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    Default Vintage Rolex Movements found in Vintage Panerai 3646s & 6152-1s

    Hi Friends....

    This post that i've found on ...web....after Italian section...now are at home!!



    In the collecting career of any Panerai enthusiast the highlight most definitely is acquiring one of the original Vintage Panerais that lay the basis of the Legend of Panerai as a War Machine. Tested and proven in the steely fires of battle these machines now adorn the wrists of modern Warriors taking on the challenges of everyday life.

    The critical component of a Vintage Panerai is the movement and over the production period of 1936 till 1955 various Rolex work horses were used. The movement is also essential as it forms nearly 50% of the value of the timepiece (and in the case of the Vintage Angelus powered Richemont issued PAM 203, 85% of the value of the watch).

    However in authenticating a Vintage Panerai and ensuring the right movement is in the right case can be a daunting task as there were many variations as far as movement markings are concerned and this can confuse a potential Vintage Panerai Collector.

    I can tell you now this issue is contentious due to ego and the huge sums of money involved and there are varying degrees of opinions especially from some collectors who believe they know what is the real story that adds to the confusion. However I will try my best to bring facts forward about the movements used in Vintage Panerais and try to show both sides of the argument. The argument being:

    There should be consistency in the movements that were used in Vintage Panerais especially post 1946
    Vs.
    No consistency because that’s the way they did things in those days and during the war period 1936 to 1946 they had no choice due to poor logistics and unavailability of parts

    The danger of having inconsistent movements is that we leave the door open for counterfeiters and peddlers of fake watches who bring them to the market and claim that they are authentic and very rare because they are different from the majority watches with consistent movements.

    I would like to bring your attention to Mr. Francesco Ferretti's, a world renowned expert and dealer in Vintage Panerai, opinion on the matter of the variations in the movements found in Vintage Panerais, (It has been machine translated into English from Italian hence not perfect):

    "Vintage watches Panerai watches were intended for military during the period from 30 years up to 1956-1960. You must know that in time of war transport and communications letters were not compare to today.

    Write a letter could take 10-20 days for delivery (If you arrived!) And transport were very difficult.
    Going from La Spezia to Florence today in an hour is normal but in 40 years if everything went well we wanted 2 days and the base of Taranto passed minimum one week hoping not to meet roads or bridges destroyed.

    All equipment of the navy had to be perfectly efficient and it was not easy. A La Spezia was a repair shop where a bit of everything and in many cases to make operational equipment they had to dismount to take other parts needed to repair. For watches as for all other things was ARRANGE FOR THE ART!

    I have had many Vintage Panerai and I can assure you that I have seen all the colors, hands are made of brass sheet, bridges glued to the budget, rubies replaced with pieces of brass crowns redone with a tube threaded and welded etc ... .........

    I believe that most of Vintage Panerai has undergone transplants more or less important.
    It is not uncommon with mechanical watches 3646 with 17 Rubis incabloc and 6152 / 1 with 15 Rubis without incabloc. Once I tried always to put the clocks with the right mechanics, but I realized that some collectors, having seen the clock with the mechanics wrong, were not very happy thinking about false or at least the assembled. I now I still do only a review of mechanical and not the restoration most cases because many want the clock to see who lived and not all polished again.

    I believe that an entirely original clock and coeval is preferable to one with 15 mechanics and 17 non Rubis with or without incalboc, but these I believe them because they always original from the Italian Navy.

    Those who have the mechanics are less thick, with very few pieces used for exposure because more refined and in many cases with the display back that are original, all that I have seen are mostly false."

    Now according to Mr. Ferretti due to the Second World War, the poor logistics made it hard for correct parts to be available so it is was imperative that the Italian Navy made do with whatever was available at the time to get the job done. In my humble opinion that is a valid explanation for watches made from 1936 to 1946. Any Vintage Panerais made from 1946 to 1956 should consistently have the same movement in accordance to its case.

    Another counter argument is that if various different parts were used to make do during the war time of 1936 to 1946 why do we see movements with such varying degrees of markings and designs on some pieces whereas the majority consistently has the same movements with the same movement markings? And isn't it more expensive to make inconsistent parts vs. consistent parts?

