Dent Inclined Plane Clock


A replica of a 17th century gravity clock, this inclined plane clock by Dent dates from c.1973.

The inner mechanism and clock face are weighted to keep them vertical, while the outer rim rotates as the clock drum rolls down the plane. The clock traverses the entire plane over the course of one week. At the end of the week, the clock is lifted and replaced at the top of the plane, preferably on a Sunday. No further winding is necessary.

Dent made a limited edition of 500 of these fascinating rolling drum timepieces in 1973, most of them sold under their own name. It is stamped with Dent’s pyramid trademark on both the pyramid on the base and on the dial.

The drum movement sits on the inclined red leather-covered brass plane, held on by friction alone. Over the course of a week, it travels down the plane. The dial chapter ring remain upright at all times. The clock is wound by simply lifting the drum and replacing it at the top of the plane.

The back of the drum movement is again signed with Dent’s trademark and dated 1973. The initial owner of the edition could have it inscribed with their own name. This one was so inscribed; beneath the cover the movement can be seen to be signed by its designer Andrew Fell,  and is numbered 421.

The solid brass base has knurled adjustable feet and tapering doric columns supporting the tooled leather slope, the sides of which are embellished with red perspex borders and a brass strip with engraved days of the week.

The signed drum movement has a silvered Roman chapter ring, engraved sunburst centre and pierced hands to the movement with lever platform escapement driven by a large counterweight.

Overhauled and guaranteed for 3 years. Complete with copies of the original sales literature.

Our price includes delivery within mainland UK.


  • Plane dimensions – Width 72cm x Depth 10cms
  • Maximum height: 30cms

Dent were highly esteemed names in the English clock-making world in the 1970s and earlier. Established in 1814, they were commissioned to make the Standard Clock at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich which was to keep “Greenwich Mean Time” the time to which all others in the Empire were referred. In 1852, they were awarded the contract to make London’s “Big Ben” clock. They were also awarded a Royal warrants by Queen Victoria, later renewed by Edward VII and George V. A skeleton clock presented to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in November 2007 can today be found in the Garden Room at Buckingham Palace.

Ref: 1634

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