Make and age?

Discussion in 'Your Newest Clock Acquisition' started by captpaul, Aug 24, 2019.

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  1. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

    Aug 24, 2019
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    I recently purchased this grandfather clock. It's been in my wife's family for over 50 years. I don't have possession of it yet, and the seller doesn't have any information on it. I sent the picture to a clock shop owner, and he thinks it's a Emperor/Jauch.
    From the picture, it appears that it's a 5 tube chime movement with a moon dial. Any thoughts on make and age
    ? Resized952019060895112607.jpg
     
  2. JTD

    JTD Registered User

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    Welcome to the board.

    It is rather difficult to make any real judgement with just the one photo. Also the angle at which it is taken makes it look very top-heavy and out proportion.

    Emperor Clock Company is still in business. Jauch would refer to a German company which made clocks and movements for many years and finally went out of buisness in the early 1980s. They did make some movements for Emperor.

    I am not at all expert in American clocks, but my feeling is that your clock is older than the Emperor Clock company, which I think was founded in 1960s, but I may very well be wrong.

    Meanwhile we really need photos of movement , especially the back plate, which may have the maker's name or logo.

    Others who are more expert in American clocks will be able to tell you more.

    JTD
     
  3. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Thanks for the welcome. Unfortunately I only have 1 more picture and nothing of the movement. I won't be able to pick up the clock until mid October due to my work schedule, so I won't be able to know for sure until then. I agree that it's older than the mid 60's, my mother in law remembers that her grandmother moved into her house in the late 40's and either had the clock then or got it shortly after.
    Resized952019060895112748.jpg
     
  4. JTD

    JTD Registered User

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    I understand.

    I am thinking/hoping that you may have a much better clock than you think you have, but I will wait for the US experts here to give you their opinion.

    JTD
     
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  5. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    From the photo my estimation is the clock was made about 1900-1920. Pictures of the movement and more of other details could allow a much more accurate response.
     
  6. JTD

    JTD Registered User

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    I agree with Jim DuBois.

    When we see the movement, we shall know more but I am more than ever hoping you will find that you have a very nice clock.

    JTD
     
  7. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Those dates would make more sense. Grandma was into antiques and was known for buying quality pieces. As I posted earlier, I won't get to see the clock until October, but will definitely post more pictures then.
     
  8. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    I'm banking on it being very nice. Grandma was known for buying quality. Supposedly, the relative that I bought the clock from also has Grandma's Steinway grand piano. I'll get to see that when I go get the clock. We have a few antiques that were hers, and they are very nice pieces.
     
  9. Jim DuBois

    Jim DuBois Registered User
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    It appears you will be getting a first rate clock. The brass detail striping as well as the architectural style of the case, as well as the clocks rather imposing size, etc all suggest quality. The fact that it is not featured in any of the standard guides and reference books for these clocks also suggests a very limited production or perhaps a single special build for specific client or purpose.
     
  10. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    October can't come soon enough. I've been excited about this clock ever since I received the 2 pictures of it. Do you have any advice about moving and shipping it? I live in Ohio and the clock is in Albuquerque, NM. The plan is for my wife and I to drive down there and load it into a U-Haul trailer and bring it home. I will obviously remove the weights, pendulum and tubes. I'm hoping I can remove the movement fairly easily and secure the moving parts. I'll wrap the case in shipping blankets with a couple loosely on the inside, and tie the whole thing down. I'll rent a tandem axle trailer for better ride. Anything else I should consider?
     
  11. Casey Jones

    Casey Jones Registered User

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    Possibly a Tiffany & Co. clock as the case is very similar. If so should be marked on dial.
     
  12. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Thanks for the reply. A Tiffany wouldn't be a bad thing, right? poor cousin It (the relative I bought the clock from) is rather short and doesn't do ladders, so the only markings she could see on the dial were the chime selections, Westminster, Whittington and silent. If it is a Tiffany, would there be any identifiers on the case? Any ideas of the movement?
     
