Help 1858 Seth Thomas Clock still running slow...

captainclock

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Hello everyone, I finally got my 1858 Seth Thomas Column and Cornice Clock so that it would run with a consistent beat and the strike will trigger and shut off like it should, including straightening the plates which were bent/warped.

The only issue I'm having is that the clock still loses 10-20 minutes within 2-4 hours time and I can't figure out why its doing that, I checked the escapement wheel and there's nothing wrong with it, the verge and crutch assembly I'm using on this was the one from the parts movement and the escapement wheel on the parts movement was the same tooth count as the original escapement wheel, and the verge and crutch assembly was the same as the one that was on this clock originally.

I've even tried different size/weight pendulum bobs on the clock and it seems to help it a little bit but not much.

Any ideas as to what might be going on with the clock?
Could the size of the weight string affect the clock?
I'm asking because when I had this clock running the first time, I had the thin nylon weight string from Timesavers on the clock and the clock seemed to run fine with that in it, but then I decided to try some 50 lb. test chalkline string for the clock weights and that's when I started having the poor time keeping issues with the clock.
 

Willie X

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Well, the cord would not be your problem.

Did the replacement escape wheel have the same number of trundles on its pinion?

The pendulum could be way to long, probably about an inch. The movement may be wrong for the case.

The hand clutch could be slack and allowing the minute hand to lag behind.

I'm probably covering points alread covered in a prebiois thread, split thread.

Willie X
 

captainclock

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Well, the cord would not be your problem.

Did the replacement escape wheel have the same number of trundles on its pinion?

The pendulum could be way to long, probably about an inch. The movement may be wrong for the case.

The hand clutch could be slack and allowing the minute hand to lag behind.

I'm probably covering points alread covered in a prebiois thread, split thread.

Willie X
OK, so I already mentioned all of this stuff in the initial post, the movement I'm using is the one that originally came with this clock when it was made back in 1858, the only thing I did with the parts movement was transplant some parts from it to my clock's original movement, so your statement regarding the movement being for the wrong case doesn't apply here.

As for the escape wheel, I already said that the original escape wheel and the parts movement escape wheel are the exact same part (same tooth count on the wheel and the pinion on both escapement gears).

As for the pendulum suspension rod it's the same length as the original one was (I measured the original suspension rod that came with the clock when I got it, and it came out to about 18" and that's what I had cut the replacement suspension rod to) so the suspension rod for the pendulum is not the problem either.

As for the hand clutch goes, I don't know what that part is so I don't know if that's a problem or not.
 

captainclock

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Perhaps a thinner suspension spring?
I'm not sure, I had asked about that before on here and everyone on here said that they thought that the suspension spring (which on my clock is part of the suspension rod) didn't matter, because I know on the original suspension rod the suspension spring (or feather as I've heard it called on here as well, especially when its part of the suspension rod) was .004" and the ones on the suspension rods I bought for this clock to make the replacement (because the original one was too badly damaged to salvage) is .005" thick, which I was thinking that the last time I had this clock up and running (before the original verge retaining clip broke and a whole other slew of issues came up that required me to take the clock apart to repair it again) the clock was running fine with the slightly thicker suspension feather equipped suspension rod and wasn't having issues with falling behind like this.
 

wow

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To check Willie’s suggestion about the slipping clutch, you should be able to tell by the tightness of the minute hand. If the minute hand is easy to turn, it may be slipping. If it is hard to turn, it is probably ok.
 

captainclock

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To check Willie’s suggestion about the slipping clutch, you should be able to tell by the tightness of the minute hand. If the minute hand is easy to turn, it may be slipping. If it is hard to turn, it is probably ok.
OK, so the minute hand does move very easily and I've noticed that the hour hand kind of "slips" when moving the minute hand, and also another thing I've noticed is that the minute hand doesn't start moving with the pendulum right away after setting the time, it takes about 10 seconds before the minute hand starts moving after setting the clock.

