Thursday, July 03, 2014

Bell & Ross BR03 Ceramic

In their quest to create the ideal utilitarian watch—drawing on their experience in the aeronautical and military fields— engineers, master watchmakers, designers and professional aviators pooled their expertise to define a novel concept: the instrument watch.

Since aeronautical instrumentation is the gold standard in terms of readability, reliability and performance, the BR 03 instrument watch echoes the design principles of a plane’s cockpit clock. A utilitarian watch, perfectly suited for professional use, it is the ideal embodiment of the brand’s philosophy: functionality drives design.

The BR03-92 Black Matte.

With the constant ambition to remain at the cutting edge of watchmaking technique, Bell & Ross is a pioneer in the latest technologies, mainly those first created for aeronautical or military use. In 2014, stamping its modern vision on professional watchmaking, Bell & Ross enhanced the BR 03 instrument watch with a high-tech, hard-wearing material: ceramic.

The BR03-92 Phantom Ceramic.

In aeronautics, and especially aerospace, ceramics are the material of choice for parts that must withstand extremely high temperatures, exposure to acids, corrosion and erosion. This is why ceramics are commonly found in thermal cladding or the nose cones of spacecrafts and due to its biocompatibility it is often found in the medical world.

The BR03-92 Commando Ceramic.

Bell & Ross has reworked the ceramic, developing a specific manufacturing process which enhances the intrinsic qualities of this remarkable material, which resists scratching, does not fade, and weighs less than other materials.
  • Scratch-proof: Ceramic is one of the hardest materials in the world, after diamond, making it resistant to wear and fading. Its unglazed color will stand the test of time.
  • Lightweight: lighter than steel, it is still ultra-strong.
  • Comfortable: hypoallergenic, easy to wear, it is soft to the touch and immediately adapts to body temperature.

Producing a BR 03 from ceramic forced the designers to revise the complex construction of the case. The BR 03 CERAMIC is built around the movement and its steel container protected by a shell, a cover and a ceramic case back. The eight screws visible on the outside of the ceramic case act like a clamp to seal the watch, guaranteeing its complete solidity and water resistance.

A genuine professional tool, the BR 03 responds to the legibility requirements of professional aviators:
  • The matte black finish of the case found on aircraft instrument panels optimizes reading the dial by preventing reflection.
  • The sober design, black dial, large white numerals, shape of the hands and photoluminescent coating allow immediate reading of the time, both during the day and at night.

The BR 03 instrument watch is not exclusively reserved for professional users and has become an iconic watch for numerous collectors. Fitted with a high-quality Swiss movement, this instrument watch designed for professionals asserts its utilitarian and functional purpose by embodying four fundamental principles: legibility, functionality, precision, and reliability. It is 42 mm diameter and adapts to all sizes.

The BR03-92 Heritage Ceramic.

This new ceramic model once again emphasizes the brand’s pioneering vision. By associating a high-tech material with fine craftsmanship, Bell & Ross has created a new instrument with innovative properties. The BR 03 is an icon that pushes the boundaries of resistance over time.

Photographs: Bell&Ross

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