New England Chapter No. 8 NAWCC


Worcester Holiday Inn
500 Lincoln St., Worcester MA

Meeting Highlights by Dick Trepp

Chapter 8 ended the year 2002 with a meeting at the Holiday in Worcester on November 2. The 250 members and guests were kept busy checking out the 60 vendors in the Mart and participating in two programs, a silent auction, a 50-50 raffle, and a luncheon with a program about a Boston landmark.

But first, a tribute to the loss of an outstanding member of Chapter 8.

At the banquet, Chapter president Bob Frishman had the sad duty to announce the recent passing of John Lelievre in October, a chapter director and longtime volunteer. John will be remembered by us for all his hard work, near-perfect attendance at all chapter activities, and generous assistance to his fellow horologists. Attendees were told, too, that the Charles River Museum of Industry, where John and other chapter volunteers have met most Thursdays to help restore the museums’ horological collection, will name its research library in his honor.

Our first educational program was given by Joe Brown, a Chapter 8 director with a great reputation for his presentations. His talk about ”French Clocks” was delivered to a packed lecture room. Joe had overhead projections, which were also replicated in the handouts to the audience, to clearly show the various parts of the movement. As he described the critical things to look for he also offered suggestions on what should be done to correct a problem. There were numerous follow up questions and a detailed discussion on methods of removing barrel springs and lubrication.

John Losch, another Chapter member, returned again to discuss “Pivot Polishing.” As usual, he brought a wealth of information, aided by slides, and equipment to present this in-depth talk. John had previously published an article on this subject in the December 1999 Bulletin. Starting off with pictures of various types of pivot wear, John covered burnishers, sharpening, types of stone used to sharpen, and polishing with abrasives. He discussed both complicated machinery and simple lathe set-ups to polish the pivots. Even hand techniques were discussed. Various pivot support systems for lathes were shown. There was something there for the professional with a well-equipped shop and also for the starting repairer with very few tools. John was very emphatic, that regardless of how you do it, polishing is a basic step in restoration.

Our luncheon banquet featured a most entertaining and delightful presentation by David Hochstrasser about the Boston Custom House tower clock. The title of his talk should have been “ How two brothers overcame numerous roadblocks and problems in moving and restoring a tower clock.”

The Boston Custom House was built in 1837 to 1847. During the period of 1912 to 1919, a tower was added. The original clock was an electrical impulse type, but had completely disappeared. In 1949 a Howard # 3 tower clock was then added on the top 23rd floor. In 1987, Boston Edison, as a gift to the city, paid for restoring the clock after years of deterioration. David and his brother Ross, both professional clock restorers, and just starting out, were awarded the contract to restore this clock with four 24’ dials and wooden hands. The details of this restoration were given by the two brothers to Chapter 8 a few years later.

In 1995 the Marriott Hotel Corporation took over management of the Custom House. Marriott started to convert the building to condominiums Once again, David and Ross were asked to repair and restore the clock which had been shoved against the north wall of a game /laundry room Marriott had constructed on the 23rd floor. While David had slides to show some of the clock parts and the work that was done to repair them, the main problem was devising hand shafts from 4’ to 36’ to operate a clock that was now up against that north wall.. Despite a less than enthusiastic Marriott, union problems, Boston city bureaucracy in obtaining permits to work on the face, and the need to meet the desires of preservationists and historical groups, the brothers overcame each roadblock, often obtaining help from many other people. They exhibited great ingenuity and clever solutions to the technical and working problems they encountered. They finally finished the job they started in 1996 in July of 1997-probably with a sigh of relief!

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Worcester Holiday Inn
500 Lincoln St., Worcester MA

Directions to Worcester Holiday Inn, Worcester, MA, 508-852-4000.
From the East:  Mass Pike 90. Take Exit 11A on to 495 North. Take Exit 25B onto 290 West Take Exit 20 (Lincoln St.) Bear RIGHT off the ramp onto Lincoln St. The Holiday Inn will be at a set of lights about ½ mile on the left. Turn left at the lights to enter Inn driveway. There is a Dennys on that corner.

From the West:  Mass Pike (90), West: Take Exit 10 onto 290 East. Take Exit 21 (Plantation St.) Take a Left off the ramp, take a left at the first set of lights onto Lincoln St. At the next set of lights take a left to stay on Lincoln St. The Holiday Inn is about ½ mile on your right.

