How long has your mechanical clock been continuously running?

Douglas Ballard

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I am curious how long folks have had their mechanical clocks running without stopping? I just started an interest in antique clocks last December so can only brag about one that has run since that time without stopping.

I started thinking about this after reading about the Beverly clock: "While the clock has not been wound since it was made by Arthur Beverly in 1864, it has stopped on a number of occasions: when its mechanism needed cleaning; when there was a mechanical failure; when the Physics Department moved to new quarters; and on occasions when the ambient temperature has not fluctuated sufficiently. After environmental parameters readjust, the clock begins operating again."
 

soaringjoy

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Uhmhh, what exactly do you mean? :confused:

Running time on a winding sequence, or running times over the years, like mileage?
For example, my clocks, some over 150 old, always run until I stop them and I hope,
they'll still be running when I'm gone. ;)

OK, I take back the questions.
Let's say, a good quality made movement, if handled with TLC and given proper
periodical service, will run about forever...
 
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Douglas Ballard

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Uhmhh, what exactly do you mean? :confused:

Running time on a winding sequence, or running times over the years, like mileage?
For example, my clocks, some over 150 old, always run until I stop them and I hope,
they'll still be running when I'm gone. ;)

OK, I take back the questions.
Let's say, a good quality made movement, if handled with TLC and given proper
periodical service, will run about forever...
Running time would include winding . . . clocks that need "intervention" like winding would still have a "run time" unless they stopped for some reason.
 

harold bain

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Douglas, if you mean without any preventive maintenance, probably my longest runner is a Korean 31 day wall clock at my cottage. I repaired it about 15 years ago, and my customer disappeared. It stops on occasion when I don't get there in time to wind it, but it's been dependable since I've hung it there.
 

J. A. Olson

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My Haller mantle clock, been running steadily since I set it up here in late February.
 

Willie X

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I know of a store Sessions store clock (time only) that was installed in a local hardware store by the Coca Cola company in 1918 and ran continuously, with no repair, until 1968. The owner retired in 1968 and the clock would not run when he got it moved to his home. He died long ago but I have repaired the clock 3 times since 1968. One was a complete overhaul with some re-bushing, the other two were minor repairs. It's still running at his daughters home. Except for the interruptions, when I was working on it and when it was being moved, it has run for 96 years.

Willie X
 

lpbp

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I prefer to do a kind of a scheduled maintenance on my clocks, but sometimes one falls through the cracks, too much work for clients. I have a two weight Vienna, that has been running without any thing for about 20 years. Can't say if I'm proud of my original work, of embarrassed because I haven't done scheduled maintenance.
 

doug sinclair

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Fourteen months (360 days) for my "bazaar bargain" Neueck 400-day clock from circa 1955-56. Stopped only because it ran down. I know that most of my clocks would run for years if I were to remember to wind them. I have a Koma miniature 400-day that I acquired new in 1966. I have serviced it three times since then. But it runs for decades at a time, stopping only briefly when it runs down.
 

Burkhard Rasch

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my Schatz 1000dayer ran 1480days on one winding after TLC,now the second period is ongoing.
Burkhard
 

Willie X

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I've seen 100s of modern clocks (Hermles, etc.), that were delivered and set running by me, and ran continuously for 20 years with no service or repair. So, I can say with confidence that a 20 year run is not that unusual, even on a common clock.

Willie X
 

Billy

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I have my Grandparents Grandfather clock that was purchased in 1957 and has been continuously running since new. Its a cherry cabinet Hanson model.

Billy
 

jcosta-co

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I have a Trend Grandfathers clock purchased new in 1975.
It has been running ever since with just one service 1 year ago.
The movement is a Keininger: RK 022, Westerminster, Chain, 93CM, 36mm.

John
 

DianneB

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Hardly any kind of record but the Ansonia Regulator I acquired at auction in the mid-1980s is the main timepiece in my house and hangs on the living room wall. It was running when I bought it and has had no repairs, gets oiled about every 5 years, and has never stopped on its own (except when I forget to wind it every Friday). It also keeps good time.


