Needing help with a Waterbury movement

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by RecentConvert, May 4, 2012.

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  1. RecentConvert

    RecentConvert New Member

    May 4, 2012
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    Hello all
    I am new here and I registered to seek help with a repair on the clock pictured. It has a Waterbury Sept 22 1874 movement and on the back of the movement somebody has scratched in their name, J Wehrls, with Nov 1936 so it may have been repaired or taken from another clock.

    I found it in my loft when I was a child and it worked quite well for a while. However, it broke once when I was winding it and it has not worked since. I think one of the springs has unwound. I opened it up and took these photographs.

    There seems to be some kind of wire caught around the centre cog. Is this normal? I have tried to take a photo. From memory, I used this to hang the pendulum on this wire. The other bit which hangs from the top of the movement seems too short for the pendulum although it seems like the logical thing for the pendulum to be connected to.

    I have the clock face but I am missing the key and chime.

    Any advice or information would be greatly appreciated. I would like to repair this myself if possible.

    Many thanks,
    Ciaran
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Tom Kloss

    Tom Kloss Registered User
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    Dec 5, 2003
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    Hi Ciaran welcome to the BB.

    From your pictures I can't see the wire around the cog. In my picture there should be a pendulum hanger spring mounted on the stud I have marked.

    T.J. Kloss
    :cool:
     

    Attached Files:

  3. Bill Stuntz

    Bill Stuntz Technical Admin
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    Apr 6, 2012
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    What's that "25 minute" angle wire? It looks to me like it's jammed under the plate and wrapped clockwise around the minute arbor (not cog) immediately below Tom's box.
     
  4. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

    Feb 9, 2008
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    Also, the little piece of galvanized sheet metal below the hand-shaft is added, not supposed to be there. Probably added to arrest the hammer for some reason, unknown at this point. 1:30 tooth bent on count wheel, clock is very dirty and worn. In short it really needs to be disassembled and repaired by a pro who can do bushing work, and knows how the clock movement is supposed to be.

    Alternately, you could surface clean, oil, and replace the missing suspension spring and rod, and see what happens. It is a nice clock though and IMO it would be a shame to screw this up as a beginners project ...

    If your objective is to learn clock repair, it would be better to practice on junk clocks, or very simple clocks, before tackling this one.

    Just my 2, Willie X
     
  5. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Oct 19, 2005
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    The mystery wire just might be the missing suspension spring/hanger, bent somehow around the movement. The mainspring is probably broken at the arbor and will have to be replaced or re-holed.
     
  6. RecentConvert

    RecentConvert New Member

    May 4, 2012
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    So much information!
    Many thanks to you all. I have learned much in the last few minutes.
    I do think that the wire caught around the minute arbor is probably the pendulum hanger spring. It seems logical but I may be wrong. I will take it to a shop today to see if they can help me. I am based in Northern Ireland so I am not sure how familiar jewellers and clock workers here would be with american movements. I'm also at college, thus totally broke. I will do my best.

    Ciaran
     
  7. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User
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    Apr 4, 2006
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    This is not a difficult clock to repair and anyone who can repair British, French, or German clocks should not have a problem. Now being totally broke can be a real problem!

    RC
     
  8. RecentConvert

    RecentConvert New Member

    May 4, 2012
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    Well I am just back from the shop and the guy said that there is much to be done and it would be cheaper to buy a new movement and put it in to the clock. The work would be about £200 ($400) and a new movement would be about £30 ($60).
    It seems a shame really. I'm not sure what I am going to do. I may take it to a few more shops for advice. Or perhaps pick up an old clock to practice on and then attempt this one myself.

    I have no idea how to go about buying a new movement either.
     
  9. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    I'd shop around for a cheaper price on a two train movement, and I would definitely NOT get a new movement for it! The modern movements are cheap (which explains the price) and not worth ruining your clock over. I'm not insinuating anything about the repairman, but I've seen situations where the repairman kept the old movement after putting in a cheap Korean made copy and pocketed the money on Ebay.
     
