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Jose Pereztroika  Vintage Panerai and other iconic timepieces under the loupe at Perezcope.

SEALAB legend Bob Barth on how he got inspired to become a diver. Excerpt from the super-interesting two hour video interview I recorded last year in October.

No one can tell you you‘re in love, you just know it. Through and through.

Shaped like one of Kubrick‘s space ships from 2001: A Space Odyssey, this thing had all ingredients to conquer Mars. Day, date and a prominent 24 hours gauge to avoid losing touch with earth during the long journey in space. Additionally the movement was designed to withstand vertical accelerations up to 7g and take hits without skeeping a beat. #speedytuesday

Road trip

When the Grand Dame of Panerai - Signora Maria Panerai - opens her safe deposit box for you... My annual trip to Florence. Full report now on Perezcope.com. Link in bio.

Universal Genève chronograph made for the Italian Air Force (Aeronautica Militare Italiana) in the 1960s. Signed A. Cairelli, Roma. Cairelli was the Italian retailer who supplied these fantastic timepieces to the Italian Air Force. Mi piace!

On Nov. 2, 1940, the Spanish newspaper ABC DE MADRID reported that a strange device was found on the LA LINEA beach near the British Naval Base of GIBRALTAR. Shaped like a torpedo but with two seats and several levers. No trace of the crew. The propeller was still spinning. (1st picture) — This is what happened. In the night of Oct. 30, the Italians had launched three manned torpedo (SLC) teams from the submarine Scirè in an attempt to attack Gibraltar. All SLCs aka Maiales respectively the breathing apparatuses of the crew members failed. BIRINDELLI was captured by British sentinels after he destroyed his SLC. DE LA PENNE sunk his delivery vehicle and managed to escape. TESEO TESEI, the inventor of this new device, detached the warhead and send his Maiale off to the south. He escaped but his SLC travelled on its own around the bay and landed on the Spanish coast where it was seized by the Spanish Guardia Civil. The British Secret Service took pictures of this peculiar thing and slowly it began to dawn on them what the Italians were cooking. In 1975, the Spanish government returned this amazing machine to the Marina Militare. It is now exhibited at the ComSubIn base in the Varignano Fortress in Porto Venere. An interesting observation is that the compass was made by G. PANERAI & FIGLIO (6th photo).

In the mid 1960s, Panerai introduced LUMINOR, a harmless tritium-based luminous compound. Most highly radioactive RADIOMIR dials were subsequently replaced in order to keep the divers safe. The old dials were sealed into an ammunition box and sunk into the sea near La Spezia. Only a handful 6152/1s survived with the original RADIOMIR dials. This is one of them.

When you play with the idea of writing something on the watch related to Steve McQueen but the current paranoid hysteria is too fun to watch and you go on a joyride with your buddy instead...

This is how you wear ‘em!

Things you come across in London. A strict “Buy American” policy for all US Forces led to this interesting rebranding of around 1000 Blancpain Fifty Fathoms in the mid 1960s. Tornek-Rayville on the dial refers to Blancpain’s US distributor Allen Tornek. The large dot at 6 is a moisture indicator that would change colour in case of water intrusion. This particular example remained unused and is therefore unissued.

This 3646 with sought-after Decima MAS engravings is an ongoing restoration project. When I first came across FLOTMAS 48, I had never thought I would end up restoring this piece of history to its original condition. FLOTMAS 48 was a war trophy, brought home by an American GI after WW2. The original riveted plastic dial, installed in this watch, was warped to an extent where it could no longer be used. In the early 2000s, the owner bought a replacement dial from an Italian Panerai dealer named RINALDI, believing it was original. Turned out the dial was an altered Kampfschwimmer dial with fake engravings (4th picture)... Stay tuned!

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