Along with its distinct and inherently modern Scandinavian design language, unique dial materials have become one of the hallmark features of Arcanaut as a brand. Additionally, rather than exclusively making its dials from unusual existing materials, such as the recent Fordite dial model, Arcanaut also creates its own unique composites, which it then turns into the thin sheets that are used in the construction of its dials. Joining the Arcanaut lineup for 2023 are two new versions of the ARC II that expand upon this novel dial material concept, and while the Arcanaut ARC II Klint embraces a crisp white colorway and features a dial made with titanium oxide, the ARC II Havender has a unique purple dial that is created using the shells of Scandinavian mussels, and it will be produced as an exclusive one-time limited edition with a total production run of just 33 pieces.

Just like other Arcanaut ARC II watches, the new Klint and Havender models feature cushion-shaped cases that are crafted from stainless steel and measure 40.52mm in diameter, with largely micro-blasted surfaces complimented by polished edges and a brushed steel bezel. Similarly, the two models also both have domed sapphire crystals above their dials, solid screw-on casebacks, 100 meters of water resistance, and the brand’s unique rectangular “Pentablock” crown that clips into the side of the middle case in order to keep it perfectly aligned with the rest of the watch. Additionally, as the Klint and Havender are both ARC II watches, the two new models use the same integrated rubber strap, and Arcanaut offers eight different strap colors for the ARC II case, which include Axe Red, Void Blue, Fett Green, Rex Brown, Kakarot Orange, Bondi Blue, Replicant White, and Black (just black).

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Similar to their shared cases and straps, both the Klint and Havender variants are powered by the same Soprod A10 automatic movement, which runs at a frequency of 28,800vph (4 Hz) with a power reserve of approximately 42 hours. However, where these two new Arcanaut ARC II watches differ is when it comes to their dials and hands. The Arcanaut ARC II Klint is arguably the most traditional of the two new models, and it places an emphasis on purity of design with a clean white colorway. The Klint dial is made by combining titanium oxide with an ultra-clear binding agent to produce a special composite material that is unique to Arcanaut, and it offers a pure white color with a subtle texture and luster. The resulting Klint material is then cut into the thin sheets used for the construction of the dial, before being finished to specifications and completed by white Lumicast indexes that are positioned along the periphery to offer a subdued tone-on-tone appearance.

To offer better contrast against the white surface of the dial, the handset on the ARC II Klint has been slightly redesigned and now appears in a style that the brand calls its “Chevron” set. The previous “Grand Paw” handset that can be found on other ARC II watches (including the new Havender model) has luminous finished tips; however, since both the dial and luminescent material used for the Klint is white in color, the handset for this particular model needed to be slightly redesigned to allow the tips of the hands to easily be seen against the white surface of the dial. The new “Chevron” set repositions its luminous tips inside the apertures of the hands, and this allows the entire black-finished frame of the hands to clearly stand out against the bright white dial that resides below them.

Meanwhile, the Arcanaut ARC II Havender is arguably the far more unusual offering between these two new models, not only due to its unique purple dial color but simply because the dial itself is made using Scandinavian mussel shells. Similar to the dials fitted to the brand’s Arc II D’Arc Matter watches that use powdered slate in their construction, the Havender material is entirely unique to Arcanaut, and it is created by combining the powdered shells of Scandinavian mollusks (specifically blue mussels) with a clear UV-resistant binding agent to produce an unusual purple dial with a subtle organic texture. As for the “Havender” name of the material, the Scandinavian word “Hav” means ocean, and the color of the dial is lavender, so “Hav” combined with “Lavender” gives you Havender.

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The Havender material is made by James Thompson (aka Black Badger), who produces the material in what can only be described as an incredibly labor-intensive process that is largely carried out by hand. Since only a very thin layer of the mussel shell actually yields the desired color for the Havender dials, the shells must be individually ground down, with the powder from the desired layer carefully collected by a vacuum during the grinding process. From there, the purple shell powder is combined with a special UV-resistant clear binding agent to create a unique composite material that gets cut into the sheets used for the dials. Since the color of the dial on the Arcanaut ARC II Havender is purple, its laser-cut steel handset appears in the brand’s classic “Grand Paw” form with white Lumicast tips to match the white luminous arc-shaped indexes that are positioned along the periphery of the dial.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that a lavender purple dial wasn’t the initial goal when Arcanaut and Black Badger first started working with the Scandinavian mussel shells. Given that this particular mollusk is commonly known as a blue mussel, the brand’s original objective was to create a blue dial from the powdered shells. However, during the experimentation process, it was revealed that the blue hues observed in the mussel shells are actually the result of a pale purple pigment in them, and the unique lavender-colored powder that Black Badger was able to achieve by harvesting a thin layer of the shell ended up lending itself to a far more unusual and compelling concept that deserved to be showcased in a dial.

Despite their differences, the new Arcanaut ARC II Klint and Arcanaut ARC II Havender watches are both accompanied by the same official retail price of $3,950 USD, which is the exact same as what the brand charges for other versions of the ARC II, such as the D’Arc Matter and Fordite dial models. However, since production of the shell-based Havender material is so labor intensive, the Arcanaut ARC II Havender will be a one-time limited edition of just 33 total pieces, while the ARC II Klint with its white titanium oxide composite dial will be joining the collection as a returning offering with an availability of 25 examples per year. The Klint and Havender variants of the Arcanaut ARC II each have their own aesthetic personality, although both models feature dials crafted from unique composite materials that you won’t find anywhere else within the industry. For more information on the Arcanaut ARC II Klint and Arcanaut ARC II Havender watches, please visit the brand’s website

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