Welcome To Stuart's
Rolling Ball Clock Page

The Place to be for info on Arrow Handicraft Electric Ball Clocks



 Latest News.

Table of Contents
(Click topic to jump to that section)

The Idle Tyme Corporation
The Arrow Handicraft Corporation
How the Ball Clock Tells Time
Assembling the Arrow Ball Clock
The Deluxe Arrow Ball Clocks
The Arrow Domino Clock
The Time Machine Ball Clock
Motor repair information
Guide to repairing the motors
Assorted pictures of Arrow's Clocks


   If you have found this page you probably share my fascination with the Rolling Ball Clock. I have maintained an interest in these clocks for over 20 years. These amazing timepieces still have a substantial following. Not a day goes by that I do not receive emails regarding these clocks. I created this site to share the information that I have gathered on the Rolling Ball Clock.




Idle Tyme Corporation.

The Rolling Ball clock was the brainchild of Harley Mayenschein. He patented the design and founded Idle Tyme Corporation who manufactured these clocks before  the rights were sold to Arrow Handicraft.  For a more detailed history on the inventor, read a letter from his daughter Patrice Gunville which gives a good chronology of the clock's history.

UPDATE!     The original Idle-Tyme Wooden Rolling Ball Clocks are also once again available.  The inventor Harley Mayenschein passed away in 1985 and the family closed down the company. Well some 25 years later, his son, Joe Mayenschein has started up limited production of those beautiful clocks. They are hand-made of genuine hardwoods - furniture grade quality wood. Below is a photo of mine, hand made by Joe. I am enjoying it very much in the home office!

Arrow Handicraft Corporation

The following text was included with the literature from the Arrow Handicraft version of the clock.

.... Arrow HandiCraft Rolling Ball Clock Kit #675 Time never stands still with the Arrow Electric Ball Clock.  A unique addition to the world of timepieces, the Arrow clock uses the principles of gravity, balance and motion to record the passage of time.  "It lets you sit and watch the time go by without becoming bored," says the inventor Harley Mayenschein who designed this accurate time machine with the clock watcher in mind. Combining a Rube Goldberg-like structure with the small nickel-plated steel balls, the maze-like clock was inspired by a broken gum ball machine.  "Something seemed to click," recalls Mr. Mayenschein. "Why not use rolling gum balls to record the passage of time?"  Three months later, the inventor had developed an accurate working model.  The gum balls had been replaced by steel spheres and an electric clock motor arm dispensed one ball per minute.  The balls rolled along a maze of tracks, coming to rest at numbered positions on special racks to tell time.  Mr. Mayenschein began making hand-crafted wood versions in his shop.  Popular demand for an economical model led him to search for  a reputable firm that could produce and market the invention. 

How the Ball Clock Tells Time.

     The clock works by using steel balls to indicate the exact time.  ThereIn this example the time is 11:24 are 3 main rails which are numbered for hours and minutes. The bottom rail represents the hours.  The middle and upper rails are used to represent the minutes.  An electric motor scoops up a ball every minute. Every five minutes, the top rail will dump and deposit a ball on the second rail. Every hour, the upper and middle rails dump and one ball is transferred to the bottom rail to increment the hours.  The part that most people like to watch is the 1:00 drop. At 1:00 all three rails dump their balls to the feed rail at the bottom.  If this sounds like a noisy timepiece, you are right. The time in the picture to the left is 11:24.




Some Assembly Required

The Original Arrow Ball Clock box says "Can be assembled in an hour."  If you actually get a chance to assemble an original kit, expect more like 3 hours. It's a daunting task if you aren't good with assembly. Below are the assembly instructions. Click on the thumbnail to see full size.

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    Someone who purchased one of my Arrow Clock Kits has taken an excellent set of photos demonstrating the fun of assembling one of these kits. You can see the level of patience that must have been involved here.  Click on the thumbnails to see the full size pictures.


