Canadian clock collectors are very familiar with the name Arthur Pequegnat and associate the maker’s clocks with a solid construction, robust movements, conservative designs, and nationalism since many clocks were named after towns and cities in Canada. The Moncton was named after the City of Moncton in New Brunswick, Canada.
The Moncton was often found in offices and train stations across Canada and was known for its accuracy. This clock is originally from the Toronto (Ontario, Canada) area but I have no idea where it spent most of its life.
For an 80+-year-old clock, it is in exceptional condition. A double spring time-only movement with a Graham deadbeat escapement running at 80BPM means that it is very accurate despite being spring-driven.
It has a 12-inch Arabic dial with simple, bold numbers. The pierced spade hands are attractive and are a common feature on many Pequegnat wall clocks. It has a fumed quarter-sawn oak case, is 35 inches high with a hinged 16-inch oak bezel door that swings to the right to reveal the dial.
The pendulum access door is 14 ½ inches high by 10 ¾ inches wide and swings to the right. The clock is 5 inches deep with wall stabilizers on either side of the case. The pendulum bob is brass over iron with an oak pendulum rod. The dial glass is original and has the “waviness” you would expect with old glass.
Assessment of the movement
With solid plates, front and back, and a mounting system similar (but not quite the same) as the Seth Thomas #2 the movement looks solid. I was expecting past repairs and some wear and, of course, a dirty movement, all confirmed when I looked at the movement for the first time.
I removed the dial first and the movement from the case. The first step is to let down the mainsprings.
The mainsprings are much smaller than and half the width of a typical American clock with a recoil escapement. Not surprising since a Graham deadbeat escapement requires between one-fourth to one-half the driving power than the same clock using a recoil escapement. Less drive power means less wear over time. Having very few gears and little friction in the gear train also improves efficiency and time-keeping.
Even in its unserviced state, it would easily run 16 or 17 days.
I am not seeing a lot of wear, an indication that the clock has had a good life. The verge arbours may need bushing work otherwise I cannot see any other wear that is problematic. The lantern pinions are also in very good condition.
Next is to inspect the movement more closely and look for anything out of the ordinary.
In Part II I will cover the servicing of the movement.