2015 April meeting

2nd April 2015

The History of Metals and its Influence on Clock Development

Chris McKay FBHI

How much do we know about the metals we use everyday

Chris will start with the history of how Iron, Steel, Zinc and Brass were commercially produced over the centuries. Starting in 1386 the supposed date of the Salisbury Cathedral Clock to 1900 when social and economic conditions determined a downturn in clock production.



With the metallurgical history established Chris will then go on to chart the development of clock production identifying marker points in horology that can be attributed to the metals available. Domestic as well as Turret Clocks will be considered.

bloom out of furnace

Bloom out of the furnace

Looking to the future Chris will speculate on the discoveries that may be made using the bewildering array of tools and techniques available today.

Chris, a Chartered Electronics Engineer is Chairman of the Dorset Clock Society and a prolific author. His books “The Turret Clock Keeper’s Handbook” and “Big Ben – The Great Clock and the Bells at the Palace of Westminster” are seen as the definitive works on these subjects.


A regular contributor to the HJ Chris has provided both articles and authoritative book reviews. Risking the attention of every Health & Safety Officer in the land the November 2013 issue covered working with molten lead in a practical and safe way for the clock enthusiast.

Aged 11 Chris started to take alarm clocks apart and by age 13 had learnt to put them back together again! At the age of 19 he worked on his first Turret Clock and has been fascinated by horology ever since.

This is a talk not to be missed!

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