Our database – an interim status on 1 January 2023

by on Jan.25, 2023, under Allgemein

What happened after 1 January 2016 when we “paused” counting new entries in our database for a moment to complete our book set “The References”? We continued to count and still do that – since 2003 (…20 years ago). January 2023 was a good time to pause again and see how our records have changed in numbers of known watches in our database. The total number of all historic Panerai watches in our database from the 1930’s to the 1960’s has grown to 449 known watches.

Back in 2016 we had 211 entries of the Reference 3646 in our database (seven different number groups, from 3646 / Type A to 3646 / Type G). Since then, 53 watches of the References 3646 have been added into our records, making a total of 264 watches of the reference 3646 today. Find an interim status on 1 January 2023 below:

Reference 2533: 3 examples known (2016: 3)

Reference 3646 / Type A: 18 classified (2016: 18)

Reference 3646 / Type B: 21 classified (2016: 16)

Reference 3646 / Type C: 65 classified (2016: 52)

Reference 3646 / Type D: 107 classified (2016: 79)

Reference 3646 / Type E: 32 classified (2016: 26)

Reference 3646 / Type F: 11 classified (2016: 11)

Reference 3646 / Type G: 10 classified (2016: 9)

Mare Nostrum Chronograph: 1 example known (2016: 1)

The watches made by Guido Panerai & Figlio after the Second World War, those with solid lugs, references 6152, 6154, 6152/1 and GPF 2/56 as well as the transitional references and those with Angelus movements increased from 162 to 181. Most additions are watches of the reference 6152/1 – all four versions (Rolex and Angelus movements, Rolex crown and Panerai crown guard) increased from 103 (2016) to 117 specimen classified in our database on 1 January 2023.

Reference 6152 / Type A: 7 classified (2016: 7)

Reference 6152 / Type B: 2 classified (2016: 2)

Reference 6154: 18 classified (2016: 15)

Reference 6152/1 Rolex with Rolex crown: 24 classified (2016: 23)

Reference 6152/1 Rolex with Panerai crown guard: 73 classified (2016: 64)

GPF 2/56 Angelus: 27 classified (2016: 25)

Reference 3646 Angelus: 5 classified (2016: 5)

Reference 3646 Transitional: 5 classified (2016: 5)

Reference 6152/1 Angelus with Rolex crown: 8 classified (2016: 6)

Reference 6152/1 Angelus with Panerai crown guard: 12 classified (2016: 10)

At this point, again, we want to thank those who shared information on the watches lined up above with us. Auctioneers, collectors, veterans or their family members and friends.

Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann

Comments Off on Our database – an interim status on 1 January 2023 :, more...

Artcurial to auction a Ref. 3646 / Type C with riveted plastic dial

by on Dec.31, 2022, under General

Artcurial will auction a Ref. 3646 / Type C with riveted plastic dial in their upcoming auction on 16 January 2023 (Lot 232) in Monte-Carlo (Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo, Square Beaumarchais).

The watch is one of 65 watches we have recorded since 2003 in the number group 3646 / Type C. In 2016, we had 52 watches recorded and featured in our book “The References” 1930’s-1940’s. Until today – including this specimen – the total number for watches of the Ref. 3646 / Type C increased from 52 to 65.

Watches with the riveted plastic dials are rare, and inbetween case numbers from 1010091 to 1010374 (3646 / Type C) we know today only five. In 2016 we had already just four and this specimen introduced here is the 5th. The five watches with this type of dial are spread all over the known case numbers, so its not like they were put into watches with a similar / consecutive case number close together.

We mention just two examples of 3646 / Type C with such dials: One belongs to Panerai’s own Museum collection (its one of the lowest case numbers of 3646 / Type C we have recorded), and another similiar watch has been published in the book “Military Wristwatches” (Michele Galizia, 2008) with one of the highest case numbers in 3646 / Type C known today.

The watch comes with a typical onion crown (“BREVET +” / Type 11). It is notable that this watch shows a solder point on the back of the casing near the crown. The high version of the bezel of this watch is another characteristic of watches with a sandwich dial.

