Cuckoo music box song is strange.

ticktockalot

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This clock is a yard sale find. Very nice exterier and has dancers that circle around when music box is activated, however the melody is weird. I did oil it and it keeps perfect time, the bird does function ok, door does not close completely. My question: is it possible for the barrel to be put on backwards? It is obvious that someone was tring to work on this clock and doing not so great a job at that. I guess they gave up and decided to get rid of it. Thanks!
 

steamer471

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Without pictures it's hard to say. Check the music comb for broken parts and the spacing. I've never seen a barrel that could be reversed but with Cuckoo's anything is possible.
 
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shutterbug

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A video, posted to Youtube and linked here would help. We kinda need to hear what you're hearing.
 

Willie X

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Sometimes a previous repairer will replace a comb or pin drum. This makes a mis-match and will never make any joyful, or even recognisable, sounds. :oops:
Willie X
 
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ticktockalot

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Without pictures it's hard to say. Check the music comb for broken parts and the spacing. I've never seen a barrel that could be reversed but with Cuckoo's anything is possible.
Thank you for answering. The pins on the barrel seem to be complete and the comb is complete. I'll try to get a picture.
 

ticktockalot

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Sometimes a previous repairer will replace a comb or pin drum. This makes a mis-match and will never make any joyful, or even recognisable, sounds. :oops:
Willie X
Thank you for this tip. A question: is it possible to fix?
 

Dick Feldman

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It is not unusual to find a cuckoo clock music movement that does not work. It seems it starts when somebody has one of those and the music movement stops working. They work on the music movement without any success and sell it at a garage sale. Someone comes to the garage sale and gets a deal on a cuckoo clock but the music movement does not work. That person works on it without any good results. It then goes to a thrift store where it is even a better deal but the music movement does not work so the new owner fixes it–well sort of. That story maybe has a few more levels.
Who knows where you are in the chain of events.
Cuckoo music movements are made in Switzerland, the makers are not good about supplying parts, and some parts are not available. If, in the process someone has broken something, it may not be possible to repair the music movement. By the way, available parts are pretty expensive.
It is possible to sometimes repair music movements and make them dependable. It is not likely that a normal, mechanical minded person can properly repair one on the first try.
What was your question?
I have made a living repairing clocks for a lot of years.
That is my opinion.
Dick
 
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JimmyOz

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As In #2, it sounds like the comb could have been messed with, better to take the music box out so you can operate it by hand. The 2 screws that hold the comb on the box can be lossened (they give the comb some movement) and just use trial and error to see if you can get a better sound out of it.
 
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Dick Feldman

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If this music movement has been attacked by a novice, it may already be damaged.
If another inexperienced repairman works on it, there is a good chance the music movement will be damaged and not be able to be repaired.
If a music movement has been around long enough to fail, a replacement may no longer be available at any price.
The future for that music movement sounds bleak.
Is it correct to offer it for sale to another candidate?
JMHO
Dick
 

ticktockalot

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It is not unusual to find a cuckoo clock music movement that does not work. It seems it starts when somebody has one of those and the music movement stops working. They work on the music movement without any success and sell it at a garage sale. Someone comes to the garage sale and gets a deal on a cuckoo clock but the music movement does not work. That person works on it without any good results. It then goes to a thrift store where it is even a better deal but the music movement does not work so the new owner fixes it–well sort of. That story maybe has a few more levels.
Who knows where you are in the chain of events.
Cuckoo music movements are made in Switzerland, the makers are not good about supplying parts, and some parts are not available. If, in the process someone has broken something, it may not be possible to repair the music movement. By the way, available parts are pretty expensive.
It is possible to sometimes repair music movements and make them dependable. It is not likely that a normal, mechanical minded person can properly repair one on the first try.
What was your question?
I have made a living repairing clocks for a lot of years.
That is my opinion.
Dick
Thank you Dick for your comments and I appreciate your words.
Just to be clear, I, myself, will not try to fix the music box because I, unlike yourself, do not have the knowledge the skill the tools and all else that it requires to do such a delicate job. You must be great clock repair person to be able to make a living doing this type of work.
I was just curious if it was possible to correct the problem.
Actually, I don't really care if the song:???: is not a song. The clock itself is very lovely, it keeps good time and the cuckoo works great and when the music box activates the dancers spin around as the music plays...just a good thing they are hard of hearing or they might stop dancing..lol
Rest assured that this clock will not be going to a thrift store, charity auction, yard sale or the attic! Besides, how many other people have such a mysterious sounding cuckoo clock. ;) Makes a great conversation piece!]
ticktockalot
 

JimmyOz

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The OP said "melody is weird" therefore I take it that it is working, therefore to me, it just may be that someone messed with the comb or the comb is damaged in some way, what I said in #10 will help work it out whatever it is.
As for resale, let's face it lots of clocks that come in for repair have been messed with by someone that may not have the skills to repair them, however they are still sold in places like eBay or in this case a yard sale, is it right, maybe not, however it keeps us working.
 

Altashot

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I almost never repair yard sales cuckoos.

The customer often comes in my shop all happy that he got the clock for $30.00.

Not so happy when he finds out that it’ll cost $450.00 to repair it...

In most cases, he just leaves it with me, which I promptly dispose of the abomination.

Can we get a video or audio of this weird tune?

M.
 

ticktockalot

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I almost never repair yard sales cuckoos.

The customer often comes in my shop all happy that he got the clock for $30.00.

Not so happy when he finds out that it’ll cost $450.00 to repair it...

