Ansonia Gothic Steeple Clock

Discussion in 'General Clock Inquiries' started by kologha, Mar 20, 2017.

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  1. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Hi, I have an Ansonia with patent date 13 June 1882 in for cleaning & overhaul. Everything looks original to me. The clock is running but will need one or two bushes otherwise is OK except for the minute hand. The minute hand end has been broken off and I have been requested to repair or replace the hand. I doubt whether a repair is really viable (someone in the past has tried soldering it) but Timesavers has very similar bushed hands which will need modification to the centre as the square on the minute hand is 2mm and should be 3.4mm, while the bush on the hour hand is 5mm and should be 5.5mm. I could file the square bigger on the minute hand so it would fit but not replace the hour hand just reblue it to match the minute hand. The pendulum rod however is very loose in the bob and was jammed up with cardboard with the regulating nut missing. However the nut turned up lying in the bottom of the case. I have found a picture of this clock on a 1915 catalogue page which ties in with the clock having belonged to the owner's GF. Comments please!
     

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  2. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User

    Jul 3, 2016
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    I would replace both hands with similar spade hands and file to fit if I could not find anything matching from another parts clocks. If I did replace them, I would leave the current hands in a small envelope inside the clock in case someone wants to try to re-use them at some time in the future.
     
  3. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

    Feb 9, 2008
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    That pendulum rating wire needs to be replaced. You could reshape the old wire by straightening the upper part and reforming the bail to make a much sharper bend about where that black speck is about half way from the present bend and the bob. This will allow the left side of the bail to go down into the bob's slot where it is supposed to be. This would require replacing the suspension spring/rod too, so unless the suspension spring is bad replacing the rating wire would be the best approach.
    Willie X
     
  4. Jeremy Woodoff

    Jeremy Woodoff Registered User

    Jun 30, 2002
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    If the old rating nut fits the threads, mightn't that be the original rating wire? I would keep it. I'd also leave and reblue the hour hand, unless the replacement minute hand is so different they appear mismatched.
     
  5. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    I have reshaped the rating wire as per a picture on Timesavers and now it's as it should be. I am still thinking about what THTanner said about replacing both hands and putting the originals in a packet inside the clock. I like that idea. How should the suspension spring attach to the support? There doesn't seem to be a pin nor is there a hole for a pin and the end of the spring is bent over to form a hook which hooks over the top of the slot. Is that correct? I have never worked on one of these clocks before, in fact it's the first Ansonia I have ever seen. They are not common in SA although I have seen two or three for sale on the local auction.
     
  6. George Nelson

    George Nelson Registered User

    Oct 5, 2007
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    Hi, Kologha,

    Regarding your suspension spring, there are several methods of securing it. The easiest is to flatten it out, and use either a dull punch or a Phillips-type screwdriver to gently punch a small dimple into the top 1/4 of the spring, in about the center. This will keep the spring from sliding down through its holder. Some collectors will take a very sharp awl and punch a tiny hole through the center top 1/4, and twist a small piece of copper wire through it to accomplish the same thing. Alternatively, I have often seen the simple fold that is currently present on your spring completely folded over, which works as well. The most original and authentic methods are either the dimple or small wire, with the dimple being the most common in American clocks like yours. Hope this helps!

    My very best,

    George Nelson
     
  7. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    Thanks George for the descriptions of how the suspension is secured.

    Can anyone help with dating the clock? The trade label pasted inside the clock gives New York, Brooklyn and Ansonia, Connecticut addresses. I believe that by 1883, the Connecticut factory had ceased operations so can that mean that the clock might have been made between June 13 1882 (stamped on the movt) and 1883 when the Conn factory stopped?
     
  8. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator

    Jan 15, 2004
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    #8 Steven Thornberry, Mar 21, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2017
    Operations at Ansonia did come to an end in 1883. Your analysis sounds right, though perhaps also a bit later, making allowances for the using up of labels already printed that mentioned Ansonia.
     
  9. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    Thanks Steven.

    Can anyone identify the species of bird on the door of the clock?
     
  10. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator

    Jan 15, 2004
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    #10 Steven Thornberry, Mar 22, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2017
    Ruffed grouse, perhaps? or quail? (Audubon is never around when you need him!)
     
  11. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    My thought is Quail, Callpepla Gambelii perhaps.
     
  12. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    The trade label glued inside this Ansonia mentions a wire behind the Vll which is used to make the clock strike. "If the clock should strike wrong in consequence of it's running down or other accident, it may be made to strike by lifting the wire directly under the figure Vll." However I can find no sign of any wire attached to the strike mechanism, nor is there any provision for one. Looking at pictures of movements on the 'net I haven't yet seen one which has this wire!
     
  13. Steven Thornberry

    Steven Thornberry User Administrator

    Jan 15, 2004
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    If your clock ever had a strike adjustment wire, it may have been removed for one reason or another and not put back on. I often remove those on my clocks because I find them a nuisance when getting the movement in or out of the case. I also have found that they can become hung up and allow the clock to keep striking past the specified hour. I generally keep those I remove in the case. Clocks that have them often have a loop on the count lever to which they are attached.

    And, I suppose, the label may simply be a generic label intended for clocks with or without the wire.
     
  14. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    Thanks Steven. No loop on this one's count lever so obviously it never had one.
     
  15. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    I haven't started work on this movement yet a I have another clock which I want to finish first. However I have noticed that the count lever is deeply notched where it drops into the count wheel. Is it in order to file this notch away when I overhaul the movt and what (if any) effects will filing the end of the count lever have on the working of the strike train?

    [​IMG]
     
  16. harold bain

    harold bain Forums Administrator

    Nov 4, 2002
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    The count lever shouldn't drag, or ride on the countwheel to cause this wear in the first place.
     
  17. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    Thank you Harold. The only way I can see to prevent this from happening, is to adjust (bend) the arm which drops into the maintenance cam, so that the maintenance arm stops against the bottom of the notch in the cam before the count lever reaches the bottom of it's slot. Is that the correct thing to do?
     
  18. kologha

    kologha Registered User

    Dec 11, 2011
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    Perhaps I should clarify my question above by saying that the count lever sits about 3mm above the count wheel while it rotates and does not drag along it. The notch appears to be caused by the fact that the count lever drops onto the count wheel and lifts off again while it is rotating until it finds a deep notch at which point it drops all the way in and stops the train. I was under the impression that that was the correct way for it to work.
     
  19. harold bain

    harold bain Forums Administrator

    Nov 4, 2002
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    The wear is not normal and isn't seen on most clocks. You will have to identify why it is dragging and correct it.
     
  20. THTanner

    THTanner Registered User

    Jul 3, 2016
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    To me it does not look like a gradual 'drag" wear, but like a catastrophic break event, as if it got snagged on a tooth while under pressure and broke a piece out. Perhaps there is a damaged tooth as well to tell the tale.

     
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