Antique Clocks/Herman Miller Clock
I recently acquired a Herman Miller Mantel clock and would like more information about it. It seems to be missing its pendulum as well as I do not have a key for it. The chimes do work when you manually put the hour hand on the quarter hour, hour or half hour.
The identifying marks of this clock are as follows:
On the bottom, carved into the wood is Miller with a J-53.
On the back is the brass plate stating Herman Miller Clock Co., Zeeland, Michigan.
On the inside, inscribed on the back of the mechanism, is a symbol with Miller on top and Germany on the bottom with a No. 110.
Inscribed on the back of the clock mechanism is the following:
D.R.G.M. No. 916380
with the number 1772 on the bottom left side.
I have exhausted the Internet with trying to find out about this clock. From what I can gather, it is a rare clock as it was made by the Herman Miller Clock Co. as opposed to the Howard Miller Clock Co. I believe the case is made out of mahogany with burl walnut inserts?
Many thanks for any information you can give me regarding this clock.
Thank you for the quote to repair the clock, if it can be repaired. If not, do you recommend electrifying it (which is something I do not want to do). Please do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail or by phone if you have any questions. I love the clock and am hoping it can be restored to its original glory! I look forward to your response.
We did some research and found Herman Miller was a W.. Michigan business man who, together with his son-in-law, D. J. DePree bought the Michigan Star Furniture Co. in 1923. This company manufactures to, this day, office furniture. In 1927 that same D. J. DePree founded the Herman Miller Clock Co. They specialized in chiming wall and mantle clocks. It was spun off from the furniture company in 1937 and renamed after Herman's son Howard C. Miller. The Howard Miller Clock Co. is still in business today manufacturing and marketing all kinds of clocks.
There were a couple Herman Miller clocks for sale. One had an asking price of $650. and the other was priced at $815.
It appears that Herman Miller Clock Co. had available wood working equipment only and built the various clock cases. They purchased a German made movement and installed it in these cases.
We have quite a large number of articles which we can fax to you if you can furnish us with a fax number.
By the way, I never gave you a quote on repairing the clock. this must have come from someone else. Also, I do not have your e-mail. You can provide that to me if you care to.
A key and a pendulum can be obtained from organizations such as Merritts (www.merritts.com) and Timesavers (www.timesavers.com).
You will have to check the flat to flat measurement of the winding arbors, in mm, and compare with the chart in Merritts online catalog to select the correct key. From the looks of the rear view of the movement, the suspension spring and rod may also be missing. these organizations have these too.
Since the chime and strike are both functional, I doubt there is much wrong with the clock. Usually a cleaning and oiling will get them running again. Sometime, if the clock has been run dry too long some of the pivots will wear excessively and require rebushing. This is kind of an expensive and time consuming process, but it will restore a clock to run many more years. I do not like, personally, to see clocks electrified or otherwise altered. From my experience at auctions and other sales this greatly devalues them.
If you do decide to order the pendulum and key, be certain to lubricate the clock before using it. You will probably have to remove the movement from the case to measure the arbors. Oil it with a household type oil such as sewing machine oil. If you are ordering parts from either Merritts or Timesavers, you could order specialty clock oils if you prefer using them.
Merritts does offer a line of relatively inexpensive plastic chime and strike movements that operate from batteries. Again, I would consider this only as a last resort as your movement looks like it is in relatively good condition.
My e-mail is email@example.com if you wish to e-mail me with any further questions.