frequently asked questions

Who is this for?

The Clock Register is for everyone who loves clocks, professionally or as a hobbyist or collector. It does not matter who you are. If you like, or work with, clocks, you are going to enjoy and benefit from The Clock Register.

Why The Clock Register?

Conservation of clocks is an important issue, as is conservation of any object that is worth holding on to. In the past twenty years or so, clock enthusiasts (professionals as well as hobbyists) have developed a different understanding of how we should be custodians of precious objects—passed on to us by previous generations—so future generations can continue to enjoy them.

The impetus for The Clock Register is the conviction that a world-wide, open-source collection of clock information will help conserve clocks and make even more people enthusiastic about them. There is a vast reservoir of knowledge out there in the world of clockmakers, collectors, museum curators, dealers and retailers. We can either all play our cards close to our chest and take that information to our graves, or, work together to learn from, and support each other with a view of passing on that knowledge to future generations. We, at The Clock Register, would like to push for this latter approach.

Just as a doctor wants to access the medical history of his patients, so should a clock conservator have all previous work, carried out on a clock, at his finger tips. This way, the conservator can come up with an accountable, and preferably reversible, approach to the conservation of that clock. A collector, dealer or auctioneer will gain respect and credibility if a clock's pedigree can be verified and explained. Many musea already offer information about their collections online. That's great. What's missing, however, is an overarching database that will hold information about all clocks, regardless of their ownership, nationality or physical whereabouts. This is all why The Clock Register has sprung up.

What is conservation?

Rather than making old objects look new again, we now realise that such an intervention often throws away what made "old" interesting in the first place. By leaving old "as is", through minimum intervention, we now work in the age of conservation and use the word "conservation" specifically to distinguish it from restoration and repair, the latter two activities often liable to change the object irreversibly.

What is crowdsourcing?

Our service, which we call "The Clock Register", allows all of us to contribute (also known as "crowdsourcing") information and photos in a register that holds that information forever and grows and grows and so becomes an invaluable resource for our Members. But also, because of the contributions of our Members.

Of course, this effort brings along costs. We want to keep costs as low as possible for our Members. Hence, we have chosen a model where Members who contribute clock information can search and learn for free. Members who also contribute their clock photos, will make money from these photos, when another Member pays to see them.

The more clocks our Members add to The Clock Register, the more valuable it will become as a resource for you, for now and for future generations.

How does The Clock Register work?

Clock owners, collectors, dealers, museum clock curators, clock repairers, restorers, conservators and in general any clock enthusiast can register a clock into The Clock Register. And... contribute their clock photos to earn money from them.

We catalog clocks with more than 150 fields. Of course, you will not necessarily have to fill in all 150 fields when you register a clock. That's why we offer a basic and an advanced clock registration. Even if you only fill in one or two fields, that is of great value. The Clock Register has an update function which allows you or others to complete what you have started.

Finding a clock via a Google-like search in The Clock Register is quick and easy. Here are some examples of questions you can ask:

Show me:

  • all clocks with a Brocot escapement
  • all wall clocks with 6 wheels in the going train
  • all clocks I can see in Museum ABC
  • all clocks made by Daniel Quare
  • what is the ownership history of this Thomas Mudge chronometer?
  • show me a conservator report for a wall clock with two bells and deadbeat escapement made between 1850-1875
  • ... and many more...

How can I add a clock to The Clock Register?

You first need to join as a Member. Joining is free. Once you have joined, you can add clocks to The Clock Register, search for clocks and begin making money from your clock photos. Simply click on upload/add in the menu bar and then click on either basic or advanced and answer the questions that follow about the clock you wish to enter into The Clock Register.

Can I add 100 clocks in one go to The Clock Register?

Yes. Ask for our spreadsheet with all the fields you need to fill in. Return the spreadsheet when you are done and we will load all your clock data in one go into The Clock Register.

Quality Control

All information entered into The Clock Register is checked on quality by our Experts. If we find that you have contributed information lacking in quality you will be given a chance to remedy it, failing which we will delete it.

How secure is The Clock Register?

Every page on our website runs under the encrypted https (as opposed to the unsecure http) protocol. This means that all the traffic between your browser and our server is as secure as we can make it. We do this because we are handling your photos and your money. We want both to be safe.

What are Clock Credits?

