How To Make A Clock In The Home Machine Shop – Part 16 – Making The Motion Work And Hands

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Making The Motion Works And Hands, by Clickspring.

In this video I make all of the parts required for the motion work and hands. There are a lot of different operations in this video including hand turning with gravers, and depthing of small gears with a shop made depthing tool.

If you would like to help support the creation of these videos, then head on over to the Clickspring Patreon page:

A very special thank you to Patrons Dan Keen, and Robert Shearing.

You can also help me make these videos by purchasing via the following Amazon Affiliate links:

Cameras used in this video:
Panasonic GH5 –
Panasonic X920 –

Tools & Shop Products:
Dykem 80300 Steel Blue Layout Fluid, Brush-in-Cap (4oz):
“Solidworks 2013 Bible”:
Hegner Scroll Saw:
Super Pike Saw Blades Size 4/0 pkg of 144:
Sherline Lathe:
Heavy Duty Arbor Press:
Norton 1-by-2-by-8-Inch Fine/Coarse India Combination Oilstone, Red:
Digital Calipers:

For more info on this build, as well as other tool making info and plans, visit

Ask Me A Question:

Abbreviated Transcript:

00:25 It’s essentially a reduction gear train, that takes the single hourly rotation of the center arbor, and reduces that by a factor of 12, so that the hour hand sweeps one full revolution for every 12 hours.
00:44 The pinions and wheels for this part of the mechanism were cut at the same time as I made episode 4, but of course the wheels still need to be so I’ll do that later in this video For the other parts, I’ll be using these sections of rod stock, as well as some gound flat stock for the hands. So lets get started.
02:46 The finger plate tool is perfect for safely holding these awkward small parts, and I used the belt sander to bring the edges closer to the line. And I should mention that this 1″ belt sander is an amazingly effective tool for quickly and accurately removing metal. Its easily one of the most useful machines in my shop.
04:44 With the profile formed, the center was drilled out, and then it was parted off and flipped end for end, to turn a seating for the minute hand. The tricky bit to form of course is that square hole, which needs to be dead on center, as well as perfectly square.
06:03 As for the previous part, the center was drilled out; although this time a little undersize, to permit the use of a shop made reamer. And that completes the 2 parts required for the minute hand. Next up is the Hour wheel pipe, which is a sort of sleeve that carries the hour hand on one end, and the hour wheel on the other.
06:58 Once the fit with the hour hand is confirmed, the center can be drilled out, and then reamed to the required dimension. Next the part needs to be reversed so that the wheel seating can be turned, but often when using ER collets to hold short parts like this, it’s difficult to get the collet to hold the part accurately.
08:04 It carries the minute wheel on one end, and has a square to receive the minute hand on the other. The first job is to drill out the stock and then ream it to be a close fit on the center arbor. Next the profile was formed, and the dimensions marked out for the next operation, with a bit of tailstock support to keep the stock from deflecting.
10:13 A quick tidy up with needle files, and that’s the minute pipe complete. Next up is the Intermediate wheel stud. It screws into the front plate beneath the center arbor, and carries the intermediate wheel and pinion. So it needs a thread on one end, and a nice smooth arbor surface on the other.
11:56 The final finishing was completed with needle
and escapement files, followed by a light papering with fine grit abrasive paper, and then a uniform burnish of all of the inside surfaces. A light paper and polish brings up the other surfaces, and the motion work wheels are ready for assembly.
12:51 The fine adjustment screw moves the wheels closer together until I can see and feel the smoothest meshing of the teeth. I’ll be using tapered clock pins to secure the mechanism in place, so I can put in a cross hole for the pin now, and also tidy up the end of the arbor.
13:39 I put in a similar hole for the intermediate
stud, and then hardened, tempered and polished it. So finally, after a whole lot of work, let’s put all of this together, and see how it runs. In the next video I’ll make a start on the pendulum.


John Wilding “Large Wheel Skeleton Clock” construction book can be purchased online from Ian T Cobb:

Making The Motion Works And Hands, by Clickspring.


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