The Engineer Hydrocarbon DEVGRU, Designed with SEAL Team Six, May Be BALL’s Toughest Watch Yet

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When one gets a press release announcing a watch designed and engineered with input from SEAL Team Six, that watch better be built like a tank. BALL’s latest, the Engineer Hydrocarbon DEVGRU, does not disappoint. It’s a beast of the watch chock full of really cool anti-shock tech, and it may be BALL’s coolest tool watch yet.

According to BALL, the Engineer Hydrocarbon DEVGRU can withstand a 10-meter free fall. That would be a death sentence for most watches, so what makes the DEVGRU different? The answer lies in BALL’s patented case and movement technology.First, there’s BALL’s SpringSEAL, which locks the regulator assembly to prevent it from shifting upon impact. Then there’s BALL’s SpringLOCK system, which is essentially a cage around the hairspring that is designed to prevent severe twisting in case of a sudden shock. There’s also a redesigned elastomer ring that suspends and shields the entire dial and movement, acting as a giant cushion for both. It also rises up and past the dial to provide support to the sapphire crystal. Finally, moving to the case, there’s a new crown system with a special protective cap to ensure the crown doesn’t take the full force of a hit and stays screwed down in case of a fall. Altogether, these elements make for a watch that can handle some major abuse.

Clockwise from top left: protective crown with cap; elastomer ring suspending the dial and movement; SpringSEAL; and SpringLOCK.

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As you should expect from BALL, the DEVGRU has 14 tritium gas micro tubes (measuring .5mm) on the hour markers and the hands. No charging needed here. They should provide a solid glow for about 25 years.The case measures 42mm wide with a thickness of about 13.4mm. The watch is available in stainless steel or stainless steel with a TiC (titanium carbide) coating for a decidedly tactical look. The watch is rated to be shock-resistant against 50,000 Gs, anti-magnetic to 4,800 A/m, and water-resistant to 100 meters. Powering the watch is BALL’s RR1102-SL caliber, essentially a rebadged  ETA 2836-2 with the aforementioned movement modifications.

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BALL has a tendency to be a bit adventurous with their dial designs, but here they’ve gone for a more pared down aesthetic with legibility in mind. Bold markers and broad sword hands keep the look simple and effective. There’s a day-date at three, which does throw off the symmetry a bit, but it doesn’t look out of place. The dial comes in black and blue, and you have the option of choosing a red or grey elastomer ring (but come on, you have to go with the red).

The watch comes with either a rubber strap or a tapered stainless steel bracelet. You can also choose your edition number and have a personalized engraving along the case back free of charge.The Engineer Hydrocarbon DEVGRU is limited to just 1,000 pieces now available at a special pre-order price—$1,199 in stainless steel and $1,349 in stainless steel with the titanium carbide coating. Orders will ship between January and February 2018. The pre-order ends October 31, 2017. BALL

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Ilya is Worn & Wound's Managing Editor and Video Producer. He believes that when it comes to watches, quality, simplicity and functionality are king. This may very well explain his love for German and military-inspired watches. In addition to watches, Ilya brings an encyclopedic knowledge of leather, denim and all things related to menswear.
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