  13. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    #13 brian fisher, Aug 25, 2019
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
    i agree with jim and jtd that this clock is probably from the 1920's or earlier. there are 2 reasons i can see judging by the photo that tell me this clock is more than 5 tubes. first, there are two sub dials in the top corners. a 5 tube would only play westminster, thus the clock wouldn't have a need for those.

    one sub dial will say "chime" and "silent". the other will be the selector for the songs it plays. as you mention above westminster and whittington. i would guess it is a 9 tube clock but perhaps it is a 7. i can't remember how many are required for the whittington song. @chimeclockfan will probably be along soon for a little more info in regard to this subject.

    just looking at the pic, i am pretty sure i can see at least 6 tubes through the glass. one of them appears to be at an angle and not hooked into the rack.

    the bell on the far right appears to be hanging a good bit forward of of the rest. that one would be the strike tube. the only manufacturers i can think of that use this configuration are primarily herschede and possibly waltham.

    so...the insignia between the 12 and moon phase appears in your photo to be a fluer de lis. herschede did not use this insignia, but it is possible that they sold this movement another company who put their logo on the dial(tiffany perhaps?). my guess is it is possibly a waltham 9 tube. the cabinet looks kind of waltham-ish to me
     
  14. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    I just looked at the side picture again and zoomed way in. On the last tube in the case there appears to be a piece of masking tape with a number 8 on it, so now I'm betting it is a 9 tube movement. This is just getting better by the minute. Although, that tape has probably been on there for over 40 years when the clock was moved from Ohio to Albuquerque. That oughta be fun to get off.
     
  15. JTD

    JTD Registered User

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    It will come off quite easily with sticky-stuff remover.

    JTD
     
  16. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    IMG_0995.jpeg IMG_0996.jpeg IMG_0997.jpeg For those that have followed this, I'm in Albuquerque getting ready to move it to Ohio. I know the pictures aren't very good and I'll get some better ones after we get it out of the dark corner it's sitting in. NOWHERE can I see any makers markings, on the back of the movement, on the face, or anywhere on the cabinet. Everything seems very heavy duty compared to anything I've seen before, and it is definitely a 9 tube movement. Any new ideas? Also, 1 weight is much larger than the other 2, and if you look at the picture someone labeled them A & B, "B" being the larger. A&C appear to be the same, but I'll weigh them to be sure. Can someone tell me which order they should go in, or at least where the big one belongs. Also, do the tubes go short to long from left to right or right to left? it plays Westminster and Whittington.
     
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  17. Rockin Ronnie

    Rockin Ronnie Registered User
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    I can't help you with the maker but I am very curious.
    Ron
     
  18. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Me too. It is a huge piece, and impressive. I just wish I could find more info on it.
     
  19. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    CaptPaul - It looks like an exceptionally nice clock (with or without knowing the maker). Congratulations! I hope you have a place large enough to display it (I once saw someone had cut a hole in the floor for a tall case clock because the ceilings were only 7 feet and so the clock was recessed into the floor - looked goofy even if it was a nice clock). They do command quite a presence in the room when they are this large - don't they? The larger weight would be for the chimes, and that would be on the right side (when facing the clock).

    Brian - As they say, for every rule there is an exception... My John Wanamaker has two subsidiary dials with selectors. One is for Strike or Silent and the other Chimes or Silent (not tune selection). It is a 5 rod gong.
    20190929_135244.jpg
    Tom
     
  20. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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  21. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    That looks like a perfect place for your clock. Show us a picture when it is set up please.

    Tom
     
  22. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    #22 brian fisher, Oct 22, 2019
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2019
    looks like a Grand Rapids Clock and mantle company movement to me.

    check out entry #31 in this thread.

    Herschede/Elite 11 tube Hall clock restoration thread

    other things in this thread might be useful to you as well.

    Tom gleber:

    i guess i did not specify, but in my example you quoted above, i was referring to tube clocks with traditional moon dials such as the example at hand in this thread. the exception you posted above doesn't exactly apply(nice clock though).

    tom is correct. the heavy weight is properly placed on the right side. the lightest would be on the left. Often, the strike and going weights are identical in these clocks.
     
  23. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    I guess I should have figured there would be an exception to my exception - there are always exceptions...:)
     
  24. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Brian, I think we have a winner!! The movement in the thread you sent the link to, sure looks like mine. There are a couple of subtle differences on the dial, but still are very similar. Now, for the $64 question, are these movements any good? As heavy duty as mins seems to be, I can't imagine it's average quality. The (end?) plates on the movement are at least 1/8" thick. Any ideas of age or where I can get more info?
     
  25. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    IMG_1002.jpeg I'm sure we have a winner. I googled Grand Rapids Clock and found 2 pictures of clocks with my exact case, although painted differently. The way I'm reading the little info I've found so far, they only made mantle and hall clocks until 1916, so that narrows down the age considerably. If anyone on here can give me more info, or point me towards finding more, I would greatly appreciate it. I'll post more pictures as I get this thing home, set up and running. Thanks to all for the help
     
  26. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    I honestly know very little about this manufacturer and their movements as I have never worked on one. I believe very few were ever made and they are quite rare.

    I would suppose they are perhaps middle of the road?


