English Astral Coventry Fusee Wall Clock. Ca 1890.

A high quality English Fusee clock.

Time Only Fusee movement during cleaning. Relatively few parts. Easy to work on.

The Fusee chain was missing when I purchased this English astral Coventry fusee wall clock, I wasn’t sure if it would have originally had a chain or a cable drive to the fusee cone. After examination, I determined that it would have been a cable drive. Some points that led me to this were:

  • Three holes in the mainspring barrel to accommodate a cable. A Chain would fit in a slot.
  • A recess hole in the back of the fusee cone to accommodate a knot and, again, no slot.

Fusee cone

On occasion it is possible to determine whether the movement was originally fitted out with a chain or a cable by examining the Fusee cone grooves. If the bottom of the groove is rounded, it was machined to accommodate a cable. If the groove has a flat bottom, it was made for a chain.

Repaired movement


Cable v. Chain

One can fit a cable to a chain fusee without incurring problems, but one cannot fit a chain to a Fusee cone that was machined for cable because the chain will not sit correctly on the curved bass of the Fusee cone grooves.

This one cleaned up nicely and the case just needed some TLC. I used a Brass cable because it looks better with the brass movement.


Used in older spring-powered mechanical watches and clocks, a fusee is a cone-shaped pulley with a spiral groove around it, wound with a cord or chain which is attached to the mainspring barrel. Fusees were used from the 1400s to the early 1900s to improve timekeeping by equalizing the uneven pull of the mainspring as it ran down.

Perhaps no problem in mechanics has ever been solved so simply and so perfectly — G. Baillie (1929)


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