Consolidated Time Lock Co., Cincinnati, Ohio - 2 movements, modular, first design

Back Up Next

Consolidated time lock mounted to Hall's bolt motor. Next the door to the lock open and the front plate of the bolt motor removed. Consolidated and Hall were both owned by the same entity. Hall started out as a safe manufacturer founded by Joseph Hall. Shortly after Hall decided to enter the time lock business he started a separate corporate entity, Consolidated, in order to shield his safe business from the litigious environment that surrounded the time lock business at the time.

 

The prototype modular movements.

The two photos below show another example in the Harry C. Miller lock museum in Nicholasville, KY. This as well as a three movement of the same type is to this author's knowledge the only other examples of this style of time lock.

 

A. c. 1900. This is a rare example of an experimental transitional time lock from the Consolidated company. Beginning in 1887 Yale introduced the first production lock with the feature of interchangeable, modular time locks. Yale used Waltham Watch Co., Waltham, MA, movements beginning with their Type B through E  series of locks to do this. In 1888 Sargent & Greenleaf introduced their concept of modular time lock design with the introduction of individually removable time lock movements of their own manufacture in their model Triple A. Although these movements were not yet truly interchangeable, that would come by 1895. Up to this time any time lock that had more than one movement had these incorporated into one movement plate or were made as matched pairs requiring the change out of both movements, or repair on the spot by an experienced technician; a more expensive proposition. Modularity allowed a simple swap out requiring far less training. The example shown, made around 1900 was Consolidated's first attempt at this problem. Prior to this all of their two movement time locks were combined as matched sets and not interchangeable. To prove the point, both movement dials always had the same serial number marked on both dials. One can see that they abandoned the horizontally mounted platform escapement made by E. Howard for the more a conventional configuration where they are positioned on the same plane as the rest of the movement. The movements are not signed, Mr. John Erroll thinks they were probably made by Seth Thomas, but the design on the platform escapement are similar to those that later appeared on the balance wheel cocks of the Elgin watch movements which later Consolidated used and do not resemble any of the designs that the E. Howard company used for Consolidated or any other time lock maker which employed that company. One can see that Consolidated still clung to the same dial and lever actuator design that connected to the snubber bar. One has to wonder why Consolidated did not simply take their existing single movement design and gang those together. Perhaps the expediency of using an existing pocket watch movement was the answer. This idea was later copied by other makers, Mosler and Banker's Dustproof who used pocket watch movements exclusively in all their models.

Time lock mounted to a contemporaneous Hall automatic bolt motor with original winding lever. The serial number of 7557 on the dial is the highest number encountered indicating that this was one of the last to be made before consolidated shifted to the new dial and modular movements based on Elgin Nat'l Watch Co., Illinois pocket watch movements, see example below. Case (time lock only), 3 1/2"h x 3 3/4"w x 2 3/8"d. Case #1117, movements 7556, #7557. file 202 

Back Up Next

(1). American Genius - Nineteenth Century Bank Locks and Time Locks, John and David Erroll, pg. 314