    In my opinion(experience), even though they command the highest resale value, Herschede movements are about the most finicky, cantankerous, and unreliable of all of them. Especially when the plates start to get a little wear on them or the pivots get dirty. I think people like them because they are American made, were in business for over 70 years, and arguably make the best tube sound.

    personally, of those I have had the opportunity to work on, I actually find the Charles Jacques products will stay running even if the pivot holes are wallowed out to almost double size. (Slight exaggeration):)
     
  27. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Brian,
    I was looking through the link to the other post you sent me of you restoring a 11 tube Herschede. You mentioned you were going to put new strings in the tubes. Is there some kind of special string used for this? I need to restring mine also. Another question, do the hammers that strike the tubes have some kind of leather covering? mine are just little steel knobs and I can't imagine that is correct. I saw a picture of a movement somewhere on the net and it looked like the hammers had little leather strips over the knob with a wire going around it to hold it in place. (sorry if I have you totally confused)
    Thanks,
    Paul
     
  28. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    the string came from Timesavers. i believe they call it weight string or some such thing. i bought a 3 pack of various thicknesses. i used the heaviest one for these tubes. i would highly recommend replacing your weight cables too.

    as to the hammers, they DEFINITELY need to have leather over the faces of them. metal to metal contact will likely crack the tubes in short order. if you read through the thread i previously linked, i actually have a little in-service on the leather replacement. i think there may be a lot of info in that thread that relates to what you are doing here. this clock came to me in pretty rough shape. there was not a single square inch that i did not touch.

    something i wanted to clarify: i mentioned that your movement was perhaps middle of the road. i meant that term with respect to tubular bell hall clocks built before 1930 or so. i was not intending to lump these awesome behemoth movements in with a typical Hermle of today.
     
  29. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Brian,
    I figured that the hammers should have leather on them from my high school band days, I just wanted to make sure. I didn't think of replacing the weight cables, but for the small investment, I definitely will, although the current ones really look fairly new. Understand, I have been a clock geek since I built my first steeple clock as a junior in high school (1978), but I haven't grown the balls to take a movement apart, YET. Changing cables, tube strings, and oiling pivots and bushings are all well within my realm of capabilities, and I will get to taking a mov emend apart, just not this one. :) I will definitely be leaning on you and this forum as I go along.
    Also, I took absolutely no offense to your comment about my movement being middle of the road. I'm still trying to find info on it and you could very well be right. I just have not come across a clock movement that is built as stout as this thing, it's built like a tank. I have many mantle clocks, a couple of Becker wall regulators and a grandfather clock that I built as a senior in HS and have never seen a movement like this one. Since building the grandfather clock in HS, I have always wanted a large tube chime grandfather, so I am super stoked about this clock. And an added bonus, it was my wife's great grandmother's clock. The topper is that I'm a ship's captain on the Great Lakes, I've been working on the water my entire adult life, and this is one of the scenes on the moon dial. Tell me I wasn't supposed to have this clock. IMG_1016.jpeg
     
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  30. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Well, the clock is in Ohio, in 1 piece I might add, after spending 1500 miles in various places in a RV. I'm going to start cleaning the movement tomorrow. If any of you that have been following this journey know where I could get more info on the movement, I will be eternally grateful. There's a couple of things I'm confused about. One is how to select between Westminster and Whittington. Also, "tube order", for lack of a better term. When I took them out of the case in prep for moving, they were longest to shortest - left to right. who ever moved it last had all of the tubes labeled with masking tape, and the longest on the left side was #8, with the hour strike tube being #9. They also had a piece of tape across the top of the inside of the case and had written 1-9 with an arrow pointing to the right. I interpret that to mean they should be shortest to longest left to right. On an 8 tube chime, which 4 would play Westminster? I was thinking of watching which hammers move while it's playing Westminster.That's the only way I can think of to determine which way they go before I but them all in the clock, then discover the song it plays is some indecipherable garble because they're in backwards.
    Help please!!
    Paul
     
  31. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    For the chimes selection, there should be a pointed indicator that can be rotated to the desired selection. Is that not the case? Or, is it stuck?

    Yes, if you play the first quarter of Westminster, there should be 4 descending notes. From that it should be easy to tell the order of the tubes.

    Tom
     
  32. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    IMG_0996.jpeg Tom,
    I haven't tried moving the indicators yet, I wasn't sure I was supposed to. :) More as things progress.
     
  33. JTD

    JTD Registered User

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    Yes, you are supposed to move the indicators (if you want to), that's why they're there! Even when enlarged, the dial on the right is so murky that I am really only guessing, but I think I see Whittington there, so am supposing the other choice is Westminster. But don't force them if they are stuck, though they are often a little tight to turn.

