Odd striking problem

Spidicus

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Jun 16, 2018
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I recently acquired an E Lauffer grandfather clock. It wasn't running at the time, but the only problem seemed to be a broken clickspring on the first wheel of the going train. I made a new one, split the plates, installed it, cleaned everything up, and hooray! It worked! It chimed (Westminster) and struck just as it should. I left it to run for a while, to see if anything untoward developed. After a couple weeks of sterling performance it suddenly developed a perplexing issue: at 12:00 it only strikes once. The chimes still work fine, and it strikes correctly on every other hour, but at 12:00 it only strikes once. I am a newcomer to fixing clocks, and I must admit that my understanding of how the strike works on this clock is incomplete, so I'm hoping that someone might be able to tell me where in the movement to start looking. I will attach a picture of the front of the movement for reference.

Thanks!

DSC_0883.JPG
 

Uhralt

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Sep 4, 2008
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Most likely the wheel of the motion work which carries the snail on the front plate needs to be moved one tooth. At 12 the rack needs to fall on the deepest step of the snail. I suspect that the rack falls on the highest (next) step of the snail instead so that the clock strikes only once.

Uhralt
 
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Spidicus

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Thank you, that makes sense. I will (sigh) take the movement out, remove the face and have a go.

Spidicus
 

shutterbug

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When I set up the snail position, I turn the minute hand until the highest lift falls (that will be the hour mark) and then set the snail so the rack tail hits right in the center of the 11:00 step. That's usually the narrowest step, and everything else should be right from there.
 
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Spidicus

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Jun 16, 2018
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Thanks to all. It was puzzling to me that it would work fine for a while, then develop this problem. Moreover, I thought that if the snail was improperly adjusted, that the symptom would manifest when it struck the other hours, rather than just at 12. That said, after reading the posts, it's certainly possible that instead of hitting in the center of the step, the rack tail is falling very close to the edge, and hanging up on the 12th step, which might be ever-so-slightly wider than the others. This is indeed a very nice clock and movement and well worth the effort to understand and put right. (As a matter of interest it came to me complete and without a scratch, right down to the sales brochure, bill of sale (1930), and setup instructions, all in German.) I'll report out as soon as I am able to implement your suggestions.

Spidicus
 

Spidicus

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Jun 16, 2018
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Sure enough, moving the snail one tooth lined up the rack tail properly. All seems well again. Interestingly, the strike seems to rely on the chime train to trigger its function. Removing the weight for the chime train stops both the chime and strike.
 

roughbarked

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Sure enough, moving the snail one tooth lined up the rack tail properly. All seems well again. Interestingly, the strike seems to rely on the chime train to trigger its function. Removing the weight for the chime train stops both the chime and strike.
Yes. The strike levers lock while the chime runs and are only released when it is finished the 12 o'clock chime. If the chime sequence can't run then the strike will do nothing.

I don't recall ever seeing a chiming clock that could run the strike independently of the chime sequence. They all have the silent lever attachd to the chime train.
 

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