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Verge & Foliot details

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Doug Grove14/05/2009 18:45:36
2 forum posts
Hello all,
 
I am interested in building a verge and foliot clock based on original pre-17th century pieces. Alas, I have been entirely unable to find any source for information on dimensions from extant period pieces. Either scaled drawings or photos with a measuring device would be wonderful. Does anyone know of any such resource, or perhaps have ready access to a museum that would allow detailed photos to be taken?
 
Many thanks,
 
Doug
keithmart14/05/2009 22:03:05
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165 forum posts

Hi

See if you can locate this book, it looks promising.

How to Make a Foliot Clock, by Steven Conover

 

Keith

Leeds UK

D.C.Clark15/05/2009 19:06:44
16 forum posts
8 photos
Hello,
 
I purchased Conover's book some years ago and made my own adaptation of his design: added a minute hand, used a cycloidal gear cutter instead of home made triangular tooth cutter, made a windlass for braided brass weight cord, and other practical and aesthetic changes.
 
I've created an album here and posted some photos.
 




I can recommend the book as a good introduction to the design.  I'm not myself interested in making an exact copy of anything, preferring to pursue my own ideas.
 
You don't say where you are located.  I've visited many clock museums in Europe, and can also suggest the museum and library of the NAWCC in Pennsylvania.   see:
 
http://www.nawcc.org/

Best regards,
 
DC
 
David Clark in Southern Maryland, USA

 


Stephen Benson18/05/2009 21:55:10
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203 forum posts
68 photos
I would say that John Wildings building a 16th century style clock would also fit the bill and its still in print I bought my copy from  Ian Cobb it has full drawings and instructions included.
Steve
Gep Engler20/07/2009 14:42:14
14 forum posts
3 photos
Dear friends,
 
After having build a few simple steam engines and some tooling, I am currently building my first clock.
It is a very simple foliot clock based on this design:
 
Although the winding mechanism is still to be made, the clock runs since last night with a temporary weight. See the attached pictures.
 
Best regards from The Netherlands,
Gep 



Martin Cottrell20/07/2009 21:35:23
297 forum posts
18 photos
Hi Gep,
 
Your clock looks great and would seem to be a fairly simple project for a first attempt at clock making. I had a quick look at the website that you listed but unfortunately my Dutch is not  quite good enough to enable me to translate the notes included on the plan! Do you know if the plans are available in English?
 
Regards, Martin.
D.C.Clark20/07/2009 22:02:23
16 forum posts
8 photos
Nice job, very handsome.  How did you make the dial?
 
Best regards,
 
David Clark in Southern Maryland, USA
Gep Engler23/07/2009 13:02:05
14 forum posts
3 photos

Hi David,

 

I had a full size picture of a dial (can send you a JPG if you wish).

Made a photocopy; glued this on 1 mm iron sheet with "Bison Tix" (a thixotropic contact adhesive).

Spayed this a few times with clear acryl varnish.

Cut the outside with my bench shear (I was to lazy for the piercing saw!).

Drilled both the 3 mm mounting holes (through the numbers XII and the VI).

Marked the centre of the dial with a centre punch.

 

I made a "backplate" from MDF and mounted the scale with 2 small screws that fitted tightly in the mounting holes of the dial..

With the backplate in the 4 jaw chuck, I centred the dial.

Turned the outside to shape.

Removed the dial from the backplate (but left the backplate in the chuck).

Cut the large inside hole with a piercing saw.

Mounted the dial again on the backplate and turned the inside.

 

Smoothed outside and inside with fine sandpaper.

Finally I applied a few more layers of varnish.

Dial ready.

 

Best regards from The Netherlands,

Gep
keithmart23/07/2009 16:06:51
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165 forum posts

Hi

QUOTE:

Dutch is not quite good enough to enable me to translate the notes included on the plan

Foreign languages are no longer the problem they used to be. try some of the electronic translators. google Dutch to English.

