I'm embarrassed to ask!!!!!!!

Discussion in '400-Day & Atmos' started by phylrick, Jul 15, 2019.

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  1. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    Hello fellow Atmos Clock masters out there.I believe we are a special group of clock-smiths that have tackled the hardest of them all!! I say this with deep regret that I have to ask for help which may be futile!! I normally have standard steps to return an Atmos back to perpetual running state. 1-Totally dis-assemble and check every piece for wear or damage. 2- I clean everything in Acetone/Toluene/Alcohol 3-3-3 solution and blow dry. 3- I check all specs for the bellows and run a test deflating and inflating to insure the power house is in good shape. 4- I dis-assemble the mainspring unit and completely clean the spring using same solution and then re-apply fresh high grade 'synthetic' oil along entire length. Re-assemble and check return spring and chain for any anomalies. 5- Check bushings and pivots on mainspring and first wheel. Use pith wood to clean bushings and pivots making sure there are no scratches on the pivots. I apply a SMALL amount of oil on these bushings. Thats all that get oil!! Put it away from this point out! 6-Once the frame and components are re-assembled I move to the balance. I install the roller assembly and while re-hanging the tube I partially set the beat to the flat side of the spring, which helps with final beat set. 7-After everything is installed and spacing at bottom plate is checked I turn the roller 540 degrees with NO POWER (do not wind) and I see how long the balance will rotate un-assisted. The roller should run 45-60 minutes minimum and come to the stop at beat. (Adjust beat if it is off).
    8- I clean all bushings and pivots of the movement and check for scratches or cracked jewels. I re-assemble the movement (NO OIL) and do a final blow off of any dust or debris inside the movement. If I can apply a SMALL amount of power to the second wheel at the point of contact with first wheel and see the fork oscillate freely I consider my re-assembly correct. 9-With the roller at beat I install the movement and correct the set of the fork, making sure it does not contact anything but the roller. This is probably one of the most important settings so beware. After temporarily placing the minute hand on the movement I wind the clock manually and turn the roller to the 660 degree position, place the cover and carefully start the clock. 10- Nothing to do but wait and pray after starting.

    Now my question.....this is truly embarrassing. I have a clock (Pictured) that I have done just as outlined. I, for the life of me, cannot find my error point. The clock only runs at most 45 minutes. There is a serious point of friction and I am darned if I can find it. I have dis-assembled and re-assembled this darn clock three times!!!! Same result. My only point of suspicion is the fork. I see a good snap to the right as the roller passes but a rather lackluster movement to the left.

    I am going to increase the spacing of the fork on the roller to see if it helps.

    Can anyone with more experience than me , give any hints on where to go now:???:?? I'm stumped. Most of my clocks run with litle problem......this one is a problem child!!!!!
     
  2. sjaffe

    sjaffe Registered User

    Dec 25, 2012
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    I'm not sure if this applies to an Atmos, but for all other clocks I work on I put each wheel in by itself and spin it. It should spin for several seconds and coast to a stop. A shorter spin time or a more abrupt stop indicates a problem: tight bushing, bent pivot, etc. If all the wheels pass this test, I do the same with pairs to reveal any depthing issues. Be sure to test in all orientations even though the clock is only used in one. Testing upside down recently revealed a mainspring barrel/first wheel issue. This is somewhat time consuming, but it has served me well.

    Thanks for posting your process. Could you tell us (honestly) how many hours this takes? I'm convinced I spend too many hours on an overhaul, but it just seems to take a certain number of hours even after doing enough to be proficient.

    Thanks,
    Stan
     
  3. victor miranda

    victor miranda Registered User

    Jan 13, 2017
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    I doubt I'll see the problem...
    I have to let you know I was expecting a photo?

    victor
     
  4. Ed O'Brien

    Ed O'Brien Registered User
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    Nov 30, 2009
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    I didn't see where you mentioned poising the fork, which can be the source of a problem like you describe. Additionally, very important that the fork be put in beat. If the suspension spring is not installed exactly centered in the regulator, it can make contact as it enters the balance tube. Has the suspension spring be checked to make sure there is not a kink inside the balance tube?
     
