Kaiser Universe Overhaul

KurtinSA

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I was thinking about getting into one of my Kaiser's...it keeps stopping while trying to raise the minute hand through 45 minutes. I've been told that the previous owner put the wrong main springs in them.

Is there anything unusual over a regular 400-Day clock about them? Looks like there are extra arbors to drive the small moon. Plus the anchor pin is not vertical but canted off to the side. The repair guide mentions something different about how the center arbor works and/or drives the motion works. Plus, I'm still not sure how to get the pendulum ball off.

But one thing I've found I'm not prepared to handle are cannon pinion's that are pressed onto the arbor...like those on the Schatz Model 53 and like a Huber I recently encountered. I just haven't gotten around to getting the necessary tools.

So are there things like that which will make it more difficult to take apart and put back together?? I'd rather not get half way through teardown only to find an issue that I can't resolve.

Thanks...Kurt
 

daveR

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Hi Kurt,
Just quickly off the top of my head, I would say treat the dial relly carefully, I believe it mah even be water soluble paint, and only silk screened on.
Keep a really close track where they go of all the washers and spacers that seem to appear, especially those that link the moon mechanism on top.
Again, if you plan to dismantle the lower pendulum unit, treat the earth carefully, it is quite light. Understand how the mechanism works it may or may not be immediately clear to you. check the guide as well for his notes on it. Not that only two weights actually move for regulation the other two are fixed. If you remve them (probably not really necessary) make sure they are balanced and far enoughtout to not foul the hub, although youwould see that anyway.
I am sure others will have other useful tips as well.
David
Just realised , to a coup,e of yourspecific worries: once the dial is off you will see pretty quickly how the center drives the hands and I dont think the escape being cantedover is a major issue either, though on mine the escape is still central. Maybe you have the narrow plateversion and that is different. I dont know.
I also remember that the ball part of the pendulum cant come off until it is pulled apart, I dont remember exactly how , but that there was something very tight!
D
 
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STEVE SHOEMAKER

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JUST CURIOUS HOW YOU MADE OUT WITH THIS. GOT A COUPLE MYSELF AND ALWAYS HAD A PROBLEM GETTING THE MOON TO FUNCTION AND STILL NEED TO FINISH IT BEFORE I DO THE ONE THAT GOT A CHROME MOON
 

KurtinSA

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Steve -

Sorry, I put this on the back burner. Still seems somewhat complicated and I have other clocks to work on my "skills". Not sure when I'll get to it.

Kurt
 

KurtinSA

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Well, this has now moved to the front burner! I thought I was try to get this overhauled. I will be taking my usual pictures shortly...wow, it sure does look complicated between the plates! I believe this clock is plate 1309.

I guess my thoughts all along is how to get the pendulum apart. I'm guessing that first the cover under the bottom of the base needs to come off to expose the actual pendulum weights. I've also noted the parts stack up as shown in App #68 in the guide. I think that will make more sense once I get to see it.

But as far as the globe, I'm still wondering how to deal with that. I'm think that I should undo the two thumbscrews holding the movement to the top of the columns...set that aside for dissection a bit later. Is the globe attached to a rod which is in turn held in place by the nut at the very bottom of the stack up as shown in the parts picture? If that nut is removed, does the globe then slide up and away? I'll need to pay special attention to the rest of the parts to get the weights of the pendulum apart and back together again properly.

The other thing that I wondered about is the eccentric for this clock. Is this the upper bracket that holds the saddle for the top block?

Thanks...Kurt
 

KurtinSA

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Found a post by John Hubby...interesting last line about putting together a photo montage for disassembly and reassembly of a pendulum:

Kaiser globe pend.

I couldn't find anything along those lines. Does anyone remember if he did that? John?

Kurt
 

KurtinSA

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Well, I guess here's my tutorial. I did remove the movement and set it aside. I managed to get the bottom cover off to expose the weight system. Below are a series of pictures as I took thinks apart. Interesting...I'm not really seeing the exact stack up parts as in the repair guide. Plus the hex nuts on the underside weren't really that tight...I've read where they are supposed to be.

