Grandfather clocks

Grandfather Clocks as Anniversary Gifts Presents


We have focused some attention in past grandfather clocks blog posts about how we see a booming trend toward giving grandfather clocks as special wedding gifts, especially as spectacular wedding presents from parents or grandparents of the bride and groom to be.

A quick aside, in these times of war for our Nation, we do see many family of loved ones serving in the military, and even members of our Armed Forces serving overseas purchasing grandfather clocks to be delivered shortly after their planned return, or sometimes for special anniversaries while they are still serving in the Army, Navy, Marines, and other special forces, as well as some military contractors working overseas in support of the USA and its allies’ efforts.

Well, back to everyday civilian life customs and traditions for gift-giving and wedding anniversary celebrations.  More and more parents of “children” in their 20s and 30s whom are getting married are finding grandfather clocks to be the perfect wedding gift for their loved ones.  We also see this grandfather clock gift trend for special and milestone anniversaries, as well as the kids giving their parents the perfect anniversary gift of a grandfather clock for, say, 25th and 50th wedding anniversary gifts, as examples.  The gifts come in all tastes, shapes and sizes,  In addition, many choose to give mechanical mantel clocks, such as howard miller keywound chiming mantel clocks, sometimes with triple chimes including the Westminster Chime.  Grandfather clocks and high-end Mantle clocks are by far the most popular wedding gifts and anniversary present for those looking for that special clock gift for their loved one.

Below is a table, for which we would like to acknowledge and thank the website, for showing what are considered the traditional or customary gifts for each anniversary rule.  While we feel no rules such as this should really apply, and when tradition coincides with desire, so much the better.

Wedding Anniversary Gift Ideas

Keep in mind that these are gift ideas. They are just suggestions to make it easier to choose a gift. If you decide to give an anniversary gift that doesn’t fit the list… that’s fine. The only way to really go wrong with a wedding anniversary gift is…to not give one at all!

Anniversary Traditional Modern
1st Paper Clocks, Plastic, Gold Jewelry
2nd Cotton China, Cotton, Calico, Garnet
3rd Leather Crystal, Glass, Pearls
4th Fruit, Flowers Appliances, Linen, Silk, Nylon, Blue Topaz
5th Wood Silverware, Sapphire
6th Sugar, Iron Wood, Candy, Amethyst
7th Wool, Copper Brass, Desk Sets, Onyx
8th Bronze, Pottery Appliances, Linens, Lace, Tourmaline Jewelry
9th Pottery, Willow Leather, Lapis Jewelry
10th Tin, Aluminum Diamond Jewelry
11th Steel Fashion, Turquoise Jewelry
12th Silk, Linen Pearls, Jade
13th Lace Textiles, Furs, Citrine
14th Ivory Gold Jewelry, Opal
15th Crystal Glass, Watches, Ruby
16th Silver hollowware, Peridot
17th Furniture, Watch
18th Porcelain, Cat’s Eye Jewelry
19th Bronze, Aquamarine
20th China Platinum, Emerald
21st Brass, Nickel
22nd Copper
23rd Silver plate
24th Musical instruments
25th Silver Sterling silver
26th Original pictures
27th Sculpture
28th Orchids
29th New furniture
30th Pearl Diamond
31st Time Pieces
32nd Conveyances (e.g., automobiles)
33rd Amethyst
34th Opal
35th Coral (Jade) Jade
36th Bone china
37th Alabaster
38th Beryl, Tourmaline
39th Lace
40th Ruby Ruby, Garnet
41st Land
42nd Developed real estate
43rd Travel
44th Groceries
45th Sapphire Sapphire
46th Original poetry tribute
47th Books
48th Optical goods
49th Luxuries, any kind
50th Gold Gold
55th Emerald Emerald, Turquoise
60th Diamond Gold, Diamond
75th Platinum Diamondlike Stones, Gold
80th Diamond, Pearl
85th Diamond, Sapphire
90th Diamond, Emerald
95th Diamond, Ruby
100th 10 Carat Diamond

This list has been compiled from an extensive list of sources. Most agree on the basics, but have slight variations. The only significantly different list was the alternative modern anniversary list of jewelry… that came from the Jewelry Industry Council.

