Clearly Boxing it up... Acrylic Box

Discussion in 'Tower, Monumental & Street Clocks' started by scootermcrad, Jun 8, 2018.

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  1. scootermcrad

    scootermcrad Registered User
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    Mar 1, 2016
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    Hey everyone!

    A discussion in another thread regarding service and overhaul intervals reminded me that I've been meaning to ask about protective enclosures. So here goes...

    The clock we're restoring for our historic county courthouse was housed in a big galvanized metal box since the late 70's. For all intents and purposes, it worked. There was very little bird poop and very little dust on the movement when the box was cut away. When going into this restoration project, the county liked the idea of having an enclosure installed around the clock again to help protect it, but hated the idea of hiding it after all the work being put in to it. So it was proposed that we do an acrylic or Lexan box and actually install lighting and a web cam to allow everyone to view the clock remotely in the lobby and/or website.

    I really like the idea, if they feel they must have it, but is there anything I'm not thinking of that would be a downfall to an acrylic enclosure? Only thing that comes to mind is a layer of dust on the top and of course it must still be vented, and the top would have to have enough support so that the panels don't get "droopy" when it gets hot up in the dial room.

    Anyone else do something like this? Do people even do enclosures anymore, or just strive to keep it clean? suggested alternatives? I'll be servicing the clock myself, so I'm aiming to keep it clean, but the decision to have an enclosure may be out of my control.

    Any input would be appreciated! Thanks guys!
     
  2. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    you may be better of with polycarbonate sheet (lexan) rather than acrylic. However if this is a place where the birds are still going to poop and roost why not just have a wooden box plus a front window for viewing. I visited a church that had that it seemed to work well.
     
  3. scootermcrad

    scootermcrad Registered User
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    As they're restoring the tower itself, it will be better bird-proofed. There's really not much, though. The louvers have been screened up pretty well, there's just a few areas that need attention. Dust will be the bigger concern, at the end of the day.

    The dial room on this installation is pretty small (about 10x10) and the clock takes about about 1/3 of that without the box, so adding a box and having a viewing window with a camera would be pretty difficult. The viewing angle wouldn't allow much of a view. A wide angle lens as far away from the movement as possible will help.

    I suppose Lexan/Polycarb would indeed be a better choice.
     
  4. Paul M

    Paul M Registered User
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    Our clock is in an attic that is used often by the maintenance staff for various repair tasks. As such. it would be extremely difficult (though not impossible) for us to completely enclose it in a structure of any kind. As a first step, we suspended an acrylic dust cover (supported by PVC pipes) over the clock. It's been up for less than a year but a layer of dust and dirt is beginning to accumulate. Once the layer gets too big, we'll stop the clock, cover it with a sheet , and vacuum the dust cover. Here's a photo of the dust cover (from above) on the day it was installed:

    upload_2018-6-9_16-41-42.png
     
  5. Paul M

    Paul M Registered User
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    Another view, this one from below the clock:

    upload_2018-6-9_16-53-20.png
     
  6. scootermcrad

    scootermcrad Registered User
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    Thanks for sharing that! As you're servicing your clock, have you found that the added "ceiling" has been helpful compared to before?
     
  7. Paul M

    Paul M Registered User
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    It definitely has caught some dirt and debris, but it doesn’t catch everything. We use a small soft bristle paint brush to “dust” the clock as well.
     
    scootermcrad likes this.

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