Seth Thomas No. 117 W Chiming Tambour Mantel clock, 1938

I repaired this Seth Thomas tambour mantel clock with Westminster chime. The label on the bottom calls it “No. 117 W Chime”. The dark mahogany case is 20 1/8 inches wide and 9 3/8 inches tall. The silver-plated brass dial has black printed numerals, minute track and lettering. The 8-day No. 124 movement has the date code 38-3 (March 1938) stamped at the upper left of the front plate.

See more pictures.

Repair job 7731. These No. 124 movements sure run well after repair, but they take a lot of work. I polished the pivots and installed 27 bushings! The lead pendulum bob weighs 3.2 ounces and is 1 5/8 inches diameter.

Share this post:



  1. Thanks. It hadn’t occurred to me that Seth Thomas had a rationale for those strange barrels beyond making life difficult for the repairman. It also occurs to me that I don’t really understand the manner in which a broken mainspring damages a clock or a watch. I’ve certainly seen it happen, and it’s pretty dramatic, and apparently it’s been studied to the extent that watchmakers were able to design ‘safety pinions’ for watches that unscrewed from the second wheel if given a jolt in the reverse direction.

  2. I think Seth Thomas had trouble with the going barrels in their earlier No. 113 movement – when a mainspring breaks it will wipe out some of the barrel teeth. So the stationary or “safety” barrel was a good solution – you never have damaged teeth with this design except due to careless repairers. I remove and install the springs in these barrels by hand, usually.

  3. Those bogus mainspring barrels must have delighted someone in Thomaston, Connecticut. Miserable things: all I can figure is that S.T. was involved in some sort of patent dispute.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.