    These are unanswered questions that I think no one has the answers to.

    Another interesting point mentioned by Mr. Ferretti is:

    " Those who have the mechanics are less thick, with very few pieces used for exposure because more refined and in many cases with the display back that are original, all that I have seen are mostly false."

    Basically thin Cortebert ebauche based Rolex movements are mostly false in his expert opinion since these thin movements were used at that time in Rolex pocketwatches.

    Now going forward the most likely first Vintage Panerai is either a 3646 Radiomir or a 6152-1 Luminor Panerai with the Bridge Crown Protector and that will be my focus.

    I will briefly look at the Angelus Calibre 240 movement found in 6152-1 watches with a seconds hand at 9 o'clock.

    I hope this guide can be useful for first time Vintage Panerai collectors.

    3646 Panerai Radiomir

    Panerai used Rolex sourced 16 Ligne 618 Cortebert ebauche based movements for their watches. One French Ligne is equal to 2.25583mm so in this case that should technically equal 36mm however most sources state the movements are 30mm in diameter and in others that they are 34mm in diameter. An ebauche is an incomplete movement that is purchased, assembled and modified by watch companies to their own individual specifications. So the Cortebert ebauches were significantly modified by Rolex.

    Most Rolex Cortebert ebauche based movements at the time were originally destined for Rolex Pocketwatches and hence there are similarities between them and the Vintage Panerai Rolex 618 Cortebert ebauche movements keeping in mind the primary difference was the thickness of the movement.

    The Rolex 618 Cortebert ebauche based movements were found to be reliable in extreme conditions and became the movement of choice for Panerai Military dive watches.

    We will start by first looking at the most common movement found in the 3646 before we proceed to look at exceptions and odd movements.

    Common/Consistent Movements

    The 17 jewel Rolex movement is the most common found in 3646s and the similarities are clearly evident in the pictures below







    15 Jewel 618 Movements

    Several prominent sources mention that Panerai used a Rolex 15 jewel 618 movement vs. the more common but better 17 jewel movements.

    Konrad Knirim a noted German military watch expert states in one of this articles:

    "…..Diese Uhr hat folgende Merkmale: Rolex Gehäuse mit Anstößen für das Band, das Werk mit einen Durchmesser von 30 mm basiert auf einem Cortébert Kaliber mit 15 Steinen und einer Gangdauer von ca. 48 Stunden, verschraubte Krone zur Zeigerverstellung, der verschraubte Boden ist hand-graviert: ‘X. FLOT. M.A.S. 01’. Dies scheint die erste an diese ‘10. Flotilla’ ausgegebene Uhr zu sein. Das schwarze Zifferblatt ist markiert: ‘Radiomir Panerai’ .Im Bodendeckel ist innen eingraviert: ‘Montres Rolex, Geneve’. Mit hoher Wahrscheinlichkeit wurden all diese Uhren von Panarai fertiggestellt und an die deutsche Marine während des Krieges geliefert und zwar entsprechend der Geheimhaltung ohne jede Signatur…"

    Google Machine Translation (not perfect but you get the idea):

    This watch has the following characteristics: Rolex housing with impulses for the tape, which works with a diameter of 30 mm Cortébert based on a caliber with 15 jewels and a running time of approximately 48 hours, screwed crown to pointer adjustment, the ground is screwed hand engraved: 'X. FLOT. M.A.S. 01 '. This seems the first of these'10. Flotilla 'clock to be issued. The black dial is marked: 'Radiomir Panerai'. In the bottom lid is engraved inside: 'Montres Rolex, Geneve'. With a high probability were all these watches Panarai completed and sent to the German Navy during the war and delivered according to the secrecy without any signature.


    Also in the essential Panerai collectors book "I Mezzi D'Assalto Della Xa Flottiglia Mas: 1940-1945" by Marco Spertini and Erminio Bagnasco it is stated on page 244

    "The mechanism or movement had 15 rubies and was produced by one of the larger Swiss Houses."

