HJ Article of the Month Archive

From the Horological Journal

Each month the BHI post one of the articles from the latest edition of the Horological Journal on the BHI website to give those of you that are not already members a chance to see the high quality peer-reviewed content that has kept the HJ at the forefront of the industry for over 160 years.

Feel free to download and share these articles and if you would like to become a member and recieve the HJ every month you can join here:

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June 2022

Justin Koullapis FBHI, ‘Omega ‘TV Clock”

A ‘TV clock’ used in the broadcasts of Swiss Television in 1960s throws up some interesting questions for Justin Koullapis FBHI.

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May 2022

Martin Rice, ‘Remote Monitoring and Control of a Turret Clock’

An 1826 turret clock is introduced to the Internet of Things as Martin Rice develops a system of remote monitoring.

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April 2022

Jim Arnfield FBHI, ‘Rare Bentley Earth Clocks’

Jim Arnfield FBHI recalls the time he was tasked with bringing a pair of rare pre-patent Bentley Earth Clocks back to life.

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March 2022

Brian Loomes, ‘Finding Mister Pye’

A horologist turns super-sleuth as Brian Loomes tests his detective skills to uncover the secrets of a longcase clock signed in a very strange way.

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February 2022

Justin Koullapis FBHI, ‘The George Daniels Anniversary Watch’

Justin Koullapis FBHI ‘road tests’ the George Daniels Anniversary Watch – the final timepiece by the twentieth century’s greatest watchmaker.

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January 2022

David Read, ‘The History of Vertex’

David Read delves into the history of Vertex watches, which date back to the turn of the 1900s.

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December 2021

Jim Nicholson, ‘Why is it Called Silver Steel?’

You may well have heard of Silver Steel, but why the peculiar length, and why the name ‘silver’ asks Jim Nicholson.

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November 2021

Justin Koullapis FBHI, ‘Barratt Silver Medal Awarded to J. Malcolm Wild’

Justin Koullapis FBHI meets BHI Barrett Silver Medal winner John Malcolm Wild FBHI.

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October 2021

Eduard Farré-Olivé, ‘Roman Strike – Grand Sonnerie’

Seeking a more ‘efficient’ way of telling the time through striking (as in, with as few strikes as possible) Eduard Farré-Olivé followed in the footsteps of makers such as Joseph Knibb and Thomas Tompion, devising a system that relies on Roman numerals rather than the standard 12-hour system.

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September 2021

Richard Fox, ‘From the Auction Room’

This report on turret clocks that have sold recently at auction includes an interview with turret clock expert Chris McKay FBHI.

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August 2021

Michael Glen, ‘A New Type of Watch Mainspring Winder’

Michael Glen explains how he developed a mainspring winder as an alternative to conventional winders.

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July 2021

Eur Ing David Boettcher CEng MIET FBHI, ‘Hallmarking Imported Watches’

David Boettcher FBHI gives an account of the complexities in the history of hallmarking imported watch cases.

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June 2021

Richard Thomas, ‘Living with Longcase Clocks in the Modern Home’

Winding a 30-hour longcase clock can be a challenge if space is limited, or one can lose track of when it is necessary. Here, Richard Thomas describes the design and creation of an automatic winder for such clocks, without altering the movement or the case.

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May 2021

Anthony Randall BSc FBHI, ‘Lucky Chance, Fraud or Deception?’

John Harrison’s timekeeper H4 is a key part of horological history. How much, though, can we rely on the two eighteenth-century ‘proving voyages’ that were held to test it? Anthony Randall FBHI analyses the evidence, including his own clock that incorporates a reconstruction of H4’s mechanism.

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April 2021

Philip Kuchel FBHI, Lindsay Drabsch, Reuben Schoots, ‘Screw Cutting Attachment for a D-bed Watchmaker’s Lathe’

Screw cutting (also called thread cutting) attachments are of great use to horologists, but manufacturers have not provided them for all lathes. Here, Philip Kuchel FBHI, Lindsay Drabsch and Reuben Schoots give an account of how they created one for a D-bed watchmakers’ lathe.

