Clockmaking

Unique clocks, hand-crafted by a master clockmaker in the UK

The Uk has long had a fine tradition of clockmaking. Throughout the last 5 centuries clockmakers have endeavoured to use the best skills, science, materials, and tooling available to make mechanical clocks. As a company, Simmonds Clockmaking Ltd we continue to use this traditional approach today, using materials such as the latest steels, including stainless steel, hard brasses, glass, titanium, carbon fibre, and where appropriate CNC precision machining to complete our unique and bespoke designed clocks. 
We are specialist designers and makers of unique mechanical clocks with over 30 years experience. All of our clocks are bespoke and made to order, from original pieces designed by Richard to the reproduction of historical pieces. If you wish to commission a unique clock made by our specialists, contact Simmonds clockmaking Ltd for something truly unique. 
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Month running astronomical regulator

This clock was designed to be accommodated by a room with 14' (4260mm) high ceilings, and so stands 8'4" (2525mm) high. It is wound once a month, and features a grasshopper escapement, the design of which is based on American research carried out in 1974. In this instance the escapement is inverted and is at the base of the movement in order to be clearly visible. It is fascinating to watch. The clock strikes both the hour and half hours, the half hour striking on two bells especially cast for this clock at the Whitechapel Bell Foundry. There are three hands on the main chapter ring of the dial, two of which show the time in the conventional way. The third hand is silver, and shows the passage of the planet Jupiter around the sun.
Astronomical regular clock
One of the original concepts of the clock was to show the passing of time on a longer scale than human life. The hand of Jupiter takes 4330 days, 14 hours and 38 minutes to travel once round the dial. This it does in an anti-clockwise direction, as this is the direction the solar system actually travels. The motto etched in the circumference of the scale reads: "Jupiter's orbit is 4330 days, 14 hours and 38 minutes. Its hand passes the present point 5.9 times during three score years and ten." 

The base plate of the dial is glass, allowing all movement to be observed. The left hand upper dial shows the sun travelling through the sky, its time of rising and setting being shown by a rising and falling shutter, on which the constellation of Orion is displayed. As the year progresses the plate falls thus showing an earlier sunrise time, and allows the sun to appear sooner in the scale. The time of the sunset is also extended - so the sun sets later. As autumn approaches the shutter is well on the way up again, until at the winter solstice the shutter is fully raised, and Orion is fully visible. The right hand upper scale shows the phase of the moon. The sphere is silver, with the dark side being guilder. The lunar day is engraved in a band round the "equator" of the moon. The lunar month is shown in the revolving scale, which travels anti-clockwise. Situated between the two scales, and slightly lower, is the calendar disc. This disc displays the date, and the angle of the sun in the sky over London, at mid-day. This is a detail specifically requested by our client. 

An alternative feature is to display the equation of time, as on clock number 19. The remaining two scales are situated in the lower corners of the dial. Both the hands are levers to be turned by hand to carry out the following operations: The left hand side is to allow the clock to be regulated without stopping the pendulum. The right hand side is for turning the striking on and off, allowing light sleepers to sleep through the night!

Musical long case clock
Musical Long Case Clock

Musical Long case clocks have always been popular. In this example, designed and manufactured in our Raveningham workshop, the principle tune played is "Oranges and Lemons". As this is not a usual tune Whitechapel Bell Foundry cast the set of bells especially for this clock. The clock is wound once a week, the winding squares being revealed when the case hood door is opened. 
In addition to showing the time, the clock also shows the time of sun rise and set, the passage of the sun through the sky during the day, the date, including the 28th and 29th February, and the phase of the moon. 
Standing 7 feet 2 inches tall in a purpose made Cherry lined Oak case, and featuring two marquetry panels showing birds in their Norfolk broads habitat, the clock is a wonderful addition to the clients home.

Month running table calendar clock

Clock numbers 18 and 19. Both clocks feature a version of John garrisons famous grasshopper escapement which is fascinating to observe. This version is based on research carried out in the U.S.A. Each clock is wound once a month, and each clock displays a full year calendar, ferry having 28 days. Clock number 19 has the addition of the phase of the moon being displayed.
Table calendar clock

Bronze sun dial clock
Sun Dials

These are an attractive and fascinating external garden feature. The Sun dial shown is made from Bronze, with gilded time lines. The outer surround is 17th century oak, and was designed to incorporate certain architectural details from Hales Hall . During the afternoon hours the name of the hall is shown as a shadow on the dial scale.th gilded time lines. The outer surround is 17th century oak, and was designed to incorporate certain architectural details from Hales Hall . During the afternoon hours the name of the hall is shown as a shadow on the dial scale.
Associations and accreditation:

We are associated to the British Horological Institute (161951) and the British Watch & Clock Makers Guild (S635)
  • Accredited to the Federation of Small Businesses (2013464)
Terms and Conditions
British Watch and Clockmakers' Guild logo
For a personalised clock created by a master clock maker in Norwich, call Simmonds Clockmaking Ltd on 
01508 548 085
We have clients in London, the UK and worldwide. 

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