Seth Thomas Octagon: Date?

Douglas Ballard

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Dec 2, 2011
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Just got this today. It is a Seth Thomas time only Octagon wall clock. The case is in very good condition as is the glass. The dial has pretty much disintegrated, most of which happened in shipping, just flaked off. Will be looking into a replacement as soon as I get the case cleaned up and the movement cleaned and lubed. Surprisingly, after some Slick50, the movement was perfectly in beat! I did this just to check for problems before tearing it down for cleaning.

I was wondering if anyone can date the clock for me? "41B" is stamped on the lower bottom right of the plate as is the Seth Thomas Logo. I was also wondering if this pendulum bob is original to the clock? Don't ever recall seeing an "R/A" bob on an American clock. Also wondering what the star shaped gear is next to the winding arbor? The winding arbor goes through a similar gear that meshes with the other star shaped gear. Thanks in advance! (1895 was the "approximate" date the seller was advertising, although it was pretty clear he didn't know anything about clocks.)
 

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eskmill

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You didn't provide the diameter of the face. However, Tran duy Ly's Seth Thomas catalog reprint illustrates a 10" drop octagon with either the 41 or 89 movement as shown in the 1913 catalog.

Wonder no more; the R A bob is a handyman's replacement. The correct bob is the No.12. Pendulum, from center of movement to end of rating screw, 13 inches.
 

George Nelson

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The gears you ask about are called Geneva Stops. These gears assure that when winding you use the center of the spring, which helps in accurate timekeeping. This means that the spring will be wound a set amount each time, avoiding too tight or too loose a force, resulting in a pretty much even spring force after each winding. Many Seth Thomas movements use the stops, and sadly, the stop gears are often left off by less experienced repair people when re-assembling a movement after cleaning. George Nelson
 
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nicksey

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Tran Duy Ly's Vol 2 describes movement 41B as

" (1907 Catalog) 8 day, large, pendulum, time, spring, 10 in. Drop Octagon Time. Pendulum from center of movement to end of rating screw 11 7/8" with No. 12 ball, diameter of ball 2 7/32". Crown 40, dead-beat, center 2". Length 5 5/8". Width 5 7/8", Depth 3 3/4". Mainspring No 131. 9' x 11/16" x 0.15."

So presumably dating yours to around 1907 giving or taking a couple of years
 

Douglas Ballard

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The chapter ring is 9" while the dial pan is about 10". Thank you for the information!

You didn't provide the diameter of the face. However, Tran duy Ly's Seth Thomas catalog reprint illustrates a 10" drop octagon with either the 41 or 89 movement as shown in the 1913 catalog.

Wonder no more; the R A bob is a handyman's replacement. The correct bob is the No.12. Pendulum, from center of movement to end of rating screw, 13 inches.
 

Douglas Ballard

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George,
I've heard of these but have never seen one. Thank you for taking the time to reply, appreciate it.
Doug

The gears you ask about are called Geneva Stops. These gears assure that when winding you use the center of the spring, which helps in accurate timekeeping. This means that the spring will be wound a set amount each time, avoiding too tight or too loose a force, resulting in a pretty much even spring force after each winding. Many Seth Thomas movements use the stops, and sadly, the stop gears are often left off by less experienced repair people when re-assembling a movement after cleaning. George Nelson
 

Douglas Ballard

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nicksey, thanks for taking the time to look this up for me, certainly appreciate it and this will be added to the clock's history.
Doug

Tran Duy Ly's Vol 2 describes movement 41B as

" (1907 Catalog) 8 day, large, pendulum, time, spring, 10 in. Drop Octagon Time. Pendulum from center of movement to end of rating screw 11 7/8" with No. 12 ball, diameter of ball 2 7/32". Crown 40, dead-beat, center 2". Length 5 5/8". Width 5 7/8", Depth 3 3/4". Mainspring No 131. 9' x 11/16" x 0.15."

So presumably dating yours to around 1907 giving or taking a couple of years
 

Douglas Ballard

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Would you happen to have a photo of this pendulum? I'm not sure if the pendulum leader I have is original or not, a photo would help me find the correct pendulum. Thanks in advance.

You didn't provide the diameter of the face. However, Tran duy Ly's Seth Thomas catalog reprint illustrates a 10" drop octagon with either the 41 or 89 movement as shown in the 1913 catalog.

Wonder no more; the R A bob is a handyman's replacement. The correct bob is the No.12. Pendulum, from center of movement to end of rating screw, 13 inches.
 

pragmatist

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Aug 5, 2010
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ST schoolhouse 003.JPG Douglas,
Here's a pic of a ST from 1914 that may help, original finish, door glass and bob. Sorry I no longer have the clock so can't give you a better picture of the bob.
 

Douglas Ballard

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Dec 2, 2011
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Thank you!

150866.jpg Douglas,
Here's a pic of a ST from 1914 that may help, original finish, door glass and bob. Sorry I no longer have the clock so can't give you a better picture of the bob.
 

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