    The dial is really badly in need of restoration. When it has been done, it will be looking really beautiful.

    You have a very nice, good quality clock. If you look after it, you will have an heirloom to be treasured long after you've gone.

    And I have been so happy at the obvious joy you have shown at having this clock - it has indeed found a good home.

    Keep us posted.

    JTD
     
  34. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    JTD,
    Thanks for the kind words and help. Yes, I am super geeked out about this clock. My mother in law is happy I have it too, since it was her grandmother's. My wife, not so much. According to her, I have too many clocks already. I didn't know you could have too many clocks.I agree, the dial needs to be restored. For now, that's down the road a ways.The moon dial is in great shape though. The indicators were not stuck, although the chime selector arrow was 90 degrees off. (easy fix)The grandfather I built in high school just has levers on the sides of the dial for tune selection and chime/silent. This is my first antique hall clock, so I wasn't sure of the operation. Although, thanks to the many people on this forum, I'm learning fast.
     
  35. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    IMG_1020.jpeg IMG_1021.jpeg IMG_1022.jpeg Here are a few pictures of the hammers on my Grand Rapids movement. Can anyone tell me if they are supposed to have leather on them, and if so, how to attach it?
    Paul
     
  36. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    as i mentioned above, i've never had or worked on a grand rapids clock. but, with that said, i would say that all chiming tube clocks from this era are perhaps 80-90% the same.

    as to tube order: i would suggest placing the longest tube in the hour strike position in the front right. from there i would put the second-longest tube on the far left in descending order to the shortest on the right. that should be correct for this clock i believe.

    check out the second page of the thread i linked above for replacement of your hammer leathers. that should tell you everything you need to know. go to a second hand store and buy a purse with the softest leather you can get your hands on. the leather needs to be as close to 1mm in thickness as possible. it is all spelled out in that thread if you can take the time to go through it. i took my digital calipers with me to goodwill. a pinch of leather doubled over @ 2mm = 1mm when you cut it open and parse out a few strips. just make sure the (satin) liner is out of the way when you take your measurement.
     
  37. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    That's how the tubes were when I got to Albuquerque and started taking it apart for moving. But, there was a piece of masking tape across the back (and what a pain in the ass to get off) showing 1-9 from left to right and they had the shortest labeled #1. Once I get the movement cleaned and oiled, I'll watch which hammers move at the 1/4 hour for Westminster chimes. I should be able to figure out which way they go from there, HOPEFULLY. Otherwise, I put the tubes in, if I don't recognize the tune, reverse them. :)
     
  38. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    If you use the first quarter of Westminster, it will be four descending notes, so the tube that gets struck first would be the shortest of the quartet. But, it may not be the shortest of all of the tubes - it could be the second or third shortest. Just make sure you put them in size order so that the first note is on a tube that is shorter than the last note. One other caution - If the chimes drum is out of sequence, the first quartet that plays only four notes may not be the descending order quartet. The notes should be arranged in order, so the hammers should be in order from highest note to lowest note (again, maybe not on sequential tubes, it cold skip one or two, but always from left to right or right to left, but not changing direction).

    I hope that is less confusing than it sounds.

    Tom
     
  39. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    I had to read it twice, but now I follow what you're saying. :)
     
  40. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Brian,
    I had thought I gone through your entire post before but didn't realize there were 2 pages. I found exactly the info I was looking for in regards to hammer leather. Now I'm off to the Goodwill to get the purple haired teenagers wondering. :)
     
  41. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    Well, it's running, sort of. I can't seem to keep it running for more than about 15 minutes. I'm still fooling around with the beat a little, but it's not sitting in it's final spot, so I may need to fool with it some more once I do get it in place. Could there be something else I'm missing? The beat actually sounds pretty good to me. Of the 3 weights, there is 1 that is CONSIDERABLY heavier than the other 2. Right now I have it on the far right, running the chimes. It was labeled "B" with masking tape that I'm assuming the movers put on it 50 years ago when they moved the clock from Ohio. They had also labeled the tubes 1-9 and the shortest on the left, facing the clock, and 9 as the time strike. I'm pretty convinced that's how they are supposed to go. I watched the clock I built in HS play Westminster at the first 1/4, then watched my hammers move at the first 1/4 to figure this out. Could it be that the big heavy (like 35 lbs heavy) weight goes in the middle and that's why I can't get more than 15 minutes of run time?
     
  42. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    I think the heaviest weight should go on the chimes. That seems to be consistent across all clocks I have seen.

