Dent London clock movement

Discussion in 'General Clock Discussions' started by P.Hageman, May 9, 2020.

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  1. P.Hageman

    P.Hageman Registered User

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    At the moment I am working on my Dent London, "East Anglian Tavern clock" . The movement is made at the highest standards but the pivot of the escapement came too high up in the plates :) They soldered the bearing higher up. Could this be a small fault by the clockmaker, or is this made this way for some reason? I thought Dent was a very large manufacturer who made thousends of movements, I can hardly believe this was a small failure in construction?? The movement has no name nor number stamped on it.



    Dent pivot bearing.JPG
     
  2. jmclaugh

    jmclaugh Registered User

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    #2 jmclaugh, May 9, 2020
    Last edited: May 9, 2020
  3. D.th.munroe

    D.th.munroe Registered User

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    I would guess it started life with a recoil escapement (as a rough movement?) and needed that extra bit for the dead beat
     
  4. Chris Radano

    Chris Radano Registered User

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    I would call it an anomaly. Perhaps it was a miscalculation during it's manufacture, but it's been running all these years so "error" may not be appropriate. Since it has maintaining power I would think the movement was always this way. Maybe the plates were pre-cut that size to accommodate a more standard recoil anchor.
    This is partly why we like clocks, for little quirks that make us wonder.
     
  5. daveR

    daveR Registered User
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    I think novicetimekeeper will be along soon to give a more definitive answer, or Dean who Knows his technical aspects really well, but I think Tavern clocks were mostly made with anchor escapements. So it is possible that this one was modified at some time -- maybe by Dent themselves- for someone who wanted a DB escapement in their clock ,maybe after the great period of tavern clocks had passed. Also do what JM said and see if Dent's themselves are any help. It would be an interesting outcome.
    David
     
  6. jmclaugh

    jmclaugh Registered User

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    "East Anglian Tavern clock" is a confusing term as East Anglian could relate to a different type of wall clock than a tavern clock, both types used anchor escapements. Dent was founded in 1814 by which time my understanding is tavern clocks were out of fashion and no longer being made.
     
  7. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    I'm watching but don't recall this clock at all and would like to see more. Jonathan is quite right about the description and that Dents came after tavern clocks. I associate Dent with spring clocks not gravity driven clocks.
     
  8. P.Hageman

    P.Hageman Registered User

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    #8 P.Hageman, May 10, 2020
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
    Thanks guys, sorry for the misunderstanding. I am referring to this clock of mine: Dent clock, are there records????
    Perhaps my desciption "East Anglian wall clock" might be wrong, perhaps Norwich- or Norfolk wall clock is better??
     
  9. Chris Radano

    Chris Radano Registered User

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    I realize my opinion is perhaps not well regarded. But it's my opinion the case looks older than the dial and movement. With that dial, I would expect a more plain or businesslike style of case (like a "regulator"). Anyway, it's a finely finished movement and I'm not sure the question will bear a definitive answer.
     
  10. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    You are one of my go to people so I don't think that's true

    I have seen so little of Dent gravity driven clocks I have no idea. Obviously there is one they are very famous for and that isn't their only turret clock but in this domestic size I have seen very few.
     
  11. P.Hageman

    P.Hageman Registered User

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    Chris, no problem raising questions :) After all, we are here also for learning things. But in this case I am convinced the clock is original due to the fact that nothing has been changed, all original fixings and seatboard etc. I also wonder why such a high quality movement was used for such a clock?? But I had a longcase clock made by John Wilson of Peterborough which looked like an "normal" longcase from the outside (moon dial, small seconds etc) but had a deathbeat movement, maintaing power and highly interesting an Ellicot compensation pendulem! On this clock of mine, Hugh Watson (RIP) wrote an article in his book "Keeping Time, a brief history etc" and describes it as a precision timekeeper.
     
  12. P.Hageman

    P.Hageman Registered User

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    Chris, I was thinking it over. The drums for the cat gut are very small in diameter compared to the "normal" longcase drums. I thought this was done because the drop of the weights is not as big as in a longcase. Do you know if for regulators, smaller drums were used?
     
