Bell & Ross watches have long been synonymous with aircraft cockpit instrumentation, and for the Vintage BR 126 collection, this inspiration has come from the styling and functionality of the aviator watches of the 1940s, with prominent luminous hands and clear numerals ensuring optimum ‘at a glance’ readability, as well as a cool classic look.
Created as a tribute to the pilots and crews of the Allied Air Forces in the Second World War the Bell & Ross BR 126 Insignia Chronograph faithfully captures many little nuances familiar to the airman, and in particular the fuselage cockade bearing the colours of the RAF, which is the centre of focus on its dial.
Presented in a rounded 41mm stainless steel case, which was common to the period, it has been finished with a sleek matte black pvd coat, which together with the black dial and black rubber strap come together to create a watch which is as cool as it is emblematic of a time when the direction of modern history hinged on the fortunes of a small number of brave airborne defenders.
Beneath a pronounced domed sapphire crystal, the spaciously appointed black dial is clearly laid out, and features a bi-compax 30-minute chronograph with the small seconds at the 3 in slightly recessed subdials, and date aperture between 4 and 5.
Its white on black markings and indices are equally effective in daylight or low light environments, thanks to the generous application of Super LumiNova on the hands and hour indices, which glow a vivid green in darkness, and further supporting its authenticity with the period.
As a whole, the BR 126 Insignia Chronograph accurately recalls an era of timeless uncomplicated design, when a pilot’s watch was an indispensable piece of his kit far much more than being perceived as a luxury perk. In it’s subdued black coat it looks like it has been lifted straight out of an aircraft’s instrument cluster, with the black rubber strap being the only real nod to contemporary tastes.
Created as a strictly limited edition of just 99 pieces worldwide, the Bell & Ross BR126 Insignia Chronograph is a robust piece, with a water resistance to 100M, and being equipped with an ETA automatic self winding movement inside for lasting reliability.