Antique Clocks/How to tell which clock I have
My mom has a bulova mantle clock, I'm trying to figure out which click it is. I'm very new to clocks and find it very interesting. Where do I look for date codes, model number, etc... I'd alsoike to find a manual for it, she got it as a gift so we never got one. Thank you
Table of Bulova Date Symbols: 1924 - 1949
Marks indicating age of Bulova movements
Year Date Symbol
Year Date Symbol
Table of Bulova Date Codes: 1950 - 1999
After 1949, Bulova used a 2-digit date-code which was stamped on the case back (usually near the serial number) and sometimes also on the movement (usually near the set-screw).
The first digit indicates the decade and the second indicates the year.
For example, date code L5 = 1955, date code P2 = 1982.
L M N P T
0 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990
1 1951 1961 1971 1981 1991
2 1952 1962 1972 1982 1992
3 1953 1963 1973 1983 1993
4 1954 1964 1974 1984 1994
5 1955 1965 1975 1985 1995
6 1956 1966 1976 1986 1996
7 1957 1967 1977 1987 1997
8 1958 1968 1978 1988 1998
9 1959 1969 1979 1989 1999
Above is a copy of Bulova's symbols and date codes. If this is not readable please send me your e-mail or a fax number and I can resend it to you in better detail.
I have not had much luck finding manuals for clocks. In many cases the operating instructions were single sheet attached to the back door or bottom of the case. These discussed lubrication and setting of the clock. They also identified the method of adjusting the beat rate.
Bulova apparently started out making clocks, probably with wood movements, then began making pocket watches and about the time of WWI they began to make wristwatches. They were the first that I know of to make an electronic watch, the tuning fork timed unit called the "Accutron". Later they switched to quartz movements and build them to this day.
I do not know whether they built their own clocks or simply purchased and marketed them under their name. I even have a Bulova radio in my collection of radios. This rounded out the jewelers line of merchandise. Many clocks used Hermle movements which were made in Germany. There were many case makers and I am certain Bulova would have used only quality items in their line. If it is a Hermle movement it probably has a three digit marking followed by a hyphen and three or more digits. I have had difficulty tracing man;manufacturers because in many cases there are no markings on either the case or the movement indicating the name on the dial is not the manufacturer.