Radio navigation in the spotlight

The BR 03-92 Radiocompass is the newest navigational tool watch to join Bell & Ross’ collection of flight instrument watches which began in 2010, distinguished by its brightly coloured hands on an otherwise sleek black case. The BR 01 Radar was the first watch in this line and was an instant hit partly due to its innovative rotating disc display. A year later, Bell & Ross released its BR 01 Red Radar, which replaced the traditional watch face with sweeping red light beams, looking just like an air traffic control radar. Then came the HUD in 2020, inspired by head-up-display technology with an innovative dial which combined rotating disks and analogue hands.

The Flight Instrument Collection

The Flight Instrument Collection - Image credit Bell & Ross.

Bell & Ross began making aeronautical and military-inspired watches back in 1994, since then becoming a brand renowned in the field of professional aviation watches and a benchmark for aeronautical-inspired watches with designs that draw their inspirations from onboard instruments.

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The BR 03-92 Radiocompass - Image credit Bell & Ross.

This year the brand is paying homage to air radionavigation instruments - advanced tools that rely on radio waves to guide jet planes - with the launch of the BR 03-92 Radiocompass. As the name suggests, the watch takes its name from the Radio Compass, an onboard radio receiver which can pinpoint the exact position and flight direction of an aircraft by the use of signals emitted from beacons on the ground - a vital tool that guides pilots even when visibility is severely reduced, allowing them to fly at night, in fog or the rain.

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A Radio Compass instrument next to the BR 03-92 Radiocompass - Image credit Bell & Ross.

The BR 03-92 aims to achieve the greatest possible precision and readability in Bell & Ross’ quest for ultimate performance. The unique dial of the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Radiocompass, reproduces the display of the eponymous tool. It reinterprets its hands and its graduations which allow optimal readability under all circumstances. For the display of the BR 03-92 Radiocompass, the Bell & Ross development teams have faithfully reproduced the graphics of the instrument that served as an inspiration.

The matt black dial contrasts with the white graduations arranged in 3 circles. The innermost circle features the hour numerals. The minute indexes follow, and finally, the seconds numerals are on the flange. A white triangle at 12 o’clock in Super-LumiNova® enables you to find your bearings at night.

All the numerals are arranged in a targeted way and turned towards the centre of the dial, just as you would see them on a navigation instrument. The numerals adopt Isonorm typography, with very legible graphics. This technical and functional typeface was created in the 1980s by ISO (International Standards Organisation) and is often used for technical charts and graphics in the aviation industry because it’s easily legible for both the human eye and machine readers. Finally, the dial also houses a date window between 4 and 5 o’clock.

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The BR 03-92 Radiocompass - Image credit Bell & Ross.

What really makes the BR 03-92 Radiocompass stand out are the very unusual and visually striking hands, which take up the shape of the hands on the Radio Compass instrument. They also adopt 3 complementary colours. These vibrant, almost fluorescent shades contrast with the matt black of the dial. They allow easy and immediate reading of the time and give a fun appearance to this watch.

BR 03-92 Radiocompass Lume

Lume shot of the BR 03-92 Radiocompass - Image credit Bell & Ross.

Certain indications on the dial are coated with Super-LumoNova®. At night, the luminescent indexes take on blue tones, the minutes stand out as green and the hour hand transforms from a yellow glow into green. The dial sits within a sleek square 42mm ceramic black case, a staple case design for Bell & Ross, fitted onto a BR branded rubber and ultra-resilient black synthetic fabric strap. Powering the watch is an in-house BR-CAL.302 automatic movement with a water resistance of 100 meters.

The watch is limited to 999 pieces and is available from Bell & Ross for £3,400.