Frodsham, London c1974

A high quality reproduction Congreve rolling ball timepiece made by Andrew Fell for E. Dent & Company, London and retailed by Charles Frodsham, London.

This clock is number 036 of a limited edition of 150 examples. The clock is complete with its original perspex cover with brass corners, and its original winding key.

The clock stands on a mahogany base which sits on a solid Italian marble plinth with 3 adjustable brass feet. The perspex cover has applied brass corners and edging.

Sir William Congreve was not a clockmaker but a prolific inventor, newspaper proprietor, Member of Parliament and Comptroller of the Royal Laboratory at Woolwich. His best known inventions are the Congreve rocket and the rolling ball clock which he patented 1808.

Andrew Fell was born in 1919 and joined the army in 1939 as a specialist in communications and radar. Fell was the first Principal of the National College of Horology founded in 1947 and had a long and varied career within horology. He died in 1988.

Clock size: 14 x 9 x 13 inches high

Plinth & cover size: 19 x 14 x 17 inches high

Weight: 60 lbs (27 kg)

 


The 8-day timepiece has a brass base with 4 brass columns supporting the movement which has a 15-second tilting table; the rolling tungsten ball controls the escapement action.

The clock has separate dials for hours, minutes and seconds, the latter moving every 15 seconds as the table tilts. Individual seconds are indicated by the seconds indicator bar located horizontally across the table.

 

 

The clock has an applied nameplate to the base engraved Charles Frodsham, London and the back of the movement is engraved Ser. No 036 Andrew Fell del 1974.

In my view this design is the very best of the reproduction Congreve clocks as it is well designed and well made. It is very reliable in operation. It is also one of the very few 20th century designs that use the rolling ball to indicate individual seconds.

Congreve clocks are not good timekeepers due to the varying friction as the ball rolls on the table. The ball and tilting table need to be cleaned regularly as dust has a significant effect on timekeeping.

 

THIS ITEM HAS BEEN SOLD

Stock No. C1126

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