Dial Design

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Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (3).jpg (169751 bytes) The movement had provisions for dial hands through the use of motion works. So it was assumed a dial was contemplated, however there was no evidence of a dial having ever been attached anywhere on the frame. Choosing the dial size proved to be more challenging than would first appear. This photo shows the size I would have preferred if there were no problems.
Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (4).jpg (186125 bytes) However, problems there were. The movement had several areas that could not be covered with dial work. The winding squares were first amongst these. Furthermore, the pendulum and it's suspension were to be positioned behind the dial, presenting other points that would have to be avoided. Because of this, the dial also had to be easily removed to gain access to the pendulum. This photo shows an alternate layout that was appealing, but impractical.
Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (2).jpg (163449 bytes) This diameter met the clearance criterion, but was too large for my taste.
Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (1).jpg (244124 bytes) Since the former dial size was too large, the next size down that could be used was this one. While a bit smaller than I'd liked, it was the best compromise I could make given the circumstances. Ouside diameter is 11".

 

Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (6).JPG (560379 bytes) A paper mockup was made to ensure that all critical areas of clearance were met. Note the position of the winding squares.
Brass framed tower clock-Saff-dial work (8).JPG (570760 bytes) I had a good idea of what style I had in mind. I wanted a minimalist look, to allow as much of the movement, escapement and pendulum to show. This is were I wanted the focus to be. The dial used by William Congreve on his epicyclic clock filled the criterion. The numbers had a nice, readable design. The dial was two toned with the numbers being silver with the outer and inner rings brass. I thought this would add to the readability of the numbers against the brass background of the movement yet minimize the intrusion of the overall dial on the movement.
Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (21).jpg (115219 bytes) A pattern was developed on a CAD machine and a dial was cut by wire EDM.
Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (22).jpg (56192 bytes) Finished dial.
Brass tower clock-Saff-dial work (23).jpg (645953 bytes) Dial installed on clock, before final polish and finishing. Notice how all of the recreated parts and systems reflect the designs of the original maker. The heart-shaped pendulum 'key hole' cutouts and dial hands match that of the center going train frame design. The bell hammer support frames and pendulum suspension subsystems match the curvilinear design of the two strike frames.
         Brass tower clock-Saff (72).JPG (917701 bytes) A close up of the dial work and movement behind after polishing. There is a plethora of reflecting surfaces and shimmering movement.

In the end, after the dial and movement was completed, the dial size proved to be just right.

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