  5. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    Atmos is inherently expensive so when I take in a clock I tell them that complete overhaul can take 6-8 hours and if a problem appears (like this one) it can be more. My work is small and has become more a part time endeavor. I tend to spend more time on a clock to make it right than I should, but thats me. I tried 'spinning' gears as you suggest and ended up spending a half hour looking for it on the floor!!! I'll try becoming more proficient at it....thanks for the suggestion!
     
  6. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    oops.....forgot!!! I will post a couple pics but really don't know what exactly to show??
     
  7. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    Ah well.....you'er right on all points. Of course the fork is poised and in beat. I did remove the balance tube and checked poise. I installed a new suspension spring so I'm sure there are no kinks in the tube. I have found a careful point of re-installing the tube is when you slide the regulator down into the top of the tube it often moves off center. With my luck that could have happened....sooooo....I will again check and re-affirm poise. I don't like messing with the suspension spring too much due to it being so delicate.
     
  8. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    OK here are some of the pics that show progress.

    First is a pic of Poise of Balance plus center on regulator.
    Second is spacing on Fork
    Third has a question....the Second wheel gear, to me, seems tight. Does it look that way to you??
    Forth is the 4th wheel post straightness. I have run into bent posts before!
    Fifth I tried to show escapement but it basically doesn't show much.
    Sixth shows a side of movement. I can't see anything wrong in here but I'm pretty sure now the movement is the culprit!!
    Seventh whole clock....why I made this pic.....I duh know! I made a picture of the whole clock.....you guys know what an Atmos looks like already tho'!!

    So I have checked the balance /roller/mainspring and am down to the movement ....again!! I am going to take it apart ....again...and reclean pivots/bushings and parts. I must admit I dread this becauser I am so afraid of messing up the pivoits on the escapement wheel. They are so delicate.....I already broke one:(. Maybe someone out there has tools to re-pivot a small wheel like this. I can re-pivot the larger wheels but the pivot is so small on the escapement wheel I'm stuck!!

    So there it is..... I will post results of doing the movement ....again.....!!

    My best to ya all,
    Rick

    Center on Regulator.jpeg Fork spacing.jpeg Second wheel gear.jpeg Escapement.jpeg movement.jpeg Atmos.jpeg
     
  9. new_hampster

    new_hampster Registered User

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    Hard to tell from photos, but you want to be sure that the top tine of the fork does not contact roller assembly as it moves across its arc, both directions.
     
  10. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    I have a question.....how many times can you remove a balance from an Atmos clock before you break the pigtail off the spring:???:? ANSWER IN MY CASE......SIX!!!!!.......AAHHHHHHHHHH!:mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad::mad:

    Might be a blessing in disguise....slight bend in spring below regulator. OH WELL.....I'll replace and try again!!!! I feel like a first timer beating up a clock!!!!!
     
  11. sjaffe

    sjaffe Registered User

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    #11 sjaffe, Jul 21, 2019
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 22, 2019
    Re: losing parts. Here's what I'm doing to help avoid small parts disappearing to some alternative universe never to be seen again. I do all my movement work on a heavy duty cookie sheet with all sides about an inch high. To catch any parts that make it past this first barrier, I installed a piece of plastic rain gutter on the front edge of my workbench with the back edge even with the bench top. Wayward parts rolling off the front edge of the bench are captured in the gutter. It's also a handy place to temporarily place tools to keep them near but out of the way. I have yet to come up with a solution to springs that sprong off to the far corners of the shop. I'm getting to the point where I don't spend more than a couple of minutes searching and just go find a replacement if it is something common like an e-clip or nut.

    Stan
     
  12. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    I always find missing parts easily ..... months later when I'm looking for something else :D
     
  13. zygo

    zygo Registered User

    May 29, 2008
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    Returning to the OP's question, I have recently encountered a similar problem - more impulse from one side than the other - and I traced it to loose pallet jewels. Never seen that before but placing the complete movement (with fork) under a microscope showed an erratic drop from the pallets. I removed the fork again and found one jewel at an angle; it was only when I examined it more closely that I realised it was not actually held tight. You might want to check that, Phylrick.
    Gordon
     
  14. larrabee

    larrabee Registered User
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    I had an experience similar to the one described by zygo. I had an Atmos 1 that appeared to be "perfect" but would stop after 1-2 hours. One Atmos repair person, who had worked on a few clocks for me before, could not figure it out. I finally sent it to Mike.....yeah that Mike....Mike Murray. It took him awhile, and he was quite frustrated at times, I think, but found that one of the pallets was cracked or chipped. Fortunately, a pallet stone from a model 519 was a perfect match, and Mike had a colleague watchmaker do the stone replacement on the fork. The clock now has run continuously for 500 days (except for stops to regulate and change for DST).
     
