The Legendary Ball Watch Company, Stronger Than Ever….

As a huge fan of watches, exploration and survival, I have chosen to feature my favorite watch company. Enjoy…..

At the time of this writing, Chicago, IL is being assaulted by it’s first major winter storm, PERFECT
weather for inspired writing! I love the cold, and spend long hours out of doors in the thick of it!

The Ball Watch Company was started in 1891, by Webster Ball. Mr. Ball is considered the “father”
of American precise time keeping and his standardization of all railroad timepieces, was his gift and legacy
to us.

This article, features one of Ball Watch Companys’ greatest technological accomplishments,
the Engineer Hydrocarbon TMT. It comes with great pleasure, that I share this with you, with
the assistance of the master watch builder’s of the Ball Watch Company.

My friend’s at Ball Watch have provided me, with technological
assistance in this effort. We can truly benefit from their knowledge, and I am quite grateful for their
interest in this article!

In the realm of expedition timepieces, this watch IS the benchmark by which all other
timepieces will be judged! Only Ball Watch Co. Gives the explorer a timepiece that is
cold endurance rated to – 40 below zero, that you can read in the worst of conditions in
any light AND has a patented mechanical thermometer!

Ball Watch has gone to the max, and given us the most
useful instrument one can buy and just to have one of these timepieces, suggests that
you take your exploration VERY serious!

First let’s take a look at understanding what goes into this cutting edge timepiece….

A timepiece can be the most accurate thing on this planet, if it does not convey
this information, what good is it?

Ball handles this in fine order, it is accomplished by the use of Self-Powered
Micro Gas Lights (3H). Recognized by many elite forces as the ONLY way to go as
far as lighting in concerned. I own several watches with this
system, Ball is by far, the most prolific in the use of these gas
tubes of any watch on the market today!

For the finer aspects of this timepiece and a look into their thinking ,
I decided to ask Ball Watch for a little Question & Answer session,

This is directly from Ball Watch, so you can be sure it says what they would like you to know
about their timepieces!

Q; What made the owners of Ball Watch Co. decide to take up the challenge of a mechanical thermometer?

A: We always felt that temperature measurement is a very practical feature on the wrist, especially in exploration. The desire to better understand their environment is at the root of all explorers’ quests.


Q: Does the normal body temperature (98.8) affect the performance of the timepiece, and should one remove the watch to get a truly accurate reading of the ambient temperature?

A: In normal usage, yes, the temperature of the wearer’s wrist would affect the accuracy of the reading. As a watch designed with Ball Explorers in mind, we expected that many wearers would choose to wear their Engineer Hydrocarbon outside a parka or over a wetsuit. In these conditions, the TMT would easily register the temperature of the frozen air or chilly seawater.


Q: Ball Watch is famous for it’s cutting edge thinking, and this is evident in your timepieces.  Do you feel as if this IS the main reason why many professional explorers have become “family members” and partners?

A: We sought out world-class explorers to create our Ball Explorers Club, and we strive to develop world-class watches to fit their pursuits. By focusing on the needs of our Explorers, we have had major successes. The limited edition Engineer Hydrocarbon Alligator developed for oceanographer Richard Limeburner sold its entire run of 1000 pieces in a little more than a year. The second half of 2006 saw the launch of the Engineer Master II Diver created for World Champion free diver Guillaume Néry and the Engineer Hydrocarbon `Mad Cow’ Titanium inspired by champion speed skier John “Mad Cow” Hemble. Each watch fits the needs of its explorer, and they work with us to refine the concepts.

In the case of our most recent Explorer, our reputation preceded us. Dr. Christopher Hillman works among nomadic communities in the Himalayan mountains. He could never depend on a watch during his daily rounds because it would always freeze. On one trip back to the U.S., he mentioned this to a friend who had recently heard about the Ball cold temperature movement with operating range from 140°F to -40°F. He contacted us, and when he next ventured into the mountains, he had an Engineer Hydrocarbon on his wrist.


Q: Finally, as a true fan, I would love to see Ball Watch at every fine Jeweler, how does one go about to start a relationship with your fine watch company?

A: We are expanding rapidly worldwide, with major growth in the top Asian cities like Hong Kong and Tokyo. In North America, we’re building on our good reputation in the U.S. and developing our presence in Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean Islands. Any inquiries can be addressed to

For more info or to find a dealer nearest you visit: or

Ball Watch, “R&R” Logo are the registered ®trademarks, of the Ball Watch Company.
©Photography/ Scans are the property of Ball Watch Company and are used by permission.
Technological assistance was provided by Jeremy Hogan & Henry at Ball Watch Company,
It is with much thanks to them, for their help!
Get the cool “TMT” wallpaper
for your computer!