  13. Chris Radano

    Chris Radano Registered User

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    I think it's possible the movement and dial were made later to fit the case. The case looks mid 19th century, and the movement and dial look possibly like 1870-80, or at least later Victorian. Not every clock, and it's components, were made from "scratch". This does not mean "marriage", rather a movement made to fit in an existing case. Perhaps this is possible with your Dent.
     
  14. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    #14 Jim DuBois, May 10, 2020
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
    Here is another deadbeat clock with "add on" tabs to hold the rather unusual verge. The clock has maintaining power and there are no signs of it ever being done up in another fashion. It is a brass dialed clock, sheet dial, Philadelphia maker in a well-done mahogany case. It appears as if the maker used conventional, off the shelf castings, and modified them for this purpose. Dovetailed and soldered pieces seem a bit out of keeping with what should be a bit higher quality timepiece. It is a rare combination to have a time only tall clock with deadbeat escapement. The flat-top case is also a bit unusual for the period of the clock, 1772. The case has no markings on the bonnet suggesting there were not any frets, finials, or other top decorations.

    20140329_135838_Android.jpg 20140329_135106_Android.jpg 20140329_134912_Android.jpg 1034173 (2).jpg 20140329_140032_Android.jpg
     
  15. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    I would think most English longcase with deadbeat were time only, as most will have been made as regulators, for use in observatories.
     
  16. zedric

    zedric Registered User
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    Dent as a firm certainty made a number of very high quality regulators as well as some one off designs. I wouldn’t be too surprised if the movement and case started life together. There is a reasonable book on Dent and his successors by Vaudrey Mercer, but it has been a while since I read it.
     
  17. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    #17 Ralph, May 10, 2020
    Last edited: May 10, 2020
    I would agree with your opinion on the small drums. Regulators I have looked at, have normal proportioned drums.

    Is the case restrictive in the height of the plates.? The movement having maintaining power would suggest it was always intended to be a deadbeat. I might consider the plate height was altered. The bridge seems to mounted hight as well. Is the movement original to the case? I find it hard to brlieve the Dent firm would let that configuration leave their shop.

    Ralph.
     
  18. jmclaugh

    jmclaugh Registered User

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    No ,either are fine, just don't add tavern clock. I did remember the clock thanks to the link and now also understand your original question. You could annoy Dent again. ;)
     
  19. daveR

    daveR Registered User
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    Chris, I am with novicetimekeeper, I think your opinions are well regarded.
    David
     
  20. P.Hageman

    P.Hageman Registered User

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    @ Ralph: the case is not restrictive in the height of the plates etc. There is plenty of room for a larger movement. The dialsize is 14 inch, so its quite a big dial.

    Perhaps there is no defenitive answer to the questions raised by this clock. Perhaps it not even a real Dent clock, but a fake one made in that time. It seems Dent was copied a lot by other companies. All I can say, all your information and suggestion are very welcome. I already contacted the present Dent company, but they could not deliver any further information.

    One thing is sure, the clock once came off the wall and knocked on the floor. There are a lot of tell tales on the case and a little bent in the dial. Also the seatboard has been split and has been repaired. As far as I can see, its the original seatboard as well, no wrong holes etc. The seatboard fixing holes line up exactly with the cheeks...............................

    Most important, like the clock and it gave me a lot of pleasure working on it and looking at it (still does) :) And once again, soo much thanks for all your advise/suggestions/information!

    seatboard 1.JPG seatboard 2.JPG
     
  21. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Chris, , I'm with the rest of the group of those who recognize and appreciate the value of your thoughtful participation and contributions to the message board discussions. Thanks!

    Regards, Ralph
     
  22. jmclaugh

    jmclaugh Registered User

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    I think you've answered your own question, i also think it would not be unreasonable to attribute the movement to Dent. It is a very nice example of an uncommon type of English wall clock about which there appears to be little information and I'd get pleasure in being able to hang one in my home.
     

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