Clock Repair Learning Curve

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by Mattbau43, Jun 3, 2014.

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  1. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Hello all,
    I have wanted to learn more about clock repair for years. I have enjoyed clocks and appreciate how they work. What has held me back has been the assumed large learning curve. It appears that even basic work on these is complex and looks a bit overwhelming. Am I correct in my assumption?

    -Should you be an "expert" of all things clocks before opening one of these up?

    -Are there simple repairs/cleanings that are not overly difficult?

    -I have done small engine repair in the past and realized that 90% of the issues with non running motors can be traced to bad gas. These repairs require a simple cleaning and replacing of gaskets in most instances. If this similar to clocks? Are there a few repairs that you see constantly, or is each unique and difficult?

    -How did you learn clock repair? Was it handed down or did you tear into a clock to learn?

    -Is there a great online resource for learning (besides this forum)?

    -What is the best toolkit needed for a beginner?

    I appreciate everyone taking the time to read and reply here!
     
  2. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    Well one has to start someplace and just like with a small engine or automobile, one should begin by learning how to maintain it and how it works. You do not need to have a full machine shop and the skills to rebuild an engine in order to change the oil or replace a belt. If you can do a small engine you should have no trouble with a beginner's clock. I suggest you read a couple good books on basic clock repair and go shopping for a not too valuable old clock and just take one step at at time. Learn how to take it apart and clean it get to understand what each part does. Come back here and ask as you run into issues with bushings and the like. As for the type of clock to start on? Stay away from the chiming clocks and stick with a basic time and strike clock. A weight powered clock like an old OG clock does not have springs to contend with but can be more difficult to setup a test stand. Try to find a clock that is all there and not messed with. Use caution on eBay as a lot of sellers are unloading junk that has serious defects or missing parts. One step at a time and before you know it you will have a house full of smooth running old clocks.

    RC
     
  3. Bruce Alexander

    Bruce Alexander Registered User
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    [QUOTE=Mattbau43;871971...[snip]..
    -Should you be an "expert" of all things clocks before opening one of these up? [/QUOTE]

    Of course not. Expertise with your hands requires practice along with knowledge.

    There are amateur techniques and methods. What you don't want are amateur results. At least I don't. Let's just say that you start with the basics, add time and effort, just like anything else. There are a lot of permanent threads here with basic explanations and illustrations.

    You probably have a head start with mechanical aptitude, but obviously a clock is not an internal combustion engine. Still, just like an engine, it requires basic maintenance. You're looking at cleaning and lubrication. Even these basics can lead to a lot of controversy over how best to achieve lasting results...assuming that is your ultimate goal. Clocks measure time. Successful service of them requires time.

    I was lucky. I had a long-distance mentor. He sent me a Ingraham 8-day time and strike movement and told me to tear it down, clean it, and put it back together. With some difficulty, and some guidance I did just that. He wasn't about to waste his time instructing me on how to dunk a movement. Perhaps that is why I see so little value in that approach. I didn't learn that way. To me, by itself, it is a shortcut unworthy of serious pursuit. To others, it may be a path to a better way...or it may be an end unto itself. Everyone must decide for themselves. I must leave it there. Others who are proponents of assembled cleaning can guide you if that is how you choose to learn.

    Learning can not be "handed down". No one can learn for you. You can only be shown the way.

    There are excellent books, and DVD courses. This Forum can help on many different levels. I think it excels at teaching the basics and in assiting actual application of methods you may read about. There is a wealth of knowledge and experience here. Folks are ready, willing and able to help you. It can be like an online mentor. It can also be overwhelming with many different opinions and methods offered. If you are looking for singular guidance, you may be frustrated in trying to determine the "best" way to proceed. The best way for you will be determined by how you best learn.

    There are no tool kits. I began with guidance from an author by the name of Philip E. Balcomb, and my mentor, of course. "Steve" was so far ahead of me that there wasn't enough spare time in the day for him to spoon-feed me. That became clear to me when he commented with some irritation in his voice that "You ask a lot of questions don't you?". This is the information age. Do your homework.

    Welcome to the NAWCC's message board. It's hard to put a price on this resource. I wouldn't be able to afford it if they did.

    Regards.
     
