Friday, July 19, 2019

The BR V2-92 Military Beige

From Bell & Ross -

Courtesy of Bell & Ross

This one for me is pretty special.  It combines a lot of different Bell & Ross elements together and unites them into one comprehensive piece.  Looking at it gives me the feeling that the designers at Bell & Ross climbed inside my emotional memory bank and tapped into 3 key visceral memories and combined them into my ideal watch.

Memory number one is the idea of a diver style watch that DOES NOT have a black dial.  As a (decidedly) younger man, I was very partial to diver style watches, but to be honest?  EVERYONE had a black or even a blue dial.  I wanted something different, but could never really find one that fit the bill.  White was nice enough, other colors while intriguing felt a little "too" different.  Around that time, I was a regular habituĂ© of Seregin's in San Francisco, and the legendary Francis Z was the resident watch nerd.  You could count on Francis to find that piece that had that extra little something, and it bears mentioning that he is the man that coined that now infamous phrase amongst the watch cognoscenti -

            The Shit That Killed Elvis!

Francis was a devotee of one specific flavor of Bell & Ross, and that would be the beige dial.  He was not averse to other color dials for other brands, but for him beige was what made Bell & Ross tick.  Francis walked me through several trades, upgrades, and was my wife Wendy's accomplice when she bought a watch for me for Christmas one year that required Francis to use some truly remarkable acting skills.  Following that we were friends, bonded by an action that was born of kindness.  Francis's favorite watch was this one -

Courtesy of Bell & Ross
The BR 123 Original.  Wendy and I had moved to Santa Barbara from San Francisco and I had returned back for a business visit and popped into Seregin's only to be informed that Francis had passed away after a brief but intense battle with cancer.  I'd like to think that the BR 123 was with him when he left for his next adventure.  Suffice it to say, he would have loved the BR V2-92 Military Beige.

So that is two.  Emotional trigger number 3?  It's gotta' be the strap!

Courtesy of Bell & Ross
To quote my friend Francis?  It IS the Shit that Killed Elvis!  There is more to this third emotional element, but that dear reader is a story for another day ; )

You can certainly get this time machine with a stainless steel strap if that is your inclination, but for me the strap just pulls the whole thing together quite nicely.

So a sincere thank you to Bell & Ross for reminding me about why I love watches.

Here are the pertinents, straight from the source -

Movement: calibre BR-CAL.302. Automatic mechanical.

Functions: hours, minutes, seconds and date.

Case: 41 mm in diameter. Satin-polished steel. Bi-directional rotating steel bezel with anodized black aluminum ring and 60-minute scale. Screw-down crown. Sapphire case back.

Dial: beige. Black painted numerals and indices. Metal skeletonised Super-LumiNova®-filled hour and minute hands

Crystal: ultra-curved sapphire with anti-reflective coating.

Water-resistance: 100 metres.

Strap: elastic canvas strap or satin-polished steel bracelet.

Buckle: folding for metal bracelet.

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