How it works

The cuckoo clock from the Black Forest is a mechanical pendulum clock which is driven by a weight in the shape of a pine cone. These days 1-day and 8-day movements are common, meaning that the weight has to be wound up daily or every 8 days, respectively. Adjusting the clock takes place via a shiftable pendulum bob that is usually made in the shape of a maple leaf.

The mechanical cuckoo that chimes the hour is driven by a second, independent weight. When each full hour strikes, a sophisticated lever mechanism moves the so-called perch forward where the cuckoo sits. A wire arm opens the door and the cuckoo appears. Slightly delayed, the cuckoo call is then imitated via a bellows and 2 pipes.

The cuckoo is going to appear again in x minutes. For those who don’t want to wait that long, the cuckoo can be lured out here…

  times cuckoo call

Further information

The Wikipedia article on the topic „Cuckoo clock“.

An online shop in Schönwald, Germany with hundreds of handcrafted cuckoo clocks that are delivered worldwide, as well as spare parts. Besides Schönwald, the town of Neukirch also claims to be the birthplace of the Black Forest cuckoo clock.

Hand-carved cuckoo clocks by HUBERT HERR.

Thanks a lot to Torsten Schneider and Ferdinand Fuchs for the help.

The JavaScript cuckoo clock presented here is governed by the Creative Commons 3.0 licence. It may be used freely for private and commercial purposes when indication of the author is made or a link is posted to this website.