About clocks

The FCC4 runs clocks fitted with modified Quartex Q80 movements. Consider the following when choosing clocks to convert to fast time.

What kind of clocks do you like?

Many clock styles, from plain to fancy, are available in stores and online. Many modelers choose inexpensive plastic clocks, while others prefer ornate wooden clocks reminiscent of railroading's glory days. Some build kits from Klockit, or make their own from scratch.

Whatever you choose, replacing the factory movement with a modified Q80 movement is easy.

Most commercial clocks have a snap-fit holder for the movement, and the Q80 fits this holder perfectly. If a clock does not have such a holder, the Q80 can be attached with the supplied nut and washer on the movement's threaded bushing.

You can make clocks from wood or styrene, with a face from hardboard or acrylic. Use a computer graphics program to draw a dial to glue to the face.

Get your clocks first

Construct or buy clocks to be transformed into fast clocks before ordering Q80 movements. You'll need to measure the "time ring" diameter to choose clock hands, and the dial thickness to select a movement bushing length.

Keep reading to see why these are important.

Clock size

The clock's time ring (the circle surrounding the numbers) may be as large as 7" in diameter, for a 3½" minute hand. The outside dimensions of the clock face or the clock itself may be larger, but the time ring should be no larger than 7".

Please don't be tempted to use longer hands. The Q80 movement isn't powerful enough to move longer hands at fast-time speeds.

Clock dial thickness

Q80 movements have a threaded bushing on the front that goes through the clock face, and allows a nut and washer to secure the movement in place. This bushing must be long enough to protrude from the face with sufficient threads for the washer and nut.

Measure the the clock dial thickness ("B" in this drawing), then order a movement that matches this thickness.

For example, most inexpensive plastic clocks have dials 1/8"-thick or thinner. If yours does, select 1/8" in the Clock Dial Thickness drop-down list when you buy movements. If your dial is between 1/8" and ¼" thick, select 5/16" in the list. If about ½" thick, select  ½", and so forth. It's OK if your dial is slightly thinner than the selected size.

The movement's bushing length ("A" in this drawing) will be slightly longer than the selected thickness to accommodate the mounting hardware.

Clock hands

Each movement comes with one set of #66927 hands (a 3½" minute hand) for a time ring 7" in diameter, but you may use shorter hands for smaller clocks.

Fast clocks cannot use a second hand.

This drawing (not exact size) shows the four hand styles and sizes I offer (more are available at Klockit), along with rulers to help judge the length. You can snip off a short portion of the minute hand if it is too long for your clock's time ring.

You may specify alternate hands when you buy movements.

Clock hands


Updated December 27, 2017