132 years of dirt removed

Discussion in 'Clock Case Restoration and Repair' started by the 3rd dwarve, Dec 24, 2016.

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  1. the 3rd dwarve

    the 3rd dwarve Registered User

    Nov 3, 2000
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    This case was made in 1884 and it has had a hard life.

    I have been taking my time cleaning it and resecuring any loose joints.

    I left the roof for last and have spent about 6 hours cleaning it. I have left the original finish intact, I probably need to spend another hour to finish it up. I’m pleased with the way it has cleaned up. The Cuban mahogany is beautiful.
     

    Attached Files: Download all post attachments

  2. BLKBEARD

    BLKBEARD Registered User

    Nov 15, 2016
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    Nice to see it as the Case Maker saw it
     
  3. Rockin Ronnie

    Rockin Ronnie Registered User

    Nov 18, 2012
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    The cleaning makes a big difference.
     
  4. the 3rd dwarve

    the 3rd dwarve Registered User

    Nov 3, 2000
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    Well here it is after 5 toothbrushes, a pack and a half of swabs, two old cotton tees, a pint of paraffin oil, FF and FFFF pumice, boiled linseed oil and rottenstone. I lost track of the hours.

    At some point a previous owner rehung the upper and lower doors with screws long enough to come right through the front. The lower door frame was split at each hinge.

    The bottom was split in two and blown out where the weight dropped at some time. The pieces whet back together rather nice so I glued them and reinstalled the original piece.

    The lower glass was held in with 5 brads driven into the frame at about a 45 degree angle. How the door glass survived is beyond my imagination.
    The lower door lock is missing. I will have to make a copy of the one in the upper door.

    On the flat surfaces I started with paraffin oil and FFFF pumice powder on a cotton pad. I like to use paraffin oil because it is clear and lets you see what you are removing. I started with FF pumice on the roof because the dirt layer was so thick. I also used the FF pumice in some areas that had heavy white paint splatter on them. In the intricate areas I used FFFF pumice in paraffin oil on a swab of a toothbrush. This was a very tedious process.

    Once I got down to the original finish I switched to boiled Linseed oil and rottenstone. Unlike pumice rottenstone is friable rock so it acts more like a polish than an abrasive. There are some areas like those around the door locks where all of the original finish is gone. I think I am going to just give it a couple of coats of Gilboy’s to finish it.

    This might be my new favorite, until the next one.

    D~
    IMG_2107s.jpg
     
  5. BLKBEARD

    BLKBEARD Registered User

    Nov 15, 2016
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    Well done!!!
    That's a Handsome Clock, I'd like to see more Photo's of it.
     
  6. MartinM

    MartinM Registered User

    Jun 24, 2011
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    Great job! Lots of elbow grease expended on that effort.
    Is it me? Or does the base seem like it's not well matched to the rest of the clock?
     
  7. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User

    Jun 20, 2013
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    The wood looks beautiful, what a difference!
     
  8. the 3rd dwarve

    the 3rd dwarve Registered User

    Nov 3, 2000
    597
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    #8 the 3rd dwarve, Dec 31, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2016
    Thank you all for your kind words.

    Martin,

    It’s not you. Almost all that have seen it have commented on its unusual proportions.

    It is the only one of this model that I have seen with this base. I am sure that the case is all original. The 1888 catalogue shows this model with a wider, squatter base with a panel in the front. I have owned one with the wide base before. The base was the same size and design as the one used on the model 84 with different trim molding.

    This one stands at nine feet tall and the waist is only 12 inches wide. The combination of tall/slim proportions and very plain base and waste draws your eye to the top.

    It grows on you.

    Best wishes for the new year.

    D~
     
  9. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User

    Jun 20, 2013
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    PS Thats a lovely Portico clock you have on the shelf behind!
     
  10. the 3rd dwarve

    the 3rd dwarve Registered User

    Nov 3, 2000
    597
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    One of the upper side doors is missing the escutcheon plate. I finally got around to fabricating a replacement and have it plated to match the rest of the hardware on the clock (sterling silver).

    I just got back from the plating company and I am very pleased with their service. They are glad to accept mail order business and there is no minimum order. However, if you order is small like mine was it will be less costly if you can wait until they do a scheduled run of that material. I also had a bezel done in brushed nickel that I am happy with. I have several more pieces I will be bringing to them in the near future.

    Here is the link to their website. http://providenceplating.com/

    This is a small business and is split into two different physical locations so someone may not always be available to answer the phone. Leave a message or call back. It has gotten extremely hard to find anyone willing to do small jobs so I’m glad I found them.
    Other than being a happy customer I am in no way associated with Providence Electroplating.

    D~
     

    Attached Files:

  11. diamondclub

    diamondclub New Member

    Mar 10, 2017
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    This is a really good job. I have one with so much dirt but I have not been able to get around to doing it myself.
     
  12. the 3rd dwarve

    the 3rd dwarve Registered User

    Nov 3, 2000
    597
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    Well, it’s finally finished. One project always leads to another. There is an inner bezel on the top door that needed repair because the glue joints had failed. I wanted to make a fixture to hold everything in place but my lathe would only accommodate a 12 inch swing. I made riser blocks for the lathe and turned the fixture. It worked well and the ring went back together nicely. On to the next one.
    D~
     
  13. BLKBEARD

    BLKBEARD Registered User

    Nov 15, 2016
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    ​Great looking clock.
     
  14. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin

    Nov 13, 2011
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    wow... great work. if i weren't so lazy, i'd PM you for tips and tricks.... unless you'd be interested in an artist-in-residence case restoration position in the san francisco bay area for a week or two? 😊
     
  15. the 3rd dwarve

    the 3rd dwarve Registered User

    Nov 3, 2000
    597
    2
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    Hi Bruce,

    Thanks for the acknowledgment, I had a good teacher. It's not so much difficult as it is time consuming. There is some technique involved but what’s most needed is patience.

    Also, thanks for the offer. As much as I enjoy the bay area, the theater, food, entertainment, parks, museums, and of course the Warf I’m going to pass but next time you’re at Seven Hills have the octopus and squid pasta for me.

    Regards,

    Jeff
     
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