English Carriage clock -1

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Project by madburg posted 02-21-2016 01:53 PM 524 views 1 time favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Carriage clocks were originally designed as a portable time piece which could be taken on your travels in a horse and carriage. They have there origins in France in the early 1820’s where by the middle of the 19th century they were mass-produced in large numbers across France.

In England however they were made in limited numbers only for the more affluent members of society. They were made by London chronometer makers, and as such were expensive and of a superb quality, superior to any other clock then available in England. They had a balance wheel, rather than a pendulum escapement as these were not affected by movement.

We usually think of carriage clocks as having a brass or gilt case, with glazed panels to every side. However in England a wooden cased version appeared. This is typical of the style made in the London area between 1815 to 1845.

The style is sometimes called a four glass bracket clock; the dial glass isn’t included in the count! It is made from local Western Australian Jarrah, the first commodity to be exported from the growing colony of Western Australia. It is veneered with vavona, obtained from the roots of a sequoia tree.

The handle is a replica of the elaborate ones used on these clocks. It could be folded flat so the clock could be put into its case for taking on a journey. However, few were actually made with a separate carrying case. It is always good practice not to lift the clock by its handle.

The dentil molding around the top is typical of these clocks. The dial is a replica of the delicate engraved and gilded ones of the period. It has a gilded ‘sight ring’ around the dial.

Another typical feature of your clock is that it is wound and adjusted from the rear. This negates the need for a front opening door and holes in the dial.

Most four glass clocks would strike the hours on a coiled gong, this strikes the hours and half hours on two bells – a ting tang strike.

The movement is by Hermle of Germany, one of the few remaining mechanical clock makers. It has polished brass plates clearly visible through its four beveled lights.

The key is housed inside the back door.

-- Madburg WA

7 comments so far

View RogerBean's profile


1598 posts in 2371 days

#1 posted 02-21-2016 02:23 PM

Very nice work indeed. Enjoyed the carriage clock background.

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

View BurlyBob's profile


3456 posts in 1683 days

#2 posted 02-21-2016 05:19 PM

Beautiful clock. A very classic look to it.

View Druid's profile


1230 posts in 2213 days

#3 posted 02-21-2016 11:38 PM

I hope that you signed and dated it. Sometime in the future, someone will be wondering who the craftsman was who made this beauty.

-- John, British Columbia, Canada

View madburg's profile


140 posts in 261 days

#4 posted 02-22-2016 12:04 AM

I didn’t used to sign things but I now have a small makers button that I inlay in most things.

-- Madburg WA

View AJ1104's profile


208 posts in 1077 days

#5 posted 02-22-2016 02:03 AM

Beautiful clock! Thank you for the details that are the essence of your project. It would be great if you can post a few more pictures From different angles.

-- AJ, Long Island. New York

View Eyal's profile


82 posts in 984 days

#6 posted 02-22-2016 02:14 AM

What a wonderful project with the history that goes with it!
Again, very nicely crafted.

View madburg's profile


140 posts in 261 days

#7 posted 02-22-2016 02:17 AM

See my English carriage clock 2 for a few more pictures – I don’t have any more of this one. It is to same design as number 1, just different woods and a bit of extra stringing.

-- Madburg WA

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