Barograph

Discussion in 'General Clock Discussions' started by rmarkowitz1_cee4a1, Feb 24, 2018.

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  1. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Barometers are often "cross over" pieces of interest to clock collectors. In fact, barometers were also products offered by clock makers.

    A barograph or recording barometer records the barometric pressure over the period of a week on a paper record attached to a drum which at least in earlier models was rotated by a clock work mechanism. More recent ones now use electric movements and even quartz movements to drive the drum.

    Here's an article from the Bulletin about barographs:

    http://docs.nawcc.org/Bulletins/2000/articles/2002/339/339_429.pdf

    I thought I would post a barograph made by what appears to be an important London maker. I find it a rather attractive object, too, and that is what really appealed to me.

    The case is mahogany with beveled glass. The pix don't really indicate how wonderfully compact it is:

    barograph 1.JPG

    The drawer was used to hold the paper charts applied to the drum:

    barograph 5.JPG

    Note the nice pull and that the draw is constructed using hand made dovetails:

    barograph 6.JPG

    There are 6 aneroid "disks". Apparently the more the better.

    barograph 3.JPG

    The drum is driven by a balance wheel movement with a "captive" key under the lid of the drum.

    Overall, to me, a very high quality object.

    It is signed by F. Darton and Co. of London

    barograph 4.JPG

    Based upon my research, they were an important maker of such instruments. I am awaiting the arrival of a book about barographs which should contain more info about them.

    Here is an 1902 add from that maker that shows the exact barograph:

    barograph 7a.jpg

    Note that this was the somewhat more expensive model.

    Now, of course, for the superfluous.

    It is an amazing (IMCO) watercolor of a factory in Manchester, NH:

    kimbal and gerrish 3.JPG

    It is signed:

    kimball and gerrish 1.JPG

    The name is pronounced "Coy".

    J.H. Rollins Caughey was an itinerant artist from Ohio who travelled around the U.S. including New England and NH painting bird's eye views of factories, hotels, etc. Some of his paintings became chromolithographs and plates in atlases. The former were published by such prestigious firms as Strobridge. Apparently he did watercolors like this and offered them to the wealthy mill owners. No lithograph nor print based upon this particular watercolor is known. Guess Kimball and Gerrish weren't buying.

    A wonderful scene of the Kimball and Gerrish tannery. Gives the impression of a bustling thriving concern. Wagons and trains coming and going. So busy, they had their own signalman to regulate rail traffic.

    Also some Victorian wishful thinking. Note the boy fishing in an adjacent pond, the nearby house, the park like setting for the factory. In fact, tanneries spewed poison into the air and ground water. There are also documented outbreaks of anthrax from the sheep hides.

    None the less, evokes, to me, the view painted by such American artists as Huge and Rasmussen. barograph 2.JPG
     
    Raymond Rice likes this.
  2. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    And once again, a picture that I can't relocate.

    Most tiresome.

    RM
     
  3. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    I've always fancied one, especially with the drawer, like yours. You needs somewhere for the papers!
     
  4. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Yes, I think that the little dovetailed draw adds just the right touch especially with such an original decorative pull.

    I found it in a multi-dealer shop on one of my "picking" routes. The typical offerings in that shop are at the level of second tier yard sale. However, every so often, a goody pops up. It's what keeps me going back on a regular basis. I found it all dirty and ignored on top of an out of tune 1960's blond wood upright piano with a bunch of junk. Almost walked by it.

    RM
     
  5. Jeremy Woodoff

    Jeremy Woodoff Registered User
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    #5 Jeremy Woodoff, Feb 24, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2018
    Very nice barograph! Over the years I've kept my eyes open for one, but I really don't have any surface area to spare. I do have an early Victorian banjo style mercury wall barometer, without the mercury. On the other hand, if I saw a nice barograph in the circumstances you describe, I'm sure I'd buy it, if it was affordable.
     
