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How To: Determine What Size Clock Hands to Use

Quartz clock movements vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, making it tricky to find the right clock hands for your clock project. Simply follow these two steps when selecting clock hands to ensure you purchase the right size and style of your clock project!

Quick Tip: Free Clock Hands | Klockit

Step #1: Measure the Outside Diameter of the Clock Dial

Grab a tape measure or ruler, and measure from the outside diameter of the time ring on your clock dial (also called a clock face) as shown below. If there is no time ring, measure from the outside edge of the numerals or markers.

Measuring for clock hand length


Step #2: Divide the Outside Diameter by Two

Take the outside diameter measurement and divide it by two. That measurement will give you the recommended length of the minute hand. We may not carry the exact size that’s recommended from this simple formula, so it’s perfectly OK to be within 1/4” of the recommended size.

Quick tip on measuring clock hands | Klockit


If you have any questions on this information or need assistance determining what size clock hands will be best for your project, please leave a comment below and we’ll respond within 24 hours.


39 comments on “How To: Determine What Size Clock Hands to Use

  1. mark royall
    June 27, 2016

    You can create a unique art clock by creating outside the box by making the hands bent, oversize or undersize. .Mark Royall

  2. Håkon
    November 27, 2016

    Would a clock eho is 45mm fit my hand, which is about 5.5 cm?

    • Klockit
      November 28, 2016

      Hi Håkon, we need more information about your clock before answering your question. Can you please call us at 1-800-556-2548 or email us at klockit@klockit.com with the type of movement you have (quartz or mechanical) and the shape hole your current clock hands have (rectangle or circle)? Thank you, we look forward to helping you!

  3. Brenda
    January 25, 2017

    I am going to make a clock out repurposed wood I bought a quarts movement and some larger hands they don’t have a measurement on them so I don’t know how big to make the clock help please

    • Klockit
      January 26, 2017

      Hi Brenda, we have a few tips and tricks that will help with your clock project. We’ll be in touch soon via email. Thank you!

  4. Carolyn Martinez
    March 12, 2017

    I have a handmade clock, glass face and handblown glass chunks instead of numbers; they are spaced a bit less than 3.5 inches from center. What size hands should I buy? Can hands be trimmed slightly or is smaller better?

    • Klockit
      March 13, 2017

      Hi Carolyn, thank you for reaching out to us! Our clock hands can be trimmed up to 1/4″, but the hand size is more of a recommendation than anything – everyone has their own preference. We will be in touch soon with more details via email.

  5. Jill Seifert
    June 19, 2017

    I am making clocks 20″ round, need clock kits in bulk.

    • Klockit
      June 19, 2017

      Hi Jill, we recommend 10″ clock hands with a 20″ diameter clock. We’ll be in touch soon via email with more details about pricing on bulk clock kits.

  6. Natalie Limbert
    July 25, 2017

    What size of clock hands and motor or kit with everything in it what I need for a 36 inch wooden wall clock?

  7. Audra Lewis
    September 4, 2017

    I am trying to build a large clock out of pallet wood. The base is made and now I need to know what I need to make it into a working clock.

    • Klockit
      November 6, 2017

      Hi Audra, please contact us at 1-800-556-2548 for assistance with the next steps in your project.

  8. Cindy
    September 17, 2017

    We are building a 60″ diameter wall clock for my kitchen. I’m having a lot of difficulty finding any hands longer than 18″. I would love to find an entire clock kit with everything included. Do you have any idea where I could find supplies to fit. Thank You

    • Klockit
      November 6, 2017

      Hi Cindy, the longest pair of clock hands we offer are 17.5″ long. If you’re looking for longer clock hands, we recommend doing an internet search.

  9. lynda m rafferty
    October 6, 2017

    What size clock hands should I use for a 24 in clock ?

    • Klockit
      November 6, 2017

      Hi Lynda, we recommend using 12″ clock hands for a 24″ clock

  10. Amanda Thomas
    October 24, 2017

    We are having a hard time determining what movement and hands to use on a large clock. The clock is 21 inches wide. The thickness of the wood used is 1/2 inch. Don you have any suggestions?

    • Klockit
      October 25, 2017

      Hi Amanda, you’ll need a high torque clock movement to power the longer hands on a 21″ clock. We recommend using our 10115-bundle clock movement (including hand mounting hardware): https://www.klockit.com/high-torque-quartz-clock-movement.html. For the clock hands, we typically recommend taking the diameter of the clock and diving it by 2 to get the clock hand length that would look best on that size clock. So in your case, 10.5″ clock hands – we don’t offer a pair that is specifically 10.5″, so the next best option is 10″: https://www.klockit.com/10-black-spade-hour-and-minute-hand-set.html.

