ON THE WRIST: Panerai Luminor PAM 372
WEDNESDAY APRIL 8, 2015
Growing up not knowing watches while parents not believing in watches since technology has provided us with smartphones. I agree partially. Little that I know about fashion, wearing a watch does boost a fashion sense of one against those who don’t wear any. I then started looking at watches as a fashion item.
The first watch I had was an Orient Chrono. As always, the first item of any kind is always precious. It was dear to me so I looked after it with care. The Orient was a gift from my father. As time went on, I started looking at watches differently. What value does it carry? What makes a watch special? Or why is Rolex so expensive? What made them retail at such prices?
Looks great with almost any strap
Gets in the way
47 mm Diameter
16 mm Thickness
72 hours Power Reserve
100m Water Resistance
Not knowing watches to even begin with, the only brand that came to mind was Rolex. That is only when I had a conversation with a good chap of mine, Shiang. There were several brands that were discussed. Or should I say shared by Mr Shiang himself. Moments later, one particular brand or company that caught my attention was Officine Panerai. As said earlier, the value or its achievement is important in determining a brand. With that, what made Panerai special? Allow me to answer that.
"THE MOST PANERAI OF PANERAIS"
Panerai was founded in 1860 in Italy and makes two infamous watches namely, Luminor and Radiomir. One achievement, long ago, which is still recognized until today is when the Royal Italian Navy wore the watch under sea while riding a torpedo. It is not just that, but the ability of the glow that makes the dial visible under dark waters, an achievement. I concur that any other watches glow if it’s dark, that is when you are in the room or cinema by being almost as still as a statue.
The one that I like from Panerai is a Luminor. In particular is the PAM372. The Luminor models have what is called a “crown” protector which is just beautiful yet purposeful. To some, it’s a little intrusive as you need to bend your wrist. But it just requires a little getting used to.
The dials on the watch are neat as well as tidy, with the numeric 12, 3, 6 and 9 in their respective position. It can be argued that it could be mistaken with the base Luminor. That is not when you are seeing it with your own eyes. With the plexi glass paired to gold hands, it instantly draws my attention to it amongst other watches. The Italian design was further appreciated when I had a look at the full skeleton back of the 372. What’s more is that 1950 Luminor has exactly 21 jewels.
Being a 1950 watch, this is surely going to cost a lot, and to my expectation, it is largely true. In general, anything that is antique or “one of the first” is always going to be priced high. Most people will react by looking at other models instead, but to me, something this desirable is worth any tear or sweat. Thankfully the sales lady was kind enough to let me finance it. You never know until you try. Right? After a handful of struggles, the watch was in my hands. Do you know the feeling of owning the thing you wanted for so long on top of knowing it's time to bring it home? That my fellow friends, is an indescribable feeling.
After some photoshoot, I immediately wore it which concurs with the phrase “you get what you pay”. Why do I say that? Simple reason is, it is instantly recognized as a Panerai Luminor without a second guess. Sadly not everyone can tell it is the historical PAM 372 until they are being told so. Even for a huge guy like myself, this 47mm watch does look a little large for me.
Despite that, it certainly feels light on my wrist. For a non-automatic watch, winding is a must, as for the 372, it is every 3 days. While winding, you can feel the spring tightens with a very smooth, rewarding manner. Once the winding is done, there are ticking noises of the P.3000 movement. At first, I thought it was broken, but only to find out that those sounds indicate the movements happening inside the watch, with symphony and precision.
In short, the watch I wear today is not in fashion sense or decoration in any way. But, the history along with the purpose that lies in it. With that, how can one remember its story? The watch reveals itself and all we need is one look. Am I proud? With every living day. Will I get bored of it? Not with the achievements Panerai has done for many. Most importantly, will it look old? Well, it is from the 1950s. Therefore, I will end by saying, design doesn’t age with this one and history will live on with time.