Comparison of Panerai Radiomir vs. Radiomir 1940 Case

The Officine Panerai brand as we know it today has only been around since the 1990s, yet the company has a history that dates back to 1860 when Giovanni Panerai established a watchmaker’s shop in Florence, Italy. On the eve of the second world war, Panerai began supplying diving watches to the Italian royal navy and had a relationship with the Italian government until the 1980s. Panerai was first sold to the public in 1993, and a few years later Richemont bought the brand and developed it into the popular luxury fake watch brand today.
By the early 20th century, Panerai had provided high-precision instruments for the Italian royal navy. To get better visibility in the dark, Panerai patented Radiomir, a radio-based self-luminous material that can be painted on military-grade instruments, in 1916.
The current Panerai catalog is almost composed of watch models encouraged by those developed in the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s for Italian combat divers, including the Radiomir collection. And among the Panerai Radiomir collection, there are two major case styles: the Radiomir and the Radiomir 1940. The overall look of these two may be quite similar at a glance, yet if we look closer we see so many distinct differences. Let’s get into the Panerai Radiomir vs. Radiomir 1940 case comparison to stress the origins, similarities, and differences.
The Regia Marina put out a call for replica watches that could accompany its fleet of frogmen and by 1936, Panerai supplied ten prototypes for the navy’s consideration. The watches featured massive 47mm cushion-shaped cases built by Rolex, hand-would movements, and dials painted with self-luminous radium-based paint. The cases included welded wire lugs to attach the straps and an oversized flared winding crown for easy access, even while wearing gloves.
According to replica Panerai, in 1940, the Radiomir’s case design evolved for even better performance. For improved resistance to tension and to keep the lugs from detaching from the case under extreme pressure or impact, the case and lugs were built out of the same block of steel instead of welding lugs onto the case. This results in thicker ears than previous wires that are fitted to the original Panerai Radiomir. In addition, the conical crown was replaced with a cylindrical one, presumably to reduce the risk of the crown getting caught in a grip or accidentally knocked off.

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