      If you have any more questions, please don’t hesitate to comment back on this thread or call us at 1-800-556-2548.

  11. Dianna
    November 4, 2017

    I have a 1″ thick piece of pine that is 17.75″ round. Is there a kit that would work best for this? I’m trying to find the right size hands as well.

    • Klockit
      November 6, 2017

      Hi Dianna, are you able to route out your piece of pine wood? The longest hand shaft we offer can go through a maximum of 3/4″ width. For your clock hands, we recommend 8 or 9″ clock hands – which means you’ll need a high torque clock movement: https://www.klockit.com/high-torque-quartz-clock-movement-with-c-cell-power.html, #10161-bundle.

      • Dianna
        November 6, 2017

        I can cut out the extra. I was looking at 10161 bundle and was wondering what the note of not using a second hand meant?

      • Klockit
        November 6, 2017

        Ok great! The note on the second hand means that this clock movement doesn’t take a second hand, so you’d just be using the hour and minute hands.

  12. Sonja Graham
    November 7, 2017

    I have a round clock face that is 10″ in diameter. How long should the minute hand be on a clock face that size? Thanks!

    • Klockit
      November 8, 2017

      Hi Sonja, we recommend using a 5″ minute hand for your clock. If you are unable to find one that’s exactly 5″ long, a little over or under will look just fine too!

      • soned1990
        November 8, 2017

        Ok. Great! Thank you so much for replying!

  13. Ria
    January 15, 2018

    Hi, l have an old outside clock that doesn’t work.Did your formula to measure clock hands.The large hand measures 25cm so this equals 250mm are they available also need mechanism?

  14. ADRIAN toups
    January 25, 2018

    Hi I have a 31.5″ clock we made and I need the clock movement and the hands. Can you tell me what I need to order. I have SKU: 10115-bundle in my cart, but i am unclear if this is a bundle that included the hands.

    • Klockit
      January 25, 2018

      Hi Adrian, the 10115-bundle includes the clock movement and the hand mounting hardware. The clock hands are sold separately, and can be selected here: https://www.klockit.com/all-departments/clock-hands.html?hands_type=249. We usually say to take the diameter of your clock 31.5 and divide by 2 to get the recommended clock hand length. The clock hand lengths listed on website are a measurement of the minute hand. In your case, 15.75″ hands would be best. Since we don’t offer that exact length, your next best bet would be our 14 3/8″ pair: https://www.klockit.com/14-3-8-black-hour-and-minute-hand-set.html

      The 10115 clock movement can go through a maxiumum of 11/16″ thickness. If your material is thicker than that, please call us at 1-262-729-4855 or email klockit@klockit.com and we’ll help you with that.

  15. Amber
    January 27, 2018

    Hi! I am Making a clock out of a wire spool top. It measures 23.5 inches so I am curious what size hands I will need? Thanks in andvance!

  16. Rana Aijaz
    January 31, 2018

    Plz can u tell me if the length of my minute clock is 15 inch from top tp.bottom
    Then what shud be the length of hour minute

    • Klockit
      January 31, 2018

      Hi Rana, all of the clock hands listed on our website are sold in pairs, and the measurement listed is a measurement of the minute hand –
      from the center mounting hole to the tip of the hand. The hour hand is proportionate to the minute hand. We hope this helps! If you have additional questions, we recommend calling us at 1-262-729-4855.

  17. Joshua Patrick Bliven
    February 17, 2018

    I build very large wall clocks and i have found it difficult to locate proper size click hands. Many of my projects require a minimum length of 24″ for the minute hand. Perhaps I’m new to all this and I’m just looking in all the wrong places. Any recommendations and help you could give is greatly appreciated.

    • Klockit
      February 19, 2018

      Hi Joshua, the longest minute hand we currently offer is 17.5″ long. Most high torque quartz clock movements on the market today can move an 18″ minute hand at max capacity. We have not tested our high torque clock movements with any hands that are longer than that. We hope this information is helpful!

  18. Iraida Lopez-King
    April 17, 2018

    Need to fix 2 clocks, both movement parts broke but still have the hands. The outside diameter on both is almost 14″ and inside diameter is 12″. Still have the hands on each measuring 4″ and 5 1/2″. One is an indoor clock while the other is and outdoor with temperature sensor. Need assistance to get correct movement parts and probably hands as well. I bought one movement by itself but hands don’t fit. Note: hands are spade style. I can send pictures if needed.
    Appreciate the assistance ,
    Mrs. King

    • Klockit
      April 17, 2018

      Hi Mrs. King, thank you for reaching out to us! We’re happy to help you with movement and hand replacements, and will reach out to you soon via email.

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This entry was posted on June 20, 2016 by in How To and tagged , , , , , , .

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