A few things that get me down in the clock business!

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by NEW65, Aug 17, 2019.

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  1. NEW65

    NEW65 Registered User

    Nov 17, 2010
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    Deals in modern reproduction floor clocks.
    United Kingdom
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    Hi Chaps,
    Just a quick post... I am sure you guys may feel the same BUT...
    What gets me down are customers that have had their clocks for several months and then call me to say that its stopped and they would like me to take a look! When I eventually arrive I soon discover that they have caused it to stop by either moving it from the position I set it in or knocked it completely out of beat by catching the pendulum every time they have wound it! All the buyers have been told how to adjust to put back into beat but none of them seem able to do that without assistance! Its a really frustrating side of the job!
    Another moan ...
    Nearly every movement that I rebush is done correctly... i'd say 19/20 are a complete success! There is always one though that isn't! I know you chaps are experts in this job but I dare say that you too have the 'bad' times too? It tends to lower ones confidence when something doesn't turn out the way it should and even worse if lots of time has been spent and therefore wasted! Although, as Mark Kinsler rightly mentions, its not a waste of time when things go wrong. I guess we learn whatever the outcome maybe.
    I could keep adding to the list but I'll finish there!
     
    Kevin W. likes this.
  2. tom427cid

    tom427cid Registered User
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    Mar 23, 2009
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    There seem to be a particular group that is "mechanically challenged" and they need a greater amount of hand holding. When I encounter one of these I will make note and after the second time I humorously explain "the next time this happens I am going to charge $$$$$$ to take care of he issue.
    You would be amazed how quickly some people can learn!!!!!!!!
    tom
     
    MartinM and disciple_dan like this.
  3. NEW65

    NEW65 Registered User

    Nov 17, 2010
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    Deals in modern reproduction floor clocks.
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    Hey thanks Tom for the good advice, its the expectation of some folks that amazes me... its like they expect a lifetime free fix when 99% of the time they have caused the problem! I had one individual who told me that their clock was rapidly gaining time. I told them to ensure that they lowered the disc by turning the nut at base of pendulum to the left as viewed from front of clock, which they said they had been doing! At the time, they had me thinking all sorts of things but when I finally arrived at their place I soon discovered they had been turning the adjustment nut the wrong way! And I told them which way to turn the nut when the clock was initially delivered. I even email clock instructions!
    Luckily this sort of thing doesn't happen too often but when it does it can be expensive. Cheers Tom
     
  4. woodlawndon

    woodlawndon Registered User
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    Jan 18, 2017
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    New, I know you said you email instructions but have you thought of maybe printing some basic guides that you could fold up in a small envelope that could be placed inside the clock? I think of my mother in this case, she has email and knows how it works but she doesn't bother with it (you have to phone her and tell her she has email). She won't print anything off but will follow instructions to the letter if they are in front of her.

    Nothing heavy, maybe how to adjust time, how to move the clock safely, how to get in beat, how to wind and how to start pendulum correctly (many don't know).
    Don
     
  5. R&A

    R&A Registered User

    Oct 21, 2008
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    Your desire to repair has to out weigh your problems with customers. Customers have no clue as to the mechanics and better to not teach them to much. I just tell them from the got go. Not my fault your paying for it. If customers know that their mistakes will cost them money, they tent to not make them. Not always true for the repairman. I am constantly fixing mistakes from others and having to reinforce the integrity of repairman. There is more to this field, when you do it 7 days a week. This trade is being lost at the hands of unexperienced try hards. I have been at this for over 43 years and I am still learning.
     
  6. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Oct 19, 2005
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    You need to build into each transaction the potential for return issues. Don't try to base your business on more reasonable rates or you will pay for it in the long run. Base your rates on good repairs that don't come cheap.
     
  7. mauleg

    mauleg Registered User
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    In the computer business, any issues regarding software where we need to travel to the customer's office are subject to charge; customers are informed of this in advance. I'd consider regulation, being put in beat and setting the time as "software" issues.
     
  8. lpbp

    lpbp Registered User
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    Aug 25, 2000
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    On your bushing problem, are you checking for end shake, and that it is upright?
     
  9. fbicknel

    fbicknel Registered User

    Apr 14, 2017
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    Please elaborate on what you mean by being "upright". Thanks!
     
  10. Uhralt

    Uhralt Registered User
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    Sep 4, 2008
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    I think he means that the bushing hole is perpendicular to the plate.

    uhralt
     
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