The Craftmans Shop > General Crafts

A Clepsydra


 The idea of a water powered clock has always interested me . There is very little information available on the web .The only reference that I can find is to one built in about 1903 by the Earl of Meath . There was a brief write up about it in 1949 in the Horological journal

I aquired  a copy and have made a working model . It works by directing a jet of water onto an inclined pallet on the pendulum ,if the water supply is uninterrupted all that would happen is the pendulum would be pushed to one site .

The clever part is a deflector plate fitted directly above the pendulum pallet on its own suspension   and controlled by the pendulum rod but not fixed to it . This crosses and interrupts the column of water  directly above the inpulse pallet . Therefore  the only water to land on the inpules pallet is a column of water  equal to the the height differance between the deflector pallet and the impulse pallet .

Next stage is to make it full size with a 2.5 second pendulum which will be about 12 feet long .
I have ordered enough green oak to make a tower 18 feet tall and 10 feet square
When it is working I will use it to control a turret clock  based around my light house drive mechanism  Mike

Interesting concept. Got lots of water? Does the spent water get pumped back into the header tank? All sorts of questions come to mind with no solutions to offer.

      So, a 12' pendulum,  that's some size clock movement.

Interesting project to follow,
Chris of YouTube channel "Clickspring" is well into clocks so may be able to give you pointers to where you may find information.
Good luck with it.
John B

The next stage in building a water powered clock involves getting a means of operating a conventional clock  . As this  is a free pendulum design I do not want to take any power from the pendulum so that when the water supply is not being interrupted by the defector plate it will fall onto a  paddle that will control the operation of a conventional  weight driven clock .

 Also bought a few sticks to build the clock tower


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