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March 2021

John Wilding MBE FBHI, ‘Forming Holes in Suspension Springs’

John Wilding MBE FBHI was a national horological treasure. He was known for many things, including making horology accessible to people who were new to it. He passed away in February at the age of 96, as the Horological Journal was going to press with what might have been his last article. We are glad to be able to have published it, and have made it our Article of the Month for March. This is partly as a tribute to John himself, and partly because it is an excellent, practical article that will be useful to many horologists.

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February 2021

John Reynolds FBHI with Robert Ovens MBHI, ‘Restoring a Month Going Comtoise’

Comtoise clocks are not generally seen very often by UK clockmakers, and this month going one is rarer than usual. John Robey, a Comtoise enthusiast, gives an account of how he restored it to look and run almost as well as it did when it was first completed over 200 years ago.

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January 2021

John Reynolds FBHI with Robert Ovens MBHI, ‘My Black Forest Clock’

Black Forest clocks: disliked by some for their supposed roughness, but beloved by others for their accuracy. John Robey FBHI is a lover, and here he shares his work on one such clock that has been in his possession for 50 years.

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December 2020

Chris Hooijkaas, ‘Comtoise Clocks’

Sturdy, reliable and easy to work on…Chris Hooijkaas explains his appreciation for Comtoise clocks.

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November 2020

Jake Sutton, ‘The Clock as a Work of Art, Part 4’

Clockmaking is a blend of art and science, as any horologist could tell you. In this article, the latest in a series titled ‘The Clock as Art’, Jake Sutton examines how to make the best use of silver soldering for both precision and beauty.

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October 2020

Martin Foster FBHI, ‘Swiss Fairs Review’

COVID-19 has caused a full sea change in the way the international watch fairs operate. This article by industry expert Martin Foster FBHI is the latest in a series in which he analyses how the fairs are adapting to the pandemic – and presents some of the most intriguing new launches.

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September 2020

John Reynolds FBHI and Nick Brown with Robert Ovens MBHI, ‘Problems with Snails!’

‘When striking problems occur in an eight-day rack-strike longcase clock, the blame is often placed on the snail.’ So says John Reynolds FBHI. In this article he, Nick Brown and Robert Ovens MBHI address problems with snails and how to solve them.

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August 2020

Jim Arnfield FBHI, ‘A Justin Vulliamy Chiming Clock’

When Jim Arnfield FBHI was asked to get a Justin Vulliamy movement back into working order, he knew the job would require skill and innovation. Luckily, he possesses both qualities in great measure, which certainly came in useful when he had to create a new balance. Here is his account of the job.

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July 2020

Eur Ing David Boettcher CEng MIET FBHI, ‘The First Automatic Wristwatch’

Wristwatches may seem like a very modern invention, not fully replacing the pocket watch until quite recently. Their history, though, is in fact longer than many people realise. Here, David Boettcher FBHI explores a Le Roy timepiece from 1890 which could be the first self-winding wristwatch.

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June 2020

Martin Foster FBHI, ‘Baselworld in Turmoil’

The cancellation of Baselworld has dominated the watch media recently. Industry expert Martin Foster gives an analysis of the situation.

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May 2020

Richard Fox, ‘From the Auction Room’

The country may be in lockdown, but auctions are still being held. Richard Fox finds out how.

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April 2020

John Reynolds FBHI with Robert Ovens MBHI, ‘Tavern Clock Troubles’

Tavern clocks are a rare sight for most people, and sadly this means that they are often poorly maintained or repaired. This article gives an account of overcoming the challenges of working on one such clock.

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March 2020

John Moorhouse MBHI, ‘Creating a Bird Automaton’

Automata and their intricate mechanisms are part of horological craft and history. John Moorhouse describes how he created a miniature form watch in the shape of a violin, complete with case, music stand – and two hidden, tweeting birds.

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February 2020

Robert Horan MBHI, ‘Service and Repair of a Minute-Repeating Chronograph’

When Robert Horan was asked to repair pocket watch whose repeat didn’t work, he found that the repeat work was located in the opposite position to how one would normally find it. Here he gives his account of how he mended this complex watch.

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January 2020

Justin Koullapis FBHI, ‘Behind the Scenes at Nomos’

2020 marks the 30th anniversary of independent watchmaking company Nomos, based in Glashütte in Germany. HJ Technical Editor Justin Koullapis got to meet its staff and see its watchmaking processes up close when he went to visit the factory.

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