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jitai

Full review for PAM36B MARINA MILITARE

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jitai

A PAM36B review I posted sometime ago in other forums. It was also my first attempt at doing a review on PAM. Please be gentle with me as I am not an expert. Everything written are basically what I have learnt and collected and I hope to share with like minded people who enjoy the same hobby as I do. I hope you'll find my review interesting.

 

Some history about PAM036

 

The PAM036 marina militare is one of the legend vendome watches after Panerai Firenze was sold to Vendome in 1997. Panerai Vendome launched PAM40 (a mysterious luminor marina model, black dial with tritium lume and titanium case) to test the some market in EU, USA, Japan with only 200pcs produced. PAM40 is like a prototype and they are no reference for this model. The PAM40 is like a preview to PAM036. Anyway, I guess the watches were well received by the collectors and PAM036 was created after that. It is the first marina militare after 5218-202A pre-v.

PAM036 marina militare with titanium tobacco dial has a very nice patina to the tritium numerals. The tobacco dial looks stunning with a great vintage look. The PAM036 is referenced as a 1998 limited edition and only 200 units were made thus making this very rare.

All the gen PAM036 have “ T swiss T ” marked underneath the dial. So, does the “ L swiss L “ dial really exist for PAM036? According to uncle jay from RWG who is a collector for many gen PAMs, there are only 3 “ L swiss L” dials produced for PAM036 but they used for photography purpose and not officially released.

 

Some gen pics

 

3124406567_96a8f557a9.jpg

 

* The tobacco brown dial tone amazingly changes under different lightings

A : Tobacco brown

B : Dark brown

c : Black

 

3125233350_f3012e2b48.jpg

* Beautiful B series movt

 

Standard version PAM036 reps from the dealers

 

Over the years, the rep factories have come out with a few variants for this model.

The old school / earliest batch of PAM036 reps which are no longer available are IMHO the closest in term of accuracy to the gen.

Back then, there were 4 versions to PAM036 reps. Let’s take a look at the all the versions

 

V1 pic

 

3411491859_5707836a67.jpg

3124411871_61c29bb0cc.jpg

* Swiss ETA 6497 with sticker decorative foil pasted on the movt bridge

* Incorrect Nodivac shock protector

* Incorrect straight balance wheel spokes

* Comes with the incorrect matt finished winding gears as compared to gen

 

3411491785_ddbc1b9216.jpg

* An example of a inverted CG pin

 

+ve points

- It was the most accurate version IMO.

- Correct tobacco dial and correct dial font size

- Do not have recessed cannon pin issue because dial was thinner

- Thick Ti crown

- Etched on BB and OP number behind the case near the lug

- Nice and deep engraving details on outer area of the see thru caseback

- Real titanium case and the watch feel very light as compared to SS PAM reps on the wrist.

 

-ve points

- V1 comes with Swiss 6497 movt

- Because of the Swiss 6497, the straight balance wheel spokes and nodivac shock protector are incorrect. The balance wheel should have flared spokes and using incabloc shock protector as per the gen.

- The tip of the CG lever is often badly shaped. It was like a lucky dip back then. Some got it with nice shaped lever tip and most do not.

- Production number was missing on one of the lug corner

- Font and spacing of the see thru caseback engraving are incorrect

- Winding gears are matt and have rough finished surface. It should be using sunburst gears as per the gen

- Although it comes with real sapphire crystal but the AR (blue or purple hue) are too heavily applied and gen PAM036 comes with non AR crystal

- Words pattern on the Bridge are sticker not engraved

- CG pin is inverted

- Gold plating are missing from the jewels recessed areas on the movt

 

V2 pics

 

3411491621_64314f72d8.jpg

* Look at the CG lever tip. The shape of the tip is either sharp pointed or flat which are incorrect

 

+ve points

- Same as V1

 

-ve points

- Same as V1 except V2 has the incorrect black dial

- Most V2 have the recessed cannon pin issue

 

V3 pics

 

3411498991_6f6a2ddce2.jpg

* The dial text font are smaller as compared to V1 and V2

 

3411491401_0a49d4023f.jpg

* An example of a Swainese movt (combined usage of swiss and asian parts). Notice the ETA 6497 stamp?

 

+ve points

- Same as V1 but comes with a swainese (combined usage of both swiss and asian parts) movt with the correct flared balance wheel spokes and incabloc shock protector. The swainese movt look closer to the gen as compared to the Swiss 6497 with decorative movt.

 

-ve points

- The text font and the font size are incorrect. They are smaller in size and the position on the dial are printed incorrectly

- The tip of the CG lever is often badly shaped. It was like a lucky dip back then. Some got it with nice lever tip and most do not.

- Production number was missing on one of the lug corner

- Font and spacing of the see thru caseback engraving are incorrect

- Winding gears are matt and have rough finished surface. It should be using sunburst gears as per the gen

- Although it comes with real sapphire crystal but the AR (blue or purple hue) are too heavily applied and gen PAM036 comes with non AR crystal

- Words pattern on the Bridge are sticker not engraved

- CG pin is inverted

- Gold plating are missing from the jewels recessed areas on the movt

 

V4 pics

 

3412297262_69390e8558.jpg

 

+ve points

- Same as V1 but comes with a swainese (combined usage of both swiss and asian parts) movt with the correct flared balance wheel spokes and incabloc shock protector. The swainese movt look closer to the gen as compared to the Swiss 6497 with decorative movt.