Coming up with creative gift ideas can be hard. Jewelry is always safe, but an original gift can work, too! One article suggests combinations of traditional and modern that work for the early anniversaries. Home Indulgences adds flowers to the list. The best advice may be a quote from the Latin scholar, Plautus who wrote, “Let us celebrate the occasion with wine and sweet words.”

Back to 1-800-4CLOCKS, where we see grandfather clocks gift-giving being as relevant for important milestone birthday gifts, or to celebrate a big promotion gift, or like event award.  As we like to always point out, clocks make great gifts, whether wall clocks, grandfather clocks, grandmother clocks, wall clocks, atomic clocks, mantel clocks, and dare we say, wristwatches.  A new iPhone or iPad would also likely be welcomed as a gift to treasure.

Hospital Wall Clocks Atomic Wall Clocks


We have seen a surge in demand for wall clocks by hospitals.  Interestingly, many of these heath care facilities have asked us to customize a specific clock to their needs.  Sometimes the wall cocks are used in just about every patient room in the hospital, and sometimes they are used for very special purposes.

We have been pleased that we have been able to meet this growing need, including a growing interest in and demand for atomic wall clocks.  We have also learned about some hospital procedures that we were frankly unaware of,  including the fact that there are units staffed by individuals in hospitals whose functions include documenting the exact time and place of a patient’s death.  Not too surprisingly, these units have wanted to have atomic wall clocks, which were bolted to moving carts, so that they could record the time of death with great precision and less room for any challenge by any third party for whatever reason.

One type of wall clock NOT popular with hospitals, which is not surprising, are wall clocks which include the weather or indoor temperature.  The hospitals don’t want to hand a piece of information that may in many instances be used as a source of a request — e.g. can you lower the temperature of this room, or can you raise the temperature of this room, the wall clock says it is 50 degrees, or whatever, in here.

Below are examples of two atomic wall clocks that have been extremely popular with hospitals over the last couple of years:

Howard Miller Murrow Wall ClockHoward Miller Murrow Wall Clock Model 625-259 Atomic Wall Clock

Howard Miller Techtime III Wall Clock Howard Miller Techtime III Wall Clock 625-429 Atomic Wall Clock

We are waiting for a large order from hospitals of grandfather clocks, such as Howard Miller grandfather clocks, or Ridgeway grandfather clocks, but so far it has yet to materialize.

Wall Grandfather Clocks – Wall Clocks Redux


Have you ever heard of a Grandfather Wall Clock? Or a Wall Grandfather Clock?  Well, many of our customers have, and they are almost always not referring to grandfather clocks but rather to large wall clocks with a pendulum and weights.

Many of those we work with have wondered if there is some mythological clocks beast which they had never encountered by name.  But it does make sense.  When one thinks of some of the defining characteristics of grandfather clocks, it is that they are big, chime, and frequently have weights that show through glass — not unlike many of the Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks or Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks or Hermle Floor Clocks (also known as Hermle grandfather clocks), among many others, including antique grandfather clocks, hat we sell routinely.

We have always thought of one of the defining characteristics of a grandfather clock or a grandmother clock as one that is free-standing and unless a miniature, of a certain height for a grandmother or grandfather clock.

Wall clocks need not apply.

Ridgeway Vanderbilt Biltmore Grandfather Clock R2538

Ridgeway Vanderbilt Biltmore Grandfather Clock R2538

Howard Miller Stevenson Wall Clock 620-262

Howard Miller Stevenson Wall Clock 620-262 – NOT a grandfather clock

Moonphase Grandfather Clocks


The writer of this blog post has always been a sucker for a clock with a moonphase dial, sometimes also referred to as moondials, whether moonphase grandfather clocks, moonphase mantel clock or bracket clock, or moonphase wall clock.  And watches too!