The Arrow Handicraft Deluxe Rolling Ball Clocks

   At a period of time in the 1980's a "Large" version of the Arrow Ball Clocks appeared. It was called  the Arrow Deluxe Ball Clock.The Deluxe Rolling Ball Clock  The deluxe versions were also featured in various Sports themes.  This version of the Ball Clock was about double the size of the original and used plastic balls. If you think the standard version was noisy, this one will rattle the windows.  I believe there were three different Sports themes. Two of them were Tennis and Golf and I think the third may have been basketball.  

The Arrow Handicraft Electric Domino Clock 

Here's a really The Arrow Handicraft Electric Domino Clockcool clock by Arrow that you do not see too often. It's called the Domino Clock Kit #677. It uses 3 metal balls and 3 rows of Dominos that rise and fall to represent the time. Each minute a ball is scooped up which forces one of the dominos to rise. Every 10 minutes the entire right side row will topple. Every hour the middle and right side rows topple. The real show is at 1:00 when all 3 rows are toppled. This clock is much noisier than the ball clocks. Do you have a Domino Clock with a dead motor? See the motor repair section for info on fixing these motors.

 Would you like to see the Domino clock in action? Check out this YouTube Video!




Assembly Instructions for the Domino Clock

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The Time Machine

 This is the current version of the Ball Clock from the company "Can You Imagine"  and is now known as the Time Machine. It is built by Hoffman Products inc.  This new version of the Electric Ball Clock retains many of the qualities of the original with some changes.  Assembly is no longer required. Personally I enjoyed assembling the original version, but some people would be daunted by the number of pieces when opening the carton. The Time Machine is ready to go right out of the box. All you have to do is put the balls on the rails. The motor has been changed also. Unlike the original where the pickup arm continuously spins, the new style spins quickly at the end of a minute to scoop up a ball.  The Time Machine also now has a "seconds" wheel which lets you see exactly when a ball is about to get scooped up.  Also required are four C batteries. I find that my clock runs about 3 or 4 months on one set of batteries.  There is a jack for and A/C adapter but they don't include the adapter.  Personally I like the original Arrow Clock much better. I don't like how the pickup arm is stationary on this remake.  Only at the last second it makes a quick pass to scoop up a ball then stops.  Since there is no assembly you don't experience the pleasure of sitting back and enjoying the rewards of assembling it yourself.



Motor Repair for original Arrow Electric Ball Clocks

       The most frequent issue with the original Arrow Ball Clocks #675 is the motor has stopped turning. The motors in the original Arrow ClocksMotor for the original Arrow Ball Clocks only. are Intermatic WG-1420, WG-1420-2, WG-1420-3 and WG-5094.  The most common cause of this failure is due to the armature gear that has cracked or worn out from age. Sometimes the armature may appear ok, but actually it has swollen and distorted so it cannot spin on the shaft. The result is the motor will not run.  I have the resources to get your motor repaired. Repairing your Intermatic Ball Clock motor will cost $42 plus $6.00 for priority mail return postage.  I highly recommend that you do not attempt to pry the motor housing apart as it may cause damage to the motor. Please send me the entire motor and wire as shown in the picture. See the "Parts" section of my page regarding replacement motors.

Stuart Singer
PO Box 78715
Charlotte, NC 28271-7040

So You Want to Fix the Arrow Clock Motor Yourself?

Very important!  Do NOT pull the electric wires off the motor. There is no reason to do so and you will end up breaking the extremely fine copper windings. I've seen this many times and people are ruining perfectly good motors by pulling the wires out.