I'm at the point where the globe is still attached to the spiral groove plate underneath. I'm guessing that I have to unscrew the slotted plate on top of the globe that will release the axle tube (with spiral plate) which then frees up the globe. Not sure I have much of anything to get at the slotted plate...all while being careful to not slip and damage the paint on the globe.

Kurt

Kaiser1-1.jpg Kaiser1-2.jpg Kaiser1-3.jpg Kaiser1-4.jpg Kaiser1-5.jpg Kaiser1-6.jpg Kaiser1-7.jpg
 

KurtinSA

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Managed to take care of it. I got my snap ring pliers and used the 90-degree ends. Carefully fit that into the slots on either side and turned the slotted nut. It wasn't that tight. After a number of turns, I could work it off by fingers. The fixed nut at the bottom fits into the hex-shaped hole in the bottom of the globe.

Now the thing that probably scares me the most will be the movement! Yikes!

Kurt

Kaiser1-8.jpg Kaiser1-9.jpg
 
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KurtinSA

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Finally got the movement completely apart. Yes, the suspension spring bracket is the eccentric. I tried to make some marks in order to get it back in that position...I like the look of the escapement when manipulating by my finger.

This clock wouldn't raise the minute hand past 45, so I was suspecting issues with the main spring. In a Torsion Times, Les mentioned that he's seen both 19x38 and 19x40 barrels in these clocks. But after measuring things, the barrel seems to be 19x38mm and I'm getting 0.018" for thickness. I've never been good at measuring the main spring, but the guide calls for 0.016" thick so I guess I'm in the ballpark.

Lots o' parts on this one!

Kurt

Kaiser1-10.jpg
 
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PatH

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Kurt, Thanks for the updates and pictures on your progress. Hopefully this will help others who might be facing similar restorations.
 

KurtinSA

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Thanks, Pat. Since I couldn't find anything, I had to make my own way. I've taken more pictures on this clock refurb than I have for any other. Hopefully that will help me on the backend!

Here's a picture of the back of moon part of the dial. I had never looked at it before. It looks like a small arbor that's been staked in place in a groove in the brass. I haven't decided if I'm going to put oil on the pivots for the moon part of the movement. It seems to run directly off the main spring barrel...should be lots of power I guess.

Kurt

Kaiser1-11.jpg
 

KurtinSA

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It's been pointed out to me that there should be some kind of felt or softer surface on the wheel that drives the moon ball. In the previous post, you can see the thin line around the middle where the paint has been rubbed off. Attached is a picture of the front plate and you can see the brass toothless wheel which contacts the moon ball and turns it...there's clearly nothing to soften the contact with the moon. Any suggestions as to what I might use?

-- edit -- Found a post by John where he mentions a thin layer of a product called Freesole used for repairing shoe soles...I guess I could start there.

I hadn't planned on dealing with the missing paint on the moon but maybe I should. I'll have to look around for some discussion on that...seems like someone posted about painting this stuff a while back.

-- edit -- A little about painting the larger globe here:

Kaiser universe globe

Kurt

Kaiser1-12.jpg
 
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KurtinSA

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I just noted something weird with this moon setup. Notice that the axis of the moon is offset from straight up and down...aesthetics or the rotational axis of our moon also tilted relative to our view? (The earth axis has a tilt of a little less than 25 degrees.) Anyway, the wheel which contacts the moon on the backside touches the in the center. So while the wheel moves tangentially horizontal at that point, the axis of the moon doesn't coincide with that. That means there's a bit of scrubbing action going on between the wheel and how the moon wants to rotate. :banghead:

Kurt
 

Wayne A

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Scrubbing is going to be hard on paint but likely made for the simplest drive solution. Its just a moon phase indicator right? Why bother even tilting it since the moon is synced and we only see the same side all the time.
 

KurtinSA

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Yeah, it's a phase indicator. The moon is painting two colors...blue and gold which I suspect the gold represents the phases of light while the blue represents the dark part of the moon that can't be seen.

