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Author Topic: hor to repair an antique clock  (Read 2158 times)
mattig89ch
Gunner
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United States United States



« on: November 19, 2010, 05:46:46 am »

Hello all,

this is for those of you who know their way around the inerds of a clock.

Picked this beauty up at my job for $7 and change at my job:


Thing is that it doesn't seem to work.  Have to think its because the pendulum isn't where I think it should be....

here are the pictures I took:





Notice the little piece of tin hanging down in the back there.  Found the pendulum in the corner of the clocks case.



when I move that little piece of tin haning down it moves a gear (think thats the thing that ticks the seconds off).  If I could find a cheap clock repair man near port jeff i'd take it to him/her and see how much it'd cost to fix.  since I'm only making a dollar more then minimum wage, thats not going to happen.
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I believe that Steampunk is more than just brass and watchparts. It's finding a way to combine the past and the future in an aesthetic pleasing way. It's living a life that looks old-fashioned, yet speaks to the future.

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Captain Shipton Bellinger
Master Tinkerer
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« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2010, 09:14:41 am »

Have you tried hanging the pendulum on the end of the brass rod that hangs down at the back?

It's quite usual to dismount the pendulum to prevent damage when a clock needs to be moved about. Hopefully you just need to re-hang it to get the clock working.

Jolly nice purchase, by the way.  Smiley

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Capt. Shipton Bellinger R.A.M.E. (rtd)

mattig89ch
Gunner
**
United States United States



« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2010, 02:34:59 pm »

yea, tried that.

this seems to be a larger problem.  I tried hanging the pendulum, I tried winding it.  I acually got a few gears to move (the little thing sticking up in the top right corner is supposed to spin).  I just doesn't keep moving....


Yea, its a nice one isn't it?  I looked at it in the store, and said to myself "even if it doesn't work, I could use the gears as decorations.  Win freaking win baby!".
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twilightbanana
Snr. Officer
****
Netherlands Netherlands


« Reply #3 on: November 24, 2010, 09:04:37 am »

I'm no clockmaker, but since the alternative would be you dismantling the clock I think we can afford to try a few more things.

If you have access to a compressor or a can of pressurized air, you can try blowing out the dust.

There is a screw on the pendulum that lets you set how high or low it hangs. This would influence the speed of the clock, but might also make it run a bit more easily. Try fiddling with that.

Another thing you could try before dismantling the clock for parts is to oil it. Use only a minute amount of very liquid oil - sewing machine oil for instance - and only on the axis of the gears, not the teeth. If you use too much oil it will mostly catch dust which will cause problems later. After oiling, have the clock run for a bit (assisted by hand if necessary) to lubricate the bearings.
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mattig89ch
Gunner
**
United States United States



« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2010, 05:39:58 pm »

a compressor...hm, I could try that.  I suspect that there is something blocking some gear some where.  I am beginning to suspect that there is something blocking some gear some where...have to see about getting a webcam in there....
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Just call me Rob
Zeppelin Admiral
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United Kingdom United Kingdom


Captain: RD Susurrus


« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2010, 05:51:53 pm »

When it winds does the spring tighten?

If it does then look for a sticky gear, but if the spring has sproinged then you need a new spring.
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Noxtradamus
Officer
***
Canada Canada


« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2010, 06:12:52 am »

Whatever you do, if you want to take it apart, watch out for the springs! They store a great deal of energy, and can (and will) hurt you if you let them loose. You have to carefully unwind them before trying to unscrew anything. This is normally done with a letdown key, similar to your winding key, but with a round shaft that you let turn slowly in your hand to control the operation. If you decide to open it up, let me know, I'll try to help
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oldskoolpunk
Zeppelin Captain
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United States United States


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« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2010, 09:11:08 am »

That clock looks to be in excellent condition. It was clearly taken out of service properly, the pendulum stored and the key taped to the cabinet. There's no sign of damage.

Most likely, the oil has simply congealed and the escapement is binding. This shouldn't be hard.  See
How to Oil a Clock
on YouTube. Clock oilers tend to be insanely overpriced, but here's one for $2.99, pre-filled with clock oil. The oil used matters; 3-in-1 oil is adequate; WD-40 has the wrong properties. The basic idea is to get a drop of oil onto each place where a shaft goes into the end plates.

As a hint to understanding the mechanism, that's a striking clock, of course, and it has two gear trains, the timekeeping train and the striking train. That's why there are two places to put in the winding key on the clock face. They're connected by a trip mechanism that trips on (probably) the quarter hour. If you gently move the minute hand of the clock clockwise past the hour, the striking train should start and strike the hour.

The little thing at the top which spins is the speed governor for the striking train.  That only moves when the clock is striking. If it moves a little and then jams, that's normal; the striking train is locked until it is tripped.

If you move the pendulum lever back and forth, does the escapement wheel (the spiky wheel at the top) advance?

There are plenty of books and web sites on clock repair. Clocks in this size are easy to work on.
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mattig89ch
Gunner
**
United States United States



« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2010, 04:51:25 am »

omfg, that looks identical to the one I have!

thank you!
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mattig89ch
Gunner
**
United States United States



« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2011, 07:56:51 pm »

sorry i haven't posted here in a while.  but I figured oiling the clock wouldn't work.  and I was right.

just got back from the jewlers, while they don't repair antique clocks anymore he did take a look at if for me.

turns out all the holes where the gear pins go into and turn need to be drilled out and re-something'ed (don't remember exactly what he said there).  next there is a missing part, up top the brass piece that is hanging down attaches to another metal piece (have that one, thought it was just garbage that someone threw in there, but it turns out to be usefull).  that in turn hangs off another metal piece thats missing.

repairing all this will cost something like 500 bucks.

I did find something else out.  This clock is over 100 years old!
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