Another Ref. 3646 / Type C watch with a similar case can be found in chapter II.III on page 312-313 in our book “The References” 1930’s-1940’s. Same features of this watch are the long strap loops soldered to the case, which point slightly downwards, as can be seen in the photo.

Read more on watches of the Ref. 3646 with riveted plastic dials also here. Ref. 3646 watches with this dial version can be found in our book on page 154-159, 176-193 and 226-228 (chapter II).

Features of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type C
Dial: “Radiomir Panerai”  (sandwich, riveted plastic dial)
Case number: 1010XXX
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

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

We hope that this Ref. 3646 / Type C with riveted plastic dial will find a good new home and remains surfaced in the Vintage Panerai collectors world. [Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

 

 

Comments Off on Artcurial to auction a Ref. 3646 / Type C with riveted plastic dial :, , , , , more...

The Radiomir which returned from Gibraltar to Italy…

by on Dec.28, 2022, under Allgemein

IMG_2843_600x600…but alone – without the SLC pilot who used it on his wrist during the mission B.G.5 in December 1942: Licio Visintini.

Born 1915 and enterred the Royal Italian Navy in 1933, Licio Visintini took part in several missions against the allied fleet in Gibraltar as a member of the Decima MAS. In 1941 Visintini was promoted to Tenente di Vascello. After surviving from SLC missions B.G.3 (May 1941) and B.G.4 (September 1941), carried out by the transport submersible “Scirè” under the command of Junio Valerio Borghese, Visintini returned to Gibraltar undercover in June 1942 where he built the core of the “Orsa Maggiore” on board the tanker Olterra – the hidden base for the SLC units in the bay of Gibraltar.

IMG_2842_600x600According to legend, Visintini’s „Radiomir Panerai“ was returned to his mother after the end of the Second World War by his former enemy, Lieutenant „Buster“ Crabb (head of the Underwater Working Party in Gibraltar). The return of personal items to relatives showed a great respect that the combatants on different sides had for one another. Crabb, who was himself an experienced diver serving the British Navy, knew from experience all too wellt he level of courage and determination that was neccessary to carry out missions of this kind. Before Visintini’s mother died, she gave the watch to Vittorio Stradi, her son’s best friend. Vittorio Stradi was a „Gamma“ frogman in the Second World War. Fourty years later he passed the watch to his friend Isidoro Mario Nardin, who was also a member of the „Gamma“ frogmen during the Second World War.

IMG_2841_600x600To commemorate the order of ownership, the three names were inscribed for posterity on the caseback, as shown on page 358-359 and 360. For Isidoro Mario Nardin, Licio Visintini’s Panerai watch became a symbol of cameraderie and a memento of his fallen comrade.

Chapter II.III in our book “The References” (first volume / 1930’s-1940’s) features the story behind this Ref. 3646 / Type C „Radiomir Panerai“ and its three owners, Licio Visintini (M.O.V.M.), Vittorio Stradi and Isidoro Mario Nardin, on page 350-397.

Information on “The References” 1930’s-1940’s (first volume) can be found here.

Enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

Comments Off on The Radiomir which returned from Gibraltar to Italy… :, , , , , , more...

A look into our book “The References” 1930’s-1940’s

by on Dec.02, 2022, under Allgemein


Page 70-71 – engraved caseback of a Ref. 3646 / Type A “Radiomir Panerai”.


Page 112-113 – 25 July 1941: „Operazione Malta 1“ – setting out for the Augusta base, heading towards Malta: Teseo Tesei (SLC), Vittorio Moccagatta and Giobatta Parodi (MAS 452).


Page 358-359 – contemporary illustration of SLC missions starting from the “Olterra” in the Bay of Gibraltar (1942 and 1943).

“The References” 1930’s-1940’s at a glance:
33 Vintage Panerai watches, history, instruments and straps of the 1930’s-1940’s. Featured References: 2533, 3646, the Mare Nostrum chronograph and compasses.

26 x 26 cm, 696 pages, trilingual (German, Italian and English language in one book), 19 database charts, 383 illustrations, including rare historic photos from the 2nd World War, hardback jacket, slipcase.

Visit our bookstore and enjoy reading soon!

Comments Off on A look into our book “The References” 1930’s-1940’s :, , , , , , more...

