Always wanted an Atmos Clock!

shutterbug

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Yesterday, I acquired two of them! I haven't had a chance to check them out too much yet. Craigs List. Who would have thought that? :)
 
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KurtinSA

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That's great! I have one but bought from a trusted source. Almost bought one at an estate sale, but I just couldn't take a chance on getting a non-working clock. They're so darn expensive to acquire and even more so to get repaired.

Pictures soon I hope!!

Kurt
 

sjaffe

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Hey Shutterbug,

That's great! Congrats. My lifetime dream is to get a Kaiser Universe 400 Day clock. I've bid on some, but so far no luck. I ran into someone that had THREE, but he wouldn't let me buy one. :(

Stan
 

victor miranda

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ah, I am jealous.

congrats. I avoid the bay for fear of shipping damage.
to find one nearby is a boon.

:-D a picture or two of your new book ends will be welcome.

victor
 

Wayne A

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Nice you just never know what you will find. Craig's list around here has nothing but junk. Found my Atmos at an estate sale in working condition and waited for the last day discount. Estate sale was out in a rural area which I think reduced the number of customers, worked for me.
 

shutterbug

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So far, one is working and the other stopped. Pretty sure the click is not functioning in the stopped one. Still watching the other to see if its winding properly. I'll post pic's when I get done checking everything out. :)
 

Kevin W.

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They are really nice clocks. Nice to find two of them. I have one, it needs some bellows work.
 

shutterbug

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Update: The one is still running, but it is not winding on its own. I'll have to do some work on both of them, but at least the important stuff is functioning well. I haven't been able to get the bellows cover off yet. Don't want to break anything. Any tricks to that?
 

shutterbug

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Thanks, Ed. Would that keep it from winding? It seems to be running on the spring power well at this point. Two days now.
 

new_hampster

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I haven't been able to get the bellows cover off yet. Don't want to break anything. Any tricks to that?
If you mean the cover with the posts sticking through, just pry slightly at different points around the outside edge, should pop right off. If you mean the plate with the mounting posts attached, you will want to put the assembly in the freezer for 3-4 minutes to collapse the bellows. Then you can remove the plate by pushing down and turning until the bayonet mount comes apart. NOTE: you do not want to leave the bellows at room temperature without some sort of restraint. If it expands to its maximum, it could crack the seams.
 

Ed O'Brien

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It must keep at least some of them from running, as this is often the only thing "wrong" that I discover in servicing an Atmos. They are so well made, and with extremely little friction, that in most instances Atmos service involves cleaning and adjustment. Hardly ever see a worn pivot or jewel, and virtually all broken parts are the result of an accident or attempts by someone to disassemble without proper tools or knowledge. Even the tiny suspension springs seem like they will function almost forever if treated right. Besides the mainspring, most common problem is distortion to the fork, either the result of someone trying to resolve some perceived issue or pushing the balance until the roller collides with the fork. I have found a fork twisted 90 degrees.
 

new_hampster

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Thanks, Ed. Would that keep it from winding? It seems to be running on the spring power well at this point. Two days now.
1) If the spring is fully wound to equilibrium with the bellows, it will not continue to wind until the clock has run enough to let the spring down a bit. As Ed says, if there is some binding in the mainspring, this could take a while, or fail entirely.
2) Some sellers will fully wind the mainspring by hand to hide a defective winding mechanism and/or bellows. The clock can run for several months with no winding.
 

shutterbug

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It looks like I might be able to get one of these running. I got the bellows portion off (it has mounting nuts on both clocks) and after testing, they seem to be working. One of the clocks apparently has a bad click and/or a broken or unhooked mainspring. I'll look into that later. The other one will wind, but on the cold side of the wind the internal spring doesn't seem to want to push the bellows enough. So it appears to want drastic temperature changes to wind. Any ideas about that? I wound it about 3 turns by hand and have it running as a test now.
 

new_hampster

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The other one will wind, but on the cold side of the wind the internal spring doesn't seem to want to push the bellows enough. So it appears to want drastic temperature changes to wind. Any ideas about that? I wound it about 3 turns by hand and have it running as a test now.
If you checked the bellows assembly (see attached), and it is OK, then the spring that does the cold cycle 'pushing' is OK. The spring that moves the chain in/out does not follow the bellows - yes, it gets pushed by the bellows (moving the chain out and arming the ratchet), but when the bellows contracts, the chain spring will only expand as much as the winding mechanism lets it. The chain spring could be weak (it happens, but not likely), the chain pulley could be binding (common on the 540, but we still don't know what clocks you have), or the mainspring could be binding (common in older clocks if the mainspring has never been serviced).

These assume that the clock was NOT running before you wound it by hand. If the clock was running before you wound it, but was not winding as expected, it is possible that the mainspring was already at equilibrium with the bellows. It doesn't wind on every temperature cycle, only when needed, i.e. it winds more quickly than it lets down. A proper bellows will always expand/contract with temperature, but that does not always wind the mainspring.

BellowsMovement.jpg
 
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shutterbug

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Thanks, new. I'll do some more testing and looking into both of them soon. I'll also post some pictures. They are both identical as far as I can see. 1960's era.
 

shutterbug

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ah, I am jealous.

congrats. I avoid the bay for fear of shipping damage.
to find one nearby is a boon.

:-D a picture or two of your new book ends will be welcome.

victor
Here 'ya go, Victor :D . The one on the right is running. I need to clean up the bottom where a presentation plaque came off.

IMG_5058.JPG
 
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shutterbug

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:D You have to read Victor's comment.
 

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