‘Wonder Clock’ Hands Turn Once in 26,000 Years (Dec, 1938)

There is a museum dedicated to him in his hometown of Lier Belgium and it looks like they still have this clock available for viewing. It kind of reminds me of a much less ambitious version of the Long Now Clock.

‘Wonder Clock’ Hands Turn Once in 26,000 Years

One master movement controls ninety-three different dials on the “Wonder Clock” built by a Belgian clockmaker. It was brought to this country recently for exhibition at the Museum of Science and Industry in New York. The various faces show the time divisions of the world, the location and movements of the earth, sun, moon, planets and stars, high and low tides at the principal ports and other phenomena—all synchronized by the single movement. Some of the clock hands cannot be seen moving—the slowest indicator rotates but once in 26,000 years, while the fastest revolves around its dial in one-hundredth of a second. The clockmaker, Lodewyk Zimmer of Lierre, Belgium, took three years to build the mechanism.

4 comments
  1. Hirudinea says: August 14, 201212:51 pm

    That’s an amazing clock, but does anyone think its ironic that the clock registers a time, 26,000 years, that it will never survive to? Wonder how well it maintains accuracy?

  2. Toronto says: August 14, 20126:30 pm

    Imagine what poor Herr Zimmer would have thought of leap seconds.

  3. GeorgeT says: August 15, 20122:22 pm

    Hours, minutes, seconds, years, lunar cycle, Martian year, and sunspot cycle dials I can understand; but what is the 26,000 year dial’s label?

  4. Stephen says: August 16, 20125:29 am

    @GeorgeT: it measures the precession of the equinoxes.
    http://en.wikipedia.org…
    Another clock with this mechanism is still operating in Copenhagen:
    http://en.wikipedia.org…

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