What is now known as Alpine Clock Repair, LLC began in 1974 in a 6′ x 10′ space, cordoned off with recycled pool fencing in my parents’ Florida garage, set up with a pair of folding card tables, basic hand tools that I gathered from around the house, and a Weller soldering iron. In this space, I built Radio Shack “P-box” kits that I purchased with lawn-mowing money (at fifty cents per sweaty expanse), and repaired my very first precious antique machines; the wind-up record players with steel needles, and early radios with vacuum tubes that so fired my imagination. Any derelict old machine of substantial age and intriguing complexity was fair game, even the occasional clock in need of some TLC that found its way into my space.
Through the years, my working domain has grown along with my evolving experience, proficiencies and awareness of dedicated resources, specialized tools and equipment. Alpine Clock Repair, LLC now consists of a secured, dedicated entrance on the ground floor of our Santa Fe residence, with its own parking area, intake room, reference library and workshops.
Passion. Patience. Attention to Detail. Training. Study. Experience.
A well-stocked reference library and complete workshop with the raw materials, machines and parts essential to conduct efficient work, from basic maintenance to full restorations.
Alpine Clock Repair, LLC utilizes the AWCI (American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute) 26-step, Standards & Practices regimen. In practice, 40 dedicated steps are applied to all Alpine Clock Repair LLC rebuilds. In the USA, the AWCI is the official Education and Certification body, establishing, maintaining and updating professional standards for the trade.
THE FRANKLIN INSTITUTE SCIENCE MUSEUM, Philadelphia: Consultant, automaton and theremin restorer. Examples of my repair and restoration work can be found in museums and private collections across the country.
AWCI: American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute
Active Member, presenter, contributing author, Certificate of Appreciation recipient, for “Delivering an Educational Presentation at the Annual Convention of the American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute.”
NAWCC: National Association of Watch & Clock Collectors
Active Member, presenter, contributing author.
MBSI: Musical Box Society International
Active Member, contributing author.
AUTOMATA-CON 2016: Presenter
The Pop-up Connection:
Twenty years as a paper engineer; the person who brings a professonal book illustrator’s artwork to life as paper pop-ups, pull tabs and wheels that animate the printed images, has provided me with an extraordinary opportunity to hone my awareness of the inherent strengths and weaknesses in all kinds of working mechanism.
When designing delicate moving structures, and what are at their essence, little machines made entirely out of paper, one develops an unusually heightened sensitivity to the laws of physics and the importance of geometry in the dynamic organization of working parts. Prior to publication, newborn designs progress through dozens of refinements, after which they can be handled and operated by the end-user hundreds of times without fail, all from nothing more than die-cut pieces of paper. While there’s no shortage of nuance and complexity in clock mechanisms of wood, steel and brass, engineering paper does put it in perspective.
SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION, National Museum of American History: Presenter (paper engineering).
Restoring complex vintage machines since 1974. Santa Fe resident since 1983.
Santa Fe County Business Registration #17724
Property security by ADT
Recorded in the Alpine Clock Repair intake room. Apply some imagination and hear a Brazilian rainforest or rainwater dripping from a garden shed roof.
Some people find this complex tapestry of varied beats very relaxing, while others find it annoyingly distracting.
The difference lies in one’s ability to becalm the mind so it doesn’t compete, and then simply allow the ambient sounds to fill the space.
High and low hour-count sounds from the Alpine Clock Repair intake room.
The world of clocks has a marvelously diverse variety
of musical sounds that include tuned chimes rods, tempered steel spiral gongs, single or nested bells, music boxes and cuckoos. Patterns can include single strike, two-note (“bim-bam”), three-note (“walking”), Westminster and other cathedral melodies, Grand Sonnerie striking and more.
The classic sound of a tall-case clock, ca. 1820. The Royal Pendulum beats with an approximate 1-second interval, making about 3600 beats per hour. This beat rate is common to tall-case clocks from the 1700s and 1800s, and is also found on many contemporary grandfather clocks.
For most people, 3600 BPH is a bit slower than their natural heart rate. People who live with such clocks benefit from a physically calmer and more regular heart rhythm, which can take on the more relaxed beat of their clocks.