clock & barometer repairs
01277 658800   Billericay


case restoration

By restoration, I am attempting to distinguish bringing something back the way it was originally, from simply repairing it to make it functional again.

Much of this kind of restoration can often involve the case rather than the movement and I don't generally do that sort of work unless it is very straightforward, like cleaning off years of grime whilst trying to retain the patina of age, or replacing broken glass in the dial bezel. Generally, I would undertake this sort of work only while repairing or cleaning the movement.

Charges vary from just £15 for tidying up a small mantle clock case, £30 for re-blackening a French marble case and £50 for re-silvering a bracket clock dial. On longcase clocks and bracket clocks, re-silvering the chapter ring, calendar dial and nameplate etc costs between £55 and £95 per dial, plus a further £30 if the existing wax in the engraved parts needs re-filling. I will not attempt painted dial restoration as it's too specialised but I can arrange it for you with a commercial artist I have used. A simple 12in dial from a dial clock for example will cost about £75 and you can choose how aged you wish it to look when finished. For more on this see my separate page on DIAL RESTORATION.

Glass and glazing are more specialised and there's a great deal of difference between the bevelled glass you'd find in a small carriage clock and that in a longcase clock hood, or between a four-glass clock and a Vienna regulator. There's also flat glass, convex glass and pre-drilled glass. So for more about this see my separate page on GLASS.

Making up matching mouldings and cornices is specialist work, as is treating for woodworm, French polishing, ebonising, re-gilding, and re-veneering. For these jobs you would do well to seek out a cabinet maker, a conservator or some other specialist who treats clock cases like other furniture needing specialised restoration techniques. Have a look through my LINKS page for some contacts.

I've also recently been introduced to a promising contact in furniture restoration in Essex so contact me for his details. I have not had much direct experience yet so I can't go as far as giving a recommendation yet but he's properly trained and has a good reputation.