It bears mentioning a little background on the Instruments and BR-X1 replica watches before we start – the Instruments collection is probably Bell and Ross’ most iconic collection, with the trademark square case and round face. This is probably familiar to most watch lovers, and indeed I, personally, was quite enamoured with it at some point in the past. Bell and Ross drew inspiration for this case shape directly from the aeronautical flight instruments back in the day when cockpits were lined with rows upon rows of square inserts and round dials/gauges feeding information to the pilot, hence the name of the collection. With the classic releases in the Instruments line, such as the BR-01, Bell and Ross have strived to ensure that their Instruments deliver that same legibility a pilot would want.
The BR-X1 copy watches line was only recently slotted into the lineup in 2014, and represents an interesting direction for the normally utilitarian company. The name BR-X1 pays homage to the Bell X-1, the first American experimental rocket plane to break the sound barrier back in 1947. Drawing from that idea, experimental designs and complications are showcased from Bell and Ross’ repertoire within the BR-X1 line. For one, the movements in this line are all skeletonised. Bell and Ross seem to be experimenting with just about all components of the watch in this line, from case material to the hands and indices, not to mention movements and complications. Just on the case material alone, rose gold, carbon fibre and wood are implemented on separate models. At the time of their release, this would be previously unheard of from Bell and Ross.
We had the chance to take the BR-X1 Black Titanium Skeleton Chronograph replica watches out for a week, putting it through the daily rigours of desk diving, door jamming and all sorts of dangerous hazards that watch lovers face every day. The result – this review along with plenty of pictures to feed your eye candy needs.