  4. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Most of your questions can be answered from the wealth of information in our archives. Look for the 'search' button at the top of the forum. As for good on-line sources of learning, I recommend Tascione's video's. They will take you through the whole process step by step and you'll have a very good understanding about what you need to do to get a clock running. There are some pretty bad sources too. Youtube is one, mostly because you won't know which advice is good and which is not ... and there is lots of bad advice and procedures shown there. When you get a bit more advanced, David LaBounty has some very good video's available at reasonable prices, as well as a bunch of well prepared technical writings he offers for free.
     
  5. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Thanks for the great info everyone.

    What would you recommend for a good first clock to open up and learn on?

    Also, do many of the repairs require lathes?
     
  6. harold bain

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    Hi, Mattbau, welcome to the message board. Here is a list of basic tool requirements for the beginner in clock repair:
    https://mb.nawcc.org/showwiki.php?title=Clock_Repair_Tools
    A lathe is not required to start with. Clock repair is kind of like learning to play baseball. Some have a natural aptitude, and others don't. Those with natural talent pick it up quicker than those who don't.
     
  7. shutterbug

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    As noted above, a non-spring clock would be a great first experience. Preferably a weight driven single train (time only) clock. You won't need a lathe for most repairs when you start. You can farm out specialty repairs, like broken pivots and gear work without breaking the bank. You will need a spring winder, and there's one you can make. Plans are available. Search for Ollie Baker. You'll also want a small assortment of bushings and some other basic tools, and of course a good area to work in. Don't invade the kitchen. Your wife needs to like your hobby :D
     
  8. Bill Stuntz

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    Shutterbug, I think you might have gotten your tang toungled up when you "spoke" about Ollie Baker. Didn't you mean Joe Collins? I built the wooden parts of his winder design & bought the metal parts kit from him.
    Collins Winder.jpg
     
  9. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    It was 1967 and a friend gave me this Ansonia LaFrance iron mantel clock. It had a broken main spring, was filthy, had several coats of various color paint and the paper dial was mostly gone. I later discovered that the clock was in my great great grandfather's family. Like yourself, I was a decent mechanic with small engines and automobiles etc. Back then there was no Internet and no one to guide me, and if there were any books on basic clock repair they were not in the local public library. So the only option was to "tear into it", which I did. I knew enough to know that the springs (one good and one busted) would be a problem but was not sure how to deal with them but some how I did. Up to that point I had never seen the inside of a clock like this. I made a new end on the busted spring and I don't even want to think about how I managed to get the springs back in the clock without a spring winder, or the thoughts I was thinking! Well I did get it all back together and it ran and struck on the hour for many years. It was just about 5 years ago that I took it apart again and replaced the shortened spring with a new one and did some much needed pivot and bushing work. Still have that clock and run it every day.

    The point is if I could do it back then, anyone can with a bit of care and common sense. You have many resources available today so take advantage of them and do your homework. I'll leave two thoughts: 1. don't be afraid to take a clock apart and 2. if you are going to service a clock take time to do it right and know what you can do and what you need to send out until you acquire the skill and/or tools to do it right.

    RC
     

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  10. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    Short answer: You only need to know some basic stuff to be able to take a clock apart and put it back together. You'll want to start with a time-only or time-and-strike only (no Westminster chimer). Weight-driven practice movements aren't easy to come by; spring-driven are common on eBay. Get one similar to the one shown in RC's picture. You can see a pictorial guide to disassembly here:

    https://mb.nawcc.org/showthread.php?105602-Disassemble-an-American-Time-Strike-Movement

    Don't be afraid to get your feet wet. You'll like the water. ;)
     
  11. Chris D

    Chris D Registered User

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    I would recommend a cuckoo clock, preferably with a Regula 25 movement. They're cheap, easy to take apart and put back together and you can apply the same basic skills to any other clock you work on... cleaning, polishing, bushings etc. Just take it apart and figure out how it goes back together, you'll need to do this 'hands on' quite a few times before you 'get it'. After you've done a few weight driven clocks then move up to spring wound. Use the forum or books for the finer things like: how to install bushings, polish pivots etc. You don't need a: lathe, bushing tool (hand bushing is fine) or a professional pivot polisher... you can move up to that stuff later. Good luck, you'll be addicted in no time!
     
  12. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    PS- does not have to be "nice". Just a good learning tool
     
  13. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

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    Matt,

    I would suggest you look around for someone who repairs clocks now, or in the past. They will likely have tons of stuff you can start your practicing on. If you casually ask about others in the trade, or hobby, you might discover a network that you didn't know was there. Furniture stores and antique shops are also a good starting point. Just venture out from one place to another, just like they do on 'American Pickers'.