  6. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Thanks for your kind comment.

    With some of the craziness and rules about mercury in recent years, a barometer lacking it, as long as the tube, cistern and everything else is intact, is not such a bad thing IMCO. Also, with the mercury present, the barometer must always be kept upright which makes transporting it a pain.

    RM
     
  7. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    RM,

    Nice barograph. I have some squirreled away. One is small unit, made by Richard of Paris. I think it's main function was as a recording altimeter. Maybe for a hot air balloon. Another one is in what looks like a military metal case with Japanese inscriptions on it. .... and some others. If I get a chance I'll post some pictures.

    Ralph
     
  8. Jeremy Woodoff

    Jeremy Woodoff Registered User
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    I would like to get it filled and working. From what I have been able to glean on line (despite some scary images that supposedly show mercury "evaporating" into the air), I do not think a single barometer in a house that isn't hermetically sealed can cause any problem. Transporting is an issue, but it isn't going anywhere.
     
  9. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    I would have no problem with several in my house, sadly I don't have one but I would like to get a gimballed fortin at some point.
     
  10. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    #10 Ralph, Feb 25, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2018
    [QUOTE="<snip> Transporting is an issue, but it isn't going anywhere.[/QUOTE]

    Depending on what is meant by transporting. . You don't want to lay it down or keep it upright. A 45 degree angle, or tilting till you hear or feel the mercury fill the void at the top. The vacuum ( or pressure if you prefer) keeps the mercury stable for local trips. Laying it down invites spillage. Upright invites breakage... the mercury column will bounce around and can hammer the top out of the tube.

    The tube has to be perfectly clean, if you decide to fill it. Nitric acid used to be used.. then it needs to be dried. I've used a hypodermic with a small tube, to fill it. The tube will be upside down for this operation and filled to the bend in the case of a j-tube. When it is turned over, the mercury will drop to it's nominal height, and the reservoir can be topped off. An ingenious way I've seen for filling the tube, uses a vacuum pump. Triple distilled mercury should be used for best results. Some barometersmiths, ;) will heat the tube to a boil after filling. I don't know if that eliminates any residual moisture or... , but they claim they work more reliably if they do that final step.

    Ralph
     
  11. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Thanks for your kind comment.

    I would love to see the instruments you mention, when you have a chance.

    I have several barometers with their mercury present. I was under the impression that you get vapours only when it's heated. Anyhow, I guess I'm just not that worried.

    Yes, those are nice ones. I have what I suppose you would call a Fortin type, but it's not gimbaled:

    Henry J. Green Barometer 1.JPG

    By the way, I purchased it without Hg. It's all intact but it was removed.

    Though unsigned, based upon my investigations I have little reservation about attributing it to the Brooklyn, NY firm of Henry J. Green:

    Henry J. Green Barometer 3.jpg

    Sometimes they were not marked if retailed by another firm.

    RM
     
  12. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    I have so little room left a stick is all I can fit in, I like the gimballed ones as because I spent years sailing on sailing ships so maritime connections are of interest.

    I agree, Mercury is dangerous when you heat it up, It's fine in a barometer, and has a very small surface area exposed to atmosphere.
     
  13. Snapper

    Snapper Registered User

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  14. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Here are some images. It looks like it can record up to 10,000 ft or so. The pens are missing. Someone added linkage to a second arm and a scale that faded away.... I believe to give more normal numbers.in a typical range for domestic use.

    20180226_082335.jpg 20180226_082346.jpg 20180226_082359.jpg 20180226_082413.jpg 20180226_082503.jpg 20180226_082515.jpg 20180226_082531.jpg

    Ralph
     
  15. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    #15 rmarkowitz1_cee4a1, Feb 26, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
    Thanks for posting your barometer and the information about F. Darton with link!

    Your barometer looks much like my H.J. Green which makes sense given they are of basically the same type?

    Thanks for posting your barograph/altimeter.

