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  1. #1
    Registered User Reuven's Avatar
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    Default Spring - Clean and Lubricate?

    I received a clock with no history. When I fully wind it it runs for a while and then stops. There is no visible damage to the movement. I plan to dissemble, clean and oil

    How do I determine if I should fully unwind the spring to see if it needs cleaning and lubricating or leave it wound and place it back in the movement when I reassemble?

  2. #2
    Registered user. Sooth's Avatar
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    Default Re: Spring - Clean and Lubricate? (RE: Reuven)

    Well, normally you clamp the spring (there are a few ways to do this), then let down the power, and disassemble. Then you can let down the spring (there are a few ways to do this as well).

    Once the spring is 'let down', it's usually pretty easy to tell if the spring needs cleaning, or just a nice bath in the cleaning solution, then some fresh oil or grease.

    You rarely need to uncoil the whole spring, but I definitely would at least clean it, rather than just leave it as-is, and put it back in.

    In my experience, many clocks that "run for a while, then stop" have just one of two problems: 1: they just need cleaning and adjusting, or 2: they need bushing(s) or other minor work.

  3. #3
    Registered user. Joseph Bautsch's Avatar
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    Default Re: Spring - Clean and Lubricate? (RE: Reuven)

    You didn't say if the springs are in barrels are open. If in barrels they should be let down and removed for inspection and cleaning. There is no good way to inspect a spring in the barrel. If they are open springs they should be let down in clamps removed from the clock and then removed from the clamps for inspection. All of this work should be done using a spring winder for safety reasons.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Spring - Clean and Lubricate? (RE: Reuven)

    Reuven - judging from your clock vocabulary, I'm assuming you've done this before. You're going to the work of disassembly anyway, which requires letting down the springs, so it seems logical to go ahead and make sure the springs are clean and serviced just like the rest of the clock. I got one today that was repaired recently by a clocksmith but it wouldn't run. The clock was spotless, but he forgot to grease the time side mainspring, and missed a simple lever adjustment that was hosing the whole operation. It's the minor stuff that will make or break your reputation, so don't leave anything out.


  5. #5
    Registered User Tom Kloss's Avatar
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    Default Re: Spring - Clean and Lubricate? (RE: Reuven)

    Quote Originally Posted by Reuven

    ... How do I determine if I should fully unwind the spring to see if it needs cleaning and lubricating or leave it wound and place it back in the movement when I reassemble?
    Ruven

    One of the reasons you should always dismount and unwind the spring is to give it a good visual inspection. Look for cracks, rust and particularly the condition of the end that hooks on the winding arbor. See that there are no cracks there. The fact that it is unwound also gives you the opportunity to lubricate it.

    Tom

    “Sometimes you really don’t know if your being rewarded or punished”
    "Find a need and fill it". Henry J. Kaiser


  6. #6
    Registered user.
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    Default Re: Spring - Clean and Lubricate? (RE: Reuven)

    Furthermore, if it is in a barrel you might find that the outer hole has started to tear - a common fault.
    Mike - banned member of the throwaway society.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Spring - Clean and Lubricate? (RE: Reuven)

    Reuven, here is a site that has some good info on mainsprings.
    http://www.bhi.co.uk/hints/msprhnts.htm
    Shalom aleichem
    Mike C.
    aka
    clock whisperer
    [edit=2422=1182305983][/edit]
    Mike C.
    aka clock whisperer

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