David W. Graf's Selected Work Summaries and References (Page 1 of 2)

First Church & Parish, Dedham, MA • 1820 Simon Willard Striking Tower Clock
While examining the electrical remains of the tower clock in the First Church in Dedham, MA, I discovered that the clock was made by Simon Willard. The restoration of this historically significant, extremely rare, one of a kind tower clock (by one of the most famous of early American clock makers) is complete with time and striking trains fully operational as of 2002.
Following consultations with the Smithsonian Museum and with Harvard's Fogg Museum analytical laboratory I have duplicated missing parts, including: both wooden winding barrels (made from separate staves), the brass 6 spoked pinwheel, the pinwheel arbor, numerous screws and square head bolts, the large striking train circular winding ratchet, the entire pendulum including cast iron ball and 2 sectional rod and suspension spring, missing weight pulleys, etc. All remaining original brass parts have been polished and lacquered, original paint on wooden base and iron bar framework preserved and waxed, steel arbors polished and lacquered. Many mysteries concerning this jumble of old parts (gathered from various - sometimes unusual - locations in the tower) have been solved along the way.
Contact: Andrea Gilmore, Director, Building Conservation Associates, Inc., 66 Church Street, Dedham, MA 02026 (781) 329-4145
Pictures of this project

1st Church, Jamaica Plain, MA • Howard & Davis Striking Tower Clock
Complete restoration of this very rare, very early, previously electrified tower clock made by one of the most prestigious names in America clocks. After not having run in many years, this beautiful old tower clock was completely restored to its original condition, including: a new paint job with hand lettering, all parts polished and lacquered, broken and damaged parts repaired. Missing parts fabricated included: double sided (herring bone) striking rack, slotted rack arm, striking snail, and the snail/contrate gear collet. Restoration completed 2003. A programmable bell silencing mechanism has been fabricated as well.
Contact: Claude Emanuel Menders Architects, Inc., 59 Commercial Wharf, Boston, MA
(617) 227-1477
Pictures of this project

St. Joseph Church, Danville, PA • E. Howard #2 Time & Strike Flatbed Tower Clock
Complete restoration of Danville, PA tower clock installation including: fabrication of a new time side circular winding ratchet wheel and click, replacement of a broken brass escapement wheel tooth, preservation of original finish on cast iron base components, 4 new sets of hands, dials completely disassembled and stripped, all current (incorrect) glass removed, cast iron repainted black with white rings and minute marks, new lexan installed.
Contact: Tom Costlow, Church Deacon, Danville, PA (570) 275-1130
Pictures of this project

Wharton Co. Courthouse (Texas) • 1889 E. Howard Round Top Tower Clock
As part of the restoration of their historic courthouse, they needed to replace their missing tower clock and amazingly located the same make, model and year. I traveled to Littlestown, PA to disassemble this clock (with my 84 year old dad!) and we have since completely restored it in my shop. 4 new sets of 23 carat gilded hands have been constructed and 4 complete dials (with all numerals and minute marks) are finished as well. This entire tower clock assembly was packed up, delivered and installed in Texas in February of 2005.
Contact: Mr. Jeffrey Blair, Wharton County Courthouse Restoration Preservation, Inc. (979) 532-0404
Pictures of this project

Grace Church, Amherst, MA • 1868 E. Howard Tower Clock
At some time in the past, all four sets of numerals and hands were removed from the exterior of the granite tower. Also missing were all four sets of dial gears (except the cast iron ‘brackets’.) The church opted for four new skeleton dials and these were fabricated. Four complete sets of brass dial gears, hour tubes, minute shafts, and universal joints were milled and machined. Four sets of hands and hubs were fabricated and gilded.
All new components were installed in 2007.
Pictures of this project

Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church, NY • 1892 E. Howard #3 Gravity Timepiece
When the church neared a major construction project they decided to have their venerable, old gravity escapement tower clock looked at
as well. I performed some repairs to the escapement and cleaned and overhauled the entire mechanism. Subsequently, in order to protect the clock during the construction, we partially disassembled it and wrapped it carefully and sealed it in its room. When construction was concluded, we reassembled the clock, lubricated it and started it running once more - looking out over Fifth Avenue, a block below
Central Park.
Contact: Derek Maddalena, Building Supervisor (212) 247-0490

First Parish Congregational Church, Saco, ME • 1875 E. Howard #2 Tower Clock
The original scope of work (in 2000) was to restore the accurate function of the time train and to restore the striking train (which had suffered a severe malfunction with 2 brass gears missing and numerous components badly damaged). After a tragic fire, no trace could be found of the heavy cast iron base, legs and leg braces (which had been left in the tower during the restoration of the other components). The church decided to restore the clock as it was the sole remaining physical link with their history. Foundry patterns were constructed to original specifications and a new flat bed box frame, legs, and leg braces were cast in iron. The original components were mounted on the new, accurately machined base which was painted and lettered to match the original design. Missing gears were fabricated and all remaining parts restored and polished. This fully restored clock is now in the brand new church steeple where it will once again do the work for which it was designed 130 years ago.
Contact: Robert A. Frailey, Construction Committee Chairman (207) 283-3771
Pictures of this project

 

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