Art Deco Bulle clock under a glass dome


An early electric mantel clock from c.1930. The clock is protected under a glass dome, on a simple yet highly stylised Art Deco octagonal base. This is a design that I have not seen before. There are many examples of this size of Bulle clock on a round base (usually mahogany) under a glass dome. With this one, it is not only the octagonal shaping of the base to match the dial which sets it apart. Also the painted grey base complements the silvered dial and chromed components, and the blue painted tiered ‘supports’ are matched to a blue curved U-magnet and blue wrapped coil.

The electromagnetic mechanism was developed by Frenchman Maurice Favre-Bulle in the 1910s. We have overhauled the movement, rewiring it and replacing contact springs and pins. It runs off a modern battery concealed within the base. It has a very lively impulse, difficult to stop for long enough to take a photo (arguably I should have removed the battery!).

The pendulum consists of a coil which passes over the curved bar magnet with three poles (North at either end and South in the centre, or vice versa). As an electrical current is briefly imparted to the coil, it is attracted towards one end of the bar. It then naturally falls back to (and over-runs) the centre, when the impulse is again imparted to attract it to the other end. This design was patented in 1920, and during the period 1920 to 1952 it is estimated that production was in the region of 300,000 clocks.

  • Height: 28cms (11 inches)
    Width and depth: 20cms

Ref: LB561

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