    Stay away from anything made before 1965. These would still be good for 'practice only'. Sort of like automobiles, it's more replace, less repair after the late sixties. You will still want to learn all you can about 'modern' movements, as that will make up a lot of what you will see.

    I started when I was 8 years old, sort of a child prodigy of all things mechanical.

    The learning curve goes on forever, hence the draw for most of us. Hundreds of companies making hundreds of models over hundreds of years. That's a lot to learn!!!

    Yes, probably 80 to 90% of clock repair is straight forward fairly simple, you just have to know how it is supposed to go, service, adjustment, replacing obviously broken parts, recognizing what is worn out, etc. Not the same but similar to the bad gas and carburetor thing you mention.

    Note, you absolutely don't need an ultrasonic cleaner or a lathe to get started!

    Good luck, Willie X
     
  14. shutterbug

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    #14 shutterbug, Jun 3, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
    Exactly so, Bill. Old age sucks! :D

    Matt - I have kajillions of Cuckoo movements, and would donate one if you pay shipping. However, I don't think they're the perfect first movement. The price is right though :) PM (private message) me.
     
  15. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    shutterbug- That is great! Extremely kind of you to offer to do this. I will PM you.
     
  16. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Shutterbug- That is very generous of you. I appreciate your offer and have just PM'd you.
     
  17. David S

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    Matt is it possible that you could update your profile to show where you reside? This can often help with members wanting to make similar offers or recommending help in your area.
     
  18. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    Respectfully disagree; cuckoo clocks are NOT simple (a lot of clock repairmen won't even work on them), and cuckoo movements are atypical. Not a movement to learn on.

    Is what I think.

    Matt: Search eBay for Clocks ...Parts or Repair. You should turn up a lot of possibles.
     
  19. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    So I was able to pick up an E Ingraham Clock for $20 from a local guy I know who does a lot of the auction buying. It is not working but does appear to be complete with key. Would this be a good starter? The one I have is nearly identical to this below:

    Capture.JPG
     
  20. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    It will be an OK starter clock as far as type of clock and the price was right. It depends on how much is wrong with it. You don't really want to start with major damage like stripped teeth, broken pivots and such, so it this one is typical it should do fine. For a first clock one like an old "ginger bread" or kitchen clock with the escape wheel on on the back plate instead of between the plates might be a bit easier.
     
  21. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    #21 bangster, Jun 4, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
    Yep, that ought to be okay to start learning on.

    Take the hands off. Remove the four mounting screws inside. Lift the movement out. Show us a picture.

    --------
    (Later) But I agree with RC that a simpler, kitchen-clock movement would be preferable.
     
  22. Bruce Alexander

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    I agree with RC

    It's hard to tell which model this is from the photo. It may be one of the "Duplex" models. That's less important than the movement inside of course. Can you take a well lit photo from the back with the door open so we can see more? Even better would be if you could carefully remove the movement from the case and give us several different angles and closeups. To remove a movement from the case you'll need to remove the hands. There's normally a "taper pin" holding them in place. I can't tell from your photo. You push the tapered end back through the hole in the minute arbor. If it's not a taper pin it will be a nut fastener. With the hands off, flip the clock so it's laying face down. Through the back door you should be able to see four or so screws holding the movement to the case. Remove those and lift the movement out. If there is a gong or something similar you may need to remove that as well until you have a clear path out of the case.

    Show us what you have.

    In addition to those mentioned by RC, another ideal starter clock would be something like a complete weight-powered 30-hour "Ogee" clock (or just the complete movement). They are usually very inexpensive, simple and you don't have to worry about working with mainsprings right away.

    I agree with bangster in that you should probably stay away from cuckoo clocks for a while. Twice as much going on in half the space...with plenty of wires and tricky adjustments.
     
  23. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Ogee movement is simpler that kitchen clock movement. But to test one for running you'd need weights, cords, and a rack to put it on with its weights. That's a heavy complication, IMHO.

    I just did a quick check on eBay for Clock Movement for Parts or Repair. There are several that would be suitable for you (and affordable) — a Seth Thomas, an E.N. Welch, an Ingraham, and so on. Might want to take a look at them.
     
  24. Bruce Alexander

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    I agree, it has to be complete. But that's true for any starter clock. A complete clock would be better than just a complete movement. The open case itself could be a test stand (of sorts) and he would end up with a running clock when done.

