Originally Posted by dopey
It has the general look of military watches of that era, and is certainly a lovely design.
Do you know when it morphed into the larger scale that is the hallmark of the current Panerais? Was it as soon as they started making their own movements?
These were actually larger than most of the current Panerai (which are generally 44mm). They were always designed to be large and easily read underwater, worn over a bodysuit.
OP started making its own movements (if you could actually say that considering they're really Richemont movements raher than OP movements) very recently (last 3-4 years). Panerai has historically been a design firm and a manufacturer of military instruments - they outsourced or bought what they did not make (e.g. exclusive collaboration with Rolex in the 1930's for the 2533 and 3646 you are referring to). It was not a watch manufacture, although it is now trying to establish itself as one