I started studying the art of Horology in Knysna in the late 90’s. Originally my interest in clock repairs came about when a friend of mine Mr P.M.Belleme ( Time Machine in Knysna) began to teach the history behind old time pieces and the skills that were required to repair these items. Originally my training began when Mr Belleme agreed to train me and we started working together 3 nights a week. It was an honor and privilege for me, having such a skilled craftsman willing to set aside his time (and patience) to teach me. I still recall the feeling I had when I eventually got to the stage that I could take an item that had been made over one hundred years ago (and had been through the wars – both literally and in shape and form) and bring it back to life.
As time went on I began to realize how many skills the art of horology required. I also realized that there is no limit to how much you can learn. A few examples of this would be the metal work (cleaning, plating, annealing, tempering, etc), woodwork, chemistry, mechanics, micro mechanics, fitting and turning, and the list goes on. The two main driving forces which continually reinforce my passion for clock repairs are the bringing life back to time pieces and the fact that I am and will be learning new skills and acquiring knowledge for the rest of my life.
I eventually got to the stage where I was able to give up my job and move on to repairs full time. After a few years and many life changes, I decided to move to Cape town. Once I had spent a year or so in the city I had eventually acquired the tools and knowledge to open my own workshop.
A good Friend Shamus Mossop also caught the bug and started training with me a on a part time basis somewhere around 2008. he has now become a full time apprentice and and is very fast becoming a very skilled worker who will soon be a very skilled and competent Clockmaker.
I like to keep a record of all the work I perform and will be updating this web site on an ongoing basis. Please forgive me if some of the photographs are not high quality but they are there to give people a better understanding of the process of clock repairs. The workshop is run on an “open book” basis where interested customers are welcome to pop in. I like to encouraged clients, or any other interested parties, to spend some time here. I also like to keep in touch with others in the trade and have managed to create a good working relationship with them.
I have also recently got to the stage where I am able to make my first clock form scratch. I will be posting pictures of my progress and will hopefully have a completed item by the end of the year (2011) if not before. I am now reading this in 2016 and things did not go as planned but I have made some progress. It has become a long journey mainly because taking time from repairs and income are not always that easy but I have not given up. I would like to mention and thank Mr G Luck who has helped me with knowledge and tools/machines it is greatly appreciated. I am hoping to grow Time Menders to a stage where I am able to manufacture as well as repair. It is still early days but the future is looking bright.
Please feel free to contact me with any esquires all details are available on this site.
I would also like to thank Jim Morel from Enigma Photography for the beautiful photographs and assistance in getting the Time Menders website up and running. Please note not all the photographs are taken by enigma. The wonky out of alignment, badly focused, non edited ones are taken by me with my phone.