    Let's see what he already has and what he wants to do. If he's going to work with mantel clocks, he's going to have to work with mainsprings sooner or later.
     
  25. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Working on getting some pictures. I took the hands and face off and am shooting pics now
     
  26. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    The good thing about having a complete clock is that after the movement is repaired you will have a useful clock and not just a spare movement.
     
  27. Randy Beckett

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    If you are going to begin on a T&S movement, I think you are fortunate for it to have turned out to be an Ingraham, as the strike train is much more forgiving as far as gear timing, compared to the other American movements. and their mantle clock movements and kitchen clock movements are essentially identical. With the mantle clock version having a rate adjuster but the kitchen version doesn't. Just take a lot of pictures, try to get it operating before you take it apart, so you can study on what everything does. Piece of cake, hopefully.
     
  28. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    P1010001.jpg P1010002.jpg P1010003.jpg P1010005.jpg P1010007.jpg P1010008.jpg P1010009.jpg P1010010.jpg P1010012.jpg P1010014.jpg





    Ok. Whats next? :)
     
  29. Randy Beckett

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Remove the gong, remove the screws that hold the movement, and lift the movement out.
     
  30. Bruce Alexander

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    That should work okay I would think. Remove the coiled gong (also called a Cathedral Bell) then remove the movement from the case. Start putting all of your fasteners, hands, washer and taper pin in some type of zip-lock bag or container so they don't get lost.
     
  31. Dave T

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    Nice story! Reminds me of my first clock repair too. I also did not have the benefit of this forum and didn't have a clue about clock repair. (Not that I'm that much better now, but I have this group which I'm very grateful for to help).
    The main thing I do remember is that when I took the frame apart parts flew everywhere!!! I spent the next two or three hours trying to figure out how it all went back together. And I ultimately did install a new spring and made it run. :eek:
     
  32. Mattbau43

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Here we go. I used a twist tie because the clock has movement when removed. I was not sure if that was good or not so I tied it up.

    I apologize in advance for my utter lack of clock vocabulary. Assistance appreciated.

    P1010002.jpg P1010003.jpg P1010004.jpg P1010005.jpg P1010006.jpg P1010007.jpg
     
  33. Dave T

    Dave T Registered User
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    I'd go for it! I picked up this one for $10 with no bezel door which I had to pay another $28 for. I did need a new suspension spring, but otherwise it was in fair condition.
    Here's what she looks like, before and after.
    Ingraham Duplex Magic 7 inch.jpg Ingraham Duplex Magic 7 inch12.jpg
     
  34. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    Now that I've seen the pics, the movement is the same style as the "kitchen clocks" that have been recommended. Go for it. When finished, you'll have a nice running clock. :thumb:
     
  35. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    THIS THREAD will help you with that problem.
     
  36. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Ok. So my first clock. Please tell me where I am correct and where I am not.

    I am assuming that the right hand side with the number 2 controls the seconds and the left hand side with the number one the minutes.

    A few observations:

    1- The lever that presses on switch that assures that the gear moves in one direction is different from the one on #2. Someone replaced it? Looks to do the job right now

    2- Where the gear at #3 is has a lot of play in it from front to back. Is this an issue?

    3- I would like to see how this runs before dis-assembling it. Any suggestions on what to look for as far as problems?

    11.JPG
     
  37. Chris D

    Chris D Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?


    The left side (as pictured) is the 'strike side', it just operates the hammer to call the correct # of hours. The right side is the 'time side', it operates the hands. The levers that you are referring to are called clicks and are a common repair, so don't worry about them being different. Front to back movement of wheels is needed, it's only when you see them moving side to side that's the problem. Unless you have a movement stand it won't be that easy to see how it runs now that it's out of the case. Do you have any tools yet? a let down tool for the springs would be highly recommended.
     
  38. Randy Beckett

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Might be best for you at this point to put the movement back in it's case, since it is visible from front and back, put the pendulum on it and try to get it to run. Read, understand, and apply this https://mb.nawcc.org/showwiki.php?title=Beat_Setting_101 to this clock and see if you can get it to run.

    Whether it will run or not put the minute hand on it and turn it slowly around(clockwise) activating the strike, and watch it. You need to get a basic understanding about what everything does and the best teacher for this is the movement itself.
     