With antique clocks, dials with a moonphase were especially prized, and were found most often, when they were found, on grandfather clocks or floor clocks.  The lunar cycle is 29 1/2 days, which is one full revolution of the moondial on the moonphase clock.  When there is a full moon outside, the clock is supposed to show a full moon at the top center of the moonphase dial.  It will take another 29 1/2 days to be in the exact same position again.  In the olden days, these days were actually used by farmers to help to know when to plant crops.  They were also of use for people traversing the oceans, although a movement that would work on a clock with enough reliability was invented later and also had multiple uses for navigation and charting voyages.

In more recent years, moondials are seen on many types of clocks.  They are also on wristwatches too, as well as some antique pocket watches. Many clocks, particular in the relatively lower price ranges, and generally with all chain-driven mechanical grandfather clocks, the moonphase dials are faux dials (the nice, and French, word for fake), and are stationary and do not move.  hey are for decorative purposes only.  Most higher-end cable driven grandfather clocks, particular by makers such as Howard Miller Clocks, Hermle Clocks, and Ridgeway Clocks, have working moonphase moondials on their grandfather clocks.

A working moonphase dial on a new or antique grandfather clock is a great feature, if one can afford a clock in that generally somewhat higher grandfather clocks price range.  Keep an eye out for grandfather clock discounts and individual grandfather clocks for sale that have this feature.  You very likely will not be disappointed, whether a grandfather clocks enthusiast or not.

Howard Miller Stewart Grandfather Clock Model 610-948

Howard Miller Stewart Grandfather Clock Model 610-948 with working moonphase dial

Housewarming Gifts and Home Warming Presents


Increasingly we are seeing a trend towards people, usually very close relatives, buying really high quality grandfather clocks and grandmother clocks as housewarming gifts or homewarming gifts either for their loved ones, such as children getting married, a special anniversary, parents relocating, or simply as gifts to themselves when moving to anew home or a second home.

The gift of a grandfather clock can be highly personalized and a wonderfully creative gift idea.  Grandfather clocks have become almost traditional gifts both for couples themselves as well as present for loved ones on special wedding anniversaries or milestone birthdays when looking for the perfect birthday present or perfect wedding anniversary present.

We see the gifting of grandfather clocks becoming a new housewarming tradition, and many of our customers are also calling it a homewarming gift – a term to which we have taken a liking.

Personalized plaques commemorating special dates and occasions are just one way to make a grandfather clock or a grandmother clock be meaningful housewarming gifts to people.  Frequently, picking out a traditional grandfather clock design or contemporary grandfather clock that may be reminiscent of a clock that one of the gift recipients grew up with can be an important element in choosing a specific clock.  Many people will choice either a chain driven mechanical clock or a cable driven mechanical clock because it was the type they grew up with and made them feel most comfortable.

We find that the most popular makers of grandfather clocks for housewarming gifts are Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks, Hermle Floor Clocks, and the Ridgeway Grandfather Clock collection.  Howard Miller clocks, Ridgeway Clocks, and Hermle clocks, in addition to Bulova Clocks and others we sell are also very popular as less expensive but still very much appreciated housewarming gifts.  Grandfather clocks, wall clocks, mantel clocks, atomic clocks, grandmother clocks, and mantle clocks all make wonderful housewarming gifts, homewarming gifts, and special wedding anniversary presents and special birthday presents.

Clocks make great gifts for almost all occasions!

Pendulum Grandfather Clocks


When purchasing or shopping for grandfather clocks, how important is it for you to have a visible pendulum that is visibly swinging back and forth inside the tower or waist of the clock.

Is this a “must-have” feature to you when thinking about purchasing a grandfather clock.

