This section is from the book "Mission Furniture: How To Make It", by Henry Haven Windsor. Also available from Amazon: Mission Furniture: How to Make It.
The clock shown in the illustration was designed especially for rooms furnished in mission style. The clock, however, may be made of mahogany or other wood to match the furniture in any room where it is to be placed. If the mission effect is desired, an oxidized or copper sash should be used. Movements can be bought at the salesroom of a clock company. A movement should be selected that is wide enough from the front to the back to allow the clock case to be made sufficiently deep for standing without being easily upset.
Mantel Clock with Wood and Copper Front
Quarter-sawed white oak is the best material for this clock, but any other wood which works easily and takes a stain well may be used. Two pieces, 3/8 in. thick, 6-1/2 in. wide, and 8-1/2 in. long, will be needed for the front and back. One piece, 5 in. wide, 6 in. long, and with a thickness sufficient for the clock movement, is needed for the middle part. The thickness of this piece depends on the movement secured.
After the front and back pieces are finished, and a piece of hammered copper screwed on the front as shown in the drawing, the middle piece must be made just thick enough to make the whole distance from the front of the copper to the back of the clock equal to the depth of the movement. Plane one edge on both front and back pieces. Lay out the design and the centers for the circular holes from this planed edge. Use a plane and chisel to cut the outside design. The hole can be bored out with an expansive bit, or sawed out with a scroll saw, and filed perfectly round with a half-round wood file. The bit will give the best results. If the bit is used, bore holes in a piece of scrap wood until the exact size is found.
Details of Mantel Clock
The outside design of the piece of copper is made to correspond to the design of the clock. The circular hole in the copper can be cut with the expansive bit by first punching a hole in the center to receive the spur of the bit, placing on a block of wood and boring through a little way. The spur on the cutter will cut out the copper. Fasten the copper to the front with copper nails or round-headed screws.
If good glue can be had, the three pieces of wood may be glued together. If the glue cannot be relied upon, put in two flat-headed screws from the back.
The clock can be finished with a dark stain and waxed, or, as it is small, it can be easily fumed. If stain is used, stain and wax the pieces before putting them together. The fuming process is more easily done after the clock is assembled. Secure a bucket, a peck measure, or any receptacle large enough, when inverted, to put over the clock. Pour about 2 oz. of strong ammonia into a saucer or small pan. Support the clock above the saucer and cover both with the inverted bucket. Allow it to stand for three or four days - the longer it stands the darker the fumed finish will be. Finish with two coats of bleached wax. Do not use ordinary uncolored wax, as it will show in the unfilled pores of the wood. The works of the clock should not be in the frame while fuming.