You can search The Clock Register for free, as long as you keep contributing information. That's what crowdsourcing is all about. That's what by and for "clockies" is all about. You will get 100 free Clock Credits when you join us. Searching and viewing the result screen of a search is free. You will lose 20 Clock Credits when you click on the "type of clock", "owner" or "conservator" hyperlink in the search results. But only for a clock contributed by someone else. So when you click on a clock that you contributed yourself, that will always be free. When you inspect the type of clock, the owner and the conservator for the same clock, it will cost you no more than 20 Clock Credits for having looked at all three pages. Every time you register a clock, you will gain up to 174 Clock Credits, the precise number depending on how many of the more than 150 fields you respond to. The more detail you provide, the more Clock Credits you gain.

Does it cost money to use The Clock Register?

That depends on you. The Clock Register is free as long as you have Clock Credits available and you do not buy clock photos. When you join, we give you 100 Clock Credits for free and you can add to them by adding clocks (or more precisely: information about clocks). The real power of our service is in searching and inspecting a clock's details, searching and examining photos of the clock's parts and clock, of its owners and conservators. And remember, the number of clocks and photos in The Clock Register is growing all the time as our Members contribute information and photos.

So, while searching and viewing the result screen is free (meaning you give up no Clock Credits), every time you dig deeper we charge you 20 Clock Credits (unless you contributed that particular clock's information yourself). This "digging deeper" means clicking on the type of clock, owner or conservator for one and the same clock. Even if you click on all three it will not cost you more than 20 Clock Credits. And, again, if you click on any of the clocks you contributed yourself that is always free. You lose no Clock Credits.

As long as you have a positive balance of Clock Credits (as indicated in the top right of your screen when you are logged in) you can continue to benefit from The Clock Register without paying anything in real money, unless you buy clock photos. So keep adding clocks to The Clock Register and you never pay anything. Keep adding photos to The Clock Register and you may very well be earning nicely from them alone!

However, if you don't like adding clocks to The Clock Register, you can still carry out searches, but you will have to buy Clock Credits, after you have used up your initial free 100 Clock Credits. A page will pop up allowing you to buy 100 Clock Credits as soon as your balance hits zero. You can also buy Clock Credits at any time by clicking on my account in the top right of the menu bar (when you are logged in) and then clicking on buy Clock Credits.

How do I search for clock photos?

Click on "search" in the menu bar at the top of the screen. You will see several tabs allowing you to search for clocks, advanced (which offers several fields to search for clocks), photos, conservators and owners. In photos, you can then even further choose between searching just on photo tags or on tags, file names and descriptions of the photos. All our photos carry meta data. These meta data consist of:

  • a photo file name
  • photo tags: tags allow us to describe what we see in the photo (for instance: gathering pallet, snail, striking train)
  • a photo description

If you tick the tag box in the photo search tab, you will search only the tags of the photos. Unticked, you'll search the descriptions, file names and tags, so you cast the net wider.

Click here to see an example of a photo tag search.

Can I copy and paste these photos?

Yes. Once you have found your photo results via a photo search, or if you bought a photoset (typically consisting of about 100 photos of the clock and its parts) from the detailed clock information screen, you will see that we present these photos in a reduced quality format of 100 x 100 pixels as a maximum. As we explain in Terms of Use, you may save these photos for yourself or in your business, provided that you do not copy them to others or sell them on for money without the express written consent of the owner of the photos. Email if you want to request consent.

You can also buy the high resolution photos from this photoset (if made available by the Member who contributed that photoset) of the photos that you see in reduced quality format. In order to see a high resolution photo you need to have a login and password to be able to enter the Flickr photo service. You can sign up with Flickr to get a username and password, for free, on Our photos are free of watermarks. Each photoset and each high resolution photo carries a price which has been set by the contributor of those photos.

You pay via Stripe's secure payment service to view these photos that are stored on Flickr. You cannot find these photos on Flickr directly, only via The Clock Register, because you need a special code that we provide before we sent you on to Flickr. 70% of the net proceeds (after Stripe, the bank or PayPal take their cut for their payment services) goes the contributor of the clock photos and 30% goes to The Clock Register.

How can I earn money with my clock photos?

Do you have lots of photos of clocks and clock parts sitting idly on your PC, Mac, USB stick, safely in a drawer, or on your company's server or even in the cloud? Are you guarding your photos like the crown jewels? Are you reluctant to show them to anyone out of fear someone might do a runner? Are you still planning... one day... to do something with these photos? Is that plan shifting forward all the time?

