Check it out at www.NorthCoastImports.com/museum
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...comes this amazing video of an x-ray trip through a barnacle-encrusted lump from a 17th century shipwreck. It reveals the workings of a very sophisticated, gorgeous watchwork mechanism inside. The researchers (from National Museums Scotland in Edinburgh) who used this x-ray technology are excited about the prospects of using it on future, similarly encrusted underwater finds.Via Nature:
The watch was found on a wreck believed to be the Swan — a small warship that sank off the west coast of Scotland during the English Civil War. She formed part of Oliver Cromwell's forces that attacked the Royalist stronghold of Duart Castle in Mull, UK, but succumbed to a violent gale on 13 September 1653.
The resulting reconstruction of the watch shows plenty of decorative touches and exquisite attention to detail. The top and bottom plates are held together by square-section Egyptian tapered pillars, first used around 1640. Other parts of the mechanism are engraved with a floral design. The clockface itself is marked in Roman numerals with what appears to be a fleur de lys on each half-hour, and an English rose in the centre.
The researchers even found the maker's name. An engraving on the watch's top plate reads "Niccholas Higginson of Wesminster". Clockmakers' directories attest that Higginson was making watches in Chancery Lane and in Westminster, London, in the years before the Swan went down.
BB reader Kerray says, “The people who worked on it are themacula.com, duber.cz and michalkotek.com, and the projection itself was done by avmedia.cz. Four months of work, 5000×1200 resolution, 2x Christie 18K HD projectors.” .
Check out the violinola orchestrion!
Organ clocks of course...
Dates to about 1890, assembled by the firm of August Lasseur, who leased entertainment novelties such as this for public venues. Lasseur would maintain the machines, collect the revenues, etc., in exchange for leasing their space, much the same as is done today with vending machines.
Fitted with a 6-tune Paillard music box, it plays two songs on the drop of a coin. The internal rack of stereoscopic cards allows the viewer to see a 3-D image, which in this case is a naughty picture of a pretty girl. The rack slowly rotates, and another picture soon appears. Each coin drop shows about 4 pictures to the viewer, and when the music ends, so does the show.