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18th century French Lantern

ballistarius

Registered User
Oct 26, 2009
836
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Bilbao, Basque Country
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Hello,
Recently I could grab at a reasonable price a wrecked and extremely filthy French lantern movement. I think it is one of those 'with posssibilities'. I fell in love with the dial
Front.jpg Pediment.jpg Dial2.jpg Dial1.jpg
Chapter ring, central star and pediment disc with the inscription 'Fait a Provin 1794' are made of pewter. Spandrels look like lead, probably painted in gold originally.
The current hands are Comtoise ones 'modified' and painted white. I have bought more period reproduction ones for the future.
Top.jpg
Bell, pendulum and weight(s) are missing. Fortunately, chain and one pulley are still attached to the movement. I have bought a nice old bell to fill the 'gap' at the top.
It is difficult to tell anything about the bushings, pinions and gears, except that all of them are there, inside that filthy mass...
Left.jpg Right.jpg Back.jpg
The count-wheel has cusps instead of reccesses. A feature that I have seldom seen.
Three-Quarters.jpg suspension.jpg Flywheel.jpg
Two nasty 'surprises' have been the dial re-attached to the frame using soft solder after the original angulars broke (nearly sure it is not a marriage) and the 'new' crude crutch also attached with lots of soft solder to the anchor arbor. The remains of the suspension spring are made of brass.

Aitor
 

Dave T

NAWCC Member
Dec 8, 2011
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NC
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Love it! Looks like the dirt and grease dates back to the original date too!

Be sure to post some updates as you proceed.
 

ballistarius

Registered User
Oct 26, 2009
836
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Bilbao, Basque Country
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Many thanks, Dave:)
As far as I can see, the clumsy repair attempts could well date from not so much far in time. The movement has spent, undoubtedly, long years in a wet attic, full of shooth and cobwebs...:rolleyes:
I'd wish I had the time to proceed with this one in a short time, but more appealing horolorical projects are calling me now. When the fair season arrives and it will be comfortable to work in the open air, I'll put the movement in a tray full of alcohol, acetone or the like and I'll wash it throroughly, to see what lays below the dirt!Yoda

Aitor
 

P.Hageman

Registered User
Jul 20, 2014
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The Netherlands
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Hello Aitor, a really nice untouched movement it is!!! I particulary like the lead (or tin) spandrels. Seems they used the same patterns as on the English longcase clocks. The pattern of the ones in the arch were used in England from the 1730's onwards. By the way, why do you think this is a Lantern clock movement, I honestly think this movement was used in a case (longcase or wall mounted case) Nice find!!
Greetings,
Peter
 

ballistarius

Registered User
Oct 26, 2009
836
30
28
Bilbao, Basque Country
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Hi Peter, many thanks!:D

I'd have rather preferred to have had it even less 'touched' but, for the price paid, I must say that it was a fair deal.
The dial was the most important reason I had to buy the clock. Like you, I wonder if they took casts from English spandrels to make these ones. As for the material, I think it is lead (unless I have a surprise when I remove that thick layer of oxide and dirt!), very akin to the ornaments on stoelklokken (I own one too)
You are right about that the movement was intended to be cased (though perhaps in the same way than Comtoise clocks of Black Forest shield clocks, which many times ended simply hanged from a wall) I say that it is a French lantern because the movement has all the features of this kind of clocks. Anyway, I'll be happy to read different opinions!:cool:

Aitor
 

Nick Ryan

Registered User
Jan 2, 2010
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Hi, i have restored several of these French long-case movements, they are not lantern clocks, just 30 hour movements. The dial was pewter and the spandrels made of lead, i repaired one, it is an easy but gentle low heat repair. They can come up looking really nice, they are usually a well made clock. Some have lovely features. The one shown was dated 1803. Pewter dials become incredibly pitted due to the oxidisation of the tin in the dial. They can be cleaned up to a reasonable standard. Have fun :)

36 cm x 25 cm x 15 cm.jpg dscn0323zz.jpg
 

Jim Duncan

NAWCC Member
May 31, 2011
455
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Central Coast of California
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Aitor - Nice find! Aren't they lovely in rust and cobwebs and reeking of history?

Looking at the close-up photo of your dial/chapter ring (nice camera work) - can you tell if the markings were cast into the pewter or if they were engraved after casting?

The chains looks heavy duty, what size weights do you think will be required?

Regards,
Jims
 

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