REC Watches recycle parts from iconic motorbikes to create the TTT Escape and TTT Icon1000D.C. Hannay
Danish microbrand REC Watches has been revving up fans of motoring and horology since 2014, creating unique (and we mean truly unique) timepieces that celebrate performance motoring, with watches crafted from actual parts recycled from historic vehicles. No two pieces are alike, and their watches have paid tribute to cars including the Mini Cooper, Shelby Mustang, Land Rover, and both the Porsche 911 and 993. They’ve even created a watch utilising aluminium from a crashed WWII Spitfire aircraft. And in their first collection of motorcycle-inspired timepieces, REC is bound to drive straight into the hearts of classic bike fans everywhere.
The brand-new TTT Series (short for Twist The Throttle) consists of two limited-edition models, both inspired by iconic Triumph motorbikes. They’re big, bold pieces with thoughtful, race-inspired touches that just look fast, even while standing still. Both share a similar case profile and customised Sellita movements, along with some very cool Easter eggs (which we’ll get to momentarily) but offer unique design elements of their own. It’s time to put on the helmet and gloves and go for a ride.
Triumph has long been one of the legendary names in motorcycle history, and there’s probably no Triumph more noteworthy than the 1962 TR6 Trophy 650cc featured in the 1963 WWII film The Great Escape, starring Steve McQueen. The film was a rousing success, with an all-star cast of tough guys including McQueen, James Garner, Charles Bronson, James Coburn, and Richard Attenborough as Allied POWs attempting to escape from a Nazi camp. With its star-studded lineup, one can think of the film as The Expendables of its day.
A star in its own right, the Triumph TR6 featured in the film is so iconic (arguably the most famous Triumph in the world), REC decided that it was worthy of tribute. After filming, the bike lay dormant in storage for nearly 40 years, before being rediscovered by one of the leading private collectors of rare Triumphs, Dick Shepherd, who was determined to restore it to its former glory. The bike is now on display at the Triumph Factory Museum in the UK. During the restoration, Shepherd replaced the clutch plate and connecting rods, passing the originals on to REC, who gave the parts new life as part of this limited edition. They were reforged into inner dial rings, while retaining their original patina and informing the overall aesthetic of the TTT Escape.
Looking at the watch as a whole, the design is a resounding success.
The case itself has a unique two-part construction, with a circular 43mm diameter brushed stainless-steel outer case. The Escape has serious wrist presence, but is eminently wearable with a lug-to-lug of 46.5mm and a case height of 12.3mm. Polished wire lugs are a vintage touch, meant to evoke the look of the bike’s chrome exhaust pipes. The bezel has a combination of finishes, both polished and sandblasted, and the inner case is polished as well, nicely contrasting with all the different textures of the watch. And here’s where the coolest party trick comes in: the inner case rotates 30 degrees by sliding the reinforced crown down, changing the position from “dress” to “ride”, orienting the dial at a more practical viewing position while behind the handlebars.
The dial itself is a skeletonized sandwich design, with a white-on-grey minute track, white-on-black secondary track with Arabic numerals every five minutes, and the aforementioned inner ring recycled from the Great Escape Triumph. It’s a great look that’s highly legible, and each watch will have unique markings due to the nature of the material. The innermost plate is machined with a dark green finish contrasting with silver stripes and the REC logo, and marked with the WH-13371 license number of the movie prop bike.
Moving through the rest of the construction, the TTT Escape features an anti-reflective sapphire crystal, an exhibition caseback, and a modified Sellita Calibre SW-200-1 SB, a proven Swiss movement, fully on view. The automatic Sellita should be good for a 41-hour power reserve, and is modified with Ruthenium anthracite plating and a sunburst-finished rotor and oscillating weight. Finally, the brown leather rally-type strap is perforated for those go-fast vibes.
The TTT ICON1000 pays tribute to another famous Triumph bike, the 2013 “Speedmaster” drag-racing cycle built by customiser ICON1000 Motorsports. The Speedmaster is pure menace, paying homage to the legendary Triumph drag racing bikes of the ’60s, and REC’s special edition is packed with cool hidden treasures for the wearer to discover.
The TTT ICON1000’s construction is much the same as the TTT Escape’s, but with a completely different aesthetic at play. The inner dial is constructed from the actual repurposed stator cover of the Speedmaster, and it retains the original patina of that artifact. The case features the same dimensions and construction of the Escape, but with a stealthy blacked-out aesthetic and a black crown to match. Speaking of the crown, the same sliding mechanism found in the Escape is employed, with the cheeky addition of hidden “Go Fast” and “Look Flash” messages etched on the inner case at the crown, depending on the chosen position. Those same messages are painted on the actual Speedmaster itself, positioned at the top of the fork-mounted nitrous bottles. So cool.
The dial also has a few notable differences, with a cream-coloured minute track, a red-line from 9 to 12 on the hour track (evoking a tachometer), and the ICON logo emblazoned on the blacked-out innermost part of the dial. You’ll also notice the open-worked hour hand is blacked-out, and the second hand is tipped in red with black and white stripes that match the fork ends of the bike. The blackout treatment continues on the caseback, where you can view the customised Sellita movement. The rotor is reminiscent of wheel spokes, and sports the ICON One Thousand wordmark and lightning bolt motif from the Speedmaster livery. And in a final nod to the Speedmaster bike, the custom black leather strap has a ribbed texture that perfectly matches the racing seat.
If you’re a biker yourself, or simply a fan of classic Triumph, REC’s new limited editions should get your motor running. Their raceworthy good looks and adjustable dress/ride dial modes are note-perfect tips of the helmet to some truly iconic motorcycles, and the perfect companions to a day on the open road.
The REC TTT Escape is limited to 393 pieces, and the ICON1000 to 262, and both retail for $1995.00 USD. More information can be found at https://www.recwatches.com/collections/the-ttt-collection
Made in partnership with REC Watches. However, the opinions expressed in this article are our own in accordance with our Editorial Policy.