We were in an old one room schoolhouse. It had been built by a millionaire in tribute to his mom. That made it a bit fancier than your ordinary school. But it was old and finally moved and restored. It was fortunate. We don’t keep most things once they are abandoned. There was an old Seth Thomas clock on the wall. I’m a bit more conversant with old clocks now. It’s amazing what a year of experience brings. There’s a label behind the glass door. What’s goofy is that I have the same clock with the same label. My door has a mirror (the old one was probably replaced). But, it’s neat to see something old that I have reference with. Yawn! But to me it’s special to realize that my bargain purchase is legitimate. I paid so little I was afraid it was a complete fake.
I visited this place in Bridgeville around 2015. At the time I heard a lot of ticking and a lot of chiming on the hour. I know a lot more in the past year. I’ve got a few clocks. I did not seek them. They sort of jumped up and grabbed me as I went by. The price was right. They (the clocks) all work. Or, they can be made to work. It’s cool. I have seen a $35,000 clock. And I have heard tales of another for $80k. No, my price is way lower. I’m purely dabbling. I don’t want another. It’s just that they keep jumping up and grabbing me…
I’ve been watching wind up clocks. You know, the pendulum style wind up kind. Price is important. I’m not spending much. It helps if the clock works. It’s easier said than done – to find a working wind up clock. There were a lot of Korean made clocks. And there are China made clocks. I chanced upon this Seth Thomas. That would be old. Or… maybe not. They can date back to the 1800’s. And they were a clock company until 2009. I don’t know all that much. However, it looks old and there is a Seth Thomas label on the inside. There has also been some work done to replace the glass. Henceforth, the belly reflection. I probably knew it, but chose to ignore my misshapen selfie. And therein lies the companion photo. It jiggles. It was a stand-on-this ride. Meanwhile, I need to stop looking at clocks.
Oakland, Maryland. Junior was tucked in a corner and had been marked down three times. “Lightbulb!” Look up the brand to find it’s provenance and worth. Ah! The price is less than you can get on eBay. It’s not pretty. It runs. The key!? No key! I need to get one. Surprisingly, most clocks and keys are separated from one another. It’s not a universal key. But one can be had on Amazon. Is there anything they don’t stock? Yes, parts for my Kieninger movement clock! Yes, the grandfather now has a grand baby. It’s a New England Clock Company steeple clock… just like the picture on the internet. ….needs work…right, twice a day.
It’s sad. My grandfather clock was an hour fast per day. When it broke down, it was correct twice a day (old joke). I suddenly had a very expensive paperweight in my living room (true life). That would never do. I had turned a working clock into trash. eBay! The replacement part retailed for $649. No!! I did not pay a fraction for the used works. Auction, bidding, success! (Long story short) $10.50 and postage was paid by the seller!
It did not fit. “Shit!” Oh, well, despair again! (Hey! I’m trying to fit a long story into a paragraph or two.) Old adage – in brain surgery – “if it doesn’t fit, …force it.” At the end an extra screw is not what you want to be seeing. I bet that makes you happy you asked? Nope, I finally used the auction part to tell me where all the gears went and in what order. Voila! Yes!! Really!!! I fit all those pieces and gears back in and I got it to work. It needs fine tuning. And in the course of things I found out why the clock doesn’t work right in the first place. Unfortunately, there was a piece broken before I ever messed with it. But now I’m ok to take a Kieninger clockwork apart. I can reassemble it with a little help. It’s mechanical. No jewels. No quartz. No springs. Hey, it’s not brain surgery!
A broken clock has the right time twice a day. My sad tale begins with that grandfather clock (see previous post) gaining an hour a day. My friend adjusted the pendulum. That failed. The next thing you know – “boing…” – as in cogs and wheels all over the place. Be careful what you unscrew. I have no lack of ego or confidence. Wrong! Bad! The “cat is outta the bag.” I got a lot of parts like an impossible puzzle that needs to be put together. Online – the replacement is $649. No way! Ebay! The choices were poor. And the prices were high too. Ebay auction – the price started at .99 cents. One week later I won the auction at $10.50. Let’s see if the part fits and works. Otherwise my bargain clock is now a very large paperweight.