Material for fretwork

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  • #49639
    brianw
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    • Topics Started: 21
    • Total Posts: 109

    Hello everyone.
    Does anyone know what sort of material to use to fix across the back of the side fretwork of a mantle clock.
    I have acquired a really nice W&H mantle clock for restoration. It has wooden frets to each side and brass fretwork on the back door. The material covering the fretwork is very fine and red in colour (color) but also very frayed and brittle.
    I would like to replace it with the correct type of cloth, but don’t know where to look, or what it is called. I’ve looked at a number of online clock suppliers, but can’t find any mention of it.
    Any ideas?

    #63050
    bernie weishapl
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    • Topics Started: 58
    • Total Posts: 1218

    I usually use a red velvet on mine. It does get brittle over the years but have found some green and red. I don’t keep it on hand as it doesn’t get used often. Here is where I ordered the last bunch from. http://www.amazon.com/RED-Velvet-Fabric-45-Yard/dp/B00548NV2W/ref=pd_bxgy_201_img_y/176-5428877-7464126

    Not sure if that is what you are looking for but I know on the little side doors of grandfathers or mantles that I have worked on this is what I have used. Hope this helps.

    #63051
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Hi Brian,
    some good advice from Bernie, you can use pretty much any material you like but if you want to keep it original it would have had silk panels in there. Red or green are the usual colours with occasional purple panels seen on some clocks. I have a Lenzkirch bracket clock which still has bits of its original silk in place.
    They used silk as it is woven quite tightly so it helped to keep dust out of the movement and also allowed the strike to sound a little louder than being shut in the case.
    I buy used silk shirts on ebay to cut new panels out of, they can be bought fairly cheaply used. A lot of french clocks also had fretted back doors with silk panels.
    Paul.

    #63052
    brianw
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 21
    • Total Posts: 109

    Thanks Bernie, thanks Paul.
    I suppose I should have realised (realized) it was silk. It is so old, dirty, hard and brittle that I just didn’t know what it was. I’ve checked out the red silk shirt idea on eBay. Great idea.
    Whatever your views on eBay, it is pretty useful sometimes.
    The clock really is nice. It is old and worn but it is complete and the quality of the movement is excellent. I know that some of the Lenzkirch and Winterhalder and Hofmier clocks are similar in that respect.
    I want to restore the clock so that everything is as near as possible to what it was when it was first made.
    Brian

    #63053
    arutha
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    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    The Winterhalder & Hofmeier Ting Tang is one of my favourite clocks. The movement is built like a tank and they are a joy to work on. The variety of cases these movements came in is amazing and it does seem the more ornate the case, the higher the value. I have a W&H timepiece which I will be restoring at some point. My Lenzkirch is a striking bracket clock and although they too are held in high regard the movement is nowhere near as nice as the W&H.
    Paul.

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brianwMaterial for fretwork