A watch that keeps you on course
Instrument watch designer, Bell & Ross, adapts the most iconic dial yet of an airplane cockpit with the new BR 03 Gyrocompass. A highly evocative timepiece for lovers of aeronautics.
The fighter plane silhouette in the center of the black dial leaves no room for doubt. With the new limited-edition BR 03 Gyrocompass, Bell & Ross pays tribute to one of its favorite worlds: aeronautics. The appearance of the watch is faithful to the kind of technical design used for a pilot’s dial at the helm of an aircraft, adopting the graphic codes for what is known to professionals as a course indicator. This guiding element on the dashboard is essential: at a single glance, the representation of an aircraft in the sky tells pilots their direction of travel, allowing the position to be realigned on a magnetic compass if necessary. By getting closer to the feeling on board a cockpit, Bell & Ross is staying on course.
The BR 03 family is a central pillar in the Bell & Ross collections. Since launching in 2006, the concept has showcased the watchmaking Maison’s full capability: taking the indicators of an aircraft dashboard and reinterpreting them for the wrist. Reinvented this year in new proportions, the iconic rounded square shape of the BR 03 range now comes in a 41mm case. Also available in this new size, the BR 03 Gyrocompass has a black ceramic case just 10.6 mm thick and waterproof to 100 metres. Completing the iconic Flight Instruments collection launched in 2010, the watch’s strong personality demonstrates its full functionality, elegantly transposing an aeronautical navigation tool into a timepiece design. A robust finish inspired by aeronautical equipment, the black rubber strap fastens with a steel pin buckle with black PVD coating, underlining the professional dimension of the limited series watch of 999 pieces.
Increased readability by day and night
The display of the new BR 03 Gyrocompass has been designed to offer perfect practical readability in all circumstances, day, or night. The fighter plane silhouette draws attention. The tip of the plane’s nose aligns with the indices so that the wearer can tell the time with precision. It’s a solution first visited by Bell & Ross in 2013. By externalising the numerical inscriptions on the flange, checking the time becomes a seamless experience. Alongside the hour hand, the large minute hand benefits from a generous white arrow evoking a pointer. Slim and ultra precise, the central second hand creates an interesting kinetic visual effect through its large counterweight that permanently animates the dial, like a plane in flight. Discreet yet efficient, the date is displayed in a round window placed between 4 and 5 o’clock, making it easy to be present when needed, without disrupting the ability to tell the time instantly in the heat of the action.
Ensuring its functionality in the dark, the watch features a sophisticated luminescent treatment: the cardinal points and their triangular indices are coated with Super-LumiNova® with a green emission colour, while the time indications are highlighted by an immediately recognisable blue emission. Meanwhile, the aircraft silhouette still stands out in a unique yellow tint with green emissions.
A celebration of mechanical excellence
Beyond the power of the display, the watch pays homage to the complex mechanical design of the aeronautical gyrocompass. For pilots, it’s crucial to know their precise position. For pilots, it is crucial that they are aware of their precise location – for this reason, engineers have developed the Gyrocompass, a visually simple yet technically complex system, with a mechanism that transfers the position of the plane in flight into a vertical graphic representation on the dial. The BR 03 GYROCOMPASS does not feature a gyrocompass, but a watch movement with proven reliability: the BR-CAL.302 self-winding caliber. Beating at a frequency of 28,800 vph (4Hz), it has a 54-hour power reserve. It’s the perfect watch for professional use, whether in flight or on land.
Original and fun, the BR 03 Gyrocompass completes the collection of concept watches directly linked to instruments. With its unique display, the BR 03 is aimed at design and aviation enthusiasts.