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  1. #46
    Registered user. RJSoftware's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Loxahatchee, Florida

    Default Re: Is this lack of power...or what? (By: bkerr)

    Now this is the typical situation that calls for the shotgun approach as Dave had previously mentioned in other thread.

    When all anylitical fails, time to do house cleaning.

    First, a good loupe. I have found that when you go past 10x, the world changes...!

    And all I have is a 12x. But I think it's the perfect amount of magnification for me.

    So, while you do your initial bushing exam (with finger pressure back and forth on main wheel) you got that 12x power.

    It is tempting to let some bushings slide when they only show just a little biddy bit of slop.

    I think the hard and fast rule is they should not wiggle 1/3 or more of their diametor. Least what I recall from recollection.

    Of course the standard practice of cleaning, filing, burnishing, pegging and oiling.

    Saying things like "don't forget to file out rutts on your palettes" sorta seems like a mother reminding kids to clean behind the ears.

    Then I see you mention the possible skipping of ew teeth, so anchor depth needs tweeking maybe.

    Do all of that anyway, this being the shotgun approach.

    We should shorten this and say, did you shotgun?

    Now, when you shotgun, and you get no good results, then your in trouble...!!!!!!

    With a name like BANG...! You should know the shotgun...!

    Let's see if we can describe perfectly the shotgun.


    1. Power down movment. Use letdown tool if spring power.

    2. Do preliminary cleaning. To make handling easier. Duncan swish.

    3. Examine bushings for wiggle. With thumb pressure, wiggle main wheels back and forth examining pivot tips reaction. Repair bushing if tips wiggle 1/3 or more of diametor. Mark them with marker.

    4. Disassemble movement and clean movment. Use ultrasonic if you wanna. Not me. Tooth brush and dish soap.

    5. File and burnish all pivots that need it. Goal is cylindrical and shiney with burnished surface. Check that all pivots and arbor are true. Not bent.

    6. Check all pivot bushing relations. Repair marked bushings if needed. The goal being that the gear should stand in plate with aproximate 5 to 10 degrees of lean. Remember if a pivot needed filing/burnishing, then you may need to repair bushing hole as pivot will be smaller.

    7. File and burnish palettes if needed. No rutts.

    8. Tweek ew teeth points. No shark's teeth.

    9. Check mainspring conditions, if applicable, repair/replace (some stretch out mainspring and stone the edges -not me, too much bother) look for cracks, if ok lube.

    10. Check each gear tooth condition. Check for bent tooth and/or worn down teeth. Pay special attention to pinions (the small gear). Excessive wear causes bad mesh. A bad mesh will stop movement. Some pinions can be repaired using sewing needle as trundles. Others are cut from solid stock and replacing the gear is better option. Large gear teeth can be replaced with dove tail method.

    11. Examine levers. Usually nothing needed but might need slight bend/tweeking. Check that levers move freely and not too much slop in bushing.

    12. Re-assemble.

    13. Lube bushings.

    14. Test.

    When testing ...

    Do low speed test. With minimal power (a few turns with key on spring wind) check how easily train runs. Check that movement does not stop with any gears in same location. Use clock hands to help identify this.

    If low speed passes:

    Adjust beat.
    Adjust anchor depth for maximum swing.

    When done:

    End of shotgun defined.

    So Bang, did you shotgun?

    Good clocks always know the time, that's what they tell.

    Bad clocks get glued with macaroni, in Steampunk Hell.

    Ahh, the crunchy sound of victory https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGaVUApDVuY

  2. #47
    Registered user. Jay Fortner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011

    Default Re: Useful Hints and Tricks (By: bkerr)

    I was in the need for oil dippers so I made some. They're straws from carbuerator cleaner cans(brake cleaner,etc.) I held them against the side of my bench grinder and brought them to a point,then heated them with a cigarette lighter and bent them. What's nice about these is when you dip them they draw about a drop of oil up into the capillary so one dip goes a long way. When you're done just blow on the end to expell the unused oil back into your dipper well or bottle.
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  3. #48
    Registered user. depatty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Weaver, Alabama, US

    Talking Useful Hints and Tricks (By: bkerr)

    Been needing a letdown tool but couldn't see paying what the store bought ones cost. Got to thinking about the way the Joe Collins handled the problem with his mainspring winder and decided that the same solution could be applied to a letdown tool.

