Grandfather clock build

StanFoster

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I have a lathe sitting in my shop now. I know just enough to be dangerous. A friend is loaning me his lathe for one year to get me hooked on another avenue to go down. I called him today and told him to get that dang thing out of my shop. I dont need any other interests........He knows how I am wired.
 

Sv.grainne

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I have a lathe sitting in my shop now. I know just enough to be dangerous. A friend is loaning me his lathe for one year to get me hooked on another avenue to go down. I called him today and told him to get that dang thing out of my shop. I dont need any other interests........He knows how I am wired.
My new neighbor has an awesome machine shop, moving it next door as his new shop and home are finished. More to come!
 

StanFoster

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Well...at the age of 68...and making a living building curved stairways....I finally ran a lathe for the first time in my life. I HAD to turn these corner spindles and I wanted to train myself. I didnt even know what chisel to use, so I just chucked my white oak into the lathe, put on my faceshield...and trained myself. My methods used would probably roll the eyes of several experienced lathe operators here...just like the way I flew my gyro....but in my opinion...if I ended up getting my spindles turned without any blood...that is just as successful as training myself to fly a gyro. ha

As usual, I went at this like a snail....sneaking up on an ever decreasing piece of wood. The lathe and the wood were my instructors. They both talked to me subtly through the sound and vibrations through my hand held chisel. I would soon learn the "basics". The first one took probably 3 hours of sneaking up on an accurate turned shaft that I used my simple caliper to gauge its ever decreasing diameter. The second one took about half that time. Now, here is where I start getting dangerous. The third only took 45 minutes...as I was getting much bolder and making the lathe talk to me. This was a different mode for me used to building curved stairways. There I added to constantly until I have my finished product. Here, I am removing what is "not" my finished product.
 

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StanFoster

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Next I had to put lengthwise splines on these new turnings. That I am familiar with...and I just made a simple jig that did the job. I simply put 45 degree index marks around the circumference...and lined them up with my jigs pencil mark.

I know my turnings are as basic as it gets for lathe work...but this was a fun learning experience. They now adorn my grandfather clock.
 

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StanFoster

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Here is our grandfather clock sitting in our leisure room awaiting its precious Hermle clockworks coming from Germany. I was told that it might be here "in about 2 months". Yikes! If its actually 2 months...FINE!! Kind of sounds like worse than "in about 2 weeks." Well, one thing I learned about building this clock...you must have the "time".
 

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Mayfield

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I am so appreciative of people that can create beauty with their hands and minds. Proportion, scale, texture, color, etc. The word "Gestalt" sums it up.

Your Michelangelo paraphrased quote, at the end of post 43, is appropriate for an artist.
 
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StanFoster

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I FINALLY received my clockworks from Germany. I was beginning to think I may have been scammed of $5000. My wife KNEW I had been!. Anyway., I now have all the inner workings. I was apprehensive building the grandfather clock case without the works to take real world measurements off of.

But I placed the works inside the hood of the clock, and was extremely pleased to see it follow the straight and curved moondial framing I had made.

I have the pendulum, brass encased weights,, clock hands, 9 musical polished brass pipes to go inside the clock.

I have not the time right now, but I will soon have the time.
 

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Tyger

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I have the pendulum, brass encased weights,, clock hands, 9 musical polished brass pipes to go inside the clock.
I have not the time right now, but I will soon have the time.
Well... what good is a clock if you don't have the time??

Q: Why is there no clock in the tower of Pisa?
A: It has the inclination, but not the time. 😊
 

StanFoster

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I finished my grandfather clock a month ago and forgot to upload the finished pictures here. The Westminster chimes in this clock beautifully resonate over the solid white oak back I put on my clock. It literally sounds like it is 30 feet tall.

I put my heart and soul into this. At my age of 68....and a woodworker for 40 if those years....I had never run a lathe....and was too stubborn to hire having some other woodworker make a part of my clock. Those 4 corner turnings with the flutes were my first ever experience at running a lathe. I was very pleased how they turned out.
 

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StanFoster

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By the way....the moon dial has not been adjusted yet....

JR....you of all people here being into astronomy would have picked up on that. This works is geared such that every three years I have to back off one tooth on the moon dial gear as it's geared to a 29.5 day lunar month....when in reality it's 29.47 ?? days I recall without cheating and googling it.

So far I haven't had to fine tune the pendulum. It's keeping perfect time according to my phone. There is a very fine threaded screw that each turn and à half changes the time to one minute a day.
 

WaspAir

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JR....you of all people here being into astronomy would have picked up on that. This works is geared such that every three years I have to back off one tooth on the moon dial gear as it's geared to a 29.5 day lunar month....when in reality it's 29.47 ?? days I recall without cheating and googling it
Pretty darn close - it's a variation of .03 from 29.5, but in the other direction (29.53 vs. 29.47) for a synodic month (average value) Good show!
 

okikuma

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I
I finished my grandfather clock a month ago and forgot to upload the finished pictures here. The Westminster chimes in this clock beautifully resonate over the solid white oak back I put on my clock. It literally sounds like it is 30 feet tall.

I put my heart and soul into this. At my age of 68....and a woodworker for 40 if those years....I had never run a lathe....and was too stubborn to hire having some other woodworker make a part of my clock. Those 4 corner turnings with the flutes were my first ever experience at running a lathe. I was very pleased how they turned out.
Fantastic work Stan. Always the craftsman!

Wayne
 

GyroChuck

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Stan, The clock like all your work looks great. Do you still have your shop. I drove by it a while ago on my way to S. Carolina. looked like the gate was closed. GPS took me a weird way from 55 to 57.
 

okikuma

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Stan, The clock like all your work looks great. Do you still have your shop. I drove by it a while ago on my way to S. Carolina. looked like the gate was closed. GPS took me a weird way from 55 to 57.
Whatever happened to sitting down with a map or sectional, reviewing and familiarizing one's route to their destination (and alternates) in their brain before leaving the house for a driving trip or for a flight? Blindly traveling without any pre-familiarization or clue how to get from point A to point B and expecting the GPS to make all the decisions is very fallible. Automotive GPS are programmed by the directionally challenged for the directionally challenged.

Wayne
 

StanFoster

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Chuck....I am retired and doing what I love....building stairways! I have been so blessed to look forward going to my "occupation"...I still refuse to call it work...all my stairbuilding career.....then to retire from it and yet continue on into it without missing a beat.

My whole stair building career I would hear people say...."I cant wait to retire from my job"....

I always thought that was a shame...and yet is a reality with many people.

Do what you love doing and you seldom will call your occupation work.

I will build curved stairways as long as I can.....or until I no longer enjoy it. :)
 

Sv.grainne

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Stan:

I loved what I did when I was working but did not like where I was or who I was working for. I called it quits at 55 and have not regretted a moment.

You are very fortunate.
 
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