Stickley Mantle Clock Extras

The Stickley Mantle Clock in the December issue (#173) of Popular Woodworking magazine is a great project to build. I think you’ll see a large number of these clocks given as gifts during the holidays. For inspiration, click here and visit the Antiques Roadshow website to see an appraisal on an original Stickley Mantle Clock that was appraised near $4,000.

Fumed Finish
Once the clock is built, it would be a good thing to know how the piece was finished and where to find the art-glass insert used in the door.

To discuss the fumed finish, I’ve added an article to the Popular Woodworking web site. Here’s a link to the article.

I found this fuming process to be so easy. I think you will as well. If you’ve done this finishing technique before and have any additional tips, please leave a comment below to let us know.

Clock Dial Cutout

The 12-side opening in the door adds a lot to the charm of this clock. To make it easy, we are providing a free pattern that you can print. The pattern is in Adobe PDF format, and you will need to have Acrobat Reader installed on your computer to open the file. Chances are you already have this software, but if you don’t you can download it for free by clicking here. When you print, be sure to set your printer to “full size” or “no scaling”. Line up the lines on the pattern with the top corners of your door and adhere it with spray adhesive. Make the cuts as detailed in the article.

CLICK HERE to download the full size pattern of the face cutout.

Art-glass Insert
The small art-glass window was a project I wanted to tackle. Stained glass and work such as this has always interested me. But, in order to meet my “Just-in-time” deadline, I passed on the project and went to a local shop for help.

Rick Stein at Artisans Custom Art Glass was gracious enough to build the piece for me as I shot photos to explain the steps. (My cost for the insert piece, and your cost should you wish to have Stein build your piece, is $25. Contact information is listed below.)

Stein began the insert by copying the exact opening from my door. Then he divided the area into six sections to determine the size of the glass pieces. Once the size was determined, he snipped the pieces from the glass I had selected (with his direction), making sure there was additional space for the lead that surrounds the glass. Of course, these glass pieces are so small I doubt any deformities or discolorations will be noticed.

Next, a perfect right angle was set with the use of a wooden square. The insert is built against that square. Stein cut small lengths of U-shaped lead that divide the glass pieces as well as wrap the outer frame of the insert. As the pieces were assembled, they were held in position with nails (the nails remind me of those used by blacksmiths when shoeing a horse).

With all the parts cut, fit and tacked in place, the next step was to add flux to each of the lead intersections. Flux cleans the joints and allows solder to flow over the joint. Stein then melted solder on the joints with a quick touch of a soldering iron.

Last step was to file away enough lead from the outside of the insert to guarantee a snug fit. That took him about a minute to do. To hold the insert in the door, I used a clear silicon sealant. Push the insert into the opening, then apply a thin bead of silicon straight from the tube. One bead around the outside and one bead around the inside will hold it secure.

For additional information contact:

Artisans Custom Art Glass
7218 Montgomery Road
Cincinnati, OH 45236
(513) 791-8684

About the Clock Face
When deciding on a face for this clock, I looked at a few ideas. The Stickley mantle clock featured a brass dial with the numbers and other characters incised into the brass and filled with black wax.

I looked into etching the brass then filling the characters with black wax as in the original, but found that to be bit more involved than I wanted. I asked a local trophy store for ideas, but was waylaid by the estimated costs.

At that point I turned to a trusted Popular Woodworking friend , Gay White at Clock Prints (clockprints.com). White had a sample back to me before I had sent all the information. After one session of tweaks, the face was ready to go. It turned out great. We were all very pleased with the results, as I know you will be too.

Click here to visit clockprints.com for the Stickley Mantle Clock – Model number: AC9 PWW ($14.99)

And if you haven’t found Popular Woodworking’s Google 3D Warehouse page, click here. It’s worth a visit. There you can find many projects from Popular Woodworking, including the Stickley Mantle Clock (click here for a direct link). If you would like a primer on how to use this page or are interested to find out exactly what is there and how to get your hands on it, click here for Robert W. Lang’s entry discussing the site and its benefits.

- Glen D. Huey

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About Glen D. Huey

Glen Huey is editor of American Woodworker Magazine, and former managing editor of Popular Woodworking Magazine. He's an accomplished period furniture maker and author of numerous woodworking books and videos (as well as magazine articles).

3 thoughts on “Stickley Mantle Clock Extras

  1. Michael Brady

    I just wanted to let you know that I got great service from the vendors for the art glass and the clock face. Thanks for featuring both of these exceptional details (the face and the art glass)in your article. I am about 1/2 way done with the clock and it is a blast to do. Art & Crafts clocks are one of my favorite woodworking projects; having made six or so over the last few years. Sorry I didn’t get a chance to meet you in Berea.

    Mike

  2. Ethan

    Regarding fuming with anyhdrous ammonia…

    I use an old igloo chest cooler as my fuming box. It has a great seal and is easy to open and close. I think it is also easier to maintain a constant (or at least warmer) temperature to help the process move along at a good pace.

    Make sure your respirator (because you will need a respirator) has filters rated for such chemicals as anyhdrous ammonia. Normal painting filters will not work.

    Latex gloves come in handy; they keep your hands safe while giving you the dexterity to manipulate the pieces. If you don’t wear them, you’ll quickly find out where you have little cuts or scratches on your hands as the fumes will make them burn.

    Finally, don’t worry if it looks gray or greenish gray as you take it out of the fuming tent/box. That first coat of amber shellac will really warm it up and make the color pop.

    If you fume white oak with good results, try it the next time you make something with mahogany or cherry. I’ve had good results with both.

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