I'm in the planning stages of a Hotchkiss/Seth Thomas restoration, as some of you know from my previous posts. One of the things we've been tasked with by the City and County is to have the ability to silence the bell when needed. There is a theater in the building and they don't want the bell to chime during events. They would like to have the ability to tie the function into their building's Siemens control system. The current installation has no built-in silencing mechanisms for the strike train and would probably be difficult to add and visual presentation for the arrangement is important as well. We dont' want to add anything to the system that looks out of place for the restoration. One of the methods we've been tossing around is simply having a mechanism to slide a stack of leather or rubber between the strike hammer and the 1000 lb bell. That way it would still strike, but be "muted", so to speak. Or possibly some kind of swing limiter. I could design a mechanism that would operate off a hidden low voltage DC solenoid, which would be easily controlled with their building's system "on demand" and could be programmed for night silencing. Before I get to far into wild ideas, I really wanted to check with the great folks of this forum to see how some of you may have handled similar requests for your restorations and installations. Any input and examples would be wonderful. Thanks everyone! Love this place. I've really learned a ton here! Here are some pictures of our bell arrangement, just for reference.