Inherited Family Clock

Discussion in 'Your Newest Clock Acquisition' started by Will_C, Feb 20, 2018.

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  1. Will_C

    Will_C Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
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    Hello everyone,

    My name is Will, I am new with this being my first post. I just had one of the family clocks passed on to me from my father. It is a Sessions, purchased in 1918 via mail order from Hartsman in Chicago. I do not know an exact model number and haven’t found an exact match online yet.

    A fairly detailed history of the clock was recorder by my great uncle on a card he stored in the case. The card was full so I added a second card to continue recording the history.

    The movements seem sound and I’m currently adjusting its timing as it runs. The springs were binding so I oiled them with Mobil 1 0w-20. I think it’s a solid enough synthetic to keep it running without humming until I get a chance to have it fully serviced by a professional.

    One thing I want to do myself is properly clean the case. I do not want to refinish anything, just clean it and restore the original color, along with preserving the label. I have been doing a ton of research from your previous posts and I thank you for your knowledge.

    What has been my biggest hang up, research wise, is finding a way to clean the painted faux marble and bringing out its original color. There are also a ton of more suggestions I know I need but can’t verbalize. I have lots of ideas but your suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you for letting me share this with you. I’ve developed an overnight obsession with this clock and everything it truly represents.

    Best regards,
    Will

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  2. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User
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    Jan 20, 2017
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    welcome to the forum will.

    that little paper with the family history is incredibly cool. if I were looking to purchase a clock like this, I would pay extra because it comes with that.

    you say above that the clock is faux marble? I'm not really sure what that means? is any of it wood? I have had really amazing results by brushing Gojo hand cleaner onto shellac finished wood and wiping it off with paper towels. some clocks need several applications to actually come clean. I've never used it on anything other than wood, but I think it is inert enough that you could give it a try. be sure to get the smooth one without pumice if you decide to go this route. good luck.
     
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  3. Will_C

    Will_C Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
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    Thanks Brian,

    I think the faux marble is painted on the wood. It is only in the top two sections with brass molding surrounding it. I think it use to be green. It shows a very slight green hue, but is very dark. I may not even try to clean it if the paint is too delicate to clean.

    Thanks for the advice about Gojo! And thanks for the compliment of the card. The card has kind of been my favorite part about it. It’s written on a family card too, so it has other features that preserve the family history.

    I’ll be sure to check out your profile.
     
  4. Levi Hutchins

    Levi Hutchins Registered User

    Oct 21, 2012
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    As a lapsed ham radio operator, I especially like it being a QSL card!

    I recently inflicted cosmetic restoration on a Sessions that had a century's accretion of nicotine that had given it a uniformly, deep brown, matte appearance. I had thought I'd be repainting, but taking the time to clean it with mild agents revealed a beautiful finish. Sessions must have applied a paint that was meant to last!

    DSCN2419.jpg
     
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  5. Will_C

    Will_C Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
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    That looks spectacular! I knew the name “Fat Sam” was Uncle David’s CB handle but I didn’t know this was a specific type of card. Thanks for Levi.
     
  6. harold bain

    harold bain Registered User
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    Nov 4, 2002
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    Your clock is the "Baldwin" shown in Tran Duy Ly's Sessions book from a 1923 catalog picture. Says it is 18 inches long and 11 inches high with Green marbleized moldings Bronze metal columns and trimmings, gilt metal caps and bases. Five inch Arabic Iveroid dial, cathedral gong half-hour strike on cup bell.
     
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  7. Will_C

    Will_C Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
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    Thank you Harold!

    My family will love to know.
     
  8. Will_C

    Will_C Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
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    Levi, what agents did you use to clean your Sessions’ paint? I was planning on using lemon oil.
     
  9. MLS

    MLS Registered User
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    Feb 2, 2018
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    Beautiful clock and cool history as well.
     
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  10. Levi Hutchins

    Levi Hutchins Registered User

    Oct 21, 2012
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    I used dish washing liquid in water applied gently for a half hour of so over a few days with #0000 steel wool to remove the nicotine accretion, followed by Butcher's wax applied with a soft cloth and buffed. I polished the brass bezel with Renaissance wax polish, and applied Rub 'n Buff gold leaf metallic finish to the column capitols and bases, feet, and handles. (The gold may be a bit too bright, and I may re-do them in an antique gold or copper.)
     
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  11. Will_C

    Will_C Registered User

    Feb 19, 2018
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    Thanks Levi
     
  12. Ivinia

    Ivinia New Member

    Mar 3, 2018
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    It's funny that I stumbled upon this thread because I was just watching a YouTube video last night of some one doing a restore of a clock that looks remarkably similar to yours. His came in pieces, but you might find it of interest all of the steps he went through to bring it back to life. Hope this helps or is useful. I just wish the video quality was a bit better!

     

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