I announced the Ukhozi Pilot back in November but in case you missed it here is a quick summary:

The Ukhozi Pilot is my second model following on from the successful Impi Automatic. It will be a pilot style watch with an eagle theme, Ukhozi (ooo-core-zee) is a Zulu word for eagle. The dial features diamond shaped hour markers to suggest an eagles talons gripping the dial and the case back will be engraved with a design of an African Crowned Eagle. The campaign will launch later this year.

African Crowned Eagle with outstretched wings
Stephanoaetus coronatus, The African Crowned Eagle. How awesome is this guy?! Image courtesy of Biodiversity Explorer.

Design

The watch is 42mm diameter with a sandwich dial in various colour combinations. It will be powered by either a Miyota 9015 or a Seiko NH35A automatic movement. Price is to be confirmed but is going to be around 300-350USD for a 9015 movement and 250-300USD for a NH35A. Whether only one or both options will be offered is still to be confirmed.
Ukhozi pilot design drawings

Ukhozi pilot 3d renders

Exclusive preview

As an exclusive preview for newsletter subscribers I’m proud to present some early photos of the prototype components that have just come in (I only got the case back one this afternoon, that’s how fresh it is!).

Dials

Ukhozi pilot dials

Lume

These lume shots align with the same dials shown above. Both the full white and white index dials use BGW9 lume for a bright blue tinged glow. The dark lume is dark grey in daylight and glows green. The dark orange lume on the brown/orange dial glows a light orange/yellow. The BGW9 dials will glow the brightest if bright lume is a big factor in your decision making.

Ukhozi pilot dial lume shots

Straps

These will be the standard straps for the Ukhozi Pilot, colour matched nylon NATO straps with hardware finish to match the case finish. I will also be looking at black leather straps with colour matched stitching as an option or possible stretch goal.

Ukhozi Straps

Case Back

Didn’t that come out amazing?! A big thanks to Francis del Mundo from Tangramatic for his excellent work turning the eagle face concept into such a stunning final design.

Survey time!

So if you’re still with me and are liking what you’re seeing, here’s how you can help shape the future of the Ukhozi Pilot. There are a few details to confirm before launch and your feedback on what you’d like to see in the final product would be immensely helpful in deciding those details. If you’ve got a minute to spare please take this quick survey. Your time is much appreciated!

Gearing up to the campaign

As we get closer to campaign time I’ll be in contact more frequently with progress updates. As with any campaign, this one will depend on it’s backers to help spread the word so we can reach as many people as possible. There is a Zulu concept know as ‘Ubuntu’ which means ‘A person is a person through other people’, that we are who we are through our connections with others. Never is that more true than in the world of crowd funding where together we can achieve so much more together than we can alone.

Please feel free to share this update and any future updates with your networks and on any appropriate forums. This second model is a lot more ambitious than the first one and we’ll have a larger goal than before. The Impi funded with 77 backers and we’ll need at least twice that many this time round. I’m confident that together we can do it!