Could any of those be symptoms of that slipping minute hand clutch Willie was talking about?
 

wow

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Yes. The easily slipping minute hand is a symptom. Do you know where the clutch tension spring is and how to tighten it? We need photos of what you have.
 

captainclock

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To check Willie’s suggestion about the slipping clutch, you should be able to tell by the tightness of the minute hand. If the minute hand is easy to turn, it may be slipping. If it is hard to turn, it is probably ok.
OK, so the minute hand does move very easily and I've noticed that the hour hand kind of "slips" when moving the minute hand, and also another thing I've noticed is that the minute hand doesn't start moving with the pendulum right away after setting the time, it takes about 10 seconds before the minute hand starts moving after setting the clock.

Could any of those be symptoms of that slipping minute hand clutch Willie was talking about?
Yes. The easily slipping minute hand is a symptom. Do you know where the clutch tension spring is and how to tighten it? We need photos of what you have.
No I don't know where that part is or how to adjust it. I'll upload a picture of my clock movement and see if you could point out that part for me.
20200921_002717.jpg
 

Willie X

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The suspension spring should be about . 003". This will make your clock run better but a tad slower.

You are making a lot of assumptions there ... At least one of them is going to be your problem.

Your clocks movement needs a lot of repair work, so it could simply be barely running and trying to stop.

Simple test: shorten the pendulum 1" and see what happens. You can do this temporarily with tape.

Willie X
 

R. Croswell

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How much total pendulum swing are you seeing? If less than 1 inch, you probably have mechanical issues that need to be repaired before trying to make it keep time. If the clock is running strong you can test is the clutch is slipping by putting the winding key on the winding arbor and allowing the minute hand to contact the winding key. The clock should stop. If it continues to run with the minute hand held by the winding key then clutch is slipping.

This movement originally probably had a suspension "feather", which is just a suspension rod with the end rolled out to a thin feather. Most of these have failed by now and either been replaced with aftermarket ones that are typically too thick and too wide, or by a suspension rod with a spring steel strip which would have somewhat different characteristics from the original.

If this movement has the correct gears and pinions, and if it is running strong, and if the hand clutch is not slipping, the only reason that it is running slow is that the length of the "pendulum" (the distance from the point where the suspension spring/feather flexes to the center of mass of all the moving parts of the pendulum assembly) is simply too long. It may be the suspension spring & rod too long, the pendulum hanger too long, the pendulum too large in diameter. The weight of the pendulum has relatively little to do with it.

RC
 

shutterbug

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The hand clutch is probably on the center arbor between the plates. Most likely a spring that needs to be tightened up. You'll have to separate the plates one more time :)
 

captainclock

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OK, so I just noticed, that this picture I just posted of the movement was of the movement shortly after I got the clock and so it still had the original verge and crutch assembly on the clock and it seems that the type of verge I had been trying to install on my clock was incorrect, so I found a verge assembly that had the crutch that was on the right hand side of the saddle and took and bent the pallet tooth on the right hand side so it was straight up and down rather than at an angle like on the replacement ones like I had used previously and now it seems to be more happy now, although now I'm back to the same problem I had originally with my original verge (the one in the picture above) and the clock doesn't want to stay running it will run fine for about 5 minutes and then it will just stop (no collision pallet and escapement collision or anything it just suddenly stops mid swing) and the weird thing is that the pendulum will still be swinging like nothing happened when it stops you just don't hear any "tick-tock" anymore just the motion of the pendulum.
 

captainclock

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OK, so the minute hand clutch is not slipping anymore (but I have a feeling that it was for a while.) Could having oil in the minute and hour hand arbors cause issues with the clock's minute hand slipping? I'm wondering because there was a lot of oil in the area of the clock where the hour and minute hand arbors go through the movement plate (I accidentally went overboard when I was oiling the movement) and so I used some compressed air and blew the excess oil out of that part of the clock and now it seems to be running fine except for the issue I mentioned in my previous post (the clock did stop when I put the winding crank into the winding arbor and the minute hand hit it.)

as for measuring the pendulum swing arc I can't tell how big of an arc it is (how many inches either direction from zero it swings because I don't have a beat measuring device like those ones you see on the bottom of the backboard of old regulator clocks). I do know that from the opening in the bottom door window that the pendulum bob swings pretty evenly within the window from one side to the other.