    Dug around in the junk tools box and found another (cheap version of the) Hanson/Irwin tap wrench. Cut a piece off of a broken post hole digger handle, turned it down in the lathe, and drilled a hole in one end for the tap wrench to fit in. Removed the slide handle from the tap wrench and cut off a piece of it long enough to fit through the wood handle. Measured the wood to locate where the hole in the tap wrench would be and drilled a hole in the wood. Seated the tap wrench in the wood with a couple of hammer blows and drove the cut off piece through both the wood and tap wrench which locked it in place nicely. Found a large brass bushing from the brass junk box that would fit the handle to use as a ferrule, drove it on over the locking pin and turned it down to fit. Sanded the handle down a bit and now have an adjustable letdown tool.

    Pictures of the finished piece below. Realized after finishing it that I should have taken pictures of the process but was a bit too late. Any questions, just ask.

    Thanks for the inspiration Joe!
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  4. #49
    Director Robert Gary's Avatar
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    Feb 2003
    Southern California
    Blog Entries

    Default Useful Hints and Tricks (By: bkerr)

    Once, while working in a customer’s very old home, I was growing increasingly frustrated with a tiny screw that secured the hour hand on her GF clock. After about the sixth time dropping it and crawling around on my knees with a flashlight looking for it (hardly professional looking), I noticed the handyman working in the same room with me.

    He was busy installing a bolt in the adobe (yes, adobe) walls using an electric drill. To prevent the debris from the drilling from getting on the floor, he had formed a piece of newspaper into a little “shelf” and, using blue painter’s tape, secured it to the wall below where he was to drill the hole.

    What a great idea! I made one for myself, and although it took several more tries (dropping the screw) before I was successful, the shelf made it infinitely easier!

    This picture shows how it looks on a clock in my home.

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    Robert Gary "Learn something. Skill does not desert the life of a person ever." Dionysius Cato (ca. 230-150 BC)

  5. #50

    Default Re: Handy hint (By: Robert Gary)

    Oho! Good to know.
    1. Check out the Repair Hints & How-To's forum. You may find your answer there.

  6. #51
    Registered user. Tony10Clocks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010

    Default Re: Handy hint (By: bangster)

    Excellent idea.......... I could try that whilst eating my biccies......

  7. #52

    Default Re: Handy hint (By: Tony10Clocks)

    Hobbyist chiming in: I paint houses for a living. I have a 4'x12' drop cloth, that I cut in half, and I lay the the 2 halves side by side, to make it 8'x6'. It works well for those parts, that either grow wings, or feet, and try to make a fast break. With the canvas being white, it makers finding them, very easy.

  8. #53
    Registered user. Scottie-TX's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Mesquite, TX

    Default Re: Handy hint (By: Patch)

    Agreeing with PATCH, only change I would make is - if available - white paper to make the hunt a bit easier.

  9. #54

    Default Re: Bangster's Bright Idea (By: bkerr)



    mixing epoxy 48b
    winding arbor alignment 20,21,31,32,77b
    Animal hair
    uses for 50b,51b,52b,53b
    winding arbor alignment 20,21,31,32,77b
    pill bottles 1,2; spice bottles 191b
    bushing aid 5; making bushings 212b
    determining chain size 33
    pill bottles 1,2; spice bottles 191b; 14b,15b
    testing rack for cuckoos 167b,172b,173b
    re-holing a dial 35
    opening hand hole 206b; uses 218b,219b
    Drill, Drilling
    drill oblique holes 29; drill press 27b,28b,29b,32b; sizing drill bits 131
    mixing epoxy 48b
    escapement analyzer 232b
    typing table workbench 4; tensor lamp stand 6
    gauges 36; feeler gauge 38b
    opening hand hole 206b
    Hermle winding tool 23
    tensor lamp stand 6; test stand 26; oil bottle holder 40,41; movement holder 7; roulant holder 37
    lathe cover 4; tools from cut nails 17; tapping with lathe 27b; lathe hints 35b,38b; center finder 239b; testing lathe center 13
    letdown aid 24; letdown tool 25,48,92b;222b
    tensor lamp stand 6
    oil bottle holder 40,41; oil dippers 47; WD-40 144b,149b
    measuring mainspring 28; servicing mainspring 28
    cut nails 17; bicycle spokes 188b; styrofoam 16; geneva stop retainers 252b; shim stock 38
    movement holder 7; roulant holder 37
    pendulum slip joint 22; pendulum stick repair 151b,152b; temporary pendulum 250b
    pictures with loupe 244b,248b
    polishing pivots 243b; door hinge pivot polisher 42
    plate supporter 12; plate spreading tool 39
    make a thin washer 3; measure mainspring length 28; service mainspring 28; re-holing a dial 35; the shotgun approach 46; tapping 28b,29b,32b; crushing shellac 177b,183b; gathering pallet removal 199b; opening hand hole 206b; making bushings 212; polishing pivots 243b; drill oblique holes 29; striking clock tutorial 45
    fine-tuning regulation 157b,160b; discussion of regulating 165b
    screw sizing plate, screw shortening aid 38; dropped screw catcher 49,52; nut & bolt sizer 124b;
    crushing shellac 177b
    Shim stock
    shim stock 38
    soldering aid 9,10,18,19
    tensor lamp stand 6; test stand 26
    tapping with drill press or lathe 28b,29b,32b
    clamp 8; pickup tools 14; magnetized screwdriver 15; styrofoam circle cutter 16; tools from cut nails 17; Hermle winding tool 23; tweezers from hemostat 30; gauges 36; plate spreading tool 39; door hinge pivot polisher 42; pullers 43; razorblade radio 67b; nut & bolt sizer 124b; Dremel 218b, 219b;
    about tweezers 27; tweezers from hemostat 30
    ultasonic hints 44
    make a thin washer 3; tension washer 12
    winding arbor alignment 20,21,31,32,77b; Hermle winding tool 23
    Last edited by bangster; 07-28-2011 at 09:36 AM.
    1. Check out the Repair Hints & How-To's forum. You may find your answer there.

