Key policy

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by Willie X, Aug 17, 2017.

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  1. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

    Feb 9, 2008
    A few times a year, I have a problem with a customer claiming that their key was lost. I used to take in no keys at all but later adopted the policy of making a note at the bottom of the tag that gets attached to each clock that comes in. This note could say many things like: key with clock, good key in clock, customer has good key, needs new key, bad key returned to customer, etc. I'm thinking about going back to the simpler 'no key' policy.
    I would like to hear how other clock repairers handle the "what key - whose got da key" problem.
    Willie X
  2. roughbarked

    roughbarked Registered User

    Dec 2, 2016
    Western NSW or just this side of the black stump.
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    The shop policy is to tell the customer that we would prefer that all the extra bibs and bobs unnecessary to the repair, should be kept by them. If a key and pendulum are found in the case then it is noted on the tag and these are put into a bag with the customer's name on it and placed back in the clock. if a key comes in that is bad, the customer is advised in the quote that a new key is required as this key is dangerous to both the clock and the person winding it.
  3. John P

    John P Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Sep 17, 2010
    Looking after the cats
    North Carolina
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    If a clock comes in with no winding key, a new one is fitted to the clock and they are billed accordingly.
  4. Jim_Miller

    Jim_Miller Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Mar 6, 2001
    Clock repair / restoration
    Jackson, Michigan
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    I prefer not to have the customers key. If they do bring it in, I send it back home with them.
  5. David S

    David S Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Dec 18, 2011
    Professional Engineer - Retired
    Brockville, On Canada
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    Lately I have a customer that has been going on a clock collecting bing at the local auction. I am glad that he is bringing the key(s) since none of them have been correct. One even looked like a roller skate key or something. Invariably too big and were rounding over the arbor or in the case of the small regulator key, completely rounded out and wouldn't operate the regulator.

    So perhaps it depends on the history of the clock. If it is new to the owner bring everything?

  6. R&A

    R&A Registered User

    Oct 21, 2008
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    I always tell them to bring the key so I can inspect it. Then send it home with them if it works well with the clock. Bad things happen with bad keys.
  7. Albert Antonelli

    Albert Antonelli Registered User

    Jan 8, 2011
    In my shop when a customer comes in with the key I check the square to make sure it fits then give it back so I am not responsible for a lost key.
  8. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
    NAWCC Member

    Oct 19, 2005
    Self employed interpreter/clock repairer
    North Carolina
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    I don't like clock tops, keys, instruction sheets and things like that in the shop. Too easy to lose stuff. I can see if the customer's key is a problem by looking at the square. I have hundreds of keys on hand, and if I think the customer's key is too large I'll make them an even trade for the right size. It doesn't cost me anything, and promotes good will.

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