Regards

keithmart

 

Leeds UK

Edited By keithmart on 23/07/2009 16:07:50

Gep Engler23/07/2009 16:16:42
14 forum posts
3 photos

Hi Martin,

Sorry for you: you will have to learn the simplest language on earth (at least for me): Dutch! May be, you have any native speaking Dutch around that might assist you?


I do not expect that there will be an English translation available. But, as you can see on the low-resolution drawing, the description is very limited. And there is at least one significant failure in the drawings I have.

As I never made a clock before, there were several details and skills I had to "invent" myself. For instance: the most extensive description is for the 96 tooth wheel, and it only reads:

"Gearwheel 96T of brass. Copy shape of teeth from drawing. Cut-in with normal saw and shape wit small file. Teeth do not need to be exactly identical. Space between teeth somewhat wider than with of tooth."

And the drawing of this item bears a note: "Glue on and saw"

I did not expect that it would make great fun to make the gearwheel (5 mm thick brass, 96 teeth) in this way.

So I did it  the vertical milling machine with a 1,5 mm slitting saw: one run with the slitting saw 5mm above centre and another run 5 mm below centre. And finally some filing.

I used my rotary table. But before starting gear cutting, I decided to first make a dividing set (dividing plate and arms)…….


I think, it is indeed the simplest possible clock, so ideal for a beginner.

 

Last update:
The chain runs via pulleys now and I hope to start making the winding mechanism this evening. I will leave making the weights until the end.

 

Good luck!

And best regards from The Netherlands.

Gep

Edited By Gep Engler on 23/07/2009 16:36:43

Martin Cottrell23/07/2009 21:08:18
297 forum posts
18 photos
Posted by keithmart on 23/07/2009 16:06:51:

 Foreign languages are no longer the problem they used to be. try some of the electronic translators. google Dutch to English.

 
Hi Keithmart,
 
Thanks for that info, had no idea such a service was available.  If I get the plans I will give it a go!
 
Regards, martin.
Martin Cottrell23/07/2009 21:18:06
297 forum posts
18 photos
Hi Gep
 
Thanks for the information. Unfortunately I have no Dutch speaking friends but Keithmart has suggested that I try to find a translation service via Google. It can do no harm to try that...who knows, if the translation is not as good as it should be I might end up making a windmill instead of a clock!!
 
Keep posting the pictures of your clock as you progress with it. Is there any chance of putting a video of it running onto Youtube so we can see it working?
 
Regards, Martin.
Gep Engler24/07/2009 00:47:22
14 forum posts
3 photos

Hi Martin,

 

Here, you can find a translation service:

http://babelfish.yahoo.com/

For my work, I occasionally used this service (since a few month I am retired).

But be warned: do not expect really good results. But it is good enough to get an idea.

 

Regards from the country of windmills, wooden shoes, and tulips,

 

Gep

Home page: http://home.tiscali.nl/gepengler/index.html (should be updated; pictures are old!)

 

For the fun, I used this service to translate my original text above from English to Dutch and than back to English. The result is like English manuals of Chinese electronics:

 

Hello Martin, here, can find you vertaaldienst: http://babelfish.yahoo.com/ for my work, now used I and then this service (since a couple month I have been withdrawn). But it is warned: expect really no good results. But get it is well enough an idea. Regard of the country of wind mills, wooden shoes, and tulips, Gep Homepage: http://home.tiscali.nl/gepengler/index.html (would have be updated; the pictures are old!)
Martin Cottrell26/07/2009 21:55:18
297 forum posts
18 photos
Hi Gep,
 
Fantastic & very funny! This does indeed explain how we get those awful English manuals that accompany everything Chinese. (It seems almost everything you buy is made in China now!!). It is nice to know that some things in life are still better with human interaction rather than being done by machine or computers!
 
