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Help: Kienzle Westminster clock

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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I've got my grandmothers old Kienzle wall clock with a westminster gong. It was no longer working but I've been able to source parts. Time is running and the strike mechanism runs partly. I might not aligned everything correctly so any help would be appreciated
 

tracerjack

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You will need to post some photos of the movement in order to get any useful help. Not all Kienzle chimers are the same model.
 

wow

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We need more information. Your title says Westminster yet you said gong. Does your clock chime the Westminster tune every 15 minutes or does it strike a gong on the hour and half hour. Photos are a must if we are able to help you.
 

rudik

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sorry forgot the photos. It strikes every 15 minutes up to the chime flirt drops stopping the fly pinion. At this moment the chime locking wheel/plate is not engaged (hope i describe this correctly). I've added an error to the chime flirt

many thanks,
Rudi

IMG_20211126_201619.jpg IMG_20211126_201502.jpg IMG_20211126_201542.jpg IMG_20211126_201448.jpg
 

wow

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First, let’s get the terminology right. The chime is the melody played every 15 minutes. The strike is the counts on the hour. A video of it with you turning the minute hand slowly so we can see what is happening, would be the best way to show us what is happening. Make it on YouTube and upload it here.
 

rudik

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thanks for the feedback. It's the chime indeed giving the problem. I've uploaded the video which i hope helps. You can see at a certain moment I need to lift the chime flirt as it's stuck with an additional locking plate lower in the clock. The top locking plate is at that moment not engaged.
 

tracerjack

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I didn’t see any warning runs. It appeared that at five minutes before each quarter, the chime starts and keeps going until it locks. I’ve never worked on this model, so am only guessing that the hook lever that you are lifting is part of the chime correction. I think it is functioning correctly, and is supposed to stay locked and prevent the chime from working until it releases at only the hour. But first, you need a warning run. The set screw circled in red on the left of the photo appears to be the lever for the warning run. From the curve of the tip (circled in red on the right side of the photo) it appears to be on the wrong side of the wheel marked with the arrow. However, it could be on the correct side and there is a pin I can't see or one missing. Whichever it is, the tip is either not in a correct position to catch a pin on a wheel to stop the chime until the quarter mark or it is in correct position, but the pin is gone. If what I have written doesn't make sense to you, you will need to read up on chimers to understand their functions. All chimes work in theory pretty much the same way, but how they accomplish each task is different from one movement to the next. But, since I have not worked on this model, please wait until someone else can confirm what I have written before you do anything.
. kienzle1.jpg
 

Mike Phelan

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That's a strange arrangement with having an unusual rack tor both strike and chime, instead of the more usual count wheel for the chiming.
Does it really have a flirt - ie no warning or it just Mr DeCarle's mispronunciation?
 

tracerjack

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Then if it is designed to have no warning, what does the lever do, the one I have marked in my post’s photo? It is a very beautiful movement that I would love to explore.
 

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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thank you for your reply. Attached a photo which i hope makes it more clear with an arrow to show where the lever slots into

20200413_125937.jpg
 

tracerjack

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Then this one (blue arrow) is for the warn? Since you have had this apart, you must have far more experience than I assumed from your first post. My apologies.
kienzle 2.jpg
There appears to be two more slotted cams. Do you know what each one does? With so many slotted cams, I can't tell which one stops the chime train, which one is chime correction, and what the third one does.
kienzle 3.jpg
 

tracerjack

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I watched the video in slow motion, and I now can see that those cams I circled, their levers drop with the lever on the back plate that is part of the locking plate. I'm really curious now as to how this chimer works.
 

J. A. Olson

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This is a first generation Kienzle movement with a large countwheel on the back movement plate instead of a conventional locking disc.
The chime train incorporates a series of 'cuckoo style' bent levers which habitually wear with age, leading to erratic performance.
I was just talking about one of these with another member earlier this year who had similar problems with their movement.
It should go into warning each quarter hour, with the hour requiring a higher lift for self correction & hour strike setup.
Anticipating there is no wear in the lever's bushing holes, make fine adjustments to the 'cuckoo style' levers if they aren't engaging.
No sharp bends.

It was Kienzle's first go at a Westminster chime movement and was the precursor of virtually every mid-range German chime movement we find. Strange it may be, it is a more important design than a lot of people realize at first glance. First year of production was 1908-1909 but your clock is likely later than that, going by the rod gong unit design.

The chimes sound real nice on these clocks.
 

