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Howard single weight time and strike electric winding system

pmiddents

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The attached picture from the Howard archives (complements of Don Bugh) shows two Round Top Special strikers. One is fitted with electric winders on both the strike and time sides. The one on the left is new to me. It shows a winding system that drives both the time and strike sides on single weight. In addition to saving on a winding motor and gears, it also saves space.

Anyone seen an actual installation like this?
Paul Middents
 

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doug sinclair

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Aug 27, 2000
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I totally don't understand how the clock on the left operates. It appears to me that there are two sets of weights, but no winding system on the strike side, and no cables going to the strike side drum.

The one on the right is an arrangement I have never seen. On any tower clock. It seems to me that the motor drive gear on the strike side would necessarily spin at a fairly high rate of speed when the strike side was operating. That is, unless there is some kind of one-way clutch arrangement on one of the gears.
 

gvasale

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look really close at that photo in question. you'll see the chain rise up from the left and cross the ceiling above the clock and then run back to the center of the movement.

These winding systems used chain.

Look a little more closely and you'll see the two weight stacks are independent.
 

pmiddents

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You have it right as far I can tell. I worked up a sketch of the system that seems to work in theory at least. Have you seen one of these installations in the flesh? If so, where?
 

gvasale

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I have photos of a couple of electric wind setups. Give me some time to scan please.

All are in Massachusetts.
 

pmiddents

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Doug,
I think the strike side winding mechanism on the right has a wheel inside the frame mounted on the winding arbor. This wheel is driven by the winding motor via two step down wheel and pinions. Most electric winding mechanisms have this wheel mounted outside the frames. The driven wheel winds the clock just like a manual crank winds the clock.
Paul
 

gvasale

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Here is one photo. Timepiece. I do believe this was an aftermarket install, but I can't prove it.

I have another somewhere, of another clock 30 miles away which I do believe is a factory electric rewind. I'm not sure where that one is at this time.

You can see the chain's path, but not the rewind motor.

This is the only overview I have.
 

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pmiddents

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There is nothing new under the sun. Yesterday I described the system to my good friend, Leon Jaussaud, a very savy clock restoration man. Without even seeing the drawing, he said it reminded him of continuous rope or chain winding systems on Dutch or Frisian clocks. I finally recognized it as a form of Huygens endless rope winding system. I have attached a file providing my interpretation of the winding system.
Paul Middents
 

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doug sinclair

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Correct me if I am wrong. The "endless or continuous rope" (or chain) system (sometimes also called "monkey on a rope") is designed in such a way that both the strike train and the time train operate using the same weight. Thereby, the same AMOUNT of weight operates both trains, to my way of thinking. I asked the question earlier. One of the clocks I look after (Howard round top) uses 750 pounds on the strike train, and 125 pounds on the time train. The time train could operate with less weight.
 

pmiddents

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The monkey on a rope and the Huygens endless rope are not exactly the same. The endless rope system does use the same weight for both time and strike trains and so does require a large weight. It's certainly true that the time side would operate on significantly less weight. The larger strike side winding drum diameter mitigates this to some extent. I count about 11 separate weights which must total at least 750 lbs. It's trade off for the space saved and the use of a single winding motor.