Saturday, December 13, 2014

Our Favorite Winery - Avondale Sky

Avondale Sky Winery
 Our favorite winery in Nova Scotia is Avondale Sky located in Avondale, Nova Scotia. Apply named? Well, yes, because it is located in Avondale NS and it fits quite nicely into the surrounding farm community.

Stopped at the entrance for a few shots
On Saturday Loraine, the owner, greeted us at the door and gave both of us a big hug and welcomed us into the store. We chatted about different things and I asked if the winery had received any awards to which she replied, "yes, look over here" pointing to the medal wins in the last two years. However, we were there for our quarterly pick-up as wine club members. The pick-up get-together was on the next day (Sunday) but we were unable to be there for the pairing and the meet-and-greet with other club members and decided to go on Saturday instead to pick up our wine allocation (4 bottles).

The main building and production section
Here are some shots of the winery store, the home of the owners and of us stopped by the entrance to take photos. It was a glorious fall day.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

German Box Clock - U M Muller - Our New Kitchen Clock

U M Muller in our kitchen dining area
 After some discussion we have decided to replace our kitchen quartz clock with our new-to-us U M Muller German box clock. As those of you who are familiar with horological history, the German box clock effectively spelled the end of the so called Vienna regulator period because it was a cheaper to produce, less ostentatious and appealed to the business middle class consumer of that period.

Our U M Muller clock (or Uhrenfabrik Mühlheim Müller & Co as the company is called) is  a special clock featuring wood carved inlays and beveled lead glass. The oak case is truly a sight to behold and it evident that considerable  craftsmanship went into the manufacture of this particular clock. Ours shows no obvious scratches or blemishes on the case but there is a poor attempt to repair the clock face resulting in an area between the 6 and 7 that is worn through to the metal beneath.

The movement is typical for that period and I would think almost as accurate as the regulators it replaced given the obvious limitations of a spring driven movement. Spring drives tend to lose time (effectively losing power) through their cycle as the spring unloads or "unwinds". However, this one seems to stay fairly "regular" through it's cycle.

U M Muller box clock
We love this clock and adore the chime in particular, kind of a ringing bong. The strike hammer hits a coil in the back of the movement. We have not decided whether it is THE clock for our kitchen just yet. Our Arthur Pequegnat Brandon "school clock" is in for re-conditioning and it may yet replace the Muller clock because it's light oak colour might fit in better with our kitchen cabinetry. The genteel chime of the Muller may sway us in the end though.

Edit: I took the clock down a day ago to properly anchor it to the wall. In the process I decided to give it a thorough cleaning and a waxing. During the cleaning I discovered something. What I thought was lead around the beveled glass panels turns out to be brass and a little Brasso plus some elbow grease revealed the brass detail around the panels. You can see the difference between the last two photos; before and after shots if you will.

The cleaning and waxing really enhances the clock and I can imagine what it might have looked like when it was new some 80+ years ago. Now if I can only do something about the marred dial face (between the 6 and 7) the clock would be almost perfect. The clock has been running a couple of weeks now and it has been accurate to within ten seconds a week, far better than I anticipated.