Engraved “Kampfschwimmer” @ Lockdales

by on Feb.03, 2019, under Watch Point

Rahmen_2019_Lockdales_307_side_push_down_crownLockdales (Ipswitch, Suffolk, United Kingdom) is featuring a Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” with painted brass dial in their upcoming auction The Fine Sale #163 on 20 February, 2019 (Lot 307).

The watch appears from the provided photos with a replacement crown, original nickel-plated brass pin buckle and rare engraved caseback, bearing the initials of the first owner “HK” surrounded by “L.K. 700 Marine-Kampfschwimmer 1945”.

The inner caseback bears the typical Rolex SA hallmark, reference and case number known for 3646 / Type D watches. Inside the watch is working a Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1 movement with typical decorations and engravings on the bridges.

Rahmen_2019_Lockdales_307_frontFeatures of the watch:
Reference: 3646 / Type D
Dial: “Kampfschwimmer” (painted brass, anonymous)
Case number: 2605XX
Movement: Rolex Cal. 618 / Type 1

Watches of the Reference 3646 / Type D are featured in our new “The References” 1930’s-1940’s in chapter II.IV (page 398-531) including a historic photo of a German “Kampfschwimmer” wearing a 3646 with brass dial on page 475. Similar nickel-plated brass pin buckles of the WW2 era are featured in chapter V Straps and Buckles (page 677-685).

Noteworthy, this watch is another specimen surfaced in the United Kingdom, where some watches were brought to as souvenirs from the Second World War by allied servicemen. After more than 70 years they re-emerge in different conditions, such as the watch up for auction at Lockdales.

Rahmen_2019_Lockdales_307_backA similar Ref. 3646 / Type D watch with painted brass dial is featured in our book “History1” in chapter III together with the history of its first owner, a German “Kampfschwimmer” who provided us very interesting information about his service, training and how some of these Panerai watches “changed ownership” during the time when he was a POW in the summer of 1945 (page 206-207).

Further information on the training commando 700 (L.K. 700 a short of Lehrkommando 700, which is part of the engraving on the caseback of the watch) can be found in our both books “History1” and “History2”.

The Ref. 3646 / Type D watch can be found online here at the salesroom.

We hope this Ref. 3646 / Type D “Kampfschwimmer” 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.lockdales.com]

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