Regards, Martin.
Gep Engler29/10/2009 18:05:31
14 forum posts
3 photos
Posted by Martin Cottrell on 23/07/2009 21:18:06:
Hi Gep
 
Thanks for the information. Unfortunately I have no Dutch speaking friends but Keithmart has suggested that I try to find a translation service via Google. It can do no harm to try that...who knows, if the translation is not as good as it should be I might end up making a windmill instead of a clock!!
 
Keep posting the pictures of your clock as you progress with it. Is there any chance of putting a video of it running onto Youtube so we can see it working?
 
Regards, Martin.
 Hi Martin,
 
Sorry for the late response. This summer, I had a breakdown of my computer.
I bought a new one and was condemned to Windows Vista.
So it took sume time until (most of) my software was running again.
 
In the meantime, my foliot clock is fully functional.
Today, I edited and uploaded a short videoclip of this clock.
 
Furthermore, I did some research on the WEB and found that the drawings I used, may be based on one of the following books in English language:
and
 
Keep us informed when you indeed build one yourself!
 
Good luck and best regards,
Gep
 
Gep Engler21/01/2010 23:40:44
14 forum posts
3 photos
Dear friends,
 
Further to my previous posts:
 
In the meantime, I have moved my homepage to: http://home.kpn.nl/gep2/index.html
 
And the page related to my clock (pictures & video) is: http://home.kpn.nl/gep2/Sub-pagina's/Klok.htm
 
Best regards from The Netherlands,
Gep
DMB16/02/2010 20:27:48
1012 forum posts
Hi Doug,
Just read your message about Foliot clocks. I am sure that one was described in Model Engineer - 1980`s??
Perhaps David (Editor) could enlighten us?
John
Gep Engler17/02/2010 00:14:04
14 forum posts
3 photos
Hi Doug & John,
 
I had a look on this site for "foliot":
 
And found these two references:
Year
Volume
Issue
Page
Author
Title
Notes
1986
157
3791
700
John Wilding
A Weight Driven Brass Alarm Clock
The pallet, the foliot mounting collet, the foliot, the foliot weights, initial tests, the jockey weight and pulley
1994
172
3962
145
Douglas Follett
Replica Arnstad Cross-beat Clock
'Scape wheel tooth profile. Impulse angle, Meccano model, carriage and verges, foliot arms, meshing gears
 
Probably, John refers to the first one.
Hope this helps!
 
Best regards from The Netherlands,
Gep
 
 
 
Richard Parsons30/08/2010 16:28:57
avatar
645 forum posts
33 photos
 

The foliot clock escapement is one of the larger escapements. It has several forms one of which you can find here. This is the most fascinating form of the equipment by God’s Clockmaker one Richard of Wallingford (have often had a drink or two in that town). The best example of is in St Albans Cathedral (it is a replica). It has been added to since I last saw it circa 2002. The Astronomical clock which was not there in 2002 looks fascinating. But it is Big!. There is another one (probably original) in Salisbury Cathedral which is here. It is a bit older. These clocks or Clochers (from the French for bell) rang bells (as in the song Frere Jakquer .. Sonnez la matina etc) so they originally had no dials.

On the later smaller domestic machines these normally had a dial but with one hand. The verge escapement often used hog bristles ti limit the swing of the foliot arm. There is a Foliot watch in the Asmolean Museum Oxford which also contained a Sundial and compass and an alarm. From the inscriptions on it it was made for a ‘Hansea merchant’. It refers to Lubek, Riga etc. It was the super Rolex of its day and would have cost serious money. That would be a beauty to make. I will try and find the photos of it if anyone is serious. To our Dutch friends, if you will promise never again to sail up the Medway and burn our ships in Chatham, I will see if any of my contacts are still alive. They may be able help you.

There is a good article in Britten’s Watch and Clockmakers Dictionary. The verge and foliot were not accurate time keeps

Richard Parsons08/09/2010 16:01:36
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645 forum posts
33 photos
Does any one know how to calculate the beatb period of a Verge and Foliot system?

Edited By Richard Parsons on 08/09/2010 16:02:12

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