Ansonia Regulator.jpg
 

Scottie-TX

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I haven't really kept close track but at least two or more here have run over five years with no service. These are weight driven Viennas and all are powered with minimum weight and when last serviced, LaPerle oil was used.
I have since become curious and whenever one stops due to lack of oil, I put a little tab of paper inside with month and year. Seems for some reason the smallest miniatures are more prone to shorter service intervals. Not sure what that means.
 

jmclaugh

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I know of a French Pendule de Paris movement that ran for over 20 years without being serviced or oiled.
 

svenedin

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My mother has a 19th century English longcase regulator that has run continuously since 1962 with no maintenance whatsoever except for a new winding key! It keeps time to a few seconds a month. Not a good think to do to a clock but it isn't my clock. It was purchased at auction and it's highly likely it hadn't been serviced when it was sold. Can only speculatie when it was last overhauled. My mother won't have it serviced until it stops which could be years from now.
 
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Douglas Ballard

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My mother has a 19th century English longcase regulator that has run continuously since 1962 with no maintenance whatsoever except for a new winding key! It keeps time to a few seconds a month. Not a good think to do to a clock but it isn't my clock. It was purchased at auction and it's highly likely it hadn't been serviced when it was sold. Can only speculatie when it was last overhauled. My mother won't have it serviced until it stops which could be years from now.
Wow, that is great. Too bad all clocks are as bullet proof as your mother's.
 

eskmill

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In the spring of 1975 I was awarded an Atmos clock. I set it on the shelf set the hands and released the bob. That was over 37 years ago, it's never been stopped, just kept dusted. This morning it is still going despite several seismic episodes over the years, one of which left it on the shelf's edge. Maybe it's time to put it back in the box store it in the attic?
 

svenedin

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Wow, that is great. Too bad all clocks are as bullet proof as your mother's.
Very true Douglas but I dread to think what will be found when it eventually grinds to a halt. It is certainly bullet proof if not bombproof. Terrible picture, sorry

IMG_0213.jpg
 
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Willie X

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I work on alot (100"s) of grandfather clocks that the customers have bought 25 to 30 years ago and have not done anything but pull up or crank up the weights, And when I walk up on the clock they are worn out.
Me too, I'm always surprised that they sort of boast about this.

Like saying, my car ran 65,000 miles and then the little lights came on.

Willie X
 

robert5556

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My grandmother was born 1922 in Davis,Weat Virginia.The population right now is about 800.Its in the Canaan valley, where black water falls is.This clock was in the general store there.She was in the store all her life.She always admired the clock and just before the store closed in the late 70s she ask to buy the clock.My grandfather was sheriff for about 5 years and I think the filled in as mayer for a few.There are also 2 or 3 generations of fire chief and one now how is on force.Along with a borther of my grandfather.He came from a family of 6 siblings.His father was fire chief and so was he.before he died he help restor about a 1920s truck that belonged in Thomas where he was from.Right next to Davis.He drove the truck back to station when finished.He lived most of his life in Ohio as a steel worker and part time deputy.There was no work here.As a prominent resident they didnt mind her having the clock.She said the store always keep the clock running.She brought it home and started it.The store was about 2 blocks from her house.She was with my grandfather when he died in 2006.She came home as soon as she could and stoped the clock.Where he died was about 20 min. from the house.After the funeral she had the clock looked at by a local man.He did a light cleaning and oil.Told her the clock looked fine to him.She brought it home and hasent had the hart to start it again.shes very old now and we have left it alone.The clock is Sessions and it has what looks like a slate board inside.People of the town would sign the clock with a piece of chalk they had on a string.I havent counted the names but there are probbly over 100.Hard to see names in photos and some are very light.They are even up under the dial as safely as they could go.Many of the towns early and prominent residents are represented.I dont know when the clock was made or deliverd to the store but my grandmother said it was there ever since she can remember and they always keept it going.Maybe someone here could date it.Ive talked to my mother and we dont know if we will ever start it again.My grangfather was 6'6" and was a mountain man all his life.He was hunting in the woods 4 months before he did at the age of 96 P1050850.JPG P1050849.JPG P1050847.JPG
 

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Rogerstar1

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This is an interesting thread. I will say that clocks that I have had installed and set up professionally and then never moved even an inch on the floor run the longest. A local clock guy who has repaired clocks at the Smithsonian (I live in Washington, DC) connects his lap top up to the clock and then makes adjustments. I've asked him what he is doing and he vaguely explains that the computer is dividing each second into nearly infinitesimal fractions of a second. I would have thought he was jiving me as he dons headphones to get it exactly right but after he is through the clocks he has worked his magic on keep on running (at this point up to about ten years and still ticking) and they keep nearly perfect time...dropping only a minute or so a week. One of my clocks was built in 1807 and that it's sounds have been gracing homes and ears over 200 years is deeply satisfying to me and in a sense calming and even somwhat reassuring. I keep it for awhile in trust for the next generation.
 

jrog100

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I am curious how long folks have had their mechanical clocks running without stopping? I just started an interest in antique clocks last December so can only brag about one that has run since that time without stopping.

