British Army Smiths Type II white dial Bakelite wall clock c.1945.
This lovely Smiths white dial clock would have very likely been displayed in an officers mess hall or some other Army facility.
Type II white dial clocks began being manufactured for the RAF in 1942. However, Army examples of such clocks are believed to exist from as early as 1940.
Due to U-Boat attacks hampering Britain’s shipping lanes in The Atlantic, the importation of raw materials became severely limited. As such, an austerity clock was produced using cheaper materials than that of its Type I predecessor. The mahogany casing was replaced by tiger oak, ply and later by Bakelite. The heavy cast brass bezels were replaced with thin spun brass bezels. The expensive fusee movements were replaced with a cheaper and more robust Smiths Astral movement.
It is believed that very few of these cheaper austerity clocks survive. This is partly due to the small numbers that were produced and the lower quality of their construction when compared to the fuse clocks which were built to pre-war standards.
Bakelite was once considered to be fairly cheap and unattractive. However, it has become extremely fashionable and desirable in recent years due to the resurgence in popularity of items originating from the Art Deco period.
The Smiths army white dial clock for sale is an excellent original example of its kind, one which is becoming increasingly rarer and hard to find.