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The origin of the "JLC" travel clock (and a new project...)

  1. tyrantlizardrex Jul 27, 2020

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    With all the talk over the last few days surrounding Hodinkee's latest release, I like many others had jumped to the conclusion that they had "borrowed" a design from Jaeger LeCoultre.

    Guess what folks? We were wrong.

    They borrowed a design from a clockmaker called Cyril James Gowland, registered under UK patent number 365,884 (GB365,884A), and granted on the 28th January 1932.

    Patent Abstract:

    "365,884. Clock cases. GOWLAND, C. J., 106, Regent Street, London. March 31, 1931, No. 9755. [Class 139.] A clock having a two part casing, one part b serving as a closure and being rotatable on the other part a to form a support for displaying the clock c in upright position, is characterized in that the closure part b of the casing is rotatable through an angle exceeding 180‹ to constitute the sole support for the remainder of the casing."

    It looks like patent law in the UK at the time, granted a patent for 20 years (but it could be renewed).

    Looking at many examples of both JLC and Angelus clocks of this design, they all bear the 365,884 patent number.

    Suggesting that this design was licensed from Gowland by the Swiss manufacturers.

    Looking at other references to the Gowland family, it appears they did good business for generations, inventing interesting clockworks and mechanisms, and producing/licensing them to retailers and other clockmakers.

    I suspect, although cannot prove, that the Garrard and Asprey clocks (without JLC co branding) of this design may have been made in London, by Gowlands.

    Sharing here because I thought it was interesting.

    The more you know eh?


    GB_365884_A (1).png GB_365884_A.png
     
  2. DaveK Yoda of Yodelers Jul 27, 2020

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    We can still sass the donkey clock though, right?
     
  3. tyrantlizardrex Jul 27, 2020

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    Sure thing! ;)
     
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  4. Tony C. Ωf Jury member Jul 27, 2020

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    Nice work!

    Next, could you please look into, and advise me on the whereabouts of my wife on Monday and Wednesday afternoons, between 1:00 and 3:30? :rolleyes:
     
    Edited Jul 27, 2020
  5. tyrantlizardrex Aug 3, 2020

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    Project JLC Travel Alarm Clock arrived this morning....

    0F180C3D-0D9E-4992-ADA6-6ED91FAC65CB.jpeg
     
  6. cristos71 Aug 3, 2020

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    FIFY :p
     
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  7. OmegaP99 Aug 3, 2020

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    She's gone from here by 2:30 at the latest, can we see where she is from 2:30 to 3:30 then?
     
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  8. tyrantlizardrex Aug 3, 2020

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    It's in pretty poor cosmetic condition, when compared to the $6000 version they're selling... but I'm confident it can be restored for considerably less. :D
     
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  9. redpcar Aug 3, 2020

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    $5 find at the Round Top Flea Market. Even at 5 bucks, I say, ummmmm now what. Can't wear it. Travel with it? please. My head explodes at the thought of a $6K "travel alarm" with a mystery movement.

    upload_2020-8-3_21-40-37.png
     
  10. Elitr6 Aug 4, 2020

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    That is a seriously gorgeous piece. I wonder how loud the movement is.

    I mean, could you keep such a clock on your bedside table?
     
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  11. tyrantlizardrex Aug 4, 2020

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    It’s running, and it’s very very quiet.

    Have managed to get a few rings out of the alarm, and it has a lovely tone too.

    3668EA71-BED1-4E3B-8BC6-7A6440E3B083.jpeg
     
    Edited Aug 4, 2020
    Caesar95, Vitezi, Bill Sohne and 3 others like this.
  12. JimInOz Melbourne Australia Aug 4, 2020

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    I'm a bit pissed off I got distracted and just missed out on this one.

    :(

    CortTravOneBay.jpg
     
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  13. cristos71 Aug 4, 2020

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    In my formative collecting years I had a penchant for travel and alarm clock from the usual manufacturers, Jaeger, Omega and Angelus. I still have quite a few and here are the Jaegers and an Angelus 'Fousome'. The two Jaegers at the back are the Petite Neuchateloise model which play a charming tune as the alarm.

    20200804_104948.jpg
     
  14. tyrantlizardrex Aug 4, 2020

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    I took the travel clock to visit James Harris at Harris Horology today, so we could discuss a restoration, and make plans.

    With a Geiger counter, James confirmed that the lume is radium on the dial, but possibly not on the hands - pondering removal and reluming with something modern, stable, and more evenly applied.

    Happy to report that the movement is all there, if somewhat filthy, and that the hammer does strike, although not with full power - so a full service will be required as expected.

    I've been talking to a couple of electroplate companies about stripping and re-chroming the front bezel piece of the clock case (the rear is pretty good), and think this is something I will go ahead with, as the chrome is peeling at the corners and damaged from impact against the metal frame of the case.

    Next challenge - someone who works with leather, and is willing/able to strip and replace the pigskin. I've been turned down by three saddlers so far.
     
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  15. DaveK Yoda of Yodelers Aug 4, 2020

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    YouTube’s Harry Rogers has a speech impediment similar to yours (;)) Maybe you two don’t live too far away from each other? The dude is a savant, and seems to make & fix anything wood or leather related. Interesting videos on his channel
    https://www.youtube.com/c/mrwindsorchair

    Edit: Contact through https://bucklehurstleather.co.uk/ From watching enough of his videos, I'd bet that he'd enjoy the project
     
    Edited Aug 4, 2020
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  16. eugeneandresson 'I used a hammer, a chisel, and my fingers' Aug 4, 2020

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    I’m preemptively one-upping the ‘donki travel clock (and yours Chris, which is nice btw) with my all original single owner mkII ... when the ‘donki release this (mark my words : their next project) it will cost 12k+ because it’s not covered by the skin of some cheap goat but made from the skin of the mystical trees of Wakanda, and is 10 days ... and the font has not been invented yet. I present to you ...

    7F27EB3D-4673-4A06-BE1C-350374AA46F3.jpeg
     
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  17. OmegaP99 Aug 4, 2020

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    It's nice, but I prefer the MKII with the racing dial.

    1039268-0519f0b292f1c548868fbadb5203f667.jpg
     
  18. tyrantlizardrex Aug 4, 2020

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    Gents, could we try and not fill the thread with off topic nonsense?


    If you want to trash Hodinkee, have at... just please not here. I want this to remain factual, and interesting.

    Thanks.
     
  19. tyrantlizardrex Aug 4, 2020

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    Thanks Dave!

    I’ve had a positive sounding email back from a book binder (they are used to working with very thin leather, and adhering it tightly), who thinks they might be able to help, but want to see it first.
     
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  20. eugeneandresson 'I used a hammer, a chisel, and my fingers' Aug 4, 2020

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    Regarding the 'off topic nonesense' : the photo I posted is an actual family heirloom (not some collected flea-market-or-ebay-find like all other clocks pictured here), with my grandparents names engraved on a plaque on the back when gifted to them in the 1954 and that has been with them ever since (my gran is close to 100), and the next time I travel to them, it will come travelling back with me ...
     
    Edited Aug 4, 2020