A look into our book “The References” 1950’s-1960’s

by on Dec.01, 2022, under Allgemein


Page 924-925 – the patented, L-shaped lever with crown-protecting device of a Ref. 6152/1.


Page 1148-1149 – patent 545668 (dated 30 November 1955) presents the O-ring used in the GPF 2/56.


Page 1332-1333 – the casebacks on the compasses, which are screwed in at six points, ar signed in the center with „OFFICINE PANERAI – FIRENZE“ and below with the patented trademark „BREVETTATO“. The Radiomir compass on the right also features the „MOD. G.PF. 4/55“.

“The References” 1950’s-1960’s at a glance:
37 Vintage Panerai watches from the 1950’s to 1960’s. Featured References: 6152, 6154, 6152/1, GPF 2/56 and modified References, compasses and depth gauges followed by an overview of the straps and buckles used in this era.

26 x 26 cm, 696 pages, trilingual (German, Italian and English language in one book), 27 database charts, 353 illustrations, including rare historic photos from Italian and Egyptian frogmen, hardback jacket, slipcase.

Visit our bookstore and enjoy reading soon!

Comments Off on A look into our book “The References” 1950’s-1960’s :, , , , , , , more...

A lot to read during the holiday season…

by on Nov.20, 2022, under Allgemein

rahmen_bild_2016_x-mas_8474_1000x700Read about watches and instruments from Guido Panerai & Figlio. Vintage Panerai watches from the 1930’s to the 1960’s are described and photographed in intricate detail for the reader, telling the stories of their first users during their dangerous underwater missions.

“History1” (420 pages)
“History2” (480 pages)
“The References” 1930’s-1940’s (696 pages)
“The References” 1950’s-1960’s (696 pages)

As a reference finder, as an addition to your library at home or as a special christmas gift for your friends: our Vintage Panerai books will be a great read for any Panerai collector. Each book comes with an embossed hardback jacket (leather and canvas) in a slipcase, sized 10.2 x 10.2″, trilingual (= German, Italian and English language).

Our four books are in stock and can be shipped immediately – just visit our bookstore. Use the browse by tags function to get further information about the content in each of the four books. Read how to place your order here.

Take your seat and enjoy reading!
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

Comments Off on A lot to read during the holiday season… :, , , , more...

18 November 1944 – today in history…

by on Nov.18, 2022, under Allgemein

img_0626_600x600Read chapter VII of our book “History2” to find out what happened on 18 November 1944. Rare documents helped us to capture the history behind a Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” watch, which can be found in this chapter.

Beside photos from the years 1944 and 1945 showing the watch on the frogman’s wrist, as well as his identification papers and travel documents issued in Venice (see photo), helped us to reconstruct the route Hanns-Martin Kaufhold took to the mission grounds in the last months of the Second World War.

Read more about chapter VII of “History2” (70 pages, 58 photos, 6 technical illustrations) here. and here. You can purchase your copy of “History2” in our bookstore.

Comments Off on 18 November 1944 – today in history… :, more...

New entry in our database: an engraved 3646 / Type D

by on Jul.17, 2022, under Allgemein

We added another previously unknown watch into our database – yet another piece of the puzzle surfaced, which marks the first entry of a Ref. 3646 / Type D in 2022 and in total the Type D #107 in our records.

The “Kampfschwimmer” watch with anonymous sandwich dial appears with a rare engraving on its caseback, bearing the initials of the first owner and the name of the unit he belonged to (Marine Kampfschwimmer 1945).

The inner caseback of the watch (full polished, read more in “The References” 1930’s-1940’s on page 486-487) bears the Rolex SA hallmark, reference and case number known for 3646 / Type D watches. Inside the watch is a Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1 movement with typical decorations and engravings on the bridges (ROLEX 17 RUBIS / FAB. SUISSE).

Still sewn onto the soldered lugs is the original leather strap (!) including the large and very rare nickel-plated brass pin buckle. The watch has its original onion shaped winding crown and the typical blued steel hands with original luminous material.

Features of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer” (sandwich, anonymous)
Case number: 2605XX
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

The first owner of the watch took part in a frogmen mission against Russian pontoon bridges across the river Oder at Aurith, near Fürstenberg, in March 1945. You can read about these frogmen missions in our book “History1” in chapter II on page 83-123. The first owner was born in 1924 and passed away in 2000.