    Even though basically a utilitarian object, it was bestowed with a glazed dovetailed mahogany case with brass feet!

    A lovely object.

    Did a real quick and dirty look on the internet. Seems the firm is still in business? See this chronology from their current website:

    About jri : JRI, Chart recorders, > our products

    It seems that the roots of the company date back to 1845.

    And check this out:

    Jules Richard

    Look familiar?

    RM
     
  16. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    RM ,

    Thanks. I missed the one at Medford Barometers.... and in your tradition, a little of the superfluous.

    Packet0009.jpg

    Ralph
     
  17. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    LOL. Glad to have been an influence...good or otherwise.

    By the way, nice ship painting!!

    RM
     
  18. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    What do the masthead flags on the ship mean? Any idea?
     
  19. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    I know that one would indicate the owner. Not sure about the rest.

    RM
     
  20. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    #20 Ralph, Feb 26, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
    Nick,

    I'm not sure if these fall under the Watson's code flags. Somehow, I think you knew this. ;)

    Ship Flag Codes | Friends of Bidston Hill

    upload_2018-2-26_19-23-42.jpeg


    The "Liverpool" was built by Thatcher Magoun, a prominent Medford ship builder.

    ...and to keep this on track, here is what I think is a very nice aneroid barometer. Retailed by Callaghan & Co.

    IMG_5651.JPG IMG_5652.JPG IMG_5654.JPG

    Ralph
     
  21. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Thanks for posting the anaeroid barometer. Another example of the instrument maker’s art.

    Even the velvet lined 1/4 sawn oak box is a treat!

    And thanks for the info about the flags, too.

    RM
     
  22. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Somewhere I have an image of a painting of the same ship decked out with maybe 50 flags, more or less. It was used as the image on the brochure promoting the Philadelphia Antique Show many years ago. I seem to think it might be a painting at the Peabody Museum. Antiques Magazine had ads for the show, with the image.

    I thought I captured it, but can't find it right now.

    Anyone know why my picture of the Callaghan case above is rotated.?

    Ralph
     
  23. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Sounds like dressed overall, where you string all the international code flags from stem to stern across the rigging. Supposed to done in a particular order, though don't ask me what that is, probably in Admiralty sailing instructions somewhere.

    The flags I meant are atop the foremast and the mainmast, the first looks a bit like the european flag and the other has an L. Dutch sailing ships fly a city flag and a masters flag, I just wondered what these might be. (Each master in the Dutch sailing fleet is given a number)
     
  24. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Nick,

    I believe the "L" is the house flag of the packet line. I'm trying to identify it, but I have a lot going on right now.

    To maintain the integrity of the thread, here are some images of a Japanese barograph, that I suspect may be military??

    The nomenclature plate was removed from one of the sides of the unit.

    20180226_194912.jpg 20180226_194931.jpg 20180226_195003.jpg 20180226_195019.jpg 20180226_195032.jpg

    Ralph
     
  25. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    It does appear similar to other barographs that I could find that were represented as Japanese WWII naval barographs.

    RM
     
  26. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Thanks,

    My acquisition predates the internet and I never got around to searching. A quick search after your post showed a near identical one being offered on the internet.

    Ralph
     
  27. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Probably the one I saw.

    RM
     
  28. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Here's a related interesting device. It 's a weather station chart recorder or register, made by Julien Friez & Sons of Baltimore. It looks like it records at least 3 inputs,

    DSC_3767.JPG DSC_3768.JPG DSC_3769.JPG DSC_3770.JPG DSC_3771.JPG DSC_3774.JPG DSC_3776.JPG fswrschematic.jpg
     
  29. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Funny this should come up again, I now have a wheel barometer in the kitchen. They usually lump barometers and clocks together here for auction catalogues and as I was going through them to get to the clocks I spotted one with a local signature. I bought it on the basis of a single pic and a mate collected it. He said immediately it was a bargain, already restored and with the travel plug in place for moving.