 

-ve points

- The numeral and hour markers are bolder as compared to V1 dial

- The tip of the CG lever tip is often badly shaped. It was like a lucky dip back then. Some got it with nice lever tip and most do not.

- Production number was missing on one of the lug corner

- Font and spacing of the see thru caseback engraving are incorrect

- Winding gears are matt and have rough finished surface. It should be using sunburst gears as per the gen

- Although it comes with real sapphire crystal but the AR (blue or purple hue) are too heavily applied and gen PAM036 comes with non AR crystal

- Words pattern on the Bridge are sticker not engraved

- CG pin is inverted

- Gold plating are missing from the jewels recessed areas on the movt

 

Latest version PAM036 reps

 

The factory factories probably see a demand for this model and the newer or latest version was released.

Instead of improving the flaws from the old school version, the latest version was a flop IMO.

There are 2 versions for the latest release.

 

V1 pics

 

3411492021_8359747e95.jpg

* Ugly capped hand. The silver color cannon pin should be revealed as per the gen article

 

3411491951_689525fe8f.jpg

* Incorrect movt and caseback

 

Others;

- Improved CG with flushed lever pin

- The CG lever is too far from the case with it is closed. Looks weird

- Although it was stated as titanium case, but the quality used for the latest batch are much more inferior as compared to the old school batch. I will be more aware to make sure it is not brushed steel to mimic the look of titanium because I thought that it feel heavier when I got a chance to try it on previously.

- V1 use the completely wrong movt for gen PAM036 never use a E series movt

- To solve the recessed cannon pin issue, V1 had the recessed cannon pin covered over by the “capped” hands. This is a total turn off as the silver cannon pin was supposed to be revealed as per the gen

- V1 uses the incorrect see thru caseback as they are meant for H series PAM reps like the 111H, 112H. The engraving details are incorrect as it supposed to be titanium and not SS - OP and BB code are missing for both versions.

- AR is a no no for PAM036

 

V2 pics

 

3411491239_e2d9c1d96b.jpg

* The cannon pin looks too big and look at the CG lever, it is too far away from the case when it is close

 

3412297968_88baea837b.jpg

* better looking movt but still incorrect, a incabloc shock protector should go with a balance wheel that have flared spokes not straight spokes seen in the pic above

 

Others;

- Same as V1 except V2 uses a slightly better looking movt but the word pattern on the movt bridge does not look neat and appealing like the old school V4 movt

- Some V2 comes with incorrect over size cannon pin

 

Davidsen’s PAM036 reps

 

If there is no luck in finding an old school PAM036 rep. The next best available option is from DSN.

Let’s see the good and bad about his PAM036 reps.

 

3412297462_f7eddd100b.jpg

* Notice the deep outlined surrounding the numerals and hour markers? The CG pin seem to be inverted too

 

3411491515_e0322a6f02.jpg

* Best PAM036 rep caseback ever made but too bad the details are etched on and not engraved. Sometime the etched out effect of details are unreadable.

 

+ve points

1.) Gen Ti case

2.) The only PAM036 rep case with OP, BB code and production numbers etched on the 3 corners near the lug of the case back.

3.) Swaniese movt (closest in appearance and accuracy to the gen)

4.) No recessed cannon pin issue

 

-ve points

1.) The deep outlined surrounding the numerals and hour markers looks quite turn off

2.) Dial Font are incorrect

3.) Details like the OP, BB code, production number and descriptions on the see thru caseback are not engraved but poorly etched on. Some are so bad that it is unreadable.

4.) The lume is too yellowish

5.) AR is a no no for PAM036

 

Summary

Out of so many variants for PAM036 reps. Old school V1 beats the rest and it is the best version IMHO.

Below are some mods suggestion for PAM036 supporters

- Relume the sausage dial with aged lume

- modify "L swiss L" to "T swiss T" on the dial

- installed a T48 crown

- Flatten the CG lever pin

- Replace the matt winding gears with sunburst gears

 

*** Latest update : DSN has upgraded the dial for PAM36B. It carried alot of improvement which I think is the best rep dial for PAM36B at the moment.

 

*** DSN's latest see thru caseback for PAM36B has also tremendously with deeply engraved details.

 

Hope you like my review.

 

Thanks for viewing.

 

Some pics of my PAM36B after maximum mods

 

4713512388_757047dd63.jpg

 

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4313471987_7fcd7cfa52.jpg

 

 

Edited by jitai

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ath

Very detailed and informative and a good writeup mate! Congrats and thanks for sharing :thumbsup2:

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gtwc

Excellent review

Comprehensive and detailed.

Thanks for posting.

 

:thumbsup:

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NFleischer

Great write up and watch. The small details of the mov't are for WIS only. No one will ask to see your watch to look at the winding gears

 

and shock protection system to call you out.

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nunu78

Very informative and thanks for making me more anal :P

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YoungGPS

Very meticulous review. Thanks!

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gB.

Nice review. Thanks!

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