Clock Plate Layout

Discussion in 'Clock Construction' started by Mike Dempsey, Dec 6, 2008.

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  1. Mike Dempsey

    Mike Dempsey Registered User
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    Jul 8, 2006
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    I have had many phone calls on where to purchase the brass material and how to lay it out on the sheet. I would suggest buying a 12” x 12” brass sheet. It can be purchased from any industrial supply house like MSC Direct. One Sheet is enough to make two clocks. I’m adding a drawing of the layout to this post. Since two can be made, I would suggest inviting a friend and work together.


    Mike Dempsey
    https://mb.nawcc.org/picture.php?albumid=23&pictureid=98
     
  2. ged

    ged Registered User

    Apr 3, 2002
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    Hello Again, Maybe I'm speaking out of turn here, Iv'e seen several DIY Skeleton Clocks "made" out of an old Fusee Movement out of an English Dial Clock (Gallery to Colonials). Its an easy shortcut, You will have the Wheels and all the parts inc' Pillars,as these are usually plain they could be easily shaped in the Lathe. All the the centres are there to copy. You of course will need new plates to put the wheels in a straight line if that is the design you choose. Regards to all. Ged.
     
  3. Bill Ward

    Bill Ward Registered User
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    Jan 8, 2003
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    Although they don't have anything right now, this place often has scraps for very good prices:
    http://www.yarde.com/catalog/drop5shpl.html
    Also, the guy who runs the Clockmaker's Newsletter, Stephen Conover, at one time sold small pieces of clockmaker's brass; perhaps he still does?
    www.clockmakersnewsletter.com
    The price of copper has been dropping like a rock in the last few weeks, and stockpiles are building up. That might set the stage for really low prices soon.
    I'm not sure that you need leaded, or clockmaker's brass, or highly machineable brass, for the plates. Cartidge brass might be OK for just sawing, filing and drilling.
     
  4. Mike Dempsey

    Mike Dempsey Registered User
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    Jul 8, 2006
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    Ged,
    Thanks for your reply. I agree that there are some books out there that describe exactly what you are describing. The big difference here is cost. You can buy all the material for about $30.00, a used movement for about $5.00, the instruction book is free, and the drawings for $20.00.

    Mike Dempsey
     
  5. Mike Dempsey

    Mike Dempsey Registered User
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    Jul 8, 2006
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    All,
    I have been asked to give the part number for the brass sheets that I used. Msc ( part # Item #32006751 ) is one of the companies I used for my material. Another place is Online metals. I did not spec out leaded brass. I have found that to keep the cost down to use just regular brass. The first clock made has been running for almost 18 months with no signs of problems. The links are:
    http://www1.mscdirect.com/CGI/GSDRVSM?PMTYPE=KEY&SISMNO=7281195&SISHNO=0&SIPCNO=0000001916&SIZZNO=29437793&SIS0NO=1034817&SISRC=GO&SISRCH=1&SIT4NO=54842846&SILEVL=3&SILSEQ=1&SIOR=
    http://www.onlinemetals.com/merchant.cfm?pid=1594&step=4&showunits=inches&id=1116&top_cat=79


    Mike Dempsey
     
  6. Old Codger

    Old Codger Registered User

    Aug 10, 2007
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    Hi Mike, for a first time venture for your clockmakers, i would recommend leaded brass. It cuts easily with hand/power tools and can save the constructor many £s $s in broken saw blades and taps/drills etc. A simple test is to drill a small hole in the brass plate then use a cutting broach. The leaded brass will cut like a dream but the cartridge type will hardly mark, some of my 10ba taps are worth £20 each and its just not worth the bother with inferior types of brass plate. Dont forget to take the edge off drill bits used for brass, some of my worst accidents have been on the drilling machine when the drill bit caught and wrenched the plate out of my hand, best regards OC
     
  7. Mike Phelan

    Mike Phelan Registered User

    Dec 17, 2003
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    This was mentioned in a lot of the old magazines in the early 20th C, but would not recommend anyone doing it now - such movements are valuable, and vandalising them is definitely not on.

    Hi Dave
    Agreed - I'd go as far as using a complete set of drills just for brass and taking the rake off. Likewise with lathe tools.

    In the metalwork class I attended in school in the 1950s/60s, they had sets of files for brass, handles painted yellow; when they got a bit worn, they were used for steel and painted blue.
     
  8. Old Codger

    Old Codger Registered User

    Aug 10, 2007
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    Hi Mike, you mention me by name, i will have to don the old Duffle coat to fend off the slings and arrows. Old movements have always been a contesious issue. What do you do with them, re-case them and you have a marriage, turn them into skeleton clocks and in some eyes you have an inferior product. Leave them on a shelf gathering dust, where does it end, to my eye its better to bring a long forgotten movement back from the dead and let it do the job it was made for. Some of my clocks started life in different circumstances, as an example, a Gledhill Brooke movement from ebay made a fine test bed for a grasshopper escapement skeleton clock. I found a paper describing the layout of the escapement and thought that it could be made into a workable project. I replaced the scape wheel with a one with 30 teeth and the clock now beats seconds with a compound pendulum, its on you tube, cheers OC
     
  9. laprade

    laprade Banned

    Sep 10, 2008
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    Irish, but live in Laprade, 16390, France, (70 mil
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    boys!

    don't forget that the escape wheel of a skelington (Scouse) clock has "six" crossings-out.

    Non Liverpool readers can google "scouse". enjoy!

    laprade
     

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