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Ball, a manufacturer of robust and attractive sport watches, is now offering a special pre-order until September 20th. The Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II watch is the latest iteration of their AeroGMT model (first reviewed here). Besides being offered in a limited run of 1,000 pieces, this version is also the only model that features an external sapphire GMT bezel illuminated by their signature micro gas lights.

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After careful consulting with experts like Boeing 777 pilots, Ball developed the Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II to be a formidable and reliable travel watch. Aside from the micro gas tube treatment, the sapphire bezel is now curved. This makes for an interesting look that pairs with the gas tubes and adds a degree of depth and visibility to the bezel scale. Together with Ball’s special crown protection system, the Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II gives aviation watch lovers something a little different than the Fliegers and dual-time watches we see today.

Perhaps the best place to start is with the degree of luminescence the watch provides. As stated previously, the Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II is designed with an array of gas tubes that can be found along the bezel, hands, and the dial – 43 to be exact. They don’t require any external source of power and deliver clear and concise reading of three time zones, such as the wearer’s home city, current location, and destination. Also, the internal 24-hour indication features an ice blue Super-LumiNova treatment that pairs nicely with the green, orange, and yellow gas tube elements.

The case is also very wearable and comes in at just 42mm wide and 13.85mm thick. It’s crafted out of 316L stainless steel, offers 100m of water resistance, and features a domed anti-reflective sapphire crystal. Another highly distinctive feature is the crown protection system, which consists of a protective plate the wearer can slide over the screw-down crown to ensure both water and shock resistance. The lugs (pictured below) also have a dramatic slope to their design, which is yet another trait that makes the watch wrist-friendly for a range of enthusiasts.

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Currently, the Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II can be purchased in either black or blue dial variants and Ball offers bracelet, NATO, and rubber strap options. One thing to note about the bracelet is that it is manufactured from a single block of stainless steel with Ball’s patented triple folding buckle. This also supports its capability of resisting up to 1,400 newtons of force.

The movement is a COSC-certified Ball caliber RR1201C (ETA 2893-2 base). Looking at the case back – which can be engraved for free upon purchasing – we also find an engraved world time chart for reference. Additionally, the solid case back ensures anti-magnetic resistance to 4,800 A/m. Combined with the rest of the watch’s features, this makes the Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II reliable, easy to own, and very resilient in most situations. It’s an evolution that respects its original design while marking a few significant accomplishments for Ball Watch Company.

Available in a limited run of 1,000 pieces, customers can pick their limited-edition number and personalize their watch with a case back engraving. The Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II is available at an exclusive pre-order price on Ball’s online shop until September 20th. Pre-orders will ship between December 2017 and January 2018. Pre-order price for the Ball Engineer Hydrocarbon AeroGMT II on a steel bracelet is $1,849 and $1,779 for the rubber strap model. ballwatch.ch

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