Remember that many grandfather clocks have solid wood doors where the pendulum and weights are not visible, even when they are present.  Some consumers obviously prefer the solid wood door covering the entire waist or tower of the grandfather clock.  In addition, some grandfather clocks are sprint driven instead of weight driven, and they will not have the visible weights working in the case even when the pendulum is there.  If the grandfather clock also has a platform escapement, there will be no working pendulum visible at all.

Nowadays, there are other options and therefore more considerations when shopping for a grandfather clock.  One is the advent of the decorative grandfather clock, generally quartz or battery driven, where when when opens the door to the grandfather clock, one may find storage shelves or even a bookshelf.   Another reasonably new technology is Quartz or battery operated grandfather clocks where the pendulum is moving back and forth, yet generally powered by magnets rather than the mechanical grandfather clock movement.  In these clocks, the visible weights, while reproducing the general look of a mechanical grandfather clock, will be stationary, and will therefore not move either up or down but will always stay in the same position.  The grandfather clocks weights therefore are decorative only in these cases.

So if you are looking for an “old-fashioned” mechanical weight driven grandfather clock, it comes down to a simpler question.  Do you want a grandfather clock with a glass door, or not?

Let us know your clocks preferences.

Grandfather Clocks Howard Miller


Which is the best maker of grandfather clocks?  This is a question we are asked almost daily.  It is a difficult question to answer, both because there is so much cross-ownership in the world of grandfatherclocks, and because there are so many criteria to take into account when comparing both within single grandfather clock brands as well as between the various grandfather clocks brands.

One “fact” seems simple, and least in the opinion of the writer of this blog post.  Based on overall perception and awareness by consumers and organizational buyers of grandfather clocks, Howard Miller grandfather clocks have the most overall awareness, and are perceived by most — the large majority, is our sense — as being the highest end grandfather clocks maker.

We should point out that the mechanical grandfather clocks we sell all currently have high-end German movements, made either by Hermle (whose grandfather clocks movements were used by Howard Miller Clocks exclusively before they purchased Kieninger about seven years ago) or Kieninger (which also makes its own branded Kieninger Grandfather Clocks).  To complicate matters of comparison further, Ridgeway Clocks (which is owned by Howard Miller Clocks) also currently use Kieninger Clocks movements in their Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks.  And just when you thought you had a grasp on the high-end grandfather clocks market, one should be aware that Bulova Grandfather Clocks have been using high-end Hermle Clocks movements, and not surprisingly, Hermle Grandfather Clocks use Hermle grandfather clock movements.  Also, Bulova Clocks, in recent years, has been making grandfather clocks using the Sligh grandfather clocks designs with Hermle grandfather clocks movements, as Sligh Furniture used to do before they exited the grandfather clocks marketplace.

All of these grandfather clocks makers use solid wood cases, at least for their wooden vs.wrought iron or stone waterfall grandfather clocks.

If you know think you understand the high-end grandfather clocks market, just wait 2-3 months.  It will no doubt continue to be a somewhat wild grandfather clocks ride.

Grandfather Clocks Favorites


Many people growing up over the last couple of hundreds years, particularly in Western Civilization, have grown up with a grandfather clock as almost a member of the family.  If nothing else, the look and sounds that these wondrous timepieces called grandfather clocks remind many of their childhood at home, or perhaps visiting their grandparents or the homes of other friends and loved ones.  Way back when, as is still the case in much of Western Europe, these clocks are and were  more commonly referred to as longcase clocks, or long case clocks, and tallcase clocks, or tall case clocks.

Customers of our who are discount grandfather clocks shoppers will frequently begin their discussions with us by mentioning a grandfather clock that in one form or another grew up with, and they are hoping to recreate that memory, including look, sound, and overall grandfather clock feeling, as much as possible.  Interestingly, people who grew up with chain-driven clocks tend to be drawn to them, at least initially, because of the unusual yet memorable way these grandfather clocks are wound, by pulling down on each of the three chains to bring up each of the three weights.

