Sessions Tambour Mantel Clock, Made in 1938.

I recently overhauled this clock. The repairs included:

  • Polished all of the train wheel pivots (some were rough when the clock left the factory);
  • Installed 10 bushings (including rear time mainwheel bushing). One bushing had been installed by a previous repairer. It was crooked in the movement plate. To correct this, I installed a bushing with a hole too small for the pivot, then used a cutting broach to open the hole while uprighting it. Then the hole was polished with a smoothing broach;
  • Replaced the click on the strike mainwheel, as it was very worn, and had been filed down. I installed a steel clickspring, and a steel rivet;
  • Filed wear from the click on the time mainwheel, replaced the wimpy brass clickspring with a steel one, and replaced the brass rivet with a steel one;
  • Installed the correct size suspension rod, and installed an original Sessions mantel clock pendulum bob;
  • The strike mainspring was a replacement that was too thick (0.018 inches). I replaced it with a spring 3/4 inch wide, 0.0165 inches thick, and 96 inches long, Merritt’s Antiques part no. P-1956;
  • The time mainspring had been ground narrower by a previous repairer. It was rough with sharp edges. I installed the same type of mainspring as above, Merritt’s Antiques part no. P-1956;

The new mainsprings mentioned above (in the last two items) provide plenty of power to operate the clock. The movies below show the operation of the escapement, the clock striking, and the movement with pendulum. This clock strikes bim-bam on two chime rods.

Here is a slide show of some of the repair steps:

The label on the rear door says the following:

No. 277 P

Eight-day Turn Back

Striking the hours on Two-Tone Chime

Half-Hours in Harmony

The Sessions Clock Company

Forestville, Conn., U.S.A.


The Pendulum Ball and Key are fastened to bottom of clock.


In order to make Clock strike the hour desired, turn the long hand up to twelve and allow the clock to strike. Then turn back to nine and forward again to twelve. Continue in this way until the Clock strikes correctly.


Should it be desired to have the clock run faster, place the small end of the key on the arbor at twleve and turn TOP of key to the left toward F. To run slower turn TOP of key to the right toward S.

There is a date code of 9-38 (September 1938) stamped on the label.

Repair job 4836.

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  1. Hello. Found your website very interesting. I have a 11-39 Plymouth Tambour 8-day that has been “repaired” twice, but the clock fails after only a few months. One repair shop kept the clock for 9 months and then went bankrupt! I guess I sould be glad I got it back. Anyway, what is your current backlog to overhaul this fellow?

  2. hi my name is steve and i recently purchased a plymouth 8 day tambour clock with the 891 move ment this clock is in pristine condition except for the fact when i got it home the pendulum would not stay running it would swing for about 5-10 minutes then stop is this some thing you would be willing to overhaul thank you steve

  3. I have a sessions electric clock believe to be made in 1936 hand painted with 2 maidens and cherub ceramic trying to find out price to sell it

  4. I am in doubt how many turns when I wind it so I don’t overwind…….and yet wind it enough so I do not have to do it too often.

    I also felt very uneasy until I realized you wind it backwards.

    I am so happy to have my clock back. Has been in the family since the ’40’s…..just not in my home…. I appreciate it now. Didn’t when I was young and had to wait for the hour to be up so I could quit practicing my piano and accordian. Now I appreciate my parents dedication to make sure I had good lessons and made the most of them.

  5. Hello,
    I am in the process of moving and am selling my antiques. I have this exact clock my parents gave me years ago and want to sell it. I am wondering what it is worth. I have researched Session clocks and came up with a wide variety of prices.


  6. I have the same model clock dated 9-39. I almost bent the key before realizing the counterclockwise winding. The clock runs and I’m in the process of slowly adjusting for speed. It was a wonderful surprise to see your clock on the web. Enjoy and happy time keeping.

  7. I am in need of a parts movement identical to the one you discuss here. Do you have such for sale. If so please send a couple of photos and quote price and postage to 43147. A complete movement would be appreciated but I am primarily interested in the strike parts including the external hammer and bracket assembly. It must have a good main wheel in the strike train.

    Thank you,


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