In most cases, he just leaves it with me, which I promptly dispose of the abomination.

Can we get a video or audio of this weird tune?

M.
This clock is doing ok, however as for getting to you an audio or video I shall have to ask my grandson how to it because my computer skills are not any better than my cuckcoo music box repair skills. :confused: I'll work on it, ok?
ticktockalot
 

ticktockalot

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In short, a new music box movement complete, playing the songs you want to hear, is the way to go.
Door not closing could be adjustment or repair/replacement of the return spring.
The door closes but not completely ( maybe 1/4" gap before it's flat closed), the bird is not visible so I guess he is completely inside. Really not that noticeable so it may be best if I leave it alone before I really mess things up!
Thanks for your input.
ticktockalot
 

ticktockalot

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The OP said "melody is weird" therefore I take it that it is working, therefore to me, it just may be that someone messed with the comb or the comb is damaged in some way, what I said in #10 will help work it out whatever it is.
As for resale, let's face it lots of clocks that come in for repair have been messed with by someone that may not have the skills to repair them, however they are still sold in places like eBay or in this case a yard sale, is it right, maybe not, however it keeps us working.
Would you please tell me what you mean by #10. I am new to this forum and not familar with such things. I really want to see what you posted.
Thanks
ticktockalot
 

JimmyOz

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Post #10
As In #2, it sounds like the comb could have been messed with, better to take the music box out so you can operate it by hand. The 2 screws that hold the comb on the box can be lossened (they give the comb some movement) and just use trial and error to see if you can get a better sound out of it.
Look at the right top corner of this post you should see #18, that is the 18th post to your thread.
 

ticktockalot

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Post #10

Look at the right top corner of this post you should see #18, that is the 18th post to your thread.
JimmyOz,
Thank you for the mini lesson about the # system. Had not noticed that before but now I see and it is very obvious.
 

Dick Feldman

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Without having the music movement or the entire clock, for that matter, in hand it will be difficult or impossible to properly trouble shoot.
There are a lot of "things" going on in that house and each "thing" should occur in a set sequence.
One function out of sequence can interfere with the whole operation. If you have only one problem, the proper solution may be bending a wire or clearing some collision of parts.
Many things that would be obvious to a clock repair person could be akin to rocket science to a novice.
The melody or lack there of may have been the result of an imported comb.
Those are not interchangeable even though they may "bolt up"
It may be that with a previous repair, the comb was offset one tooth, which will normally result in a garbled noise rather than music.
There are a lot of reasons cuckoo doors do not close. If you have two reasons for the door remaining open, it is more than
twice as hard to trouble shoot than one reason.
What is obvious is that too many (even one too many) people have experimented with your clock and given up.
Best,
Dick .
 

ticktockalot

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May 20, 2021
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Without having the music movement or the entire clock, for that matter, in hand it will be difficult or impossible to properly trouble shoot.
There are a lot of "things" going on in that house and each "thing" should occur in a set sequence.
One function out of sequence can interfere with the whole operation. If you have only one problem, the proper solution may be bending a wire or clearing some collision of parts.
Many things that would be obvious to a clock repair person could be akin to rocket science to a novice.
The melody or lack there of may have been the result of an imported comb.
Those are not interchangeable even though they may "bolt up"
It may be that with a previous repair, the comb was offset one tooth, which will normally result in a garbled noise rather than music.
There are a lot of reasons cuckoo doors do not close. If you have two reasons for the door remaining open, it is more than
twice as hard to trouble shoot than one reason.
What is obvious is that too many (even one too many) people have experimented with your clock and given up.
Best,
Dick .
Thank you Dick for your words of wisdom. I understand everything you stated. Your opinion about the imported comb sounds as though it may be just that problem. I personally wouldn't have a clue, but it makes sence to me.
Your right about too much tinkering having been made, however I did manage to get the wire off the back of the bird and reposition it under the tail so now the bird does function properl and got the hot glue peeled off the base of the bird also. Why it was there:???::???:
The door closes all but about 1/4 of an inch from being completely shut, I can live with that, and as for the music box, at least it works and the dancer twirl around and I can live with the "unsusal" song. The music is not very loud so that is a plus. It's a pretty clock and I shall enjoy having it and it keeps acurate time. What more could I ask for a $5 find. Maybe I will purchase a "fix it" book, study it for about 15 yrs then try to correct the song. On second thought, no, that sounds like a lot of work 1621904479404.png . :)
I appreciate your sharing your wisdom.
ticktockalot
 

Willie X

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If the bird attachment is plastic, they all break eventually. Someone may have glued it back on the perch. Seen that a few times. Willie X
 

ticktockalot

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If the bird attachment is plastic, they all break eventually. Someone may have glued it back on the perch. Seen that a few times. Willie X
You know Willie X, that very thought did come to my mind but,I figured I would reglue it if need be but not with such a glob of the hot glue that was used. But once I managed to remove all the hardened glue glob everything was perfect. Nothing broken. Now, and correct me if I am off base, perhaps their idea was to glue the bird into possition, it was kindda off kilter because of the wire that should have been under the tale was on the top of the tail pushing the bird in an "attention" stature. I think they wanted the bird to lower his head. Why they had the wire in this place, who knows. His head was so high he could not get out of the door...I guess they didn't hold the bird in a downward position while the glue dried. However, not having been there when this was done, it is simply my guess.
I appreciate your comment and it is a good lesson for me to learn about cuckoo birds, I never gave it any thought that they would break, all they do is go out then back in.:)
ticktockalot
 

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