“The Red Star” – a serviced Ref. 3646 / Type D

by on Dec.03, 2013, under Watch Point

Almost nine months after we introduced here in our blog the Ref. 3646 / Type D watch when it surfaced in former Yugoslavia by the family of the 2nd owner, the new owner who auctioned the watch in may 2013 at Dr. Crott, contacted us to give us an update about its actual conditions.

The conditions of the watch before the auction and Information provided by the previous owner have been published earlier and can be compared here. Especially the untypical replacement dial from a VDO cockpit clock caught our attention earlier this year.

The fact that the watch changed ownership in former Yugoslavia confirmed our knowledge about italian and german frogmen units which were captured at the end of the 2nd world war in northern Italy. Just as some of the Panerai watches changed ownership with west allied forces (where they keep surfacing rarely in these days as well, see our introduction of another 3646 / Type D watch here) it has happened in eastern Europe too. In chapter VI of our book “History2” (page 630) a surviving veteran confirmed by his very own story, where the route of his long march into captivity ended: in a POW camp in Yugoslavia.

It is great to see that the new owners’ trusted watchmaker has been able to bring back shine and functionality to the movement, which is now again working with a power reserve of around 36 hours. The new owner named his watch “The Red Star” to reflect its long term use by a Senior Officer in the Yugoslavian Army after the 2nd world war.

The result of the watchmaker’s restoration work shows that it is possible to inhail life in a nearly 70 year old watch which surely did not caught all neccessary services in the past decades. Also it is nice that the patina on the case still exist and the case appears not polished by demand of the new owner to keep the age of the watch visible. The restoration work included the replacing of the VDO dial with a flat dial reconstruction (with closed “6” and “9” digits) matching with the flat bezel, the cleaning of the hands and installing of a new seal and crown tube.

Thanks to the new owner for the update on his Ref. 3646 / Type D aka “The Red Star”
[Ralf Ehlers & Volker Wiegmann]

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