Chain driven grandfather clocks frequently have a nostalgic appeal, and they also are the least expensive of the different types of grandfather clocks movements.  Partly because the movements are smaller, the grandfather clock manufacturers tend to make these among their smallest models, from a height, width, and depth dimension.

While cable driven grandfather clocks are more expensive, the movement will generally last, based on our opinion and experience, about twice as long as a chain-driven movement.  With proper care, a cable driven movement, we believe, will generally last 25-50 years.  This makes sense when you think about it in that these clocks have much more wear and tear on the clocks mechanisms or clock movements because the chain is sliding through the movement each time the clock is wound.  Cable-driven grandfather clocks can truly be heirloom quality treasures.

A cable driven grandfather clock will not only be larger and generally last much longer with proper care, these clocks also come with more extras or options, including automatic night shut-off, working moon phase dials, triple chimes, lit interiors, and some even have lit dials.  These clocks tend to also have much more heft and weight to them, in cases which can be carved quite intricately.

While the old adage “you get what you pay for” largely applies in this instance, one needs to be an informed grandfather clocks shopper to be an intelligent grandfather clock shopper.

All the mechanical grandfather clocks we sell currently have 8 day movements.

German Grandfather Clocks


Many of our best customers, and other consumers simply shopping with general inquiries, ask about what German Grandfather Clocks for sale we have.  In fact, all of the mechanical grandfather clocks we have for sale, those that are cable driven and keywound, and those that are chain driven, current have movements which are made in Germany.  The two remaining high-end movement manufacturers that still make quality movements in any quantity are both German companies, which are Hermle Clocks and Kieninger Clocks.

Hermle clocks currently supplies movements for Bulova Grandfather Clocks and, of course, Hermle Grandfather Clocks.  Kieninger Clocks currently supplies mechanical movement grandfather clock movements for mechanical Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks, mechanical Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks, and of course mechanical Kieninger Grandfather Clocks.  Kieninger Clocks is owned by Howard Miller Clocks.  Until about seven years ago, most all Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks had mechanical Hermle Grandfather Clock movements installed.

So if you read the above carefully, you will note that all the mechanical grandfather clocks offered by Bulova, Hermle, Ridgeway, Howard Miller and Kieninger have German mechanical grandfather clock movements installed.  Where the grandfather clocks cases are made is a whole another subject entirely.

So to summarize:

Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks with mechanical movements currently have German made movements made by Kieninger Clocks, a German clock company.

Hermle Grandfather Clocks with mechanical movements have German made Hermle grandfather clock movements, made by Hermle Clocks, of course (and another German company).

Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks with mechanical cable driven and chain driven movements, which is all of Ridgeway’s mechanical clocks, have German made Kieninger Grandfather Clock movements installed.

Kieninger grandfather clocks with mechanical cable driven and chain driven grandfather clocks have grandfather clocks made by the German company, surprise, Kieninger Clocks.

Bulova Grandfather Clocks have mechanical movements, both chain driven and cable driven, which are made by Hermle Clocks, a German clock company.

So when shopping for clocks on sale, a better question than “Where can I buy one of those high quality German grandfather clocks?” might be “Are there any grandfather clocks that you sell that might not be considered German grandfather clocks?”

When you’re shopping for discount grandfather clocks on sale, perhaps you will have to call us to find out.

Grandfather Clocks to Rescue on National NBC TV Show


1-800-4CLOCKS is proud to have been a participant in making this Open House National NBC Television Show come to life.  The major contribution we made was the selection, donation, delivery and placement of one of the nicest contemporary grandfather clocks we sell, which is the Howard Miller Coco Grandfather Clocks Model  which can be seen just below:

Howard Miller Coco Grandfather Clock

Howard Miller Coco Grandfather Clock

Please be sure to tune in to this Home Rescue Special on NBC-LXTV Production  Nationally on December 20. See below for time shows near you!