From the North:  I 93 South to 495 South-take Exit 25B onto 290 West. Take Exit 20 (Lincoln St.) Bear RIGHT off the ramp onto Lincoln St. The Holiday Inn will be at a set of lights about ½ mile on the left Turn left at the lights to enter Inn driveway. There is a Dennys on that corner.

From the South:  I 95 North to I 295 North to 146 North to 290 East. Take Exit 21 (Plantation St.) Take a Left off the ramp; take a left at the first set of lights onto Lincoln St. At the next set of lights take a left to stay on Lincoln St. The Holiday Inn is about ½ mile on your right.

Registrations received by cutoff date are $19. Registrations received after October 28th and walk-ins are $25. As always, registration includes your luncheon and is required for participation in meeting activities.

7:30 AM Registration name tags available for those members who preregistered.
Registration table open for "walk-ins". Mart area open for setup by table holders only.
8:00 AM (No later than) Mart open; with closing at 11:30 A.M. for 12:00 Noon Luncheon.
8:30 AM Silent Auction Table will run from 8:30 to 10:30A.M.
9:30 AM Joe Brown will present an interesting lecture on French clocks. He will help you take some of the mystery out of handling these, and offer many tips on restoration. Joe, as many of you know, is a director of Chapter 8, is active with the Willard Museum, and is well known for great presentations.
10:30 AM Silent auction closes along with sale of raffle tickets. Buyers and sellers should meet and settle up at this time.
10:45 AM John Losch will share his knowledge and vast experience with Pivot Polishing. John usually has several approaches to common tasks that we all face. John has been a master restorer since 1954 and has worked restoring scientific instruments for Harvard University, and for many owners of valuable private horological collections. He brings a wealth of knowledge as many of you know from previous programs he has given.
11:30 Break for Lunch, Mart closes
12:00 Luncheon Program: David and Ross Hochstrasser will revisit the tower clock at the Custom House in Boston. These two young clock specialists overhauled the clock in 1987. The Custom House has now been converted to condominiums. The Hochstrassers were called back to dismantle the clock again and set it up for display. Their talk will show what they had to do this time and how they did it.


The Silent Auction table - 8: 30 to 10:30 - now offer two ways to sell a few items without the need for a table:

1. Fill out a slip at the table with your minimum price you will accept for the item. Members can then write in their bids during the course of the auction.

2 Tag or mark the item with a fixed price that you will accept. The first person to offer this gets the item. This enables a person to buy at a known cost and not have to keep checking a bid during the auction.

Either way, the cost to you as a seller is only $3.00 PER ITEM. The charge is payable in advance and applies whether item sells or not.

At the same table or at the registration table in the hall you can buy a ticket for the 50-50 raffle. YOU get 50% of the total pot and Chapter 8 benefits from the other half. $1.00 per ticket or three for $2.00.

President's Message - Bob Frishman
I and the rest of your chapter's officers and directors hope that you will send in your dues payment right away for another full year of meetings, marts, workshops and seminars. Our chapter's membership is growing again, and we believe it is because we continue to offer high-quality opportunities for you to buy, sell, learn and socialize with your fellow collectors of clocks and watches. We presently are updating the chapter bylaws to reflect minor changes we have made in operating our association. Details on these changes, which require a majority vote at a future meeting, will be available soon. If any member wishes to be sent a copy of the current bylaws and the proposed changes when ready, please let the Secretary know.... We all were sad to learn of the recent passing of member Pat Caruso, a long-time employee of the Waltham Watch Company, who was always willing to share his expertise and recollections. Chapter 8 has made a donation to the NAWCC in his name to honor his many contributions to our chapter and members.... As always, please contact me or any member of our leadership team with ideas and suggestions on making our chapter even more successful.
- Bob Frishman

Schedule of Events for 2003:

Sunday- Jan 12th Johnson & Wales Inn, Seekonk MA.

Sunday- April 6th Worcester Holiday Inn

Sunday- May 19th Timexpo Joint Meeting, Waterbury, CT.

June Willard Workshop

August Tailgate mart and picnic, Wilbraham MA

Oct/ No Educational Symposium

Oct/Nov Worcester Holiday Inn

Chapter Contacts:
If you any of you have a question or wish to contact someone in the chapter, get in touch with any of these four and they will get your message to the right person if they cannot help you.

President Bob Frishman
53 Poor St., Andover MA 01810

1st Vice Pres Dave Deutemiam
81 Kingman St., Lakeville, MA 02347

Treasurer Wayne Paskerian
5 Warren St., Winchester, MA 01890

Secretary Dick Trepp
573 Longmeadow St., Longmeadow, MA 01106


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