I started thinking about this after reading about the Beverly clock: "While the clock has not been wound since it was made by Arthur Beverly in 1864, it has stopped on a number of occasions: when its mechanism needed cleaning; when there was a mechanical failure; when the Physics Department moved to new quarters; and on occasions when the ambient temperature has not fluctuated sufficiently. After environmental parameters readjust, the clock begins operating again."
between 7 and 16 years. One of my wall clocks became unreliable and required a basic cleaning and oiling but all others are running and keeping time without servicing.
 

wisty

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I used to wind a Tower clock that had been running continuously (as far as I know) since installed in 1889 - so 130+years. It was stopped in April because the bells on which it chimes and strikes were removed for refurbishment and rehanging - last rehung in 1880's just before the clock was installed' It is serviced every year - by the original makers - and will be restarted when the bells come back in November.
 

bwclock

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I used to wind a Tower clock that had been running continuously (as far as I know) since installed in 1889 - so 130+years. It was stopped in April because the bells on which it chimes and strikes were removed for refurbishment and rehanging - last rehung in 1880's just before the clock was installed' It is serviced every year - by the original makers - and will be restarted when the bells come back in November.
The tall case clock in the attached photo has been "running continuously" since its movement overhaul in the late 1990's. It has been oiled a few times since then and the rack spring needed repair recently, none of which required stopping the clock. The maker is Glascock, Brentwood(a town north of London) who is recorded as working in Brentwood in 1725.

Glascock GF copy.jpg
 
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Carl Bergquist

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After reading this thread I have to have a little chuckle. A few years ago I was winding my clocks and I happened to look closely at an Ansonia visible escape that I had for many, many years. My wife loved it because she was an English teacher and the clock was a Shakespeare statue clock. It had run in our home for most of the 43 years we had lived there. I looked at the verge and it had to have an 1/8 inch of dust sitting on top of the VE as it ticked away. I guess clocks can be very forgiving or (as we all Know) very unforgiving. The guys that repair clocks see the ones that finally give up but some go on for decades beyond their lifespan.
 
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JimmyOz

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My body clock has been running for 67 years, hopping to crack the 100:excited::nutjob:
 
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wspohn

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One of my clocks has been running continuously without winding for the last 6 years when we moved house. Might be cheating though - it is an Atmos.....
 

RickNB

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The Beverly Clock in Dunedin, New Zealand, is still running despite never having been manually wound since its construction in 1864
 

Philip Snowden

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My William Jourdaine Month going longcase has been going for 12 years since I had a Laburnum Oyster case made for it .


image.jpg
 
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Philip Snowden

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When I bought the movement they were lead and about 30 lbs each and had cord on them instead of gut .But now have new 18 lb weights and it runs beautifully.Funny enough there were two old 18 lb brass weights on eBay two weeks ago sold for £90 but didn’t fancy bidding and stick with what I’ve got.Prefer dial clocks now .The Guy who made the case didn’t put any windows in th hood sides I asked him why and he said I wanted to get as many Oysters on the case as possible the other wood is black walnut both came from old fallen trees on the same estate.He’s passed now and I really miss that lovely guy .
 

bwclock

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When I bought the movement they were lead and about 30 lbs each and had cord on them instead of gut .But now have new 18 lb weights and it runs beautifully.Funny enough there were two old 18 lb brass weights on eBay two weeks ago sold for £90 but didn’t fancy bidding and stick with what I’ve got.Prefer dial clocks now .The Guy who made the case didn’t put any windows in th hood sides I asked him why and he said I wanted to get as many Oysters on the case as possible the other wood is black walnut both came from old fallen trees on the same estate.He’s passed now and I really miss that lovely guy .
Hi Phil, Thanks for your response. It is helpful to know that a 30-day English tall case can run on 18 pound weights. It is a lovely clock. I, too, am fond of English dial clocks. I have nine but most are pedestrian, nothing like the interesting ones you have shown on this forum. The nicer drop dials do not seem to make there way out here and one always worries about shipping damage which precludes bidding on the ones on the UK and American auction sites.
Regards,Bruce
 