    Tom
     
  43. gleber

    gleber Registered User

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    For power problems, I like to do a simple test. Start the pendulum, then lift the weight slightly to remove power. Wait for the pendulum swing to decay. As is slows down, but while the escape wheel is still advancing, lower the weight and see if the pendulum gains amplitude again. If the swing doesn't increase, it's not getting enough power and the next step is to find out why.

    Tom
     
  44. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    I'll try that this morning. More to follow. On a positive note, the mechanisms for the chime and strike appear to run properly. I haven't reinstalled the tubes yet, still working on removing the ancient masking tape and putting new string on them and leather on the hammers.
     
  45. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

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    tom is correct about the weight placement. there is a good possibility that many years ago, this clock stopped running. someone's solution was to perhaps install the chime weight on the going train in order to make the clock run at the expense of its chime and strike.

    i wouldn't put a lot of stock in the labeling some mover put in your clock years ago. it sounds to me like they perhaps simply labeled the errors of someone's previous mistakes.

    as to the pendulum timing: first, make sure the cabinet is level. start the pendulum. watch it swing. the clock will tick and then the pendulum will (should) swing a little past the tick. the pendulum will swing back the other direction. it will tock. the pendulum should swing a little past the tock. this movement should be exactly the same on both sides. watch it and adjust it until it is almost perfect.

    also....it has apparently been many years since someone overhauled this movement. i have to assume it's pivots are really dirty. it really should be at the very least cleaned before it is ran. perhaps that is a task you can take on if you are handy?
     
  46. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

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    I did "clean" it and oiled the pivots before even attempting to start it. By cleaning, I sprayed degreaser all over it, making sure to hit the pivots and bushings, then oiled the same. Right now the clock is not sitting in it's final resting spot, but I've been fooling around with leveling it. I have it sitting on a piece of marble on top of carpet. (hardwood floor going in this winter) I'm thinking of making a new seat board for it. right now the movement leans towards the back. I put some shims under the seat board to get it more perpendicular with the case. Is this a possible cause to it stopping after about 15 minutes? Also, how critical is it being level from front to back?
    BTW: The Michael's craft store has 1 lb bags of scrap leather. I'm on my way to get that, instead of confusing the purple haired teenagers. :)
    More to follow.
     
  47. gleber

    gleber Registered User

    Jun 15, 2015
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    If it is leaning front to back or vice versa, make sure the pendulum and crutch connection is not binding. That can rob power if power is. The tilt could put the arbors in contact with the plates, rather that just the pinions in the plates, but I would not suspect that to be a problem first and would look at other areas for something else robbing more power. How did the pivot holes look? Any wear?

    Tom

    Tom
     
  48. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

    Aug 24, 2019
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    No wear that jumped right out at me. I have the movement in the case right now, but need to move it in the next couple of days, so when I take it out, I'll inspect it more closely. I'm running short on time before I have to go back to my ship, so I may not get too serious about it until this winter when I'm laid off. Plus, I'll have to move it again to paint the dining room and install the hardwood floor. I guess I was really hoping to get this thing home and clean it, oil it, and it would take off. But I guess after not running for 50 years, that was a pipe dream. But I'm not beaten yet, I'll keep plugging away at it. Once I have it in his home in the corner of the dining room, I'll post a picture of it. I don't know if you were the one on here concerned about ceiling height, but you'll see that it's not a problem. :)
     
  49. brian fisher

    brian fisher Registered User

    Jan 20, 2017
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    so....oil = good. degreaser = probably really bad. the only real way to clean a movement is to take it apart, clean all the parts individually and put it back together. steel on brass over the years combined with non-synthetic oils turn into an abrasive soot that will grind into the bushing holes (pivots) in the plates. the only way to actually fix this properly is disassembly.

    my guess is your issues are a combination of leveling, worn and dirty pivots, and perhaps setting the beat. the first one and the third are easy fixes. not so much on the other one.

    my neighbor had a bag of scrap leather from the same craft store you mention above. personally, i found the contents unsuitable for 2 reasons: first it was too thick, and second, all the pieces were too hard. hopefully, you will fare better.
     
  50. captpaul

    captpaul Registered User

    Aug 24, 2019
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    I'm guessing you're right. I've been working on the leveling, and like I said, it's not in it's final place yet. As far as taking the movement apart, I'm not sure I'm that confident. Like Dirty Harry said " a man has got to know his limitations".
    So why degreaser=really bad?? How do I fix it now??
    Along with leveling, I'm still working on the beat too. Gonna move everything tomorrow, so I'll be starting over, but it's a long story why.
    More as things develop.
     

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