CLOCKS FOR SALE

Dent epicyclical skeleton clock, 1973, after Strutt and Wigstom. $2000 plus shipping. 

During the 1970s, Dent of London worked in collaboration with the exceptionally talented Fred Whitlock in faithfully reproducing technically ingenious skeleton clocks from the past - this English skeleton clock with sun and planets gearing, a triple-weight French skeleton clock and one (the design inspired by the sculptural clockmaker Martin Burgess and has a frame in the shape of the Concorde airplane) with remontoire winding. As with many designs produced by Fred Whitlock and others for Dent in this period, the quality of both the engineering and finish are exceptional. Between November of 1973 and February 1974, Dent of London produced this reproduction of a design by William Strutt of Derby from the late 1820s, and produced them in small numbers by his friend and similarly gifted engineer, William Wigston. The original production ran to only 20 pieces due to the excessive cost. Dent's 1970s production was limited to a run of 100 pieces. The clock features epicyclical gearing, also referred to as 'sun and planets' gearing. Mounted on the central arbor is a large ring with both internal and external teeth. This one wheel gears up the escape wheel, and gears down the hour wheel. A full explanation of epicyclical gearing and this clock in particular is given on pages 99-101 of F.B. Royer-Collards book, SKELETON CLOCKS. The C-scroll brass frame is beautifully finished with soft beveled edges, the pillars secured with massive blued screws. The pendulum bob is similarly beautifully profiled, all giving this clock a very elegant feel. The top of the frame is signed by Fred Whitlock.

When first sold by Dent the retail price was $3500, a lot of money at the time. The Concorde retailed for $10,000. It was the last gasp for the Dent firm where the pricing was simply not what the market was willing to bear and they went out of business in the mid 1970's.

One can see an example the original Strutt here. To be honest, I think Dent made the design a bit more refined with the curvilinear frames slightly less bulky, Breguet style hands, and the pillar screws and two toned dial work being more attractive.

Front elevation