How can we built something as precise as a clock with something as hazardous that the curse of rolling bearing balls? November 1993, I bought a sachet of balls of bearings.
I needed to imagine a display (hours, minutes and seconds) wich would be carried out by balls. For that, it was enough to make fall one per seconds in a test-tube not being able to contain some more than fifty-nine... The sixtieth would thus roll above to fall into the minutes, actuating by the same occasion a valve which would release all the seconds. The same principle is done with the hours, we had a completely original and precise dial there at the same time. I just needed to built a prototype.
Copyright Chris Morgan. Clik on image to enlarge.
It was built in January 1994 and required one month and half of work. (In a cellar, with an hand drill and butane welded for any tools!) The principal problem was then the base of time: which would be the engine which could release a ball every second? The answer lay in a quartz, which controlled a small electric motor by reversing its polarities once a second. To ensure an inertia, it was enough to put a beam of good length at the end and the turn was played.The clock started during the day when the length of the beam was synchronized with quartz. There remained nevertheless some options to be completed until it was a a true clock: the handing-over with the hours and the minutes, the days of the week, the month and the day of the month as well as the cycle of lunations, because it remained a horrible empty place at a place. This draft remained four years to tap me the conscience because it called more succeeded. The one which was going one day to be called L'Anachrone
Can we call it a clock? I'm not shure. Of course it shows the time, but the earth is made of quartz. The biggest quality of this sculpture is here: it gave me the desire to invent and built a real clock. It gave birth to "Malevoz", wich gave birth to "Florence", wich gave birth to "Cyclostyle", wich gave birth to "Aprilia", wich gave birth to "Skyport", wich gave birth to "Diaphane",wich gave birth to the Chronolithe, wich gave birth to "Conti", wich gave birth to "Moreno",wich gave birth to "Pestoline, Leon, Harley Havidson, the Foucault pendulums... We can maybe not call the draft a clock, but we can say that it has been a good mother!