Panerai California Dials and the Rolex Connection

Panerai California Dials and the Rolex Connection

lately, Panerai has delivered a small bunch of watches outfitted with supposed “California dials.” Characterized by a blend of Roman numerals, Arabic numbers, and mathematical shapes, this dial style was really protected by Rolex in the mid 1940s. Read on to find more about the historical backdrop of Panerai California dials and the Rolex association.

This interesting style of dial is known as a “California Dial” among gatherers. – however do you know why?

Rolex’s “Blunder Proof Dial”

In 1941, Rolex documented a patent for an unmistakable dial plan and was allowed the patent ( Brevet #221643) on July 15, 1942. The patent record is, obviously, in French, yet the principal section states (local French speaker here) that the patent is for the creation of a watch dial with hour markers made up of Roman numerals and Arabic numerals. It proceeds to say that the informative supplement incorporates four instances of the dial creation.

Rolex’s unique patent for the condescend of the “California Dial” dates right back to 1941. (picture:

If you take a gander at Fig.1 in the informative supplement, you will see that the top part of the dial is home to Roman numerals while the base segment incorporates Arabic numerals. Accompanying these numerals are stick at 3, 6, and 9, alongside the reversed triangle at 12 o’clock. The patent proceeds to express that this particular course of action will give a reasonable perspective on the hours, will be not difficult to make with radiant materials, and will permit simple reading of the time – particularly inside wristwatch cases, where the dials are generally little.

“California Dials” first made an appearance on early Rolex Oyster Perpetual “Air pocket Back” watches. (Picture:

The patent does exclude a particular name for the dial style, yet in Rolex advertisements during that time, the copy says: “Fitted with our new protected ERROR-PROOF RADIUM DIAL. Mistake PROOF RADIUM HANDS.” As you can see, there is no notice of the “California” dial, as this moniker just occurred during the 1980s.

At the time, this style of dial was basically called an “Blunder Proof Radium Dial” inside Rolex’s different showcasing materials. (Picture:

According to blogger and Rolex antiquarian Jake Ehrlich, there are a few speculations out there with respect to why this dial configuration got the “California” epithet. The most common hypothesis rotates around the Rolex Bubble Back rage of the 1980s, when purchasers (clearly a significant number from Japan) were searching for pieces with this particular dial format. Apparently vendors situated in Los Angeles were offering critical amounts of them to fulfill the interest, further aided by a nearby dial refinisher named Kirk Rich, who created various dials with this setup. Thus, the “California Dial” name stuck.

Rolex might not have at any point officially perceived the “California” name, yet Panerai positively has embraced it.

Panerai Watches with California Dials

Although Rolex never formally utilized the “California” moniker regarding this style of dial, Panerai surely has. The company habitually delivers watches that are straightforwardly roused by particular vintage models, and outfits them with that they formally call California dials. As some of you may already know, it was principally Rolex that provided watches to Panerai during the 20th century with waterproof “Shellfish” pad molded cases and changed manual-would developments.

Using a blend of Roman numerals, Arabic numbers, and mathematical shapes, “California Dials” offer an exceptional appearance, and regularly loan themselves to an affection it-or-disdain it sort of aesthetic.

According to Jose Pereztroika, a Panerai history specialist and legend buster, Rolex provided the (not yet named) California dials (made by Stern Frères of Patek Philippe notoriety) to Panerai in 1944. Notwithstanding, this is in direct contradiction to Panerai’s case that their 1936 models had the Roman/Arabic/mathematical style dials.

Regardless, cutting edge Panerai favors this kind of dial style for their vintage-motivated watches. For example, we’ve seen it on the Radiomir 1936 PAM 249, the Radiomir PAM 448, the Radiomir PAM 424, and the as of late delivered Luminor PAM 779, just to give some examples.

California Dials are most much of the time found on Panerai’s vintage-roused watches, similar to this Radiomir.

Though Rolex concocted and protected the captivating combination of Roman, Arabic, and mathematical hour markers on a watch dial, I would dare to say that it is Panerai that is most connected with the California dial today. Rolex doesn’t right now have a California dial in their present assortment – you’ll need to look to vintage Rolex looks for that – while Panerai offers a few to browse. Yet, it is intriguing to take note of that the iridescent modified triangle at 12 o’clock and twirly doo lists at 6 and 9 o’clock are currently standard in numerous Rolex sports watches like the Submariner, GMT-Master II, and Explorer II.

What do you consider California Dials? Advise us in the comments below.