Ticking and Chiming and Gongs, Oh My!

I did it!!!!! It’s finished – and it’s SO wonderful!!!!! My clock is done and on the wall, eye candy, and if there is such a thing, ear candy, too! 😀

Now that I’ve used up my quota of exclamation points for the entire post… 😉

Tile Fireplace 008

What a project! My extra parts order arrived from Klockit yesterday, and although I had many other things I really was supposed to be doing, there was just no way I could bear to wait even one more day to complete this project. (Apologies to anyone who was expecting an email from me yesterday…) It was a nitpicky project with what seemed like 200 little steps, many of which were challenging in one way or another, and at one point I realized that the most important thing I could do was to focus on what just the next step was going to be. Otherwise I was going to find myself very overwhelmed very quickly.

If you want to get up to speed on this project before reading this last installment, the first post is HERE, and the second is HERE. And to visit it on my Ravelry project page, click HERE.

The basic goal was to mount the movement, speaker, pendulum drive, and bezel onto the case, add the dial, and hang her on the wall. Of course, nothing is ever quite so easy as the basic goal. What actually happened took 4-5 hours was more like this:

  1. Briwax the case (after I gave up trying to remember where I put the color I wanted and settled for the darkest of those I could lay my hands on quickly)
  2. Mount the movement. This was a serious challenge until I came up with a plan of attack. The object was to have the shaft of the movement centered on the face of the clock. However, there wasn’t a simple hole in the case. Rather, there was an off center, large rectangular cut out. The movement wasn’t symmetrical either, and if I got this off center, it was really going to show in the finished project, because the bezel holes were factory drilled and on center. I finally resolved the problem by taping lengths of crochet cotton in line with the miters on the face, letting them crisscross at the center. Tile Fireplace 007I measured from this center point to mark the edges of the hole. Then I got the leftover carpet tape from when I installed the carpeting upstairs and used it to temporarily attach the movement inside the case. This way I could align it while looking at the front, but it would stay in place when I turned it over. Of course, from then on through the project, I had to take extra care to hang the edge of the clock off the workspace, because the shaft was protruding in front. For some reason, the movement didn’t come with any mounting screws, so that was another challenge – finding screws that were long enough and thin enough to do the job. The only thing I could come up with was a little too long, but since it would be behind the face, I used them anyway and flush cut the points off after I had them installed.
  3. Next I needed to mount the speaker. This required another screw hunt, but also a bit of acrobatic work between me and the clock. The speaker went into the top, and although I have a smallish drill, there just wasn’t a lot of room to work in that case with the movement in place, the case is heavy, and of course, I was limited in how it could lay on the table. By this point, I was very much in love with my carpet tape! Then there was the surprise discovery that there was a lot of wire hanging loose. I’d taken an odd  clip off the outside of the case when I started work and tossed it in my odds and ends in the tool chest. I dug it out and mounted it inside the case to hold the speaker wire out of the way.
  4. My solution for the problem with the pendulum hitting the inside of the case turned out to be purchasing something that was called a movement case. It’s designed to hold a small quartz movement and add a pendulum to its function. It didn’t say so on the site, but it’s actually a pendulum only drive – no clockwork in it, and it was precisely what I needed. That was the good thing. The bad thing is that it had to be mounted below the open area in the back, as high as I could put it in that area, and of course, level and centered. ClockThis photo was taken at a bit of a downward angle, so it looks like there was a lot of room to maneuver, but actually, the back piece is very close to exactly level with the light colored wood where the pendulum drive is mounted. There was also a screw protruding into the case right where the pendulum drive needed to be. It turned out that this was a screw I was able to replace with something shorter and absolutely perfect. I’d have never have been able to get the drive in without the tape to help me. And whenever I have to replace the battery on the pendulum drive, I’m going to crab and complain the whole time I’m doing it, as it is sandwiched into a narrow crawlspace between the front and back boards. But you know, it looks fantastic on the wall, and it really was worth doing it. 🙂
  5. Next I put the bezel on. Even this couldn’t be an entirely easy job. I’d been thrilled that the one bezel in the style I needed at Klockit was also the exact size I needed. I was even more amazed to find that the hinge holes that were factory drilled were a perfect match for the hinge pins on my bezel. On the other hand, the latch hole was an eighth of an inch too low. I had to remove the plastic plug that lined the latch hole, fill the hole (with wood putty that I first had to reconstitute), paint it over to blend with the case, and drill a new hole – which predictably enough was not a perfect fit for the plug. E6000 to the rescue… 🙂 The edge of the metal on the bezel is very sharp, so I can officially claim that here is both a lot of sweat and blood gone into this project…
  6. Finally – time to mount the dial! Of course, this is where I realized I’d not yet washed and blocked the knitting. :/ In my defense, I had already picked out one or two of the final rows of knitting in order to make it lay nicer, and I didn’t know until I got to the point of mounting if I was going to have to remove one more. However, here I was SO close to being done, and I had to wait for wool to dry… I put a lot of time into getting the face seated onto the metal disk perfectly as possible, while tightening everything as much as I could without risking breaking my drawstring of Palette yarn.  I couldn’t find the blow dryer, so I had a very long, impatient pace (well… actually, I cast on a new project to distract myself) until I was able to see the final project – and I was VERY late to bed, but do you blame me for that?

So while I was waiting for things to dry, I spent better than 20 minutes getting all the supplies and tools put away. I was amazed at the list of things that it took for me to make this project and decided it would be fun to write a list.

  • 11 colors of Knit Picks yarn
  • Clockwork Tam pattern
  • Computer and Knit Visualizer charting program
  • Printer paper
  • Circular knitting needles
  • Straight knitting needles
  • Sewing up needle
  • Scissors
  • Eucalan
  • Little wash tub
  • Recycled clock case
  • Quartz chiming movement (and included hardware)
  • Pendulum drive
  • Pendulum shaft and bob
  • 3 batteries
  • Bezel
  • Clock hands
  • Special order metal disk
  • Bias Tape
  • E6000
  • Crochet cotton
  • Scotch tape
  • Utility scissors
  • Drill
  • 4 different drill bits
  • Wood file
  • Sharpie Marker
  • Razor saw
  • 4 different screwdrivers
  • Screws of many sorts
  • Wood filler
  • Acrylic paint
  • Pliers
  • Briwax
  • Paper towels
  • Carpet Tape
  • Scrap paper (for measuring inside where nothing else fit)
  • Water
  • Ruler
  • Undu
  • Trash bag (to protect work space)
  • And a lead anchor in the wall 😀

So, it’s done, and I’m floating! It’s exciting not only to have conceptualized this, but to have had enough serendipity that it came out far above and beyond what I’d first visualized. I can’t think what would make me happier with this clock, and how often do you finish a project with that level of satisfaction? And if I needed even one more thing to make me happy, the clock shop where I bought the case quoted me $175 for the exact movement I used. I came home and bought all the parts, including the really nice movement from Klockit, and with case, parts, yarn, pattern, and custom ordered sheet metal disk, the entire project was still well under the $175 they wanted for just the movement. 🙂

And so I wander off to my evening’s work to the tune of the Westminster chimes, which according to an inscription in clocktower of Big Ben, prays:

All through this hour,

Lord, be my guide,

And by Thy power

No foot shall slide.



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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. fantastic!!! you are a real ARTIST..
    all the best

  2. Thank you, Christa! That is a lovely compliment, and I really appreciate it. 🙂

  3. That’s awesome!

  4. Thanks, Emilee!

  5. Gorgeous! That’s a wonderful example of “Dream. Believe. Do.”

  6. Fabulous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (now you have more !s to work with) 🙂 Truly a work of art!

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