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Antique Clocks/Aluminum Ansonia movement


aluminum movement
aluminum movement  
Hi. I aquired about 40 antique clocks and boxes of movements and parts a while back from an old closed up clock repair shop. One is very strange. It looks like an Ansonia but the plates and most of the gears are aluminum. I have been selling these on Ebay for the prevoius owner's son. I have had a lot of luck identifying most of them but this one seems strange. It is not marked anywhere.  My question is when did Ansonia make such a movement? Or could it be a copy?  Thank you.....Jim

The Hall-Heroult process for separating aluminum from its ore, boxite, was not put into process until the late 1800's, thus I doubt the clock is over 100 years old.

My best guess would be it was built during the Korean War (1950-54) as copper was in short supply then. I doubt it was built during WWII as aluminum would not have been available either. Brass has generally been the preferred material for clock movements and is actually an alloy of copper and zinc. Aluminum can sometimes replace it. Internal combustion engines used to be made with brass bearings but now are mostly aluminum as the harder aluminum can take the stresses imposed by modern engines more readily.

This is a very unusual clock and I think this might add to its value.

Clock manufacturers very frequently built both movements and cases but did not put any markings on them for various marketing reasons. Possibly, Ansonia or whoever made this clock was afraid the aluminum might not hold up as well as the traditional brass.

I hope this answers your question. I personally have not seen an aluminum spring or weight powered movement.  

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Tom Williams


I can not think of any questions I cannot answer in regard to repairing antique clocks or radios. However, I am sure there are a few I have not heard and may not be able to answer. If I cannot, I will say so. I have been repairing them since I was a young child.


My experience includes repairing CooKoo clocks, Westminsters, BimBam, almost all antique clocks. I do a bit of repair on battery clocks where the value is sufficient to warrant working on them. I also repair antique (tube type) radios - all makes.

Indiana Historical Radio Society, Illinois Valley Antique Car Club, Military Vehicle Preservation Association

BEE from Cleveland State University

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