  10. Dave D

    Dave D Registered User
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    Here's a thought. You might consider putting the clock aside for now. You will one day finish college and believe it or not, the day will come when you won't be totally broke. Maybe by then you will have learned enough to do the clock yourself or pay for a proper repair.
    Dave
     
  11. Kevin W.

    Kevin W. Registered User

    Apr 11, 2002
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    I agree with Shutt as well, don,t replace the movement.The value of a clock with a wrong replacement of a movement is not a good thing.Your movement was made well enough to be repaired not replaced.I would go else where.
     
  12. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

    Feb 9, 2008
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    Yes, do not replace the movement. Anyone that mentions this as a cheaper alternative knows very little about antique clocks. Careful storage and waiting for better vibes sounds good to me.

    Good luck, Willie X
     
  13. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User
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    If all else fails, shipping to the US is not that expensive. I'm sure there are a lot of people here that would restore your old movement for less than $400 US, but if you are flat broke the suggestion to put it aside may be the best one. As others have said, I to would not replace the movement. Original is much better.

    RC
     
  14. Clockguy

    Clockguy Registered User

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    If you think about the basic function of a wheel (gear or cog to many folks), it has to turn to be functional. With that in mind, that wire wrapped around your center shaft and caught in one of the spokes of one of the time wheels is definitely not normal!! That wire most likely broke loose from the pendulum spring, a part of which is still visible in the spring post, and got caught in that wheel spoke before the mainspring broke and released the pressure of the mainspring all at once while you were attempting to wind it. There is a hole in each end of the mainsprings instead of a "loop" as some brands of clocks incorporate and could very well have already been repaired once in its life. If so, many times the end of the broken spring is heated to anneal it so the ragged portion can be trimmed and rounded somewhat and a new hole can be cut into the spring end. That soft steel can be ripped out over the ensuing years as a result of improper placement of the hole during the repair or by tight winding and so it will eventually fail again.

    What puzzles me most is how you wound the clock without a key and also there isn't evidence of a pendulum bob anywhere in your photos. Regarding the "chime", your clock strikes that hammer hanging out the bottom of the movement against the round shaped bell in the center of the clock case below the movement, one ding each half hour and whatever the correct number of dings would be for the designated hour that the clock reaches as it operates.

    As pure speculation, I would say that the pendulum rod, which most likely had the spring attached to it as I can see no evidence of a separate pendulum spring being used , broke the tip of the pendulum spring off maybe from some moving of the case around the house or attic. The tip of the spring is still pinned to the spring pillar although I see no portion of that same spring attached to the other end of the rod as I would expect. I am also going to speculate that the pendulum bob, bottom round thingy on a pendulum, was possibly hooked to the U shaped tip that eventually got caught in the spoke of that wheel instead of being attached directly to the rod, as you can see the nice U shaped bend in that end of the rod. I would guess that, after the pendulum spring broke, the U shaped bend possibly jostled around and finally caught in the spoke prior to the mainspring breaking, and then the force of the mainspring power impacting the time side of the movement wound that pendulum rod around the center shaft until it could no longer exert enough power and it came to rest in the position you see it in your photos. Pure guesswork on my part, but I just overhauled a Waterbury movement almost identical to this one last week with the exception of the chimes being Westminster chimes in a mantle clock so that movement is still fresh in my mind.

    All that guesswork aside, I would concur that, if you wait until you get your present priorities behind you, then you will be in position to take steps to focus on the problems at hand with your clock. The noce thing about this situation is that clock doesn't eat much and you never have to take it for a walk every so I would replace the face, keep looking for the other missing parts on the internet, and simply enjoy looking at the clock as you would a "perfect pet" until such time that you can afford to have it torn down, properly cleaned and repaired, and re-assembled. It will be worth your wait and you will have an heirloom that should last for many years.

    Good luck.
     
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