Franken Tubular

claussclocks

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I made a house call to pick up family clock that the owners wanted repaired while they moved the case after the grandmother's passing. She had had this clock for about 40 years I was told. I did not look too closely since I knew it was coming in and the lights and power were off in the house. I discovered it was a tubular, removed the tubes and unscrewed the rack and movement. It was not till I got it in that I discovered what I had. This is a plumbers nightmare, The movement is a rod chime movement converted to use a set of what look like URGOS tubes. The dial is made up and the moon dial mechanism is home made. The clock has apparently run until just recently. Getting this Franken clock back together will be interesting. If I had studied it closer I might have run away. The strings for the hammers are attached with solderless crimp connectors to the arms and run through a series of homemade eyes. Moon dial arm is homemade and the moon dial pin is soldered to the snail. That it has run all these years is amazing. Have a look at some of the pictures below.

Chime hammers 7 - 8.jpg Chime shift lever 2.jpg Chime shift lever.jpg Close up of tubular eyes.jpg Hammer attachments.jpg Hammer link attachments.jpg Hammer string attachments.jpg Homemade moondial levers.jpg IMG_20200925_163142305.jpg IMG_20200925_163238652.jpg IMG_20200925_174903632.jpg IMG_20200925_175611745.jpg Manufacturer.jpg IMG_20200925_175618772.jpg IMG_20200925_181533937.jpg
 
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chimeclockfan

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Just when I was ready to pack my bags... These Franken-tube movements started off as typical rod chime movements from Kieninger or Gebr. Jauch KG in Germany, to be imported by Kuempel Clock. Co. of Minnesota where they were modified into tubular bell arrangements. These date back to the 1960's or 1970's and were pretty much obsolete when it was more feasible to import movements with tubular bell setups from the get-go from Kieninger or Urgos. There is not much written history about Kuempel but they were basically another case kit supplier like Emperor, et al. though its beginnings date back over 100 years ago. KUEMPEL CHIME CLOCKS – St Louis Park Historical Society
 

claussclocks

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Just when I was ready to pack my bags... These Franken-tube movements started off as typical rod chime movements from Kieninger or Gebr. Jauch KG in Germany, to be imported by Kuempel Clock. Co. of Minnesota where they were modified into tubular bell arrangements. These date back to the 1960's or 1970's and were pretty much obsolete when it was more feasible to import movements with tubular bell setups from the get-go from Kieninger or Urgos. There is not much written history about Kuempel but they were basically another case kit supplier like Emperor, et al. though its beginnings date back over 100 years ago. KUEMPEL CHIME CLOCKS – St Louis Park Historical Society
Wow!! I never knew. Thank You for the information. I did find that name on the clock. I had assumed it was a one shot wonder someone put together. I have to admit it is an engineering wonder that it works so well.
 

Isaac

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That looks like an absolute nightmare to get the hammer strings set up properly. Also, wouldn't a rod chime movement be inherently underpowered for the task of lifting the larger tubular gong hammers? I'd imagine they'd skate around this problem by simply adding more weight, but that can't be good for the movement in the long run.
 

chimeclockfan

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I don't know how many Kuempel Frankentubulars still exist, especially given the rise of other tubular bell movements old and new. I would have a sneaking suspicion that many of them got dumped in the long run. The only benefit at the time would have been a much lower cost compared to a Starkville-era Herschede from the same period. The one recorded Kuempel on Youtube can be best described as 'erratic' and the movement gives other problems as noted in the video:


There was nothing wrong with the chime rods equivalent of the same outline:

 

Bruce Alexander

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These are not bad to work on. Here's one I ran across a few years back: 8 Bells with the Longest Tube pulling double-duty on the Hour.

Kuempel Modified Kieninger Tall Case Chime Stalls on Whittington Melody

As you can see, Justin was right on top of that Thread too.

The movement was a pretty nice Kieninger. There's a bit more of a load on the Chime Train, so everything needs to be clean, smooth and well lubricated.

I'm not so sure about that Moon Dial. I don't have any photos of the one which came along with this movement, but as I recall it wasn't quite as "Folksy" as yours is.

This client's movement was cased by his deceased Finish Carpenter/Cabinet Maker Dad. We discussed the possibility that he may eventually need to go to a Chime Rod Conversion but the movement wasn't in bad condition and honestly, I think it might be a good candidate for Butter Bushing/Bearings if push came to shove.

This movement was missing a Night Shut-Off Part. Mark Butterworth got me fixed right up.

Challenges like these help to keep life interesting.

Good luck with it and let us know if you run into any "snags" :rolleyes:

Bruce

P1100414.JPG
 
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