How to identify the different models of Lemania military watches delivered to the British Army

Click here to see the difference between the "Lemania Chronographs" delivered to the British Army in the video below.

How to Identify Lemania Military Watch Models

Lemania chronographs delivered to the British Army (First, Second, Third)

The models that Lemania delivered to the British Army totaled three series in total.

What they all have in common is that they all have a push button at the 2 o'clock position, and all are equipped with a robust and powerful 15CHT (Cal/2220) movement.

However, this is something that is not obvious at first glance, and I think only a Lemania enthusiast would be able to tell the difference between first and third just by looking at the exterior.

So, in today's video, I'll explain the design differences and rarity of each from first to third.

It may be difficult to understand if I only explain the first one, so let's compare it with the second one.

The difference between Lemania 1st and 2nd

Lemania: A comparison of the first and second military watches delivered to the British Army
The first one is on the left now.
The one on the right is the second one.

Let's also take a look at the basic specifications.

First model delivery period: from about 1940
Size 38.5mm

Features of the second model Delivery period: from about 1950
Size 38mm

First of all, the distinctive feature of the First model is that it has a design that does not include the logo or broad arrow.

Broad Arrow is the arrow mark located at the 6 o'clock position.

This means it is British owned.

The dial is white (it's an 80 year old watch, so most of it has turned ivory).
Also, there is luminous paint at the 6 o'clock position, but the paint is placed on top of the number 6.

This is not a mistake, but a feature of the first model.

This luminous paint contains radium.

Now let’s look at the second.

The second model features the logo and Broad Arrow mark.

The dial color also changes to black.

The luminous paint has also been changed from radium to tritium, and a circle T mark representing tritium has been added.

It will be placed under the LEMANIA logo.

The difference between radium and tritium is the amount of radioactive material.

Since radium emits more radiation, it was changed to tritium from Series 2 onwards.

Now let's take a look at the back cover.

Lemania British military watch case back engraving

Lemania chronographs were issued to the Air Force, Navy, and submarine crews of the Royal Navy.

Let's take a look at what each marking means.

Lemania - Military divisions delivered to the British military (Air Force, Navy, and submarine crew)

The Air Force is represented by AM or 6B/551.
The Navy symbol is HS↑9 or 0552
For submarine crew, call 0552/924-3312

It will be.

HS Broad Arrow Mark 9 is an acronym for the old code name used by the Navy, "Hydrographic Service."

AM stands for Air Military, which means "items requested by the Air Force."

This English acronym was abolished when the UK joined NATO, and since then it has been managed by the NATO code.

Those are 6B and 0552.

Now let's compare the back covers of the first and second models again.

Lemania British Military Watch: Differences between the first and second case backs

Both are screw back, but the first one is a side grip type.

The second type has a groove that allows you to insert a screw opener.

This concludes the comparison between "First" and "Second".

The difference between the second and third Lemania models

Now let's compare the second and third.

Lemania: A comparison of the second and third military watches delivered to the British Army

Features of the second model Delivery period: from about 1950
Size 38mm

Third model features Delivery period: from about 1960
Size: 40mm

Now on the left we have the second model and on the right we have the third model.

The third model is shown on the right, and instead of being asymmetrical, it has a crown guard and pusher guards.

We speculate that the guard was probably installed in response to a request from the team members who actually used it in the field, as they were experiencing frequent malfunctions.

Comparing the dials, all the numbers on the second dial are the same size, whereas on the third dial only the numbers 12 and 6 are displayed large, while the other numbers are smaller, improving visibility.

The LEMANIA logo has also been changed from a bold logo to a stylish thin logo, showing improvements in printing technology.

In addition, the "Incablock" logo will be added under the Broad Arrow mark.

The size has increased by 2mm, but this is due to the addition of a guard, so the second watch appears larger when looking at the dial alone.

There are no major changes to the case back when moving from the second to the third, so we will not go into detail here.

Lemania British Air Force and Navy and Submarine Crew

Now, I will explain how to tell the difference between Air Force, Navy, and submarine crew watches.

