Well, not long till Christmas now. Yet still the good folk of Essex keep ringing for advice and guidance on fixing their clocks. And the word’s spreading – a chap in Newcastle called last week for advice about starting a 400 day clock collection and then a nice fella in Northern Ireland rang in the late evening at the weekend – just to talk horology for a while. Don’t they know it’s Christmas?

It’s getting colder now so to reflect the change in weather, I thought I’d add a bit of falling snow to my website. Getting the javascript to create snow effect was easy but it prompted me to ‘fix’ the website’s timeclock on the same page. I had previously downloaded some Flash code and images from the internet and set it up a couple of years ago when modernising the site; whoever designed it knew more about Flash than me, but a lot less about clocks (like whoever designed this WordPress template – the wheels could never actually turn because they are all interlocked!). In fact it was more like a pocket watch without a case than a clock and is quite commonly found on t’internet. A lot of things irritated me about it – that seconds dial, the lack of any case, the mismatched hands, the absence of any name… So I set about making my own last week. For the dial and case I photographed a fusee dial clock that I have here for repair at the moment and saved it as a jpg. Using Fireworks, I then airbrushed out the logo and superimposed ‘horologica’ and Billericay’ in text over the top. I also drew the hands in Fireworks, modelling them on the actual hands from the same clock to maintain authenticity. I then found some ActionScript and modified it because the minute hand only moved once every sixty seconds (like a quartz clock). As you can see, it now resembles the slow but continuous movement of the 19 century fusee movement that it is based on. The graphics still need some work but I much prefer it to the previous pocket watch, particularly as I don’t repair pocket watches! So, that’s another clock fixed, albeit with different tools from what I’m used to.

Have a great one!