If so... we do have something for you! You know that you are sitting on a valuable asset that isn't doing anything for you, nor for the conservation of clocks! Indeed, your photos can be of great value to everyone who cares about the conservation of clocks, but most importantly, to you as a source of CASH! Your photos can make you and your company, museum or clockshop money by taking action now!

Upload your clock photos to The Clock Register to boost your clockmaking income, the revenues of your museum, clockshop or auction house and, at the same time, to support the conservation of clocks.

If you want to earn money with your photos, The Clock Register is a great place to link them to. We are the only search engine on the internet allowing you to search for clock information using more than 150 fields and searching through over 10,000 photos of clocks and clock parts. And that number is growing rapidly.

Yes, we are the only clock search engine on the internet that lets you search on text, more than 150 fields and photos! As a hub for clockmakers, dealers, collectors, curators and students, we are ideally positioned to generate cash for you from your photos.

What three sources of photo revenue are there?

The three ways to make money from your photos

  • Money from Clock Credits sales: When Members buy Clock Credits from the Clock Register, you will earn money in proportion to the number of photos you have contributed. The money you earn is your pro rata part of 30% of the net revenues generated from us selling Clock Credits to our Members. So, the more photos you contribute the higher your pro rata part of the total number of photos in The Clock Register. And it gets even better.
  • Money from photosets: A website visitor or Member buys viewing rights to see a complete photoset of a clock and the parts that make up that clock. Typically about 100 photos! You happen to have sent in that photoset. So, again, you are earning money! This time, 70% of the net revenues!
  • Money from high resolution photos: A website visitor or Member buys the right to download a high resolution photo from one of your photosets. Bingo! You are earning money again, 70% of the net revenues!

Besides, while you are earning money, you are in complete control:

  • You decide the quality of the photos you want to show.
  • You decide whether you want to sell your high resolution photos.
  • You decide the price of each photoset you contribute.
  • You decide the price of your high resolution photos.
  • You can check your earnings real-time online (provided you are logged in) by clicking on My Account in the menu bar and then on my net revenues.
  • Most importantly, you remain in full control as the owner of your original photos, if you so wish.

If you only want to show reduced quality photos, that's fine. If you also want to sell your higher, quality original photos that's fine too! The Clock Register will never own your photos. Not your reduced quality ones, nor your originals.

Our website visitors and Members will be able to save your reduced quality photos but only on a licence that says that they cannot distribute or make money from them without your consent. Without your consent, they can only use them for their own purposes. Only when you decide to sell a high resolution photo—at a price that you set—can someone obtain a copy of your original. Again, on a licence where that person cannot distribute or make money from that original without your consent.

Click here to see a demo of how this all works.

If this all sounds like a fair bargain, read on, to discover what you need to do to start earning money. The good news is, you do not have to do much to make this happen, because we have done most of the work for you.

If you feel awkward about sending your clock photos to us, remember that you are dealing with The Clock Register. You have our word and a written agreement in the Terms of Use that if you want your photos back or deleted from our website, we will do exactly as you request. We exist for our Members and our aim is to run a first class business, and that, in a first class way.

So how do I get started with earning money from my clock photos?

If you are not a Member already, become a Member now. Then add the clocks to The Clock Register of which you have photos to show.

Then send us your photos (as explained below) and make sure your photos have descriptive tags that say what you see on the photo. You can have a maximum of 75 tags per photo. Adobe's Bridge and Apple's Photos are good tools to add tags to photos. If tagging sounds like a bridge too far, send us your photos and we will tag them for you. We charge £1.50 per photo to add tags.

You need to show at least 10 photos per clock (this is what we call a "photoset"). Most people sent in about 100 photos of one particular clock and all its parts. Our web visitors can see the number of photos in a photoset before they buy the photoset. Obviously, the more photos you put into a photoset, the better your chances someone wants to buy acces to your photoset. Nobody can link through to your photoset until they have paid The Clock Register. We split that payment between us (70% to you, 30% to The Clock Register). It is that simple.

So why is Flickr involved?

Now to put this into practice, we store all photos in the cloud with a professional, safe and secure photo storage service: Flickr. We currently hold more than 10,000 photos on Flickr. That number is growing with Members adding their photosets. Nobody can see the photos you sent us on Flickr directly, only via The Clock Register.