    Here is an example of a 15 jewel movement to be found in a 3646:




    The above picture shows a movement with no markings except Fab Suisse in the top highlighted area which was housed in a Kampfschwimmer watch.

    Another exception is the 3646 4 line Radiomir fitted with an Angelus 240 movement. I donot have access to the movement picture but here is a picture of the said watch:




    The California Movement

    The California Dial 3646 had different markings than the normal 17 jewel 618 movement



    However according to an article by Konrad Knirim the California movement has Rolex added to the markings:



    California movement which again has different markings:




    Odd Movements

    The 3646 watches are about 70 years old so movements get damaged, replaced and so on so you'll find later Incabloc 6152 618 Cortebert movements installed in some cases like here:




    Luminor Panerai 6152-1

    The 6152-1 Luminor Panerai case with the crown bridge and improved depth rating of 200m vs. 100 m for the 3646 is an icon for Panerai and defines its design in the minds of millions of collectors.

    The movement is essentially the same as the 17 jewel 618 Cortebert found in the 3646 but has an important modification. The 6152-1 movements were fitted with the Incabloc system which protects the critical alignment of components in the movement from sudden shocks which is essential in extreme combat situations.

    The pivots and jewels of the balance are fragile in comparison to the mass they need to support, and without shock protection are the most likely part of the watch to be damaged under impact.

    The Incabloc system uses a specially shaped spring to allow the delicate jewels and pivots to shift in their settings under impact until a stronger shoulder of the staff contacts the strong metal endpiece. When the impact is over, the springs guide the parts back to their original positions.

    Common/Consistent Movements

    The 17 jewel Rolex movement is the most common found in 6152-1 and the similarities are clearly evident in the pictures below:







    Odd Movements

    As with the 3646 watches the 6152-1s are about 60 years old so movements get damaged, replaced and so on so you'll find earlier 3646 618 Cortebert movements installed in some cases.

    Or you'll find that entire movements have been replaced with other Rolex pocketwatch movements like in this case:





    6152-1s with Angelus 240 8 Day Power Reserve movements

    A further improvement by Panerai was to install a 16 ligne, 15 jewels, 8 day power reserve caliber SF 240 Angelus movement to 6152-1s which also allowed a seconds counter complication to be added to the dial slightly to the right of 9 o'clock. Modern day Panerais replace the 9 with a larger seconds counter whereas on the Vintage dials the no. 9 is retained.



    The movement was also installed in the GPF 2/56 60mm case "Big Egiziano" in 1956

    The following picture is of the movement:



    And the following picture is of a Vintage Angelus 240 movement installed in the Richemont Issued PAM 203 in 2005/06:



    Sources:
    Francesco Ferretti "Il Professore" and www.ferrettiwatches.com
    Konrad Knirim and www.knirim.de
    I Mezzi D'Assalto Della Xa Flottiglia Mas: 1940-1945" by Marco Spertini and Erminio Bagnasco
    Vintage Panerai by Ralf Ehlers and Volker Weigmann
    Various websites




    ciao
    robi

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    Thanks for the AMAZING reference
    Vápnum sínum skala mađr velli á feti ganga framar
    ţví at óvist er at vita nćr verđr á vegum úti geirs um ţörf guma
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    thanks, very instructive...

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    Great reading - Thanks alot for sharing..

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    Invaluable information. Thanks!

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    Post of the year!

  7. #7
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    What an absolutely fantastic reference post, very nice work belandi!
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    Ah, the infamous post. It caused a lot of controversy when written (including the banning of Salman from P'sti if I recall correctly!)

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    Thanks for showing this now in english (was posted before in the italian section)

    As ross stated there was a lot of trouble on the Risti sides because of using picture of Gens saying pocketwatch movement inside.

    and the discussion will not stop. The rumor between the guys who had paid a lot of money getting a `buildt' watch is enormous.

    this info base post is worth to get sticky

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    Great job as always Belandi.
    Bravo Robi,ora anche gli altri ti applaudono...non solo gli italiani.
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