NuTone L60 Starburst Clock Chime
NuTone was a leader in clock-chimes in the 1950s. Perhaps more than any other, the NuTone L60 epitomized a mid-century aesthetic with a brass starburst clock face on top of an acoustically transparent stereo style grill cloth. This was a high end model with a cabinet available in light walnut or ebonized hardwood. The L60 is NuTone’s most ambitious “chord-tone” chime in which two of the metal tone-bars are each struck simultaneously for each note of a four or eight note Westminster sequence. To accommodate four different notes, the L60 mechanism has a fifth tone bar. The resulting sound quality is quite pleasant:
The L60 was introduced in the 1958 NuTone Catalog:
ANOTHER WORLD FIRST! A true Westminster Chord Door Chime without the conventional long tubes. An ideal chime for spaces too crowded for the use of long tubes.
L-60 “SUNBURST” Chord Chime and Clock. Light Walnut or Ebony finish wood and Brass Sunburst bezel. Four or Eight chords for front door. One chord for second door, different chord for third floor (sic).
The L60 introduction in the 1958 NuTone Catalog is interesting because it is actually two years after this clock-chime had first appeared in the Sears Roebuck Christmas Book as noted on the 1959 Design Patent. It’s possible that NuTone offered the L60 as an exclusive in order to gain access to Sears’ then unparalleled marketing reach. The L60 was offered until the mid 1960s.