Dangerous but maybe useful mainspring removal?

Salsagev

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Worked on a French clock with no collet with clearance to allow end of the spring to come release the spring. After thinking things through, I got a cloth and briskly pulled the center of the spring out and the whole thing popped out.
 

JTD

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Worked on a French clock with no collet with clearance to allow end of the spring to come release the spring.
I am trying my best to work out what this sentence means, but I am baffled. Could you explain please?

JTD
 

Willie X

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Often this will 'cone' your spring and damage the spring at the hook ... but not always. :) Willie
 

Rob Martinez

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Broke clock is right twice a day. Yes, we know this can work but the bad far out-weights the good. You were stuck and had to do it. Beside the strong chance of a damaged spring (or wheels, etc), I assure you making a habit of this will literately come back to bite you....
 

Salsagev

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I am trying my best to work out what this sentence means, but I am baffled. Could you explain please?
The collet I have for my Ollie Baker is like just enough to contain the spring after winding it up in its barrel. (The French strategically positioned the spring so it goes outward not allowing the spring to slip on its arbor when unwound.) The end of the spring, however, is exerting pressure against the barrel sides so it stays in the barrel hook. The thing is is that there is no/very little clearance to unhook the spring to take the spring out along with the collet. Hope that makes sense.


Often this will 'cone' your spring and damage the spring at the hook ... but not always. :) Willie
Is there a safer way?


Also, I had this issue once where the hole end slipped beneath the collet and I had to wind while pulling away until it popped back in the barrel.
 

JTD

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Hope that makes sense.
Yes, it does now, thank you. You didn't mention anything about a spring winder, so I was confused about this 'French clock with no collet' and wondered what it could possibly be..

Thanks for explaining.

JTD
 
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Salsagev

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Broke clock is right twice a day. Yes, we know this can work but the bad far out-weights the good. You were stuck and had to do it. Beside the strong chance of a damaged spring (or wheels, etc), I assure you making a habit of this will literately come back to bite you....
The only other way I can think of is brute force.
 

bruce linde

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i don't understand why people are so reluctant (?) to provide photos, when each photo is worth a thousand words?

i still don't understand your description and would appreciate a photo.
 

Salsagev

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I am not reluctant to post photos but just don't have the picture. I am more than willing to show what I mean when I work on a different French movement. And, I am away from the clock until this afternoon - besides, I only thought about it after it was done, therefore, I am not reluctant to post pictures.
 

bruce linde

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let me rephrase… I don’t understand why people don’t post photos when asking questions.

I read a lot of posts, I’d like to help, I have some experience to bring to the table that might help, but get stopped dead in my tracks when there’s no photo and I have to figure out what someone is trying to communicate. In this case, I still don’t understand what you described.

Glad you got your question answered, but photos might’ve brought in additional insights and comments

Posting photos with questions is strongly recommended… at least by me. :)
 

Salsagev

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I will see what I can do later. Thanks.
 

Willie X

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Sal,
No spring will be "unhooked" when unwound. You have to either turn the arbor backwards, or insert a 1/8" screwdriver in beside the hook and turn it, the arbor will pull straight out. I prefer the latter and have a small square shank screwdriver made especially for this purpose. Willie X
 
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Salsagev

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I will post pictures later because I am referring to the hole that hooks on to the barrel.
 

Kevin W.

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By collet, are you refering to the sleeve that captures the main spring?
 
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Uhralt

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French clocks are notorious for your problem because the barrels are rather small. Sometimes you have to make a sleeve that fits better than the ones that come with the spring winder. Often, a piece of copper pipe from the hardware store can be used to make such a sleeve.

Uhralt
 
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Rob Martinez

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"... I prefer the latter and have a small square shank screwdriver made especially for this purpose. Willie X "

Will, Special screwdriver? I use a pair of pliers with 90degree bend in them. Can you show a jpg of your screwdriver?
 
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Willie X

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If you were speaking of the barrel hook, you just rotate the capture sleeve backwards and it unhooks. Never seen one that wouldn't unhook easily. You don't need any tools. Willie X
 

Salsagev

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Yes, but it does not unhook because it’s so tightly compact.
 

Willie X

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Read Uhralt's post #16. No different from any other clock, just a slightly different scale. Willie X
 

shutterbug

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If you have all of the coils out of the barrel, a little push should release the hook. The fun part will be winding the spring back in. If your winder wouldn't get it out, it won't get it in either. But you can do it. I did springs by hand for a couple of years before I got a winder.
 

R. Croswell

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Yes, but it does not unhook because it’s so tightly compact.
You may also have encountered a clock where someone previously installed an oversize spring. The spring will usually unlock from the barrel when the sleeve is turned backward and pulled out, but I did encounter one not too long ago where someone either cut off the end of the spring to make a new hole or cut off a too long spring to make a replacement. The end of the spring was sharp and dug into the brass so it didn't want to turn. Usually not a good idea to just use brute force and yank the spring out. You will have the same problem installing the spring if you don't correct any wrong size spring issues and find the correct sleeve. A picture of the barrel with the cover removed and the spring still in place might have provided a clue whether you have the correct spring.

RC
 

Salsagev

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Brute force works on springs! The issue with getting them in was that the hole end slipped beneath the collet sleeve.
 

Kevin W.

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Collet sleeve, my peeve is correct terminology, i know what you mean now, but please try to improve on terminology, i am quilty of this too sometimes myself. Good points were made here. Trying to help, not to be picky Sal.
 

JimmyOz

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Check the end of your vacuum cleaner it may be the right size for the spring retainer, I had this issue with a French clock and cut off a few inches off the vacuum and made one. The sides are nice and thin and quite strong for small springs.
 
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