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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the blue arrow indeed runs the warn. The bottom slotted cam was not in the original clock. This is a replacement part from a similar model so I'm not sure if it has a function(I first thought it was 100% the same but there are some differences).
 

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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strongly if the warn runs then the chime starts as well. Maybe this is caused by the 'cuckoo style' although not sure.
I think I need to take it apart again and check all the levers
 

J. A. Olson

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If I recall everything, the slotted cam acts for the self-correct: locking after the 3/4 hour chime and releases for the 4/4 hour chime & hour strike setup. It has to be the same exact size as the original, otherwise it may be causing problems when it locks.

When everything's working it doesn't operate any differently than a later movement: just has those cuckoo style levers and that countwheel to achieve every function. Here's a video of another Kienzle wall clock, the old ones sometimes had porcelain dials like a Viennese regulator:

 
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rudik

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sounds indeed as mine was before.
I will check the replacement parts once more making sure the levers are exactly the same and will keep you informed about the result.
thanks all for the useful replies
 
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Mike Phelan

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Then if it is designed to have no warning, what does the lever do, the one I have marked in my post’s photo?
Indeed it has a warning - it was the mention of a flirt in posts #4 and #6 which led me to think at first that threw me, as when a flirt is used (usually in UK clocks in the 1700s and 1800s) there is no warning.
 

rudik

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ok, if indeed no warning would be there with this model it explains it more. I will let it run for some time to see once more what exactly is happening.
 

shutterbug

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The fact that it triggers the run 5 minutes early makes me think it has a warning run that is not arresting the train until the top of the hour is reached. Possibly what ever is at fault there is also preventing the stop at the end of the run.
 

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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I've reassembled the mechanism but the chime is still showing problems. To explain:
- If I manually lift the lever then the chime will run until both locking plates are in sync, see both arrows.
- If there lever is lifted by the chime cam it runs far too long, ignoring the locking plates, until the chime cam drops the lever

I only have 'experience' with this clock so might be something obvious that I'm missing

20200403_110343.jpg IMG_20211126_201448.jpg
 

shutterbug

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I think you are saying that it only stops at the 3/4 hour position. There is probably internal parts that need to be synced as well as the external. Watch the movement to see what's happening on the 1/4 hour lifts. Is it lifting high enough to release the train? Lifting it manually is probably forcing it to the top of the hour lift, which is too high for the 1/4's. Any way you can get a video of what it's doing both internally and externally? Post to Youtube and link here.
 

tracerjack

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By manually lifting that hooked lever, you are activating the chime train when it would not do so on its own. That the chime only unlocks at the hour makes me feel me that the hooked lever is functioning properly as a chime correction. On the hour when the hooked lever will release the chime train on its own, when does it drop back into locking position? Oh, I see you answered that already, It drops back when the chime runs on until the two cams lock. As shutterbug posts, at the three quarter mark.

I am confused by your words, “I only have ‘experience’ with this movement”. Did you mean this is your very first movement to work on, or your first chimer?
I am still bothered by why it does not go into warning. That would be the first place I would start. Since the chime runs on, something is not synced properly. If we go through it carefully, we should be able to discover why.
 
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tracerjack

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I looked back again through your photos and saw that this lever has a set screw. While you are diagnosing this movement, I would reset the lower lever so that when it is in the slot, the hooked lever stays too high to work. That will disengage the chime correction for now and can be readjusted when everything else is sorted out. Next, have you determined which cam is the chime stop? I would think it is not properly synced with the quarter slots on the back plate that act as the locking plate.
kienzle A.jpg
 
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rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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To be clear, my only experience is with this clock so bit of a novice.

if I move the minute hand the lever is lifted by the chime cam and the chime train activates, although no warning.
If I move the minute hand further the lever drops and the train stops based on the quarter chime locks, the one internal and on the back so these look to be in sync, see attached photo.

However if I let it run normally, on time, the lever doesn't drop until the chime came has moved forward enough. Due to this the chime locks are not being engaged in time. Do I miss something?

IMG_20211126_201448.jpg
 

tracerjack

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I think I have the levers identified so we can figure out what is out of sync. If I'm wrong about the levers, someone please correct me before we continue.
Kienzle A1.jpg Kienzle A2.jpg

The chime train should not continue to run with the partial lift five minutes before the quarter and before the drop off. The pinned wheel should be stopped by the warn lever A, stopping the chime train until the quarter is reached. It should then release the pin at the quarter when the lifter on the front plate drops off the center star. Try blocking the chime fan with your finger. Turn the minute hand to five minutes before a quarter. Release the fan one revolution at a time. If the fan doesn't turn, you will have to move the minute hand a bit farther, but if you go too far and the front lifter drops off, you will have to start again. With the chime train slowed down by the fan, you should be able to see why the pinned wheel is not being caught by lever A. Most likely it is too low and the lever will need to be bent to the proper place.