Philip Snowden

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Hi Phil, Thanks for your response. It is helpful to know that a 30-day English tall case can run on 18 pound weights. It is a lovely clock. I, too, am fond of English dial clocks. I have nine but most are pedestrian, nothing like the interesting ones you have shown on this forum. The nicer drop dials do not seem to make there way out here and one always worries about shipping damage which precludes bidding on the ones on the UK and American auction sites.
Regards,Bruce
Bruce do you prefer Dropdials ? l can’t make my mind up Which I like the best . But I only look at dial clocks now and pay quite a lot for some and some come very reasonable ..Did you see the one I put on with the spring bust and has a saddle pendulum ? Well I’m going to my mates in a couple of weeks and he’s going to fix it for me .That’s from a nice drop dial .This is the case .Regards Phil.

image.jpg
 

bwclock

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Bruce do you prefer Dropdials ? l can’t make my mind up Which I like the best . But I only look at dial clocks now and pay quite a lot for some and some come very reasonable ..Did you see the one I put on with the spring bust and has a saddle pendulum ? Well I’m going to my mates in a couple of weeks and he’s going to fix it for me .That’s from a nice drop dial .This is the case .Regards Phil.

View attachment 728563
Phil,
I would like to have one good drop dial. I have a couple on "non-drop" dial clocks I like but feel something is missing by not having an nice brass inlaid drop dial with a convex painted dial. Drop dials are interesting for their variety. Just think of the ones you Chris and Nick have shared with the list. I can afford a good one but as I mentioned earlier I probably could not survive the disappointment of any shipping damage.
You Benson has nice veneer on the drop. Also great in that it still has the sight ring rather than a wad of putty holding in the glass.
Here is a photo of the only drop dial I own. It has a 11" convex dial and has a sweet-sounding bell. The clock on the right is a John Walker with a 7 3/4" dial which I have had since some time in the 1990's and been running continuously. Well, at least until I put it in the guest room a few months ago.
Best, Bruce

drop dial.jpg
 

Philip Snowden

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Phil,
I would like to have one good drop dial. I have a couple on "non-drop" dial clocks I like but feel something is missing by not having an nice brass inlaid drop dial with a convex painted dial. Drop dials are interesting for their variety. Just think of the ones you Chris and Nick have shared with the list. I can afford a good one but as I mentioned earlier I probably could not survive the disappointment of any shipping damage.
You Benson has nice veneer on the drop. Also great in that it still has the sight ring rather than a wad of putty holding in the glass.
Here is a photo of the only drop dial I own. It has a 11" convex dial and has a sweet-sounding bell. The clock on the right is a John Walker with a 7 3/4" dial which I have had since some time in the 1990's and been running continuously. Well, at least until I put it in the guest room a few months ago.
Best, Bruce

View attachment 728600
Yes Bruce I know what you mean about postage even posting across Britain there’s damage ,broken glass or pins come out of the dial feet and the hands almost come through the dial.The good thing about here is if I buy in London we have free travel cards for tube and bus so it’s just a free pick up which I’ve done several times..
I like both those clocks and the fact you don’t repaint numerals if they not too bad.The 12 inch also has nice veneer and ears and of course Walker is a favourite rail clock maker over here,
Is this the sort of Drop Dial you mean I picked this one up at auction for £450 which I thought was a gift.Ham is an excellent maker as well.Went on the Tube to pick that one up .
Chris and Nick have some nice clocks as you say but that’s getting in to the more expensive end of the dial clock market .I’m not very careful with money when buying especially f I really want the clock and the wife is understanding she just says oh not again!!

8A90A596-7A36-48EA-81B3-5A1149647B6B.jpeg
 

bwclock

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Yes Bruce I know what you mean about postage even posting across Britain there’s damage ,broken glass or pins come out of the dial feet and the hands almost come through the dial.The good thing about here is if I buy in London we have free travel cards for tube and bus so it’s just a free pick up which I’ve done several times..
I like both those clocks and the fact you don’t repaint numerals if they not too bad.The 12 inch also has nice veneer and ears and of course Walker is a favourite rail clock maker over here,
Is this the sort of Drop Dial you mean I picked this one up at auction for £450 which I thought was a gift.Ham is an excellent maker as well.Went on the Tube to pick that one up .
Chris and Nick have some nice clocks as you say but that’s getting in to the more expensive end of the dial clock market .I’m not very careful with money when buying especially f I really want the clock and the wife is understanding she just says oh not again!!