  39. R. Croswell

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Nice movement to work on as Bang said, similar to a kitchen clock. Looks like an Ingraham half-deadbeat escapement so don't assume it is bent funny as it is supposed to be that way. The wind on the left is for the hour striking, and the wind on the right is the going or time train. The ratchet dogs that prevent the springs from unwinding are called "clicks" - yes, that's one of the few parts that have a logical name. At this point, with movement in hand, get a basic clock repair book and do some homework before doing anything to the clock. Step one will be to restrain and let down the main springs so YOU don't have parts flying across the room.

    RC
     
  40. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Chris D- I do not have a letdown tool. I assume the letdown tool allows you to let the spring "relax"? If so, I was able to do this with a screwdriver and the key. I do have any clock specific tools, just a basic set. I wanted to dig into this clock today to see what I should abslutely pick up tomorrow to go further.

    Randy - I t appears that I do not have the pendulum. Suggestions?
     
  41. harold bain

    harold bain Registered User
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    It would be relatively easy to make a simple test stand for your movement. All you need is a scrap piece of 1/2 inch plywood, a wood saw (scroll saw), and a vice. Cut a hole in the plywood slightly larger than the hole in the front of the clock, large enough that the movement can be screwed to it and nothing touches the wood. Screw the movement down using the same mounting as it uses in the clock. Put it in the vice and tighten it down. Feel free to improvise, and make it a table mount with a few more pieces of wood, if you prefer.
     
  42. Chris D

    Chris D Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    A let down tool is basically a key end with a smooth 'screwdriver like' handle on the other end (or in the middle). If you already did it with the key that's fine. I did it that way too when I started, it's just not easy on the hands. If you already have the springs let down, I would say just go ahead and take it apart. You'll just need some sort of cleaning solution for everything, maybe a small brush and some round toothpicks.
     
  43. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    #3 has a lot of play in it even side to side. Much more so then the others. How much is normal?

    attachment.jpg
     
  44. ddhix

    ddhix Registered User
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    Not at all. You should just be concerned for your safety when there is a mainspring. I think everyone else has talked about this a lot. A let down key set is like the #1 thing you need to purchase that is clock specific. If you want to wait, something I did in the past on my first one or two clocks was found a 6-Point Socket (metric or standard) that fit very tightly over the winding arbor. Attached my ratchet extension so I could hold it snugly in my hand, and let the spring down that way. I don't recommend this because the socket will chew up the winding arbor; but if you are just getting the feel for things, and are not yet concerned about a professional restoration, then this should be fine.

    Yes. Polishing pivots is fairly simple. You can build your own polishing tool, I posted instructions on making one from a door hinge one time. Replacing bushings is also fairly simple, but it takes a bit of practice at first. There is a "how to replace bushings" guide on the forum here, and it is what I used when I first started replacing bushings. I highly recommend replacing bushings using the Broaching method for all of the cutting, when you first start on it; since it teaches you to be slow, and accurate - plus it's cheaper to do it that way. After you do enough clocks, and you get totally fed up with broaching for an hour straight, you should think about investing in a reamer set, which is not all that expensive.


    Yes. There are some things that you will see "more often than not," I think. The #1 problem I think all of us see is the clock is dirty. The #2 thing is probably worn bushings; and it goes from there. Other common stuff includes a broken suspension springs, bent teeth (another thing you should practice fixing), jammed up/bent/broken chain links (from kids pulling on the cuckoo chain), worn pivots (and ocassionally broken pivots), misadjusted flys, the list goes on.

    I bought an OG clock at an antique store, took it apart and did what I could to fix it. I did a few repairs on it, and stuck it back together, and it worked. Now that I have done it for a few years, I know all the mistakes I made. But the clock is still running now, so I will not touch it again until it stops.

    This also goes for my first Anniversary clock that I accidentally fixed. I say accidentally becuase I know now that I did everything 100% wrong. But that clock is still running, so I will not fix it until it stops.

    Yes, Google. I've found hoards of information through google. Also through this forum I've found tons of personal websites where people have documented their repair techniques. I think the best online resource you're going to get is going to be by signing up with a membership to the NAWCC, and taking advantage of all the benefits. I waited a while, and finally did it. I don't know why I waited; I couldn't believe the amount of data I had been missing out on.

    What you need to fix what you want to fix, really. A set of small "precision" screwdrivers from Harbor Freight, I use every single day for those smaller screws. A basic set of screwdrivers. Pliers are a huge deal. If you go to Harbor Freight and get a hold of those small pliers sets, those will save your life. You will find that you are going to favorite a set of pliers, and you will use it for almost everything. Eventually you will find yourself going back to harbor freight to buy duplicate pliers and screwdrivers, so that you can modify them to meet your needs. For example: did you know that you can make a " hand pin removal tool" using a pair of flat billed pliers? Also a semi-precision Wire Bending and Adjusting tool using a long Flathead screwdriver? It's all about your needs, man.

