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By Chris | January 23 2014
The new chronograph’s Radiomir 1940 case, 45mm in diameter, has the simple, elegant lines developed by Panerai in about 1940, the time when the classic cushion case with the wire loop strap attachments of the first Radiomir started to acquire the more massive proportions of the Luminor 1950 case.
Every detail of the 1940 case has a polished finish, including the two push-buttons controlling the chronograph functions, the cylindrical winding crown and the bezel.
This bezel frames a crystal made of Plexiglas®, a material similar to that used in the original models created by Panerai for the Royal Italian Navy, which had a polymethyl methacrylate crystal.
The dial of the new Radiomir 1940 Chronograph is a new and original design, inspired by the history of the brand but also by the function of the watch, and it has some subtle variations depending on to the metal of the case.
The red gold version has a brown dial with the combination of graphic hour markers, Roman and Arabic numerals that has acquired the name California, adopted by the Radiomir of 1936.
The platinum version has the ivory dial, with simple baton or dot hour markers, and the same design distinguishes the black dial of the white gold version.
The latter has a dial with the sandwich structure, formed of two superimposed plates with the luminous material between them, visible through holes corresponding to the hour markers.
Common to all three versions is the tachymeter scale for calculating average speed and the two chronograph counters.
The movement of the new Radiomir 1940 Chronograph is the OP XXV calibre, developed on a Minerva 13-22 base. The Minerva manufacture has had historic links with Panerai since the 1920s, when the Swiss manufacturer was a supplier to the Florentine watchmaker.
The OP XXV calibre is a hand-wound chronograph with a diameter of 12¾ lignes. Its construction is extremely sophisticated, with high quality details such as the column wheel, the swan-neck regulator, the polishing and chamfering of the individual components, and the Côtes de Genève finish of the bridges.
The high level of craftsmanship can be appreciated through the large sapphire crystal porthole in the back, which allows the movement to be admired.
The new Radiomir 1940 Chronograph are produced in a unique edition limited to 100 examples for each of the gold versions and 50 examples for the platinum version. They are supplied with an alligator strap and are water-resistant to a depth of 50 metres.
Available in three versions in different precious metals: platinum (PAM00518), red gold (PAM00519) and white gold (PAM00520).