In 1940, Officine Panerai invented an ingenious locking device for divers’ watches which protected the winding crown from impact or movement. This prevented potential water ingress or the hands of the watch being accidentally moved. The device consisted of a pivoting lever, mounted on a half-moon shaped bridge, attached to the case band of the watch. After the crown had been pushed home, the lever would be closed, compressing the sealing ring around the crown, without damaging it, and thus enhancing water resistance. The lever would then sit flush against the side of the watch when locked. This device was adopted for a new model created in the 1940s, the Panerai Luminor.
Luminor, similar to Radiomir, took its name from the luminescent material gracing its dial. In this instance, the luminescent material was tritium based and superseded Radiomir. Ultimately, the company ceased using this radioactive material due to the widespread health concerns of employees working within the Swiss watchmaking industry.
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