View attachment 728657
Phil, Yes that type. Nice clock incidentally. It must be great to live in England where there are so many clocks to see and within reach of personal collection. Of course one would have to own a place the size of Sandringham House to display all the purchases. Incidentally, my time and strike long drop cost $100 this March at the Regional in Arizona. The mini John Walker I paid around $1,100 for in the 1990's which now seems steep but I have enjoyed it all these years and continue to do so.
Cheers, Bruce
 

Philip Snowden

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Phil, Yes that type. Nice clock incidentally. It must be great to live in England where there are so many clocks to see and within reach of personal collection. Of course one would have to own a place the size of Sandringham House to display all the purchases. Incidentally, my time and strike long drop cost $100 this March at the Regional in Arizona. The mini John Walker I paid around $1,100 for in the 1990's which now seems steep but I have enjoyed it all these years and continue to do so.
Cheers, Bruce
Ok so you only paid 100 dollars for the double fusee and over here the Walker would still be expensive so taking one dead cheap and one expensive still a good deal taking the two together. Here’s a better view of the Laburnum Longcase .Phil

C4512A14-C657-4419-B392-4952655CD806.jpeg
 

bwclock

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Ok so you only paid 100 dollars for the double fusee and over here the Walker would still be expensive so taking one dead cheap and one expensive still a good deal taking the two together. Here’s a better view of the Laburnum Longcase .Phil

View attachment 728689
The mini(under 8") dial clocks were going for a bit more than a thousand pounds at the time I purchased mine. Of course it is worth less now but it has been a joy to me all these years so in that sense it was a bargain. Thanks for the photo of the laburnum longcase. That 30 hour next to it sure has a nice dial and hands, particularly that magnificent hour hand. Regards, Bruce
 

Philip Snowden

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The mini(under 8") dial clocks were going for a bit more than a thousand pounds at the time I purchased mine. Of course it is worth less now but it has been a joy to me all these years so in that sense it was a bargain. Thanks for the photo of the laburnum longcase. That 30 hour next to it sure has a nice dial and hands, particularly that magnificent hour hand. Regards, Bruce
Yes that’s a 1680 musical clock with a fantastic movement .It’s got two new wheels for chains instead of ropes .I believe it was originally a wall clock an 11 inch dial and this case made about 1770 it’s been posted on here a while back .It was in a stately home near my home town from new I believe. Looks to have an early anchor escapement with one flat end.The movement weighs 32lbs and the weights 32lbs .

26093F4B-E678-47D1-9FC1-415818969852.png 0220BEB3-542D-4D65-8283-E8F784C995FC.png 37C6FCE2-863B-401D-8CF1-C33ABFA5A60A.png 15A4B9CE-C97C-4606-90F1-5C8B9DA794E7.png E4378C56-287B-451C-9B74-52859CD0AB7C.png 0130576A-5BBF-4AFF-A658-D7DA8D764FBB.png B0E54636-963B-4703-A0A5-E4F7048BF48B.png
 
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bwclock

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Yes that’s a 1680 musical clock with a fantastic movement .It’s got two new wheels for chains instead of ropes .I believe it was originally a wall clock an 11 inch dial and this case made about 1770 it’s been posted on here a while back .It was in a stately home near my home town from new I believe. Looks to have an early anchor escapement with one flat end.The movement weighs 32lbs and the weights 32lbs .

View attachment 728746 View attachment 728747 View attachment 728748 View attachment 728749 View attachment 728750 View attachment 728751 View attachment 728752
Interesting clock, thanks for the elaboration. The tuning on these two arbors(photo below) are a nice embellishment. That they have different patterns surprises me. Bruce

turned arbors.png
 

Philip Snowden

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Interesting clock, thanks for the elaboration. The tuning on these two arbors(photo below) are a nice embellishment. That they have different patterns surprises me. Bruce

View attachment 728797
There are 5 arbors in all turned like that I haven’t noticed that before but next time I get it out I will have a good look .Phil
 

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