     If you are reasonably handy and would prefer to try fixing the motor yourself, then contact me for a "Gear Kit" which consists of a replacement armature and idler assembly.  Based on the many emails I receive from this site, these gears will resolve the problem with most of the Arrow motors (Intermatic WG-1420, WG-1420-1,WG-1420-2 and WG-1420-3, WG-1450, CW-190). If you are replacing the gears in a CW-190 please let me know as I have a different version of the gears for that particular motor. I have learned that the gears will also fit an Australian version of the clock which is 250v (Intermatic WG-5094) motor. I"m also told that my gear kit will repair the President CB Radio Clock with motor WG6B9A 6X06.  You can also repair your Arrow Domino Clock motor with these gears. Gear Kits are $39.99 plus postage.

 To buy a Intermatic repair kit click the Buy Now button.  If you are outside of the USA please contact me for additional shipping cost

Click here to see detailed instructions on replacing the gears. If you feel comfortable performing these steps then you will need to order the replacement Gear Kit.

If you prefer to mail your payment, please send your payment of $39.99.

Stuart Singer
PO Box 78715
Charlotte, NC 28271-7040

Various Ball Clock Pictures
(click thumbnails to enlarge)

Arrow Handicraft Domino Clock with Dust Cover

Arrow Domino Clock without Dust Cover

The Original Arrow Handicraft Electric Ball Clock Kit #675

Arrow Handicraft Electric Domino Clock kit #677

Arrow Handicraft Electric Coin Clock (very rare)

The Original Idle-Tyme wooden Ball Clock.

Arrow Handicraft Electric Tennis Ball Clock

Arrow Handicraft Deluxe Electric Ball Clock Kit

Vintage Arrow Handicraft Ball Clock Kit #675

Special edition Ball Clock sold by Spencer Gifts featuring a personlized base.

A wooden replica of the original ball clock.

A homemade version of the ball clock made by one of my readers.

The Deluxe Arrow Ball Clock circa 1980

Blue Time Machine. Battery operated re-make of the Arrow Ball clock sold by Can You Imagine.

Green Time Machine. Battery operated re-make of the Arrow Ball clock sold by Can You Imagin

Magenta Time Machine. Battery operated re-make of the Arrow Ball clock sold by Can You Imagin

Orange Time Machine. Battery operated re-make of the Arrow Ball clock sold by Can You Imagin

Purple Time Machine. Battery operated re-make of the Arrow Ball clock sold by Can You Imagin


 Parts and Stuff

Ball Clock Parts
      I have an assortment of replacement parts such as rails, ball bearings, dust covers etc. for Arrow Ball Clocks. Please email me at ballclockguy@gmail.com for the part you need and I will let you know the price and availability. 

Custom Made Dust Covers

   One of the most common requests I get is for replacement dust covers. The ones originally made for the Arrow Ball Clock were very brittle and eventually get hazy over time. I am now able to provide custom hand-made acrylic Dust Covers for the Arrow Ball Kits #675. The material is 1/8" thick and totally clear allowing a much better view of the clock than with the original covers. These custom covers also do a good job of quieting the noise from the clock. The pictures you see below are my personal clock. The camera doesn't do it justice as the clock looks awesome with the new cover!

Below are some pictures of the custom cover.


Gear Kits
I have replacement Gear Kits for the motors that were sold with various Arrow Ball Clocks.  The kit consists of a replacement armature and idler gear assembly.  These are the parts the mainly fail on these motors. The parts are new and should last a long time.  Gear kits are $39.99 plus $4.95 S/H. I will gladly ship internationally, please contact me for a quote.

Replacement Ball Clock Motors
   Replacement motors are very hard to come by but I often have a couple on hand. I won't sell a motor if you don't have a trade.  If you have a broken motor, and you have NOT taken it apart, you can trade it in for another motor. Cost is $50 plus $6.00 postage.  Please contact me with questions.

I buy broken motors. Email me at ballclockguy@gmail.com if you have one that you don't want to fix. Thanks.

Feel free to contact me if you have any Arrow Clocks you would like to get rid of. I might be interested in the parts, or I can give some credit towards something I am selling. Thanks.

***Paypal or Money Orders accepted for any of my items***

Send your questions and comments to "The Ball
Clock Guy



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