With this new creation, Swiss watch maker Bell & Ross demonstrates, once again, its remarkable creativity and pioneering mentality, while underlining its functional and utilitarian brand values.
In a quest to create the ideal utilitarian watch, Bell & Ross broke traditional watchmaking codes in 2005 with the simple idea of turning a plane’s cockpit into a wristwatch. More than an original concept, the Instruments collection is not only reminiscent of the world of aviation but is immediately recognizable.
Pushing further its exploration of aeronautical navigation instruments, Bell & Ross has since developed other unique and high-tech models such as the BR01 RADAR, BR01 ALTIMETER and the BR01 CLIMB to name a few.
True to its philosophy, Bell & Ross introduces a new version inspired by analog instrumentation of aircraft cockpits, where each instrument is a reference point in terms of precision, legibility, reliability and performance: the BR03-92 BI-COMPASS. With this watch, Bell & Ross recreates the graphic style of these navigation tools as closely as possible, offering an alternative to the traditional approach of telling the time.
The simplicity of the BR03-92 BI-COMPASS’s design encases the complexity of its inner workings. Built on a two-tier basis, the dial divides its main center part with the outer part – where the minute track is featured – through a small “step” equipped with a minute-circle. To enhance legibility, the hour and minute graduations have been separated to promote the minutes on the main dial – as in original instruments – while the hours are displayed in the center. The hour reading is indicated by a green triangle marker which appears in the center through an independent concentric disc which is not graduated.
The technical challenge posed by its design and construction required the best watchmaking expertise:-
– An ultra-light disc needed to be created to ensure that the power reserve, nor the accuracy of the watch was not reduced. Furthermore, the disc needs to be sufficiently resistant so as to not become deformed or risk any friction.
– This dual challenge has required the development of specific materials and new techniques.
– As it rotates, an adjustment to the nearest micron ensures that the disc is constantly parallel. – The accuracy of the assembly requires all the know-how of master watchmakers.
– The typography used for the numerals is identical to that on analog aviation counters (Isonorm)
Bell & Ross designers have borrowed the graphic characteristics of navigation tools to create an original and extremely legible display of time. The result is a design and color code that allows the time to be read quickly and accurately.
The use of color is important in aviation for the coding of signals, hence the need to set adequate color requirements to ensure that flight crew can recognize information at a glance.
Blue-green: The Munsell green hue indicates the hours and is covered in a photoluminescent coating (Superluminova®) that contrasts with the black of the dial, ensuring they can be easily read both during the day and at night.
Off-white: The “coquille d’oeuf” hands and numerals on the dial unveil the minutes and seconds and echoes the legibility principles of professional aeronautical instruments. This color scheme was commonly used on instruments, specifically on US Navy aircrafts.
The anti-glare, black matte ceramic finish of the case is inspired by the color of an instrumentation panel, designed to make the dial easier to read by eliminating glare.
Model: Bell and Ross BR 03-92 BI-COMPASS
999 pieces Limited edition
Hours, minutes, seconds and date
42 mm in diameter
Matt black ceramic
Crystal: sapphire with anti-reflective coating
Water-resistance: 100 metres
Hands, numerals and indices coated in Superluminova®
Black rubber and ultra-resilient black synthetic fabric
Buckle: pin. Black PVD coated steel