• Member Voting Now through June 6. Check Your Email for a Link to the Online Ballot. The Ballot Contains Links to Each Proposed Amendment to Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation.

George III ebonized bracket clock with verge escapement and interesting count wheel striking.

Chris Radano

Registered User
Feb 18, 2004
4,109
399
83
Pennsylvania
Country
Region
I had a hard time resisting this smaller clock. It was a passed lot in an earlier auction. I was trying to buy another clock at the time. But this time I got lucky.
The clock is unsigned, and along with the style of brass hands I suspect it was not originally purchased for a residence but maybe an office or some other commercial venue.
Smaller or 3/4 size(?) case is ebonized and has been restored. Not including the handle it is 14" H, 9" W with a 6" dial.
The dial is porcelain and sustained minor damage while being shipped. I plan to have the dial restored. The dial already had slight damaged but it has not been brutalized. The method used in mounting the movement inside the case uses brackets with pins that fit in small holes inside the case. This method does not lend itself well to being boxed and shipped. In fact the movement brackets need to be adjusted so the movement will fit snug, which I plan to do. The 5 pillar double fusee movement is heavier than the case (which is common for an English spring clock).
Both front and door locks are missing. The front door retains the lock plate, and both doors still have bone lock escutcheons.
Anyway, the interesting thing about this clock is the atypical count wheel hourly strike. Rack was by far and away the preferred striking method for an English table clock of this period. Very early English pendulum table clocks used small sized count wheels. This one very late to use count wheel. Also rather late for a verge escapement. Verge can be found with this case style but not common. The hammer has a small piece of wood on the tip which dampens the bell.
The movement is pretty well seized so I suspect gummy springs.
Any other thoughts? I thought it would be noteworthy to post this clock here.

DSCN7797.JPG DSCN7798.JPG DSCN7799.JPG DSCN7800.JPG DSCN7802.JPG DSCN7803.JPG DSCN7804.JPG DSCN7805.JPG DSCN7806.JPG DSCN7807.JPG DSCN7808.JPG DSCN7809.JPG DSCN7810.JPG DSCN7812.JPG
 

novicetimekeeper

Registered User
Jul 26, 2015
11,796
1,175
113
Dorset
Country
Region
I really like this one, it is a bit quirky, and the rather heavy arrangement for supporting the escapement plus the strike mechanism suggests it might be provincial.

I think it was a very good find at a good price, what a shame it got damaged in transit.
 

Chris Radano

Registered User
Feb 18, 2004
4,109
399
83
Pennsylvania
Country
Region
I think the count wheel may be a blanc from a 30 hour longcase movement, but the movement certainly is nicely finished. I wonder if there were others like this. But this is the only one I've seen.
The hands remind me of a tavern clock but in miniature. I thought maybe they were replacements but seeing them in person they certainly look original. I really have not seen hands of this style on a bracket clock.
The dial damage bugged me when I first saw it, but really it is minor and I may very well be able to repair it myself to a good standard. There was already a chip at the "30" minute mark. Also the sliver above "15" looks like it was already there and is not visible inside the bezel. The movement is not difficult to place in the case but porcelain dials are often damaged. People have been rough and clumsy forever
I like the type bracket clock cases that have the movement mounting brackets that secure thought holes in the case sides and screw in place from the exterior. This unfortunately is not that type. This clock even has 2 sets of holes on the inside of the case for each bracket pin, suggesting the case was adjusted with age.
By the way, I think the date is c. 1800.
 

WIngraham

NAWCC Member
Apr 19, 2019
231
103
43
35
Country
Region
Great clock! I really like the smaller size. That movement is built like a tank. The hands really stand out and are nicely shaped. I have never seen an English bracket clock with an outside count wheel before, but that's not saying much.

Please let us know what method you use if you do the dial restoration yourself. I would be interested in trying it.
 

Chris Radano

Registered User
Feb 18, 2004
4,109
399
83
Pennsylvania
Country
Region
The first thing I did to this clock was straighten the movement brackets so the movement sits tight in the case.
Some notes of the movement: The curved pendulum is to accommodate it's swing past the center of the count wheel. The pendulum does not seat well in the holdfast (it's a bad fit).
I can't help notice the style of the brass hands resemble those of large dial clocks that were intended for public use (but in miniature). So I suspect possibly this was a clock that was purchased for public of office use. Maybe it really was a "boardroom clock".
Here are pics of hands from a teardrop tavern clock c. 1790, and a fusee drop dial c. 1820(?):

DSCN7833.JPG DSCN7834.JPG Bowen dial.jpg
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jezster18

Jezster18

Registered User
Jan 31, 2011
149
36
28
60
Country
Very nice & unusual, I like unusual clocks, a nice buy.
I use neat household bleach on a small artists brush on cracks in enamel dials & it removes the dirt & improves the look of the dial, although it does not cure the crack, i then wipe the bleach off with cotton buds slightly damp so no ingress of water.
I have never used it on the inked numeral parts
 
Last edited:

Forum statistics

Threads
173,738
Messages
1,517,035
Members
51,916
Latest member
JT123
Encyclopedia Pages
1,062
Total wiki contributions
2,969
Last update
-