E Howard 18 inch Wall clock electric?

Discussion in 'Electric Horology' started by beedub, Jun 3, 2020.

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  1. beedub

    beedub Registered User

    Jan 17, 2010
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    20200603_140140A.jpg 20200603_140134.jpg 20200603_140531.jpg 20200603_140625.jpg 20200603_140838.jpg 20200603_140712.jpg Hello, I recently purchased this E Howard clock but am unsure what it really is. I am guessing regular electric as the wires look too large for 3 volt as in a Self Winder.
    Could it be a slave, but it seems to be a stand alone clock since it has coils. Not sure I see a winding motor or a spring. Also wonder what the lever on top is for, it goes to a pull wire sticking out the bottom of the case.Not knowing much about electricity, I don't want to just plug it in and see what happens.

    Other E Howards seem quite collectible and of good quality. Does this one fit in that category? Age ideas?It has a nice looking 18 inch wood case and decent dial. (minute hand upside down in photo) Hands a little rusty, steel wool and paint?

    Thanks so much for any information and guidance.
     
  2. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User
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    i don't know a ton about this one but i would say the 18" dial is a desirable quality. e howard name is also good. the fact that it is electric i would say is a fairly large deterrent in value. it is difficult to determine from your pics, but judging by the photos, i would say that motor looks to be alternating current.
     
  3. D.th.munroe

    D.th.munroe Registered User

    Feb 15, 2018
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    I'm pretty sure that's a slave clock set to receive signals every minute , the lever and wire, when pulled should advance it 1 minute each pull. I dont know the voltage of the pulses or any of that but it's cool clock.
    Dan
     
    Dick C likes this.
  4. gleber

    gleber Registered User

    Jun 15, 2015
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    I agree. It looks like a solenoid drives a ratchet/wheel to advance the time. I don't know the voltage or duration, but would be interested to learn. I have an International Time Recorder master clock. It delivers a 2 second impulse from an external power source (which I don't have).

    Tom
     
  5. beedub

    beedub Registered User

    Jan 17, 2010
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    Thank you for you thoughts on this. Sounds like then it is a slave clock. Now I will need to find a way to run it. Electric is not my specialty but maybe I can locate someone to help out. I have a few SWCC clocks and maybe it can run off of them? Thanks again.
     
  6. Berkshire Vet

    Berkshire Vet Registered User

    May 12, 2020
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    #6 Berkshire Vet, Jun 4, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2020
    It might be a slave perhaps of the type used in railroad stations. The coils and wiring look to be an example of very early electric clocks. I would think it probably has an 100v AC synchronous motor as nearly all early electrical motorized devices used. Another clue towards the age, is the fabric insulation on the wires. The wire to the outside could also be a bump lever that was needed to start it, because of the low starting torque of that type of motor. That motor style was common up into the early 30s and 40s as I recall, until AC induction motors were widely manufactured. I've seen some early electric mantel/desk clocks that have a 'bump' lever on the back of the case for just that purpose. Another possibility is that it is configured for DC power that Edison used in building the first handful of urban electric grids. Those systems used 110v DC power, primarily for incandescent lighting but some small motors were made. Either way I'm stretching my historic memory here.

    I would refinish it too, but don't use steel wool. Tiny particles stick into the wood and will rust over time in spite of being sealed over. Use the 3M sanding sponges that will also conform to the trim ring. Wipe it down with a damp cloth and poly coat with a semi-gloss when dry. I'd stay away from any stain because you might get a nasty reaction of color with the original stain that was used. Probably Tung Oil, that will take the poly just fine. Varathane is always a good choice, but that's just me.
     
  7. Tim Orr

    Tim Orr National Membership Chair
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    Good afternoon, beedub!

    I'm betting slave clock too. I think the metal piece that appears to have a bit of string on it is for manually advancing the clock by pulling the string.

    I'm also betting the white, wire-wound resistor is for arc suppression. I don't think you could do much harm by trying, in sequence, 1.5 v., 3.0 v, 4.5 v., 6.0 v., etc. You can get all the way up to about 27 v. by clipping 3 9-volt batteries together. Just a momentary tap across the wires, to see whether the mechanism jumps. Try reversing the polarity too. I wouldn't go for more than a fraction of a second, and I wouldn't go any higher than 27. I have strong doubts this is either AC or high voltage. Most slaves I've seen max out at about 24 v.

    Best regards!

    Tim Orr
     
  8. beedub

    beedub Registered User

    Jan 17, 2010
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    Thank you guys for your additional info, not sure about refinishing as I think it looks pretty darn good as it is?

    Tim - I tried jumping with several variations of batteries and did not notice any noises or movement until I got to 3 9 volt batteries (25 volts according to my meter) and then I heard some movement, Couldn't really tell what. Then I opened the contact lever on top of the two green coils and got it to close back up each time I applied power. So something works.

    Does this tell you anything? Thank again everyone.
     
  9. Berkshire Vet

    Berkshire Vet Registered User

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    I think it looks very good as is. I would apply a good quality wax, like Howard Citrus Shield paste wax and call it good. It's beautiful timepiece.
     
  10. Tim Orr

    Tim Orr National Membership Chair
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    Good evening, beedub!

    Would not surprise me if it was a 24 volt unit. I doubt it's above that. Need to make sure everything is mechanically free and maybe even lubricated a little bit. If you can push the armature against the coils and the minute hand advances, you can check that. I wouldn't assume anything is broken until you can prove it. What about the thing that looks like it has string attached? If you pull on that or move that, does the minute hand advance?

    If it's all gummed up or dirty or even rusty, you may need to clean it out before it will work right. That it "tries" to do something with 25 volts is a good sign to me. Make sure all is mechanically OK and see what happens. More movement pix would help us. Get in there on the sides and make sure it's lit up so we can see. A lot of these things just "look" dead, even when they're not.

    If you're happy with the case, I agree with Vet: Just wax it up and call it done. If you think it's dirty, try cleaning it first.

    Best regards!

    Tim
     
  11. D.th.munroe

    D.th.munroe Registered User

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    The movement is quite simple and if serviced should be good.
    You can buy ready made a "slave clock impulse driver" they send up to 24v pulses at 1, 30 or 60 second intervals and then you have a working clock.
     
  12. beedub

    beedub Registered User

    Jan 17, 2010
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    20200604_202845.jpg 20200603_140614.jpg 20200603_140604.jpg 20200604_224149.jpg 20200604_223947_001.jpg 20200604_202818.jpg 20200604_224043.jpg 20200604_202746.jpg 20200604_224211.jpg 20200604_202832.jpg Good Morning, as requested, attached are more photos of the movement so hopefully you can see everything. As mentioned above, it is a rather simple movement. Pulling the external wire does indeed advance the minute hand as does closing the contact to the coils. Gravity opens the contact again as there is no spring or lever to do so. With your help I now know this is a slave and can see how it works. I will need to consider the impulse driver suggested although pricey - way more than the clock itself! Thank you Berk, D.th and Tim appreciate your guidance on this.
     

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