  15. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    Well I am back to re-ask the problem I'm in... Good impulse to right light or nothing to left. I checked the jewels and pivots as closely as possible. (Microscope) and see nothing out of kilter. Do any of you master Atmos fellows have any other suggestions for this problem. I just can't get this clock to run for more than an hour if that. Seems like a power drain that big should stand out like a wart on your nose!!!

    One other question...is there any instructions around on replacement of jewels. Is it simply a push out and push in or is it more complicated:???: Never did it before and if I do find a jewel problem will have to learn fast!!
     
  16. Ed O'Brien

    Ed O'Brien Registered User
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    Nov 30, 2009
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    If you have a jewel problem (would almost certainly be a fractured jewel, as very unlikely to have enough wear for a problem), and if it on a bridge, replace the whole part, and I probably have what you need. My opinion is that a jewel is not causing what you are experiencing. Somewhat of a stretch, but is is possible you have a bent pivot. Does the roller spin freely? I still think you have a fork issue.
     
  17. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    Well ED.... Heres what I've done. I took all wheels into the shop and re-polished and inspected all pivots. I did this on a $3000 polishing machine so I figure these are OK. I did check one spot that I was suspicious about. Where the pivots come thru at the escape and Fork. The jewels are covered with a screw on cover. I noticed if I tighten the screw the fork slows. Turned out the pivot protrudes out and the cover causes binding. I removed the cover for now but it did not stop the slow down. (Was all excited, but no luck) I see the impulse is fine in both directions. I put pics of all three views of fork placement. It is poised . I also removed the balance for the third time and recheck poise there. I do it much more I'll break my pigtail AGAIN!! I cleaned the roller assembly with 50/50 Toluene and acetone and blew dry. Roller is free. Spacing on lock plate is correct. Mainspring has been cleaned and lubed and is working fine. I checked every jewel with a jewelers scope and see no cracks or anomalies. This is a new suspension spring aand lower clamp is perfectly centered along with upper regulator. Soooooooo I'm running out of options:???:?? I have never had one do this before!!! There has to be a MAJOR power drain since it stops in less than an hour now!! It should jump out and bite my nose!!!!! I'd buy a replacement fork if they weren't so dear. Anyone have one for 528 for maybe $50 ;)!! Now......if this were you......where would you go next:???:? And don't say the parts bin !!!

    IMG_4069.jpeg IMG_4059.jpeg IMG_4075.jpeg IMG_4074.jpeg IMG_4072.jpeg
     
  18. Ed O'Brien

    Ed O'Brien Registered User
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    Nov 30, 2009
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    They are so tiny that it is a challenge to find and correct, but maybe a bent pivot. I've seen it before, and it's very difficult to detect. Maybe start with the pivot that was in the jewel you found with binding issues, as the only obvious reasons for binding at a jewel point are improper mounting of the jewel, damaged jewel (already eliminate by your checking) or a pivot problem. It sure would be an intermittent source of power loss.
     
  19. phylrick

    phylrick Registered User
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    Jan 14, 2017
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    I see the problem now....the escapement..... :???:? The jewels are into the wheel way too far. Hand does not move as it should Can I adjust the position of the jewels:???:??
     
  20. Ed O'Brien

    Ed O'Brien Registered User
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    Nov 30, 2009
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    Winter Park, FL
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    They can be moved, but this seems like a very unusual problem. I would be inclined to look more elsewhere. Hard to imagine how the jewels got relocated. If you do melt the lacquer and move the jewels you will need to use extreme care to properly position them. Unless you have a good fork to copy how do you propose to properly relocate the jewels.
     

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