On no longer presents Bell & Ross, a Franco-Swiss house launched in the early 1990s, which manufactures and assembles its top-flight pieces within the production unit in La Chaux-de-Fonds. However, and in order to better understand the DNA of the brand’s new creation, the “BR 03-94 Multimeter”, let’s take a brief look back to the past. Very soon after its launch in 1994, Bell & Ross imposed a style and design hitherto unseen in the modern watch industry. In a permanent quest for the extreme, the ampersand brand imagines watches conceived as precision instruments for the benefit of many elite corps. The watchmaker has, in fact, become official supplier of the Space Lab mission in 1994, of the mine clearance section of the French civil security in 1997, of the Raid in 2005, of the French air force in 2008, of the Rafale fighter plane from Dassault Aviation in 2015 or more recently, in 2021, from the Patrouille de France.
Whether in the air, at sea or on land, Bell & Ross therefore has a single objective: to provide legible, reliable, precise, waterproof and functional tools to users of its references by means of numerous innovations adapted to the dial. such as a compass, an altimeter, an anemometer, a turn or heading indicator or a radar screen. So many features used today by soldiers, divers, sportsmen engaged in competition such as Formula 1 pilots or modern explorers to calculate more or less long times. It is precisely in this last point that Bell & Ross wanted to innovate by presenting a “Multimeter” chronograph making it possible to calculate numerous periods of time and to provide a great deal of data concerning the physical capacity of its holder. Bell & Ross thus offers a concentrate of information, gathered not on a connected watch but indeed on an automatic timepiece.
Bell & Ross’ invitation to travel
A wealth of information on the wrist
On the aesthetic side, the new “BR 03-94 Multimeter” takes up the classic codes of its iconic “BR 01” model released in 2005. In other words, a variation of an on-board clock or a cockpit on the wrist, characterized by one of the signatures visuals of the watchmaker: a circle within a square. For this new opus, Bell & Ross has opted for a 42mm case in matt black ceramic, water-resistant to 100 meters deep and mounted on a black perforated rubber and synthetic canvas strap for absolute resistance. The real show, however, is played out on the colorful dial – matt black – which displays a multitude of colored gauges referring to the various indications displayed on the dashboards of aircraft. A kind of ultimate short time calculating instrument suitable for running, cycling, motorsport or aviation. For optimal readability and functionality, Bell & Ross has chosen a specific shade for each family of information.
The pulsometer scale – which measures heart rate and that of heartbeats – is dressed in orange. So as not to get lost, it only runs on the right half of the dial. The asthmometric scale – or pneumograph – is coated in bottle green and is also found only on the right side of the dial. It allows you to calculate the number of breaths per minute with a measurement that is generally made from five breaths. The chronograph hand stops at the user’s 5th beat and indicates the frequency per minute. Finally, three tachymeter scales running across the entire dial opt for pale green, light gray and white. These are intended to measure an average speed (or rate) as a function of the time required to cover a given distance with a calculation often made from a distance of 1,000 meters.
Duo flight with the Patrouille de France and Bell & Ross
All of this state-of-the-art mechanics is powered by an in-house self-winding chronograph caliber. The chrono is started by pressing the top pusher. Thus, the large hand is triggered and begins its travel and will be stopped with a second press on the pusher. The needle therefore intersects the 5 colored scales and informs the user of the data he is interested in using three indications: the unit basis (“base”), the function (“function”) and the unit of measurement (“unit”), all three visible on the dial.