To see which is for the Air Force and Navy, please refer to the diagram below that I explained earlier and apply it.

The Air Force is represented by AM and 6B/551.
The Navy symbols are HS↑9 and 0552.

Here we will explain how submarine crew watches differ from Air Force and Navy watches.

The one on the left is the Air Force version, but the Navy version is almost the same except for the back cover.

The one on the right is for the submarine crew.

Lemania British Military Chronographs: Differences between those for submariners and those for the Navy and Air Force

Air Force and Navy watches are marked with a round T and contain tritium.

But submarine crew watches don't have these.

This is to prevent false alarms in the radiation detectors inside the submarine.

British Military Watch: Differences between Navy & Air Force and Submarine Crews

Only a very small amount is released, but it seems that the inside of the submarine is still strictly controlled.

Therefore, there is no round T mark under the LEMANIA logo at 12 o'clock on the black dials used by the Air Force and Navy.

Lemania British Military Watch for Submariners, Comparison of Second and Third Watches
Now let's compare the second and third submarine models.
The one on the left is second and the one on the right is third.

The second model does not have the circle T mark, but if you look closely at the third model, you will see that the circle T mark has been painted in white underneath the LEMANIA logo at the 12 o'clock position.

Lemania Military Watch for Submariners - Tritium Cancellation

It's possible that they forgot to erase the circle T during the print design stage, and the circle T was printed on the dial as is, and then at some point they noticed this and erased it.

Thus, for submarine crew members, luminous paint is not used, but instead the opposite colors of black print on a white dial are used to enhance visibility and increase contrast.

Production period: 2 years Successor to the third model

Lemania Third Successor

In fact, the third model has a successor.

Since it was only manufactured in 1975 and 1976, it is rare to see one, and I think there are many people who don't even know it exists, but this is how it has evolved into the two-push type.

Lemania produces many two-push type rifles, but this is the only model delivered to the British Army.

Tracing its roots back to the early 1970s, the British Ministry of Defence (MoD) made significant changes to the standard specification for wrist chronographs, allowing for the use of two pushers.

This revision was successful in reducing costs for the British military.

At that time, there was little fear of war and it was a relatively peaceful time, so the budget allocated to military expenditures was reduced.

As a small part of this program, the MoD changed defence standards for military pilots' watches, allowing for cheaper chronograph production.

This led to many manufacturers other than Lemania offering chronographs and more affordable movements such as the Valjoux 7733.

As a result, Hamilton, CWC, Precista, and Newmark all made watches with the same shape, which is why there are watches that are identical except for the logo name.

Military watches made for the British Army by an American manufacturer

Then, in the 1980s, the MoD commissioned Seiko, a company that was on a roll at the time and was forcing Swiss watch brands out of business one after another, to manufacture quartz watches, and they began using Seiko chronographs until 1997.

The story of the back cover

Lemania British Military Watch with strike-through on the back
Speaking of the case back, there are some cases where the original code has been crossed out with a horizontal line and a new code has been engraved on top of it.

So there are cases where something originally intended for the Navy becomes intended for the Air Force, or vice versa.

The case design is the same, so I guess the back cover was reused to match the number of troops at the time.

Lemania chronograph weather ranking delivered to the British Army

Finally, we present the ranking of Lemania chronographs delivered to the British Military.

Nowadays, almost all of them are traded at high prices because collectors are reluctant to part with them, but there are still some very rare ones.

This is my personal ranking, so please use it as a reference only.

The first one is the hardest model to get.

5. Second Model for the Air Force (6B)

4th place: Second model, white lettering version

3rd place: Third model, successor

2nd Model - For submarine crew

1st place: Third Model for Submarine Crew Members

There may be slight differences in the rankings, but I think that generally, models ranked 5th to 1st are not something you see very often.


So that's how I explained the first, second and third models that Lemania delivered to the British Army today.

Just by looking at this series of watches, you can see how the military was classified, and knowing the background makes you feel even more attached to the watch.

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Thank you for watching until the end today.