Making money from photosets and high resolution photos

A typical photoset will contain about a 100 photos. The minimum number for a photoset is 10 photos. There is no maximum. But, you can set your own price for each photoset that you contribute when you are adding a clock to The Clock Register. The more photosets you offer and the more photos per photoset, the better your chances of earning money.

Again, when you add a clock to The Clock Register, you can set your own price for your high resolution originals. This, of course, only if you want to sell copies of your originals. If not, we will still show your reduced quality photos as photosets, but not offer your higher quality originals for sale.

Let's give an example of this second method. A Member decides to search on the words "maintaining power spring". Several photos are found possibly from different photosets that all have at least one tag that reads "maintaining power spring". This Member is particularly interested in one of these photos and buys the original by clicking on the button "buy the high resolution photo for £3.95". Again, as simple as that! Click here to see it in action.

Five practical steps to begin earning money from your photos

  • Step 1: Your photoset must satisfy the following requirements: (1) the photoset consists of at least 10 good quality photos of the clock and its parts, (2) each photo in a photoset must be at least 100 x 100 pixels and (3) all photos are free from watermarks. Please note that we will not offer your single photos for sale as high resolution photos, unless both width and height of these photos exceed 100 pixels. In our judgment, below 100 x 100 pixels, the photo quality is not good enough to sell as a high quality photo.
  • Step 2: Give your clock photos sufficient tags to describe what you see in the photo. The more tags you give each photo, the more revenue potential you create for yourself, because you increase the probability that your photo will be found in a photosearch. If a Member likes a photo, he or she might want to buy the original from you. Here are some examples of tags people might search on. You can create any tag you like with a maximum of 75 tags per photo. Of course, a tag must relate to what you see in the photo.
  • Step 3: Send your photoset to us (email: via a file sharing service such as Dropbox or WeTransfer or whatever service you feel comfortable with. We will then store your photos on Flickr, in a private and secure space, which nobody can access unless they come through The Clock Register. Remember, you will remain the sole owner of your photos. We will immediately return or delete your photos, if you so request. No questions asked. Our reputation as a clock conservation business depends entirely on how we treat your intellectual property. We aim to offer a first class business, and that, in a first class way.
  • Step 4: Add the clock that belongs to a photoset to The Clock Register by clicking on "upload/add" in the menu bar. The more questions you answer about the clock, the better the chances it will be found in a search, the better your chances to earn money. We will link the photoset you sent us to the clock that you add to The Clock Register in this step 4.
  • Step 5: Add your bank details, or select PayPal as a payment option, by clicking on the "my account" button in the menu bar once you are logged in. This, so we can pay you.

That's it. You can monitor, at any time, in the "my net revenues" section (under "my account" in the menu bar of our website) how much you have earned from your photos.

So you can decide at what prices to sell each photoset you contribute and at what prices you want to sell your high resolution originals in that photoset. If you do not want to sell your originals, say so when you enter the clock information under "upload/add", and we will not offer them for sale. Remember, we will only show, and our web visitors can only copy, your photoset photos in reduced quality (a maximum of 100 x 100 pixels). You will remain the sole owner of your high resolution photos, unless you are happy to sell them too. You can ask us to return your photos to you or delete them at any time. No questions asked. You can monitor, what you are earning from your photos at any time by clicking on "my net revenues" under the "my account" button in the menu bar when you are logged in.

When do I get paid for clicks on my photosets and high resolution photos?

Monthly. We use Stripe, a tried, tested and secure payment system, to handle payments on our website. We will pay you monthly your net revenues for that month within 14 days after we have received our revenues from Stripe. We pay to your bank account or via PayPal (using your email address) as you prefer. Enter your bank details, or select the Paypal "yes" button under "change payment details" in "my account" in the menu bar. You can read more about how Stripe's payment service works here.

How do you define net revenues?

definition of net revenues: The sales price of an item minus Stripe's compensation for us using their secure payment system. Stripe earns 2.4% + 20 pence per transaction. The Clock Register gets 30% of a photoset or high resolution photo sale, while 70% goes to the owner of the photos. The Clock Register gets 70% of the Clock Credits sales, while the remaining 30% is distributed among the Members who have contributed photosets pro rata to the number of photos they have contributed.

