Question: What happens when you team up a sailor with an MBA and a marine with a BS in civil engineering?
Answer: You get two guys that make handmade wooden clocks.
What? That’s not obvious? The roots of an artist are often just that, far from obvious. Most of us have had or have lives outside of our artwork. Many accomplished masters of today are able to hone their skills having already earned themselves a pension after completing their first job, I’d call it a career, but most would reflect back that their real career is their artwork and the rest of their life was simply preparation!
Dan Cooney (US Marines, Ret.) and Charles Maxwell (US Navy, Ret.) joined forces and now own and operate Hardwood Clocks. Their vision is to fulfill their creative pursuits by crafting handmade fully functional hardwood clocks.
Their flagship clock is deemed the “M4-Timber-Frame,” designed to stand out when placed within a timber frame home. Dan has a sharp eye for fine design as well as an uncanny ability to guide an individual’s personal tastes in the creation of a customized clock for any setting, starting out with the M4 designed specifically for his timber frame home.
Charles, now retired from the US Navy, (MS-University of Wisconsin-Madison and MBA University of Rochester) pursued his quest for creativity through creating wooden clocks. He has no formal training as a clock maker, just the self discipline and passion for wooden clocks that began when he visited a museum store at Cape Cod in 1982. This gave him the next 25 years to ponder his retirement and the time to design his first all-wood fully functional clock.
Dan Cooney, the Marine with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Penn State transitioned to the civilian marketplace after his service with distinction to spend the next 22 years in the telecommunications industry where he found considerable success in various leadership positions. In search of post-retirement challenges, he built his present timber frame home and then became an authorized distributor/dealer for Hearthstones Homes Inc. after establishing TimberDream Homes Inc. Dan now serves in design and marketing, matching the perfect clock to each potential client.
Making a clock entirely from hardwood parts is an amazing display of engineering, precision woodworking. Interlocking gears are complex to start, let alone when the considerations for expansion, grain patterns, and overall structure are considered. Creating a wooden gear requires carefully planned indexed cutting, in the case of these hardwood clocks the teeth are actually each inserted to ensure the grain direction optimizes the durability of each tooth.
These signed mechanical works of art are an investment in form, function, and natural beauty … not to mention the fact that they are likely to increase in value over time as Charles & Dan further their mark on the woodworking world. Someday I’d actually like to make one of these – some day when I have the time and a computerized milling machine at my disposal. Most of us woodworkers admire, then slowly back away from pieces like this, they are truly challenging to discipline and precision. I figure I’ll ponder over these for a while, contemplate making one, think about the time investment, maybe consider the costs of the CNC Mill, and then maybe buy one by Charles & Dan for Teri and I when the time is right!
Visit www.hardwoodclocks.com for more examples of their work including detailed images and specifications.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: (610) 458-4062
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The images presented on this page are owned by Hardwood Clocks (www.hardwoodclocks.com)
All Rights are reserved – their use here is with permission for mutual marketing and educational purposes.