  10. #55
    Registered User bkerr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Canal Fulton,OH

    Default Useful Hints and Tricks (By: bkerr)

    I was surprized to see the thread closed. If you can remember back years ago in Popular Mechanics there was always a how to, shortcut or as I like to refer to as hints and tricks. I was in the shop last night finishing up a cuckoo that has been a pain for way too long and thought that I should post a couple of items.

    Here you go. The first one is a wire (1/16 stainless tig wire) with a bend on each end. When working on a cuckoo it is really handy to attach the weights to the wires rather than opening up the chain links and attaching the weights to the hooks. Simply one hook goes on the chain and the other on the weight. I also use this for fishing the chain through the case.

    The next two are the same concepts just two diferent materials. If you ever have to transport a GF or any other clock with chime rods it may drive you crazy before you get back to the shop. These "cards" side on to the rods keeping them in place. This also lessens the chance of a bend or broken rod while in transport. I keep a credit card / room key in my wallet and the others go in my tool bag.

    For what it is worth!
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  11. #56

    Default Useful Hints and Tricks Sticky (index at post #54) (By: bkerr)

    Hi Everyone,

    I figured this might be the best place to post this

    I am re-working the drive for a small mill & am using a turnbuckle for the belt tension adjustment. It is heavily galvanized & I needed to cut the threads larger in a 3/8-16 nut for a locknut. If I cleaned up the shaft threads with a die to use a standard nut, the shaft would have been very sloppy in the turnbuckle.

    Sooooooo, time for an old timey trick I learned from my dad 40+ years ago.

    First I tried tapping through a rag which often works:

    This time it didn’t enlarge the threads enough so time to be more aggressive. This shim is .010 inch thick:

    Here is how it looked after a few turns:


    Originally the nut wouldn’t even go on past the end chamfer - less than one turn.

    I’ve probably only needed this trick 5 or 6 times since first seeing it, but it sure has saved the day each of those times.
    "To invent you need a good imagination and a pile of junk." - Thomas Edison
    Best wishes to Ya'll. Sincerely, Jim

  12. #57

    Default Re: Useful Hints and Tricks Sticky (index at post #54) (By: jhe.1973)

    1. Check out the Repair Hints & How-To's forum. You may find your answer there.

  13. #58
    Registered user.
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Denver, Colorado

    Default Useful Hints and Tricks (By: bkerr)

    Hopefully this will save someone some aggravation in the future:

    A while back I got a clock with a Hermle 1051 that had been run for a couple of years and put back in the box to age. I took it apart, inspected it, cleaned and reassembled. The clock ran fine, but the timekeeping was very erratic. I took it back apart and inspected everything and didn't find any problems. Put it back together and it was better, but still erratic. It would run great for a week, then I would wind it and it would start losing 30 seconds a day. I would wind it the next week and it would start gaining 15 seconds a day, the next week it would gain 2 minutes a day, etc. Long story short, on the 4th disassembly, just before I threw the damn thing in the trash, I noticed that there was absolutely no chamfer on the T3R pivot hole. The handshaft appeared to be square cut without any radius, but I didn't know what else to do, so I put about 1/64" chamfer on that pivot hole. It runs like a different clock. Best timekeeper I have. I am guessing that the chamfer was missed at the factory.

    This was a lesson learned the hard way.
    Dave Diel

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