Grandfathers electric mantel clock
by Karen Connolly
My grandfather, when he was alive, knew that I liked clocks as a child, so he gave me an old electric clock.
It's a beautiful clock, if a little large. I have never seen another like it anywhere. It's rectangular with two art deco style blocks of wood on each end. It has a rectangular front opening. The face has Roman numerals.
I believe he bought it just after he got married and that it was second hand. He married in 1926 if that's any help.
It used to have Westminster Chimes. The little hammers are still there but unfortuanately my grandfather had the chimes removed.
What makes this clock unique is the works.
The back opens up. I have had the electric wire replaced because I wanted to have it running and the wire was threadbare and dangerous. This clock still works and still keeps good time. The little hammers do work but they are out of sink now going off at five past the hour instead of the hour.
They used to chime at the quarter, half, quarter 'till and on the hour it would count the hour.
As I said, what makes this clock so unique is the works. It is electric and has a huge magnet that rotates to drive the works. It has a normal clock works its just that its run by this ectromagnet.
The dimensions of the clock are 12" side by 4" deep. and the magnet inside is approx 2" diameter.
The french polish has suffered and is now a little damaged and has a couple of scratches on the top, but then, I've moved a lot.
The make on the top of the face says "Smiths Empire", and it says "Made in England" on the bottom of the face.
It has the original instructions on the inside door of the back door.
I would love to get some chimes installed in this and the french polish restored, but is it worth it?
What is it worth as it is and if it was restored, anyone know?