Need suggestions for better sound

Discussion in 'Clock Construction' started by supermanx1a, Aug 18, 2013.

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  1. supermanx1a

    supermanx1a Registered User

    Apr 4, 2010
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    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
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    In the grandfather clock I built, the sound of the chime is much lower than my other clocks [mantel or wall]. The hammers have all been adjusted for the loudest sound possible; however, whether on the hour or quarter-hour, the other clocks can be heard from other rooms, even if the TV is on, whereas for this grandfather clock, you have to be in the same room AND listen for the notes. After closer examination, I noticed that the door, which has the full length of the clock, has a little gap between itself and the case. That gap varies from 1/8" to roughly 1/4". The top and bottom of the case are sealed with caulking and the back panel is screwed on and very tight all around. I realize now that in installing the brass hinges, I should have made a deeper groove. I am afraid that in trying to fix that mistake, I may damage the finish. I was wondering if installing foam weatherstripping between the door and the case would help obtain the drum effect for a richer, deeper and louder sound.
     
  2. harold bain

    harold bain Registered User
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    Nov 4, 2002
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    Did you do a study of other modern grandfather cases, and how the chime rods are mounted? Usually they are mounted on a "U" shaped piece of wood, and not directly on the backboard. Most have removable cloth covered side panels to let the sound out. I'm assuming you are using a recently made German movement. I don't know how much fine tuning you can do with what you've built. We would need to see your internal construction to offer much.
     
  3. supermanx1a

    supermanx1a Registered User

    Apr 4, 2010
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    The chime rods are mounted on a piece of wood (1x3) attached between the roof and the shelf on which the movement is mounted (Hermle). That shelf has an opening underneath the movement for the 3 weights and the pendulum. The commercially available gf clocks I have seen in some stores have an opening in the back panel to reduce the volume of the chimes by reducing the drum effect. As you can see in the pictures, I have installed clear plexiglas panels on the sides and on the door. This gf was built based on various models on the web.
     
  4. supermanx1a

    supermanx1a Registered User

    Apr 4, 2010
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    More details which may help. The movement is a Hermle 451-050. The opening I mentioned in the clocks in stores is like a peep-hole with a sliding door that secure places use [sort of a 2"x4"]. Also, if you knock on the side panels or back panel of these clocks, you get a sound that is similar to a bass drum. The model of the clock which I built was after a very, very long search through plans and ready-made clocks from sellers in North America and Europe. Like I said, the clocks I saw in stores seem to always be in need of lowering the volume of their chimes which is quite loud as if you are next to a huge bell in a church tower.
     
  5. harold bain

    harold bain Registered User
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    Nov 4, 2002
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    Well, you could experiment with the placement of your chime rods. Perhaps have them attached to your backboard, using a thick piece (3/4 to an inch) of hardwood. The wood you used for your case would have some degree of effect on the sound, as some thinner softwoods will absorb sound instead of resonating it.
     

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