Amplifier to assist hearing impaired with GF clock

Discussion in 'General Clock Discussions' started by THTanner, Mar 22, 2018.

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  1. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User
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    I have a dear old client who is about 90 with a very nice grand father clock. His hearing has gotten progressively worse over the last few years and he asked me if there is some way to "turn up the volume" on the tic toc, chime and strikes.

    I am considering placing a small amplifier and speaker in the clock - or on top of the bonnet - that would be set up to amplify both the tic toc and the sound of the hammers.

    Has anyone ever done this, or does anyone have any suggestions?

    thanks
    tom
     
  2. harold bain

    harold bain Registered User
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    Time for your customer to get a hearing aid.
     
  3. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    The usual quest is to make them quieter these days, however a technique used in the past was to drill holes in the top of the hood so that the bell could be heard more clearly around the house.

    If it has glass windows in the side of the hood you could change for frets with silk linings.
     
  4. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    we've gotten our mom a succession of such devices from amazon over the last year or so... no reflection on the devices that she doesn't use them!

    i would suggest a small hearing assist device w/ ac power, an external speaker (rather than ear piece) and a volume control... rather than doing anything to the clock. it's not the clock that has the problem.

    you also don't need a lot of amplification... not sure if your client lives alone or has caregivers, but you don't want the neighbors complaining! :cool:
     
  5. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    The suggestion I have made can be considered reversible, even the drilling of the hood, which was pretty standard, as the hood is then covered with paper and stained.
     
  6. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User
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    Thanks for the ideas -

    So far I replaced the side panel glass with board and silk ones on the hood so there is plenty of sound coming out of the clock. He lives alone on about an acre and refuses to wear, or get, hearing aids. I have new hard plastic hammers hitting the rods - I suppose I could turn the hammers around so that the metal hits the rods, but that seems a bit rough. He still wants it louder ;)

    I am looking at an a/c powered, small amplifier with built in dual speakers and a little mic for the chime and strike that I hope will suffice. There is a line input that I can perhaps get the tic toc sound with a simple inductance pick up, but that will probably have to be limited somehow or it will be too loud. I am not sure how to accomplish that piece of the puzzle and perhaps he will forgo the tic toc sound. But he says he misses that a lot.

    Feedback might be an issue if I put the amp and speakers inside the clock, so the plan is to put this on top of the hood and position it and the mic so that there is no feedback.

    The whole setup will run about 50 dollars, but he seems okay with that. Any good ideas on getting the tic toc into the speakers at the right volume without using a separate pre-amp just for that part of it?
     
  7. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    ah, it's a modern clock?

    Get him a verge lantern clock, or cheaper just a birdcage longcase. The bells on those are deafening, a verge has a tick to wake the dead.
     
  8. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

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    #8 Willie X, Mar 22, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2018
    Look up 'HoneyTone' amp. You will need a guitar or ukulele clip on pickup and the AC power supply.

    I also think a hearing aid would be the best solution.

    It will not be a simple matter to amp up the ticking and chiming in a balanced manner.

    Willie X
     
  9. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    I think your idea would work, and the tick toc sound would be amplified in direct proportion to the normal difference in volume. In other words, you don't want the escapement as loud as the chimes and strikes. Hopefully you can get the wires out of the case without drilling.
     
  10. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

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  11. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User
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    this got me to thinking - I wonder if this same set up - with a 180 degree signal shift - would work to make the chimes and strikes quieter in a similar fashion to the noise reduction systems?
     
  12. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User
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    The back door on the hood does not fit tightly on this clock and the small wire for the mic will fit through the gap with no issues.

    I will experiment with where to put the mic to perhaps get more tic toc directly and avoid the pick up issues. All the parts should be here next week and I will let you know
     
  13. PaPa_Clock

    PaPa_Clock Registered User
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  14. zedric

    zedric Registered User
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    Noise cancelling systems only work within a defined radius, as you have to cancel sound exactly from all directions. While you might get a limited dampened effect, but it is not possible to cancel the noise signal for the whole of the house.
     
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  15. JTD

    JTD Registered User

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    I'm not surprised she doesn't wear them! As a hearing aid wearer (both ears) I can tell you that 'off-the-shelf' hearing aids from Amazon are not the way to go. The lady needs a proper hearing test from a qualified audiologist and then receive hearing aid(s) tailored to her particular hearing loss. She will be surprised at the difference between a properly 'tailored' hearing aid and a mail-order sound magnifier.

    JTD
     
  16. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User
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    Thanks - I started reading about the technology and limitations yesterday - and it clearly is not going to do very much - and is crazy expensive for the ones that cover any area -
    usually people want it cancelled only in the bedroom - but that is still not practical - Some high end cars pipe noise cancellation through the car speakers (along with phony engine sounds), but that is a fairly confined area
     

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