By Chris McKay
Big Ben covers the heritage of 'Big Ben', the nice clock and bells at Westminster, from the origins of Westminster because the seat of presidency correct as much as the celebrations of the nice Clock's one hundred and fiftieth anniversary in 2009. The booklet starts by means of taking the reader via a customary stopover at to the Clock Tower, after which starts the historical past of the palace of Westminster, overlaying the hearth of 1834, the construction of the hot homes of Parliament and improvement of the clock and the bells, going into aspect on their layout and install. The booklet covers the recognized cracking of the present bell huge Ben in 1859, with sketches of all of the characters concerned, the 2 global wars, and the catastrophe of 1976. The publication ends with an in depth technical description of the clock mechanism. The publication is richly illustrated, and may attraction not just to clockmakers and horologists, yet to bell fans, and people with an curiosity in our wealthy Victorian history.
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Extra resources for Big Ben: The Great Clock and the Bells at the Palace of Westminster
Each bell has a hammer that is pivoted at the top of the bell, there is one arm that sweeps down and terminates in a hammer head; the other extends horizontally and is pulled down by a steel cable that vanishes into the ﬂoor below. To prevent the hammer head chattering on the bell, a ﬁ xed rubber pad allows the hammer to strike the bell and then to be kept just clear of the bell so that it can sound properly. Each bell has a top shaped like a button or mushroom, which is gripped by an iron collar.
The arrangement for striking the hours is similar to the quarters. On the great wheel are ten large cams that lift and drop the hammer for Big Ben. 23 The hour-striking train. 24 The cams that release the quarter-striking. above churns the air. In the belfry above, we hear the bells striking, though somewhat mufﬂed. There is a lot of rattling from the linkages that connect with the bells and, as the last note sounds, the train locks, and the ﬂy carries on turning and freewheels, the clicks work on the ratchet, making a loud noise like a football rattle until the ﬂy ceases to turn.
The Clock Strikes As the hour approaches, we can see the whole sequence of the clock striking. The ﬁ rst stage of the release of both the quarters and the hour is known as the warning. The cam with four lobes on the centre arbor lifts the locking lever on the quarter train until the train is released and warns, advancing to the second position of locking. When the lever drops off the cam, the train is then free to run and the quarters are sounded. The train runs, turning the count wheel until the locking lever drops back into a slot on the count wheel and the train is locked.