Example of photo net revenues: Let's assume you have a set of 80 photos of a particular clock and you have set the price of the photoset at £9.95. A Member clicks on the hyperlink to your photoset for that clock. That generates £9.95 in revenues. Stripe will take 2.4% + 20 pence of £9.95 which is £0.44. That means £9.95 - £0.44 = £9.51 is available as net revenues. You will receive 70% of £9.51 = £6.66.

Where do I enter my bank or PayPal account details?

Once you are logged in, click on "my account" at the top right of the menu bar. Then click on "change payment details" and fill in your bank account details. If you prefer to get paid via PayPal, tick the "yes" radio button. We will then send your money via PayPal using your email address from your registration details.

What about bank or PayPal money transfer charges?

Please note that, depending on where in the world you maintain your bank or PayPal account, there may be a money transfer charge that you will incur when we pay you. As we are a UK-based organisation, Stripe pays us in Pound Sterling. We can transfer money within the European Union to a Pound Sterling bank account and a Pound Sterling PayPal account without a transfer charge for you. If you do not maintain an account in Sterling in the European Union, your bank (or PayPal) will carry out the foreign exchange transaction to pay you in the currency of your bank account and may deduct a money transfer charge as well. Please check this with your bank or PayPal.

What does it mean to be an Expert?

If you pass the Expert test, it means that we believe you will be able to contribute a lot to The Clock Register. We are keen to get you involved in mapping out our future. We hope you will request Updater status, so you can help complete incomplete or incorrect information about a particular clock and earn Clock Credits doing so. Updaters get rewarded handsomely in Clock Credits when updating.

We also believe that in the future some areas of our site may only be visible to Experts. That is not the case yet, but it can easily be implemented if enough Experts push for it.

Most Experts will be in a position to earn more Clock Credits than non-Expert Members, anyway, because it is likely that they know more answers when entering a clock's details.

Who gets to see my clock data and photos that I contribute?

Anyone who is accepted as a Member can see all clock information. Any website visitor can see the photos in The Clock Register. Ensure when you send us your photosets or enter photos into the database that you have permission of the owner of the photos to do so.

What about theft?

We hear from time to time people say "I am certainly not going to enter my client's personal details in a public service for everyone to see! A thief can easily register and find out where all the beautiful clocks are..." If you feel that you should not give personal details about the owner of a clock, then please be aware that nothing in The Clock Register is forcing you to do so.

We have designed The Clock Register so, that you do not have to fill in any personal details of an owner, if you are uncomfortable doing so. Please note, that we do no ask the street address of any individual owner of a clock. We only ask for an email address. And this, so people can contact the owner if they have a question about the clock. If you have concerns about revealing personal details of owners, we offer an option to select The Clock Register as a substitute address. What happens then is that instead of showing the owner's name, email and country we will show The Clock Register substitute address fields. This way, third parties can then still get in touch with the owner, but only via The Clock Register, and only if the owner is willing to respond to such an approach.

In the unfortunate event that a clock is stolen, The Clock Register is a valuable resource for the police. Rather than trying to give the police an oral account of what the clock looked like, you can now hand over a most detailed clock description including measurements, marks on clock plates, pictures and sounds and many other things to hasten the retrieval of that clock. In order to alert clock dealers about stolen clocks, we offer a separate page that shows clocks that have been reported as stolen.

Who owns The Clock Register?

TerKuileClocks wich in turn is owned by Marc ter Kuile. Marc, a 2009 West Dean College Antique Clock Conservation and Restoration graduate, created The Clock Register as a common tool for everyone working with clocks to fulfil a central role in clock conservation. If you are keen to contribute to the further development of The Clock Register, then please email Marc at

Can I update or complete data of a clock that is already in the Clock Register?

Anyone can add information about a clock from scratch. But not everyone can update information about a clock that is already in The Clock Register, unless you have added that clock yourself. To update information in any record, you need to acquire "Updater" status. Updaters are clock experts. For the time being, people that have passed the Expert test or are known to us as "clock experts", will be given Updater rights when they so request.

How can I send feedback?

There is a feedback link in the small print at the bottom of every page of The Clock Register.

We envision The Clock Register to serve as a common tool for everyone working with clocks to fulfil a key role in clock conservation, dealing and collecting. If you want to be part this effort and reap the benefits, please join us now.