as for the pendulum rod yes this clock when I got it did have its original pendulum rod that had the end rolled into a thin strip of metal (a feather) but it was bent up so badly that it broke on me when I was trying to straighten it out so the one I have now is a pendulum rod with a piece of blued spring steel riveted to the end of the rod. and when I measured the original pendulum rod it measured 18" from the top of the feather to the bottom of where the pendulum bob hooked on, so I measured a little more extra on the bottom of the rod to help with the bending of the hook for the pendulum rod to hang on, the way the pendulum rod is sized right now the pendulum bob sits centered in the pendulum bob viewing window on the bottom door of my clock.
 

captainclock

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OK, so now I think its fixed, it was a weird combination of the clock not being level, and the verge not having the correct profile, (the verge being 45º angled on both sides rather than being a 90º angle on the right side and a 45º angle on the left side like the original verge had.)
 

shutterbug

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Hmmm. Sounds like you were trying to run a recoil escapement with a verge designed for a dead beat :)
 

captainclock

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Yes, I think that's what it is, unfortunately that verge I was able to modify to the correct verge profile broke on me. :-(

Would the verge assembly in the link below be the correct verge assembly for this clock?
Replacement Verge
 

shutterbug

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Maybe. It partly depends on the number of teeth on the EW, and partly on the adjustment of the verge. Recoil escapements always run with the teeth facing away from the direction of rotation. Deadbeats always run with the teeth facing the DOR. ;)
 

captainclock

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Maybe. It partly depends on the number of teeth on the EW, and partly on the adjustment of the verge. Recoil escapements always run with the teeth facing away from the direction of rotation. Deadbeats always run with the teeth facing the DOR. ;)
Hmm, well the Escapement wheel on my clock has 38 teeth last time I counted and the verge mount is on the right side of the hand shaft if that helps any in figuring things out.

The one verge assembly I linked to in my previous posting on here was the only one I could find that looked like it was even remotely close to the correct style of verge assembly (recoil style) and that looked like it would of worked with the correct orientation that my clock needed (the 90º bend on the right side of the crutch wire, rather than on the left side of the crutch wire.)
 
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shutterbug

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The 90° bend goes on the exit pallet. Which means it is mounted so it hits any given tooth last.
 

captainclock

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The 90° bend goes on the exit pallet. Which means it is mounted so it hits any given tooth last.
Which in that case I definitely need to have the 90° bend facing the right side of the crutch wire, which is how it looked on the original verge assembly that came with this clock from the factory (the one pictured in the previous post that showed the clock shortly after I got it.)

The one I linked to on Timesavers said it was universal, so I'm guessing it means the verge can be positioned in any direction depending on the application.
 

R. Croswell

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Which in that case I definitely need to have the 90° bend facing the right side of the crutch wire, which is how it looked on the original verge assembly that came with this clock from the factory (the one pictured in the previous post that showed the clock shortly after I got it.)

The one I linked to on Timesavers said it was universal, so I'm guessing it means the verge can be positioned in any direction depending on the application.
The exit pallet in a recoil escapement is always the one you refer to as 90 degrees, although it isn't always exactly 90 degrees. It does not matter so much where the crutch attaches as long as it doesn''t hit anything. Best to keep things like original.

RC
 

captainclock

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The exit pallet in a recoil escapement is always the one you refer to as 90 degrees, although it isn't always exactly 90 degrees. It does not matter so much where the crutch attaches as long as it doesn''t hit anything. Best to keep things like original.

RC
Well, I was just meaning that on the one that was originally on my clock it had a 90° angle. I have 3 recoil style verges, but the way the crutch is attached on them if I attached them on my clock the crutch would hit the hand shift, which maybe it's just the way the crutch was bent on the bottom for the suspension rod.
 

R. Croswell

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Well, I was just meaning that on the one that was originally on my clock it had a 90° angle. I have 3 recoil style verges, but the way the crutch is attached on them if I attached them on my clock the crutch would hit the hand shift, which maybe it's just the way the crutch was bent on the bottom for the suspension rod.
It is a fairly simple matter to drill a hole and attach the crutch where it fits best.
 

