Email from Karen Salaz, 19th Judicial District
Karen Salaz, District Administrator
April 21, 2017 - Update from Tim Orr
Thanks to Randy Schneider (and his wife, Robin) and Chuck Daldry for their work in getting the Hahl master clock in Greeley cleaned, lubed and running! The below is just in from Jennifer Finch, who was there shooting photos and video yesterday.
April 7, 2017
I will be making a trip to Greeley next week on Tuesday morning (April 11) to discuss the scope of work with the building and grounds people and with Karen Salaz. I'll also get to see where they are providing us with a work area, etc.
We have tentatively scheduled actual work to be done on Thursday and Friday, April 20 and 21. Whether or not we can complete the work in those two days is a bit of an unknown, but we can certainly get quite a bit done. Again, I am leaving the management of that part of the project up to Chuck Daldry. I should think Chuck would welcome a couple of people, at least, to assist him.
April 3, 2017
Here are the responses I received from Karen Salaz regarding work on the Hahl master clock in Greeley:
- Where is the work area? Fourth Floor, Division 10 judge’s chambers
- Near to master clock? On same floor? Two floors up [Note: There is an elevator.]
- Is there a sturdy, 4-wheel cart we could use to move things to and from the work area? Yes, we have a platform dolly we can use.
- Does the work area have a sink and running water for cleaning parts, etc.? There is one directly across the hall about 10 feet away. We can live without it, but it would be nice to have access to such.
- Presumably, it's well-lit and has electricity for any power tools we might need to use. The room has windows and lights and electrical outlets
- Can we get tool kits cleared by security? Even if they contain sharp, pointed tools, like knives and awls? I had a tiny pocket knife with me last time, and could not bring it in. If I accompany you we can get anything through.
- Can we get special parking or parking permits, so we can park for more than 2 hours? Yes, I can provide those for the parking lot southeast of the courthouse across the street.
- Could we arrange a ladder to inspect the clocks mounted high above the floor with an eye to converting those to quartz? I can do that with a date and time the B&G guys will help us.
- What days of week/hours of day would be best for us to work on the master clock? Honestly, since you will be in Division 10 any day will work and you can leave things locked in there as long as you would like. If we could avoid weekends that would be appreciated as we also own a ranch so weekends are pretty full unless it is raining or snowing. My normal workday is 6:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m., however I am more than happy to stay as late as you would like or come in earlier if that helps. If I am not here I will make arrangements for someone else to get whatever you need.
March 12, 2017
Just to let you know that we are waiting for next steps to take place. The Weld County officials are to prepare and send to me a contract detailing what we will be allowed to do (and NOT do, I suppose). John Bartos and I had a talk with Tom Erb of Electric Time, who says he will send me information on some quartz movements that could be made to drive the remaining Hahl clocks in the walls.
If I have not made you all fully aware, the situation is that we are now told that there are probably – at most – only three remaining Hahl dials in the building. Three were removed and replaced by "Wal-Mart" clocks. The remains of these, alas, have not been found, and no one seems to know where to look. Another of the Hahl clocks, the marble-dialed one in the courtroom adjacent to the master, was converted to quartz some time ago, so that slave movement is missing too. Building authorities insist that the clock on the top front of the building, while it once may have been a Hahl, was converted to electricity some time ago, and they are trying to get it running again.
In addition, building maintenance says they remember an incident in which some workers cut through the pneumatic lines during construction.
They do want to get the master working again, and are open to discussion about how we might get such slave dials as remain to at least display correct time.
Our analysis suggests we ought to work on getting made a better winding crank for the master, something with more mechanical advantage and less likely to damage the movement. We'll probably need another visit in order to determine the dimensions we can work with.
We also should consider doing as best we can to clean that master movement in place.
Nothing at all can be done until we hear from the county's lawyers, however.
My thanks to everyone for participating, sharing photos and especially to Solly for his research on historical documentation. I will let you know what I hear as soon as I hear it.
March 3, 2017
The Scientific American of October 5, 1878 had something on Victor Popp’s pneumatic master clock driving slave clocks all over Vienna. He used air because “Electric clocks are among the most unreliable of chronometers, electricity by its very nature being the most capricious of physical agents, etc, etc”
There is a Hahl clock working on
www.my-time-machines.net/hahl.htm also on www.youtube.com/watch?v=S4bwjqXPX4w
For complicated ways of using air to operate clocks see:
Pneumachron, the Air-driven Clock www.youtube.com/watch?v=JIQd_wlp2Gc
A Rube Goldberg air turbine powered clock powered by an air turbine. Built by a retired machinist with too much time on his hands. www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhYu2Etj66w
Lego Technic - Steampunk Pneumatic Clock www.youtube.com/watch?v=eO_ab375lv4
Pneumatic Clock from the Musée des Arts et Métiers, Paris https://www.flickr.com/photos/magnetbox/4346032927 Details of how it worked (or didn’t) are not provided.
Other oddly powered clocks are on www.douglas-self.com/MUSEUM/POWER/oddclocks/oddclocks.htm
The 1940 Puja Thermo-Pneumatic Alcohol Clock is intriguing https://watchismo.blogspot.com/2008/10/1940-puja-thermo-pneumatic-clock.html
You can see it in action on www.youtube.com/watch?v=VF5DMLo6Rr8 I'm not sure why there is also a mercury section.