    Specific tools, though: You need a let down key set. You also need some C-Clamps for mainsprings, but you can get away with safety wire (whatever you prefer). Someone on here suggested a large mainspring winder, and I totally agree; but I got away without one for a while, and simply used that small handheld mainspring winding tool. This got to be unacceptable after a little while, though, and I invested in the Ollie Baker style mainspring winder, which I use every single time I take apart a spring driven clock.

    A set of small files will serve you well.

    Really, man, just go through the Timesavers, Merrits, Ronell, etc Catalogs and get familiar with tools you have never seen before, and find out what they're used for. You'll find that there's some tools you just can't live without, and some that are a waste of money for you; but not for me.
     
  45. Dave T

    Dave T Registered User
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Here's one I made the other day from scraps in the shop. I'm sure everyone has many variations.
    watch stand.jpg
     
  46. bangster

    bangster Moderator
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Did you look at the Clock Terminology thread? I gave you a link to it.
     
  47. Bruce Alexander

    Bruce Alexander Registered User
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    Matt,

    I think now would be a good time to make one of the wood test stands. Dave T has put together a nice functional one which should work well for quite a while. The method that Harold Bain mentioned has an advantage in that you'll be able to easily adjust the "beat" of the clock simply by tilting the board left or right and re-tightening the bench vise. You could do the same thing with shims if you cobble together a free-standing unit. With your mechanical background no doubt you'll have a lot of general tools which can be used for clock work. To the greatest extent possible, work with what you have at this point in your journey but don't try to get too creative when it comes to the clock movement itself. There are time tested methods and techniques which you should try to use. There are a lot of "creative" solutions detailed in our permanent "Hall of Shame" Thread. I like to say that there is seldom just one right way to do something but the sky is the limit on the number of wrong ways.

    At this point you want to see if you can get the movement to operate. As has been mentioned, the best teacher for this movement is the movement itself *before* you dismantle it...assuming that is what you plan to do. It sounds like the strike side will run and you've used a twist-tie to keep it from doing so.
    Make the test stand. If you have some large heavy steel washers in your shop, you can probably hang a couple on the rod hook to make a temporary "Bob" weight.

    You should also plan to spend some time in the permanent threads up at the top of this forum. Start with the terminology thread which bangster has referred you to. It gets kind of cumbersome otherwise. Bangster and other members have spent a lot of time and effort putting those threads together. They have a LOT of good, free information and guidance.

    Some other ideas, you can fashion a let-down tool from an old broomstick handle or similar piece of scrap doweling. Drill a hole in the end and saw a slot through the diameter so that your winding key fits snugly in the end. You may want to wrap some tape around the end to prevent splitting of the wood...or you can do as you've done and just let it down slowly with the winding key by itself but be careful. The springs can "explode" with a lot of force when suddenly released. If you have some appropriately sized hose clamps, they can serve as good mainspring clamps as well. But we're getting ahead of ourselves here.

    I would say,
    1. Learn the terminology
    2. Make a test stand
    3. Try to get the movement to run on the stand using a temporary weight "bob" and setting the beat. Instructions for setting the beat are in the permanent threads as well. Let us know if you need help with this. The best movement to learn on is one already in good running order.
     
  48. Stan S

    Stan S Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    I learned by getting a couple cheap movements on ebay and setting them up on a test stand to see what makes them tick. after fiddling with them and getting them working I was able to watch how all the parts interacted. There are lots of good books on clock repair on ebay for a lot less than places like amazon, get a couple of books and do a little reading and studying the drawings. once you see a movment working then go for tearing it down.

    It is a fun hobby and there are lots of very knowledgeable folks here who are happy to help.

    welcome to the forum and good luck with your project.
     
  49. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    I read through the link on the setting beat of the clock and have had no luck.I have a pendulum and am able to set in motion and it will move the escapement. After about 7-8 clicks, the escapement will just stop and as a result the pendulum will also. It is wound. Suggestions?
     
  50. Mattbau43

    Mattbau43 Registered User

    Jun 3, 2014
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    Re: Is this a good beginner clock?

    PS- It stops like it is stuck and not getting any assistance from the remaining gears or spring.
     

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