Thomas Hall, Longford, early moon roller, 1730s?

Discussion in 'Your Newest Clock Acquisition' started by novicetimekeeper, Oct 22, 2018.

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  1. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    #51 novicetimekeeper, Nov 3, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2018
    There was a Thomas Hall in Kent for instance, early 18th century in Maidstone. There is a Longford in Sevenoaks, twenty miles from Maidstone.


    EDIT I have the book on Kent makers. Loomes lists him as early 18th century but the clock by him in the book by Michael Pearson is a 1760s clock when Hall was in the Maidstone area.

    Hall is known to have numbered his clocks, but only because this clock is numbered 77. No other clocks are known. However 77 would suggest he had been making them a while.

    He does seem to have been a high quality maker from this one example, and he had his own style of case too, unlike other local makers. According to Pearson the only other Kent maker who had a similar style was John Mercer. We have one of his here in the hall.
     
  2. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    I took the chapter ring off to see if there were any clues, there was none. However the strange hue of the chapter ring is now explained. Some idiot had the chapter ring electroplated and this is electroplate tarnish. You can see I got a bit off with silver dip I use for my flatware.

    This is a right pain as the plating went into the engraving as well. Fortunately only the chapter ring and seconds subsidiary were treated like this.

    I have included closeups of the engraving here and on the moon roller disc, where the stars show a remarkable similarity to Ralph's. You can also see just how much work it took to make that disc, no wonder this approach did not last long.

    I also had a closer look at the starwheels that drive the date and moon. The one on the date I believe to be original. It works better too with those flats rather than pins. It is also clear that they only need three per wheel so nothing missing.

    The moon one is a replacement, it needs a better friction spring and the moon disc needs and indexing spring too. A bit of bending to realign I believe this will soon be working properly, so it isn't as bad as I feared.

    The other pics show the spandrel numbering on the dialplate, the deepest I have ever seen and clearly put there from day one.

    DSC_0882.JPG DSC_0879.JPG DSC_0876.JPG DSC_0878.JPG DSC_0877.JPG DSC_0871.JPG DSC_0874.JPG DSC_0872.JPG DSC_0873.JPG DSC_0875.JPG
     
  3. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Hmmm, this clock is getting to look rarer and rarer, the clock repairer says he thinks the wax on the moon roller isn't black but dark blue.
     
  4. DeanT

    DeanT Registered User

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    Rarer than a one-off?
     
  5. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    They are all one offs really though aren't they? Even when you think you have two the same they turn out to be different.

    I have found some navy blue sealing wax, will take a while to get here then we can compare.
     
  6. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Until you sent me a set of pics I did not realise that yours also has the 1/2 between the two and the nine. There are remarkable similarities between the two engravings, same engraver? Certainly supports the idea that this clock has London influences.
     
  7. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Finally found the right wax for the sky on the roller. Has taken a lot of money because you have to buy them to see them. I have imported from China and also found examples in the UK, however the final choice is Midnight blue (quite appropriate) made by Herbin in France. I had to import it from the US because that was the only place I could find to buy two sticks. Everywhere else I would have to buy ten!
     
  8. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Rather sad, we love this clock and want it in the conservatory, however it is in terrible condition. It is going to be quite an expensive whim. I feel that dial deserves it, though the chap doing the work doesn't think much of the original movement and even less of the earlier repairs!

    hall bits 23.jpeg hall bits 22.jpeg hall bits 21.jpeg hall bits 20.jpeg hall bits 19.jpeg hall bits 18.jpeg hall bits 17.jpeg hall bits 16.jpeg hall bits 15.jpeg hall bits 14.jpeg
     
  9. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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  10. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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  11. DeanT

    DeanT Registered User

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    Still one of my favourite dials. Movement is fixable.
     
  12. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Yes the dial is wonderful, the movement is going to suck up resources
     
  13. bruce linde

    bruce linde Technical Admin
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    worth it... one step at a time
     
  14. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Concentrating the work on the dial, the idea is the dial must look right and function correctly. The movement needs to function reliably, not look pretty.

    I have to say, it looks like a good plan from what I have seen.

    hall bits 27.jpeg hall bits 26.jpeg hall bits 25.jpeg Hall bits 24.jpeg hall bits 43.jpeg hall bits 42.jpeg hall bits 41.jpeg hall bits 40.jpeg hall bits 39.jpeg hall bits 35.jpeg hall bits 34.jpeg hall bits 33.jpeg hall bits 32.jpeg
     
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  15. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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  16. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    that poor thing was rougher than a cob. nice work so far.
     
  17. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    ready for silvering. That blue really is dark enough I think.

    hall date and seconds.jpg unnamed.jpg unnamed (9).jpg
     
  18. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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  19. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Well that seems to be a success

    hall-dial-waxed-1.jpg hall-dial-waxed-2.jpg
     
  20. ballistarius

    ballistarius Registered User

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    Yes , indeed!:clap:

    Aitor
     
  21. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Thomas Hall on test, calendar and moonphase now fully functioning. Will be coming home soon.

    hall on test.jpg
     
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  22. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Now it is back here, I see the moon roller only has 59 teeth, so you can see it is more like a penny moon which came before the rolling moon system.
     
  23. Ralph

    Ralph Registered User
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    Nick, the dial looks great.

    Ralph
     
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  24. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Thanks Ralph, It's a stunner. Both dial and movement were rather wrecked and it has been the most expensive one I've had so far to get fixed but it looks absolutely fantastic. I should have it up on the wall and running tomorrow hopefully and will take a pic in situ.

    That dark blue wax between the stars looks brilliant, it was well worth the expense of trying out colours until I found the right one.

    Shame I don't know more about the maker, he was clearly an inventive chap and ahead of his time.
     
  25. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    why not search for a nice period cabinet? i really think that one deserves a good "wife" so to speak.
     
  26. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    It's our new conservatory clock, a case would not be happy in the conservatory.

    Also it is much harder to match arched dials to cases than square dials. I'm not against marriages, the sort of wrecks I buy are usually orphans. I buy cases sometimes that have the wrong dials/movements in and shuffle for more appropriate ones, but in this instance I think it is perfectly happy and rather better displayed without the case.
     
  27. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Well here he is, now setup and working in the conservatory. He changes the calendar date at midnight and the lunar date at 6am, so when we got him going this afternoon it was ok to set both.

    He has the quietest tick of any longcase I have ever known, and as a countwheel strike the fly is pegged, so he is as easy to live with as anything making Matthew very happy.

    We both love having our first working lunar dial, and being in the conservatory we will see the moon too.

    It's also the first time I have had a close look at those hands. They were cut out with a piercing saw by a well known London clock restorer now no longer with us, I bought them from Ron Rose. They have been hand finished by Peter who restores most of my clocks. He has done a brilliant job of carving them.

    DSC_1262.JPG
     
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  28. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    Full moon!

    Something you can look forward to with a new lunar dial

    DSC_1278.JPG
     
  29. Chris Radano

    Chris Radano Registered User

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    We have the full moon too, here on this side of the Atlantic :chuckling:. It's nice to be able to see at 3:00 AM :lightbulb: (when it's not raining)
     
  30. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    It's our first full moon since the clock came back from restoration. Takes about 3 hours to complete a change as it only has 59 teeth, so similar to the 31 tooth date wheel that transitions around midnight.

    Quite an improvement on this..

    442d2f9c-5f6b-4290-86a8-1592fd337e10.jpg
     
  31. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

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    No moon tonight so you can see more stars

    DSC_1294.JPG
     
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