Grey WT on eBay UK.


Another C40A WT, No.330, has come up on eBay and is attracting strong bidding. This one is remarkably complete and seems to be in good overall condition. Though with some open questions as to its electrical functionality. [See note below:]

The vendor is to be complimented on his photography. Though the purist will always prefer a blank and neutral background. Cardboard packaging is easily obtainable in suitable sizes to hide any background distraction. It will also also make the most of the item without over or under exposure. No attempt has been made to conceal anything.

NOTE: The seller has now confirmed the coils are in working order. Well worth knowing IMHO. I speak as one palmed off at a Midlands Clock Fair with an expensive master clock with dead coils by a well known dealer of the time.

The mainframe is of the early, organically curved design. It appears to have been repainted grey some time ago. I cannot be sure whether the original dark turquoise (aquamarine?) of the upper pendulum rod is the correct colour for all of this particular mainframe. This same aquamarine colour is seen overall on my own WT and appears thicker and more uniform than this grey.

Later WTs were all painted grey but matching the earlier aquamarine would be possible today with computerized paint mixing readily available. The curved mainframe is definitely early and would probably not have been painted grey at the factory. Later mainframes were painted grey but have a straight, diagonal bar above the pendulum drive electromagnets to confirm their [relative] youth.

The brass/bronze parts are all beautifully gold lacquered in keeping with the period and well shown here. Later examples would have plated details with a matt, silvery appearance.

The coils of the drive electromagnets are bandaged. Suggesting a slightly later date than my own, waxed coils on a very similar WT which was ascribed to just pre-WW2. So perhaps this one dates from the 1940s?

My original concern was the appearance of stray, coil and contact [wire] tails. It seems the main wiring loom [a simple black, twin, coiled wire] running along the base of the main frame has been removed. If the delicate tails are still sound and provide the correct resistance reading on connection to a DMM, then fine.

If not, then major rewinding of at least one of the huge coils may be required. This is almost bound to spoil the original appearance and is very undesirable in a collector's item of this rarity and likely winning auction bid.

Thankfully the seller has now confirmed the coils are still functional. The buyer should carefully avoid any strain on these fine wires during restoration.

The original time setting dial and pointer are present as are the vital worm and worm wheel. The small, hand crank, for rapidly setting the time is absent, but easily replaced. The setting dial itself is easily cleaned and re-silvered with 'old style' 18th century, white, silver salts. NOT modern silvering salts! [See previous blog post for more details.]

Early, adjustable base, cast brass, contact steady bars are correct for the period and seem to have been fitted with nice, new contacts. The Hipp toggle and V-block are both here.

As is the sloping toggle damper rod. The end would be furnished with rubber hose originally. This was to stop the Hipp toggle rattling unduly and to greatly reduce the chance of a rebound on the return swing of the pendulum. I find clear silicone, model fuel hose ideal as it is soft and does not offend the eye.

A nice compliment of bevel wheels are shown in the rear views of this WT movement. Only one more bevel wheel and several, universal [expansion] joints are missing if it was really desired to run four dials on a proper clock tower. At present this WT movement will drive the hands of only one dial [off to the right when viewed from the front] without adding more [very simple] drive couplings.

These beautiful bevel wheels are always good to have for their rarity and are all but irreplaceable today. Their golden sheen from the deep, original lacquer is always a  delight to see and well shown here in these excellent images.

There is, of course, no need to drive a dial at all. The WT makes an excellent and rather hypnotic, active display item. The usual loud clonks are easily tamed [if desired] to achieve domestic acceptability.

The pendulum bob and lower rod should [arguably] be repainted to match the aquamarine mainframe just to achieve an original, uniform look. Though some WT bobs were indeed painted to make them more noticeable and less dangerous in a dark, confined space like a cramped, clock room. The bob is really quite heavy and, when swinging normally, will punish clumsy or curious extremities. This is a powerful clock and was always intended to be!

Accurate too, in conjunction with the usual, Gents' Pulsynetic master clock. The seller also has an early Pulsynetic master clock for sale. The once-every-half-minute, brief, timekeeping pulse is vital. Or the WT will simply gain and gain. It is also nice to see the fascinating, Waiting Train mechanism in action and this also requires the brief, timekeeping pulse to operate.

Based on the photographs, this WT looks to be easily restoreable with [mostly] cosmetic decisions to be made. The finish is, of course, entirely a matter of personal taste for the new owner. There appears to be no vital, mechanical components missing for normal functionality. The obvious exception to completeness is the missing wiring.

I repeat for clarity: The seller has now confirmed the coils are indeed in working order.

Link to eBay[UK] auction: [Collection only in Northern England.]

Turret Clock | eBay

CORRECTION: The winning losing bid was £1,382.97 RESERVE NOT MET. 
A disappointing result. Sorry I had earlier suggested there had been a winning bid.

I have cropped and sharpened some of the original auction images shown here for educational purposes only.
My endless, blog scribbling is entirely voluntary and I make no financial gain whatsoever. 

Click on any image for an enlargement. 

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