By James Phang

To celebrate the 15th year of Paneristi forum, Officine Panerai recently presented a 500-piece special edition of its Luminor Base, dedicating it to the site which essentially built the foundation for Panerai enthusiasts from all around the world to gather and share their passion for the Panerai brand.

Across these 15 years, Paneristi.com has evolved from being only a watch discussion forum to something a lot more close-knit – a community where members can chat about anything under the sun, and even lash at other brands who have shamelessly tried to draw “inspiration” from what made Panerai the brand it is today. Paneristi.com was first started by ”Guy Verbist” back in 2000, and being completely independent of the Panerai brand, it created a platform where Panerai fans could speak their heart freely without any repercussions – especially when they criticize certain model launches of the brand they so endear, all in the name of progress and improvement.

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The dial of the Panerai reference –  Luminor Base Logo Acciaio PAM00634 – is characterised by the blue OP logo at the 6 o’clock mark and the Super-LumiNova ecru treatment for the two hands and the hour markers, a vintage tone which is meant to emulate the look of tritium which was used on all the Pre-Vendome models from the 1990’s.

Powering the PAM634 is the hand-wound OP I movement with 56 hours of power reserve (which is essentially a Unitas 6497) behind a solid case back, housed in a AISI 316L stainless steel 44mm – unlike the last three Paneristi watches that Panerai have released which were all black PVD models. 

The case has the characteristic bridge device with locking lever to protect the winding crown, helping to ensure water-resistance to 10 bar (a depth of about 100 metres). In this particular model, the added inscription of “Paneristi” is engraved on the locking lever as a tribute to the community’s loyalty.

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Notably the case back is a snap-on case back, a first for a Luminor, instead of the screw-down back typical of Panerai and other dive watches. Another hot debate which is bound to arise among Paneristi’s would be the use of spring bars for the strap, yet another first, instead of the traditional screwed bars synonymous with Panerai.

The solid case back is inscribed “Paneristi.com 15th Anniversary”, and is perhaps one of the nicest gestures a brand has done to reward its fans.

In summary, Panerai has encapsulated everything that made it the enduring icon of sports watches today: no frills and nothing unnecessary – just the good ol’ signature look which makes this one of the most recognizable watches in the world.

This will be a limited edition launch of 500 pieces and available to Paneristi through Panerai boutiques only – at a pretty affordable price of just US$4200. For more info, please visit panerai.com

2014-11-26 21.18.04

JAMES PHANG – CONTRIBUTING WRITER

James Phang is a young watch enthusiast from Singapore and is a self-professed fanatic of independent brands for their unique avant-garde designs. Some of his favorite brands include MB&F, Urwerk, Romain Jerome, Sarpaneva, Peter Speake-Marin and Azimuth. His love for art extends out to all things handmade, and he has made it his personal mission to find the best handmade straps and buckles worldwide for his humble collection. Read his articles here.