The watch is accompanied with an interesting documentation of his service during the Second World War and further information about his life, after he was released from British imprisonment in 1945.

If you are interested to buy this watch, please contact the owner directly via e-mail: albert59er@t-online.de

Comments Off on New entry in our database: an engraved 3646 / Type D :, , , , , , more...

Inventors, pilots and a royal visitor…

by on Jul.07, 2022, under Allgemein

The first watches for the pilots of the “new weapon” SLC were delivered in the middle of the 1930’s by Guido Panerai & Figlio to the Commando del 1° Gruppo Sommergibili of the Royal Italian Navy. According to the timeline of the development of the top secret slow running torpedos (siluro a lenta corsa, short: SLC) by the inventors Teseo Tesei and Elios Toschi, waterproof and luminous instruments for the pilots were necessary to carry out proper exercises and to control the SLC in depth and darkness.

IMG_2635_600x600The chapters I and II, dedicated to the first watches for underwater use (Ref. 2533 and 3646) take the readers of our book “The References” 1930’s-1940’s into these early years. Teseo Tesei and Elios Toschi’s ideas became real. But strategic decisions after the Italo-Ethiopian War stopped the secret SLC project. The tests with these small weapons were archived and the Royal Italian Navy focused their interest in huge battleships, cruisers and destroyers.

The SLC project was re-started by the 1st Flottiglia MAS in 1939 at the advent of the Second World War. With the first missions of the Mezzi d’Assalto carried out from August 1940 onwards, the demand for skilled operators as well as new equipment – and more instruments for the operators – grew fast. An early Ref. 3646 / Type A, dated to April 1940, is featured in chapter II.I followed by the timeline of the missions carried out by the operators of the Decima Flottiglia MAS, the special commandos of the Royal Italian Navy.

IMG_3106_600x600The photo shows page 96 of “The References” with a historic photo from June 1940: The two inventors of the SLC, Teseo Tesei and Elios Toschi, Alberto Franzini and Gino Birindelli above their co-pilots stand together with a royal visitor: Principe Aimone di Savoia Aosta, Duca di Spoleto –  just a few weeks before the first missions of the new weapon SLC were about to write naval history.

Read more about “The birth of a legend – the first Panerai watches (1935-1939)” in chapter I, followed by the timeline of the missions during the Second World War in chapter II.I – more information on the historic content in our “The References” book set with a total of 1392 pages can be found here. Read about the featured watches from Guido Panerai & Figlio in the first and second volume here.

Comments Off on Inventors, pilots and a royal visitor… :, , , , more...

Training scene in the summer of 1944

by on Jun.29, 2022, under Allgemein

Rahmen_Bild_2018_1000x700_Training_1944A few days ago we received an interesting photo from the grandson of a German “Kampfschwimmer”. With his support we were able to add the Ref. 3646 / Type B “Radiomir Panerai” into our database last year – read more here.

Actually, the photo is not new to us. It has been published many years ago in Cajus Bekker’s book “Einzelkämpfer auf See” in 1968 and again in 1978. However, there were never published names of the frogmen in the captions of these two books. Until now: The backside of the original paper photo showed pencil written names of the men which were captured in the photo, which helped us now to identify and link them to other photos in our archives. We have published a photo, taken from a slightly different perspective, showing the same training scene, in chapter V of our book “History2” on page 460.

The photos were taken in the summer of 1944 on the island of San Giorgio (south-west of Venice harbour), showing the training in hand-to-hand combat, which was a fixed part of their training along with other different sporting disciplines. One of the frogmen in the photo is the first owner of the Ref. 3646 / Type B watch on the left.

Rahmen_Bild_2018_1000x700_Training_1944_RSRead more on the activities on the island of San Giorgio in chapter I of our book “History1” including rare historic documents and aerial photographs from the Allied Forces intelligence.

Our special thanks to the frogman’s grandson who provided the photo above (including the additional informations on ist backside in shape of handwritten names), on which he placed the Ref. 3646 / Type B “Radiomir Panerai” of his grandfather. [Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

Comments Off on Training scene in the summer of 1944 :, , , , , , more...