How it works
A tide clock works according to the lunar cycle, as opposed to a regular clock, which works on the solar cycle of 24 hrs. The lunar cycle lasts 24 hrs and 50 minutes, and is responsable for the tides on Earth. The lunar orbit causes two daily tide cycles, each of 12 hrs and 25 minutes, i.e. the time between two high tides or two low tides. Hence, a tide will take roughly 6 hrs and 12 minutes to go from low to high (the flood) or from high to low (the ebb). However, this does not show for amplitude or breath of the tide.
Your tide clock works according to the lunar cycle in a precise fashion, however there are other external factors that may influence the timing and breath of the sea’s movements. They may include wind direction and strength, atmospheric pressure, geographical oddities, the sun’s position, as well as other heavenly bodies. Your clock knows nothing of the outside conditions or its geographical postion and cannot compensate for those vagaries. Hence, your clock’s timing and the tides may differ by up to 30 minutes.
This being said, the clock’s information remains relevant, as you can see for example whether there are two hours to go before high tide or three hours before low tide, and so on.
To start your clock
First, insert a single AA battery in the mechanism. You’ll find the door of the mechanism at the back of the clock.
With the wheel on the mechanism, you may adjust the hand of your clock according to the tide tables in your area.
After a few days, you ought to know whether your tide clock is ahead or behind on the tides, and thusly adjust the hand to its correct values.
The best results can be obtained when the moon is full or new.
There are actually tow tidal cycles: a twice-daily cycle and a once daily cycle. On a tide when the two cycles help each other, high tides will be higher and low tides will be lower. On the next tide, when they conflict, the tidal range will be smaller. The relative strength of these two cycles varies from week to week, and from one place to another. In the U.S. along the Atlantic Coast the tow daily tides have a similar range, but on the Northern Pacific Coast, there tends to be alarge difference between the two daily tides. Farther South and in the Gulf of MExico, the difference is so great there often appears to be just one high tide and one low tide per day. Abnormal atmospheric pressure can temporarily affect the time and height of tides A difference of one inch in parometric pressure will cause about one foot difference on sea level. Strong on-shore winds will also cause an increase in sea level. Both these effects will change the times of high and low tides as well. Tides in the lower portion of rivers will be affected by the changing volume of the river flow.