R. Croswell

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And how exactly would that work when the verge and crutch are already pre-assembled?
The crutch is just a brass wire. Drill a hole in the pallet strip where you want the crutch. Then just poke the brass wire in the hole and rivet (or solder if you like) in place. If the pallet strip is too hard to drill you will need to anneal it first.
 
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captainclock

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The crutch is just a brass wire. Drill a hole in the pallet strip where you want the crutch. Then just poke the brass wire in the hole and rivet (or solder if you like) in place. If the pallet strip is too hard to drill you will need to anneal it first.
I don't think you understood what I was saying, the verge assemblies I have currently are ones that are pre-assembled, meaning that they have the crutch wire already placed in the verge. Doing what you are suggesting would require me to have the verge and the crutch wire being separate units from the get go rather than using ones that were already pre-made at a factory that came from junker clock movements, which are the only kind of verge assemblies I have right now, are ones that were pre-made that came out of junker clock movements.
 

R. Croswell

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I don't think you understood what I was saying, the verge assemblies I have currently are ones that are pre-assembled, meaning that they have the crutch wire already placed in the verge. Doing what you are suggesting would require me to have the verge and the crutch wire being separate units from the get go ..........
You also said:
......... I have 3 recoil style verges, but the way the crutch is attached on them if I attached them on my clock the crutch would hit the hand shift,
Verges you pick from junk clocks, like the new replacement verges that are sold, can be found with the entrance pallet on the left or on the right, and with the crutch wire installed on the right or left side of the saddle or any combination of these. If you are lucky enough to find a used verge that has the correct pallet spacing and lift angles for the escape wheel tooth count and diameter that you are using, but the crutch wire is attached to the pallet strip on the "wrong" side of the saddle where it would hit the hand shaft, all I'm saying is that you have the option of removing that crutch from its factory installed location and making a new hole in the pallet strip and reattaching the crutch where it needs to be to duplicate what was originally in your clock before it broke. I don't believe that I can do any more to help you solve this issue.

RC
 
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shutterbug

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The one I linked to on Timesavers said it was universal, so I'm guessing it means the verge can be positioned in any direction depending on the application.
Nope. Whatever they mean by universal, it doesn't apply to different types of escapements, and isn't going to be "plug and play". RC is trying to explain that you have to take your crutch wire off the verge and put it on the other side if it's in the way now. The exit pallet MUST be on the exit side in order to work. Parts available now days almost always need tweaking and fiddling with. To reattach your crutch wire, you'll just make a new hole of the correct size, then poke the wire through it and crimp the top. Then tap it back into the hole. The expanded part will force itself into the hole and will be firm. Watch the direction of the verge so you don't have to do a lot of twisting afterward.
An alternate approach is to crimp the area below the hole, leaving a 1/2mm or so length above the verge. Then clamp the crimped side in a vise and peen the wire on top to create a tight fit against it.
 
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captainclock

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Nope. Whatever they mean by universal, it doesn't apply to different types of escapements, and isn't going to be "plug and play". RC is trying to explain that you have to take your crutch wire off the verge and put it on the other side if it's in the way now. The exit pallet MUST be on the exit side in order to work. Parts available now days almost always need tweaking and fiddling with. To reattach your crutch wire, you'll just make a new hole of the correct size, then poke the wire through it and crimp the top. Then tap it back into the hole. The expanded part will force itself into the hole and will be firm. Watch the direction of the verge so you don't have to do a lot of twisting afterward.
An alternate approach is to crimp the area below the hole, leaving a 1/2mm or so length above the verge. Then clamp the crimped side in a vise and peen the wire on top to create a tight fit against it.
Ok, I'll try that.
 

captainclock

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I ordered a proper verge and crutch assembly for my clock and it came in the mail today (I actually odered 4 or 5 verge and crutch assemblies that were of the correct orientation (the exit pallet on the right side rather than on the left side) and I managed to order the correct one out of the 5 I ordered, and I bent the crutch wire as close to how the original was bent as possible, and it seems to be running better now.
 
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