I watched the newest video in slow motion. The stop lever (C) can't drop into its slot in the cam to stop the chime train until the lifter on the front plate drops off the star arm, because that front lifter is supposed to hold it up until the drop off. That is why the chime train continues during what should be a warn run. After you turned the hand so the front lifter drops off, then you can see the hook on the back plate (which is synced with the chime stop lever) and the chime stop lever both drop into their slots at the same time, and the chime train stops.

I think you are very close to having this chimer run properly, but the warn run has to work or the rest can't.
 
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shutterbug

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I'm thinking you may have a missing pin. It would act as a warning pin as well as a stop pin. Look at the wheels closely and see if you can see where a pin might have once been.
 

tracerjack

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I'm thinking you may have a missing pin. It would act as a warning pin as well as a stop pin. Look at the wheels closely and see if you can see where a pin might have once been.
There is a pinned wheel on the chime side, which is in line with lever A. I circled it in the first photo of post #26.
 

rudik

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tracerjack: I think you're right with the warn lever A need to be tweaked to stop the pinned wheel. I'm currently working on it and first results are promising. Bit difficult to find the right balance but I will work on it a bit more and update further.
Thank you so much
 

tracerjack

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tracerjack: I think you're right with the warn lever A need to be tweaked to stop the pinned wheel. I'm currently working on it and first results are promising. Bit difficult to find the right balance but I will work on it a bit more and update further.
Thank you so much
Those bendable levers often need to be tweaked to get them just right. It’s easy to bend them too much or not enough.
 

rudik

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The chime train is now working well, thank you for your support. I got a 5 minute warning nd then when the lever drops the chime starts. At the whole hour I also get a warning for the strike which then runs after the chime.
So it all looks good beside the lever in thread 24 seems to get engaged at a certain moment and doesn't want to dis-engage until I run int about 4 hours forward as each pre-warning for the hour chime it moves a little bit until it's past the lock. Any advise is welcome
 

tracerjack

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Progress, yah! To reset the chime correction, first check that the longest arm on the center arbor star cam is aligned with the minute hand, so that it lifts for the hour. Most minute hands on chimers have a square bushing, so it is possible to be aligned with any one of the star arms, even the short ones. Once you have checked that, the chime correction must be aligned to engage after the three quarter chime plays. There are two levers on this movement for the chime correction. One lever has the set screw, rides a large cam, the other lever has the hook and a detent that rides a smaller cam near the chime stop cam. Both levers are on the same arbor, but only the lower one has a set screw. The two detents need to fall into their respective cam slots after the three quarter chime plays. When working properly, the two levers can then only be lifted out of their cam slots by the longest star arm on the center arbor. It will again most likely take several trial and error attempts to get the chime correction to lock properly after the three quarter chime, but then unlock properly at the hour. When a chime correction is working properly, it is normal to take 1-2 hours for correction to finally resync itself after having been silenced. If you have any problems with it, I’m sure together we can get it solved. Just post again.
 
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Poppyone62

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Rudin or anyone else on this thread,
Your original post indicated you were able to source parts for your clock. I need a spring barrel for a Kienzle 2 jewel chime clock. Was your source of parts a retail business that I could contact? Thanks
 

wow

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Rudin or anyone else on this thread,
Your original post indicated you were able to source parts for your clock. I need a spring barrel for a Kienzle 2 jewel chime clock. Was your source of parts a retail business that I could contact? Thanks
I and others may have one but we need photos and detailed measurements.
 

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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Rudin or anyone else on this thread,
Your original post indicated you were able to source parts for your clock. I need a spring barrel for a Kienzle 2 jewel chime clock. Was your source of parts a retail business that I could contact? Thanks
I've bought a complete mechanism on eBay from which I took the required parts
 

rudik

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Nov 26, 2021
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The clock is now working and I want to thank you for your support to get to this point. Need to change the finger hand which is a bit loose and get the front back on but I hope it's then ready to go.
If anything else doesn't look good please let me know.
Thanks a lot!!!
 

tracerjack

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You are very welcome. Glad to see another chimer fixed and ready to be enjoyed for many more years to come.
 

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