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Clocks, Watches/Howard Miller 612-485 wall clock


I under-estimated the weight of this clock.  When I purchased it a few months ago at a flea market, took it home and hung it on the wall, the weight of the clock bent the hanger and the clock fell off the wall.  Thankfully, I was there to grab the clock before it hit the floor, but in falling one of the cables snapped due to the weight of the brass weight.  Where can I find a replacement cable?  Also, is this something anyone can replace, or should it be replaced/repaired by an expert?  BTW, how old is this clock?  It has a white label on the back side of the clock with red writing, but there is no date.

Thanks for your assistance, John!
Steve Ashenfelter

Steve, first, I do not have any Howard Miller catalogs earlier than 1990, and those do not show the Howard Miller 612-485.  I would assume that it had been discontinued by then, and guess it might have been made in the mid-1980's.  If you will look on the back plate of the movement and give me the information, I might be able to identify it and possibly the type and length of cable used.  There are some factors in replacing a cable that might keep an inexperienced person from doing it. I can let you know about that when I identify the movement.  Another option is to find the length of one of the other cables and look at the end tabs.  This can be done by measuring the diameter of one of the cable drums, multiplying it by 3.1416 and multiplying that by the number of turns on a fully wound cable.  Also the two proken pieces could be measured and a photo sent showing the tabs.  If nothing else works, we can try that.  Some movements have a mechanism called the "stop works".  This is two gears that mesh and will only allow the clock to be wound a certain number of turns.  If it has this, a clockmaker experienced in setting up the stopworks should be consulted.

Let me know the above information and I'll see what we can do.

John Newman
Vintage Emperor Clock Consultant
Prattville, AL 36067  

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John Newman


As much as I would like to offer values of clocks, I am not a certified appraiser and will not venture into giving an unresearched guess. There is very little published information on what I consider to be the value of "modern production clocks". Considerations are what the clock originally sold for, the condition of the case and movement, and particularly the area in which you live, the demand and the economy. ALSO, WATCHES ARE NOT MY FIELD. However, I can advise the clock owner on proper maintenance of a clock to keep it running, small corrections and adjustments and how to move a clock without damaging it. I can also advise on obtaining parts for clocks. It helps if you can send any information on the clock movement which is usually found on the back plate of the movement. I have been a clockmaker for about 35 years and was plant engineer in the mid 90's and later operations and engineering consultant at Emperor Clock Company in Fairhope, Alabama. I now have my own clock shop.


One of my greatest accomplishments was traveling to China to assist a clock factory in building clocks to the standards which we required. With the proper specifications and quality control, some beautiful clock cases were built. The factory people from the wood carvers to the plant manager were very congenial, friendly and I left a lot of wonderful friends when I returned from my trips.

NAWCC (National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors) 30 years Prattville, Alabama Chamber of Commerce

Horological Times, a publication of the American Watch and Clockmakers Instute. Collaberated column author, with Photos and ideas for clock movement conversion article.

Associate of Science Mechanical Engineering Technology Emperor Introductory Clock Repair (Eventually taught a portion of the class after becoming employee)

Awards and Honors
Small Business of the Quarter (Prattville, Alabama) Leadership Class of 2009 (Autauga County, Alabama)

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