I wrote about this Ansonia Extra Drop wall clock barn find in a previous article. It has been a test bed for techniques I have never tried before.

A barn find clock in pieces (next photo) is a challenge for anyone. It was missing some parts and I began to take an inventory of what I required to get this clock running after so many years. However, I discovered that I had enough pieces to make something of it and whatever was missing could be easily sourced. Those key parts? Not so simple, as I will explain later

Ansonia Extra short drop wall clock
Ansonia Extra short drop wall clock, a barn find
Ansonia Extra Drop barn find
Ansonia Extra Drop barn find, drop access door is missing

There are a number of variations of the Ansonia Drop Extras and the one most sought after is the time, strike and calendar version. This is a time-only version and would fetch a price in the lower end of the range.

This clock was manufactured by the Ansonia Brass & Copper Co. around 1880. It is 26 inches high, 16 inches wide and 5 inches deep. It has a 16 inch round wood door bezel on a large 2-inch hinge. The drop section has serpentine sides and teardrop finials. The bottom access drop door which I am missing, opens downwards. Other Drop Extra variations have access doors open to the side. Mine will also open downwards.

Drop door in open position
Drop door from another clock in open position

I assembled all the pieces I had from the barn find. Missing were small trim pieces, the pendulum bob and leader, the clock hands and verge. But two key pieces are required, the brass dial bezel and the drop door. During the course of making inquiries concerning the missing pieces, the movement was serviced and installed in the case. It is  running reliably and maintains a full 8-day cycle.

Hmm, about the drop door. This is obviously not a piece I could buy from a clock supplier. The first step was to take the measurements and construct the frame. I cut pine wood from an old Ogee donor clock. I started with a door frame. The frame is about 7 inches wide by 4 1/2 inches high leaving a snug fit between the top and side opening.

Using my table saw I cut the appropriate lengths, assembled the frame and then glued the ends together (next photo). I put a weight on the frame for 24 hours to prevent warping. Pine moulding sits atop the frame to accommodate the rosewood veneer.

Pine frame is 7 X 4 1/2
Pine frame is 7 X 4 1/2 inches
Missing drop access door
Test fitting the door frame

I cut a single 1 inch piece of doweling with a 3/8 inch crown. The result? Too wide and the crown was too high. The wide trim and high crown meant that the hinges would not function properly and it looked peculiar.

Mitered corners
First attempt; the trim is too wide and too high

My quest was to duplicate the one in the next photo.

Ansonia door from another clock
Ansonia door from another clock in closed position and showing narrow molding

I discarded the moulding, kept the sub-frame and started again with smaller pieces. My second attempt was more successful.

I cut a section from 1 1/4 inch doweling resulting in a 3/16 inch crown. My stock Rosewood veneer is only 6 inches wide which I then cut into strips. I veneered the entire 26 inch piece using medium strength pearl hide glue. I used foam blocks to press the veneer into the moulding clamping at each end of the section.

First part of a 26 inch strip
First part of a 26 inch strip after gluing and clamping
Veneering the moulding is just about complete
Veneering is just about complete
Clamping each section
Clamping in stages using sponge blocks; the wood strip allows equal pressure along each section

The veneer was applied in stages since I had only two clamps that were appropriate for this project. After applying the first strip I learned that wetting the veneer on the top side allowed it to take the shape of the moulding more effectively. I then cut the strip into 4 mitered sections, glued the sections onto the frame and applied 2 coats of Brazilian Rosewood stain. At first I was reluctant to stain the veneer but using a test piece and applying two coats of shellac I discovered that the shade was too light compared to the rest of the veneer on the clock. The stain was necessary.

Test fitting the 4 pieces
Test fitting the 4 sections, prior to gluing
Glued (Hide Glue) and weight placed on moulding and frame
Glued (Hide Glue); weight placed on the moulding and frame
Finial and knob
Finial and knob

Two 1/2 inch hinges were used plus a knob salvaged from an Ogee donor  clock.

Knob and hinges
Knob and 1/2 inch hinges
Knob from Ogee clock
Knob from Ogee clock
Drop door taped in place
Drop door taped in place

Perhaps not perfect and there is much I could improve on in the next project but I would call it a good first attempt. No glass as yet. I have an antique mirror that I am considering instead. With the door complete and installed I can go no further with this project. If I could only find that brass bezel!

Until I find what I need this Ansonia Extra Drop will be an attractive but incomplete clock with a interesting story.