Renowned Designer, Christopher Hyland, Teams Up with Home Improvement Guru George Oliphant, to Surprise a New Jersey Family with a Whole House Restoration Just in Time for the New Year

‘Open House-To the Rescue’ Airs Nationally on Sunday, December 20

DECEMBER 14, 2009—OpenHouse, the nationally syndicated real estate and design series seen across the country on all NBC O&Os, is giving back this holiday season when the program’s home improvement guru, George Oliphant, partners with OpenHouse contributor and prominent Manhattan-based interior designer Christopher Hyland, to create a holiday miracle for one Parsippany, NJ family.

Over 20 businesses, including lead contractor Stephen Fanuka of Fanuka, Inc., will come together to give Laurie O’Hara and her family what was taken from them just under one year ago – their home. The entire re-build and restoration, from start to finish, will be featured on a special half-hour, OpenHouse—To the Rescue on Sunday, December 20 at 8:30am on all NBC owned and operated stations (check local listings/clearance list noted at end of release).

On January 24, 2009, while Laurie O’Hara, a paralegal, and her two teenage children were out shopping for a new car to replace the one that was totaled in an accident just days before, a fire started in their laundry room spreading throughout the home’s three levels. The disastrous fire destroyed all of their belongings, including priceless heirlooms, photos and memorabilia. Sadly, one of the family dogs also lost its life to injuries received in the fire. As a single mother with a son away at college and a daughter in high school, the matriarch of the household did all she could to move past the tragedy and rebuild their lives. But when it came time to renovating her home, she needed help. As such, she wrote into OpenHouse asking if they would send host George Oliphant, who lives in nearby Montclair, for a “To the Rescue” shoot. While the highly-watched show did get back to her and offer help, little does she know the extent that they’re stepping in! This holiday season, OpenHouse is giving the gift of rebirth to this deserving family.

“The ‘To the Rescue’ segments are always rewarding,” commented Oliphant. “But this one in particular, really pulls at your heart strings. I can not wait until the family sees the final product!”

The six-room raised ranch is being outfitted by Christopher Hyland with luxurious interior design elements and architectural detail. After months of work, the master bedroom will be decked out in old Hollywood glam; the kitchen will get an art deco refinishing with bright cabinetry; her son, who is an avid hockey player, will have a room decked out with official NHL paraphernalia and Catskill-style stick furniture; her daughter’s room will incorporate her love of cheerleading with a country Swedish aesthetic; and every room will be wallpapered with varying grass cloth to add opulence, texture and a environmental sensitivity. Thanks to OpenHouse, they’ll be able to celebrate the New Year with a fresh start, in home that has been completely transformed by Oliphant and Hyland.

Hyland added: “This modern and comfortable design scheme can be at home in any upscale setting – from the existing suburban location, to Park Avenue or beachside vacation community.”

About LX.TV

Emmy Award-winning LX.TV was founded in 2006 and purchased by NBC’s Local Media Division in January 2008. LX.TV produces high-quality original content accessible on multiple platforms from on-air to online to out-of-home. LX.TV’s original programming includes “1ST LOOK,” which runs in all of NBC’s Local Media markets and “OPENHOUSE,” which currently runs on all NBC owned and operated stations, in syndication and on cable. LX.TV also produces special series and programs including the wedding series, “I Do,” and the documentary series, “My First Time” and the home improvement program, “George To The Rescue.”   LX.TV is a wholly-owned subsidiary of NBC Local Media.

OpenHouse Local Listings:

New York-WNBC, Sundays at 8:30am

Los Angeles-KNBC, Sundays at 7:30am

Chicago-WMAQ, Sundays at 7:30am

Dallas-KXAS, Sundays at 11am

San Francisco-KNTV, Sundays at 3pm

Washington D.C.-WRC, Sundays at 5:30am

San Diego-KNSD, Sundays at 6:30am

Hartford-WVIT, Sundays at 6:30am

Media Contacts:

Bonita Lynch / Stephanie Baumoel at FerenComm for LX.TV


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