Kurt
 

KurtinSA

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Calculating gear ratios and how the moon moves... I've not done much of this but when I have, it's mostly involved gear teeth meshing with pinion leaves, etc. But this situation is gear teeth to gear teeth. The picture shows how things are engaged to drive the moon ball. The main spring barrel meshes with #2...turns out #3 is physically on the same arbor as #2. Then you can see the progression from there to the final gear #6. The numbers given are the number of teeth on each wheel.

How do I get from this to the moon rotating every 29.5x days? I'm pretty sure that the multiple 34 teeth in a row cancel each other out, at least two of them do.

Kurt

Kaiser1-13.jpg
 

KurtinSA

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As I've thought about this, I think the way to get to the answer is to figure out how many teeth the main barrel turns in a given period of time. So, in order to do that, work with the arbor that drives the minute hand. Picking the time of 60 minutes, then back figure how many main barrel teeth move during that time...not many...but find some combination to work with. Or maybe how many times around the minute hand has to go to equal 29.5 days. Back figure that to the number of main barrel teeth, which would then provide some idea of how to work out the teeth from the barrel to the moon ball.

The problem is that the Kaiser doesn't have a straight forward approach to driving the minute hand. There isn't a center arbor. There is an arbor that goes through the front plate, but it's offset and has its own motion works to drive the cannon pinion.

My head hurts!

Kurt
 

KurtinSA

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I have the clock back together, minus the dial and motion works. My issues before the teardown was that the clock continued to stop while raising the minute hand past 0:45. Pivots looked dark-ish so they needed polishing.

Since there was nothing on the wheel that contacted the moon, I needed to put something there to ensure a good grip rather than have it slide over the moon. I mentioned a product Freesole which I think John Hubby had posted about. It's a glue that has a tacky surface to it. I couldn't find it locally, but found something that is probably the same, at least made by the same company. It's Seam Grip+WP by Gear Aid. I put a thin coating around the outside edge of the wheel...it has a self leveling feature, so hopefully it ended up being a relatively even coat. I still need to touch up the moon with some blue and gold paint around the circumference. I bought some likely colors at a local hobby store. While I let the clock settle in to see if it will run, I can work on the moon.

Kurt

Kaiser1-14.jpg
 
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KurtinSA

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The clock seems to have "passed" my last test in that it runs for about 24 hours with no issues, having good rotation and good over swing. All that's left is to put the dial back on. I've also attempted to repaint the small line around the middle of the moon to cover up the wear line over the years. My hands weren't as steady as I would have liked, so we'll see what the results look like from a short distance!

I'm going to try and make one of the locking "nuts" for the pendulum. This composite picture shows what the nut looks like...it is from one of the other Kaiser clocks that I have...the current one was missing this as is fairly typical. It's about the diameter of a penny and has a thickness of about 0.15". The shoulder that is cut into one side fits into the larger open hole on the base cover where the pendulum rod sticks through when the pendulum is removed from the bottom block. The nut is typically stored on one of the two support pillars that stick through the base cover. I've been trying to find a screw at some local stores that will fit into the threads of the nut but can't find anything. I've done some measurements of the support pillar and have more or less established that the threads are M3.5 x 0.60. So, I'll need to find some brass, cut it to size, carve the shoulder into it, and then drill/tap for those threads. Easy for some...a bit harder for me to do!

Kurt

Kaiser1-15.jpg
 

KurtinSA

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OK, that's done. Got it all together and up on the shelf. There were some cracks in the base and did my best to clean around them. You can probably see the bright path around the equator of the moon. Maybe that will "dirty up" over time!

Now the "real" test comes...how long will it really run!!

Kurt

Kaiser1-16.jpg Kaiser1-17.jpg
 
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KurtinSA

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Thanks, Les. This involved more parts of "repair" than I usually deal with when I deal with other regular clocks. So it was intimidating to some degree.

I'm going to see if there are more of the pendulum locking nuts available. I am missing one of them. I've heard that Bill Ellison made dozens of them years ago. Maybe they were passed to Chris when he took over The Horolovar Store. I'll have to check. If not, I might look into making a few for myself.

Kurt
 
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