strap has been removed before the instrument was placed in the center of the pressure chamber.

The membrane on the bottom of the 70 x 90 mm case worked instantly after pressure was added. Interesting to note that the Panerai instrument is working properly since it was used for the last time underwater decades ago.

Click on the link to see the video of the pressure test: Vintage_Panerai_Depth_Gauge.

Click on the link to see the pressure release – “the surfacing” in this video: Vintage_Panerai_depth_gauge_surfacing

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