    I brought it home from a BHI meeting strapped in my smart car at the correct angle and put a screw in the wall to hook it on. Then a day later we felt brave enough to remove the plug and set it up, it gives me great please to see it every morning when I get my breakfast before work and I tap it and move the marker each day. Not since being at sea have I been so aware of the barometric pressure!

    Now for a fortin.

    DSC_0819 (1).JPG belloni 2.JPG
     
  30. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    #30 rmarkowitz1_cee4a1, Oct 13, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2018
    Very nice barometer. I like them too.

    Same thing occurs here. Barometers and clocks tend to get lumped together and for good reason. The makers of barometers and other scientific instruments also may have made and/or retailed clocks and watches and vice versa.

    Note the name on your barometer, "F. Belloni".

    Firstly, according to Banfield, "Barometer Makers and Retailers:1660-1900", there was a Frederick Belloni (sometimes spelled "Belonzi") working in Shaftsbury from 1830-1855 as a clock and watch maker. Those dates would agree with the style of your barometer. He may have made it or retailed it and placed his name on the dial.

    Here's another interesting tidbit.

    Some time ago I posted a fruitwood inlaid wheel (also called "2 glass" or "banjo") barometer by Somalvico & Co. of London. Here's a link to that: A barometer.

    I thought it curious that my English barometer, and so many others I have seen, would bear an Italian surname. My research into that barometer led me to learn some fascinating history about English barometers of that period. Many were produced by instrument makers and allied professionals (glass blowers, engravers, cabinet makers) who were Italian or of Italian descent. They or their ancestors fled Italy in the late 18th and early 19th centuries due to the military antics of Napoléon, the Hapsburgs, etc. Many came from the Lake Cuomo region. Furthermore, it's my understanding that even if a barometer or instrument bears an English name, it may have been made by and Italian. Finally, apparently there was a time when barometers and scientific instruments by makers with Italian surnames became so synonymous with quality that English makers sometimes marked their products with fake Italian names! So the name might actually not be Belloni but a lot of boloney.

    RM
     
  31. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Yes, all very true, in the case of Signor Belloni, he came frome Geneva, but his family was Italian. He is said to have worked in Shaftesbury from 1830, but he was then 27/28 years old so he must have worked somewhere before that and that may have been shaftesbury too. The style suggests a bit earlier than 1830, but he may have been an old fashioned chap, or tastes in Dorset were rather conservative (they still are)

    I have found a longcase clock bearing his signature, however whatever his trade the clock would have been made in Birmingham along with its dial.
     
  32. rmarkowitz1_cee4a1

    rmarkowitz1_cee4a1 Registered User
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    Interesting that he came from Geneva. Lake Como is in N. Italy apparently not too far from Switzerland.

    RM
     
  33. Uhralt

    Uhralt Registered User
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    Actually very close. Maybe a one hour drive.

    Uhralt
     
  34. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User

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    Interesting information on cleaning and replenishing the mercury and care of the tube.Is this something that needs to be done in an outdoor area ? ,I have this barometer and it appears as though the tube is dirty and the mercury may have been adulterated. At the present the barometer is non functional.
    Would like to make it a working instrument again and there isn't anyone in the Greater Los Angeles area that performs this type of maintainance.
    Bruce

    11372943_1_x.jpg 11372943_3_x.jpg
     
  35. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Tubes are a nightmare to clean, I think usually easier to replace.

    There is a company here still making them who can supply replacements.

    Russell Scientific Instruments Ltd
     
  36. Bruce Barnes

    Bruce Barnes Registered User

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    Thanks NTK for your comments and recommendation as this tube assembly is really "grungy", my concern would be the emptying, storage, refill and adjusting but I may be able to get help as this is a really cool barometer. At the top it says "Save the Union " and the Currier was part of the Currier family of Currier and Ives.
    Regards,
    Bruce
     

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