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Clock with wooden movement

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Project by Stefflus posted 06-02-2014 01:44 PM 1004 views 1 time favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is the finishing exam for 2014.

I haven’t made anything shareworthy this year, we’ve concentrated on product development and the business side of crafts, but I did make an experimental series of stains with trees as the raw material. This clock is stained with such stain, the light brown is Birch bark stain and the dark red is Rowanberry stain.

The clockwork frame is birch, the wheels are a plywood sandwich with Oak or Ash teeth (the escapement wheel which is visible has Oak teeth, but I found this particular Oak to be too brittle, so I made the rest of the wheels with Ash). The clock case is Aspen. I would have prefered Birch, but it was not available the instant I needed it.

Every internal part is wood, except the bearings which are Moose antler. Also there is some Moose in the escapement pivot bearing. The mechanism is called a “Grasshopper escapement”, invented by John Harrison, and this clock is partly meant to pay homage to him and the 300 year anniversary for the “Longitude Act” laid down in the British Parliament in 1714.

My mockup model had a fully functional grasshopper mechanism, but the final product has given me some trouble. One of the pallets isn’t grabbing properly, so I reconfigured it to work by the “Verge” principle for now. I will replace it when I get the clock back from evaluation. Even with this minor hickup the clock runs and quick tests suggest it keeps reasonable time.

-- -Steffen, from Norway





16 comments so far

View JFred's profile

JFred

94 posts in 289 days


#1 posted 06-02-2014 01:45 PM

Very well done

View Stefflus's profile

Stefflus

32 posts in 563 days


#2 posted 06-02-2014 01:46 PM

Oh yeah, the chain is the only storebought metal part. The weight is cast from wheelweights.
Then there’s the glass, I didn’t make that, I just cut it.
And the dial numbers are carved, then filled with bark/oil-paste which once dry was scraped level.

-- -Steffen, from Norway

View sras's profile

sras

3928 posts in 1873 days


#3 posted 06-02-2014 01:51 PM

A beautiful clock, but the wooden mechanism is awesome!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View HillbillyShooter's profile

HillbillyShooter

4858 posts in 1036 days


#4 posted 06-02-2014 03:43 PM

Beautiful clock—any chance of more picture of the inner works?

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View RogerBean's profile

RogerBean

1283 posts in 1697 days


#5 posted 06-02-2014 03:48 PM

Lovely clock. Nice work
Roger

-- "Everybody makes mistakes. A craftsman always fixes them." (Monty Kennedy, "The Checkering and Carving of Gunstocks", 1952)

View Stefflus's profile

Stefflus

32 posts in 563 days


#6 posted 06-02-2014 04:50 PM

HillbillyShooter: I’ll take some pictures on the inside when it’s returned to me from evaluation in a couple of weeks time.

-- -Steffen, from Norway

View cbehnke's profile

cbehnke

85 posts in 1360 days


#7 posted 06-02-2014 05:40 PM

very nice work….the grasshopper escapement is tougher to build and get working compared to the tradition escapements (graham, recoil). very well done.

View Woodbridge's profile

Woodbridge

2848 posts in 1162 days


#8 posted 06-02-2014 05:52 PM

great looking clock. I can only imagine the time and effort required to make the mechanism and all the other parts out of only wood.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112806 posts in 2321 days


#9 posted 06-02-2014 06:37 PM

Great design and outstanding build,a beautiful clock.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View stefang's profile

stefang

13623 posts in 2078 days


#10 posted 06-02-2014 09:22 PM

Wonderful looking clock and having a wooden movement makes it even more special. A wooden clock has been on my ‘to do’ list for many years, but I never seem to get around to actually making one. Maybe it’s the fear factor stopping me.

I found your homemade stains to be very interesting too, especially the red one made from Rognebaer. We have a Rognebaer tree in our yard with a lots of flowers on it this year, so there should be a lot of berries. It might be fun to make a stain from them.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Stefflus's profile

Stefflus

32 posts in 563 days


#11 posted 06-02-2014 10:31 PM

stefang: My recipe is 100g of dried material, either bark or berries or what have you, simmered in 1l of water with 3g of sodium hydroxide (a small teaspoon) for 20 minutes. Strain, filter and reduce to about 3dl. If you want, you can neutralize with 10g of 35% vinegar, but with most raw materials this is detrimental to the stain. Rowan berries are so acidic you might want to double or triple the amount of lye, but still it should be mild enough when finished that it doesn’t feel slippery. It does not seem to damage the wood or interfere with further finishing, but a bit of caution is still adviced, you might not want to use it on something precious unless you feel very confident.

-- -Steffen, from Norway

View Mean_Dean's profile

Mean_Dean

1778 posts in 1891 days


#12 posted 06-03-2014 12:17 AM

Great looking wooden clock! I’ve always been fascinated by these things!

-- Dean

View bobasaurus's profile

bobasaurus

1439 posts in 1928 days


#13 posted 06-03-2014 03:31 AM

That’s really clever and unique. Well done.

-- Allen, Colorado

View Rick's profile

Rick

7279 posts in 1776 days


#14 posted 06-03-2014 06:41 AM

Very Nice Work Indeed Steffen. Thanks For Sharing.

Rick

-- How long is a Minute? That depends on which side of the Bathroom Door You're On!

View Stefflus's profile

Stefflus

32 posts in 563 days


#15 posted 06-03-2014 10:54 AM

Mike: I forgot to mention that the stains I’ve used for the clock have been sitting on the shelf for six months. They were vastly more potent when they were fresh, the Birch bark stain could replicate walnut, and the Rowan was dark purple red, it could almost stain black. But for this I wanted a thinner stain that could be adjusted easily.

-- -Steffen, from Norway

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