Remove mainspring on Nisshin?

Discussion in '400-Day & Atmos' started by Elliott Wolin, Dec 1, 2019.

  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  1. Elliott Wolin

    Elliott Wolin Registered User

    Nov 18, 2019
    27
    2
    3
    Male
    Retired
    Williamsburg, Virginia
    Country Flag:
    My v.g. condition (but possibly somewhat old) Nisshin runs a few minutes and then stops.

    The train appears to me (novice) to be underpowered, so I suspected the mainspring (the fork just didn't seem to have enough oomph, but what do I know...). The lock and drop also look good (same caveats again). The clock repair guy who gave it to me also commented that it looked underpowered to him (he was closing up shop and moving, and was giving things away he had no time or need for...Keith Clayton-Kastenholz is a really nice guy and has been very helpful to me!)

    When I took it apart there's no slot in the barrel cover, so I'm not sure how to remove the mainspring without damaging something. I've read you whack the arbor to push the cover out, which seems scary to me.

    The pivot holes look good, albeit a bit oily, but very little dirt. I don't think it ran much before it was given to me. I'm wondering if the mainspring is good but excess oil is the problem?

    Should I clean and put it back together and hope for the best, or is removing and checking the mainspring safe and easy enough that I should do it now when it's already open?

    20191201_152744[1].jpg 20191201_152623[1].jpg 20191201_151841[1].jpg 20191201_151848[1].jpg
     
  2. KurtinSA

    KurtinSA Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Nov 24, 2014
    3,151
    96
    48
    Aerospace Engineer (Ret.)
    San Antonio, TX
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    Not recommended on these clocks. The mainspring is fully lubed at the factory. I would look elsewhere for the problem.

    Kurt
     
  3. Elliott Wolin

    Elliott Wolin Registered User

    Nov 18, 2019
    27
    2
    3
    Male
    Retired
    Williamsburg, Virginia
    Country Flag:
    A careful look at pivots, arbors, and pinions shows mixed quality, and more dirt/fibers than I realized at first look. The worst is the pinion on the center arbor, one end is ragged and acts like velcro for fibers. The finish on some pivots is not the best, I suppose it could be worn, but the clock looks almost new other than dust and tarnish on the base. And some pallet faces don't look the greatest (to my novice eye, perhaps I'm expecting too much).

    Anyway, I don't have hardly any tools yet, no burnishers, and my stones are all large for sharpening woodworking tools. I'd like to touch up the pivots and perhaps one of the pallets, not sure how to go about it. Maybe I can use the stones I have. And maybe I can make a burnisher out of an auger bit file (it has one uncut face, but the sides are cut, so have to be careful not to touch the shoulder...maybe this won't work...or I could grind the teeth off on one edge?).

    As for the center wheel pinion, maybe I can use a small stone on my Dremel tool to grind off the mess.

    Suggestions would be useful...

    IMG_4512[1].JPG
     
  4. Wayne A

    Wayne A Registered User

    Sep 24, 2019
    98
    11
    8
    Retired, process controll systems
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    #4 Wayne A, Dec 1, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
    I have a Master clock although its a different plate than yours it has that permanently sealed mainspring. Mine keeps excellent time and greatly helped by a pendulum thats not very sensitive to adjust. Its not a powerful swing but a very locked in 350deg.

    Does not take much to stop one of these machines, little sticky oil, little dirty, beat not quite right, tight fork. It all adds up to that standard symptom, "runs a few minutes".

    My first clock I worked on for weeks to get running. Figured out that just paper towel lint is enough to stop a clock.
     
  5. Elliott Wolin

    Elliott Wolin Registered User

    Nov 18, 2019
    27
    2
    3
    Male
    Retired
    Williamsburg, Virginia
    Country Flag:
    #5 Elliott Wolin, Dec 1, 2019
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2019
    Thanks for the help, looks like I'll leave the mainspring alone and go for a good cleaning. I do see lint and fibers everywhere, and too much oil, and maybe a tight fork. With luck I'll have it going soon (then I'll work on two others, a Kundo and a Koma).

    BTW, what's the best way to clean 400 day clocks manually? I've read about using mixtures of ammonia, acetone, liquid soap, and oleic acid. Where do you find oleic acid? I've also read about kerosene plus machine oil mixtures, and a host of others. And Murphy's Oil Soap instead of oleic acid and skip the soap. And Simple Green...

    Any recommendations for 400 day clocks?
     
  6. KurtinSA

    KurtinSA Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Nov 24, 2014
    3,151
    96
    48
    Aerospace Engineer (Ret.)
    San Antonio, TX
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    One thing you could find/read is Joe Rabushka's book "Repair and Restore Your 400-Day Clock". Not expensive...one person's ideas of how to service these clocks...some good ideas to start with. Joe is a prominent person in Chapter 168 of the NAWCC.

    I think the best way is to use a clock cleaning solution in an ultrasonic bath. I don't have the capability of doing that at this point. I've taken to using a diluted mixture of Simple Green with water...it sort of helps clean the grime. I hand polish the bigger flat parts using something like Simichrome. There's lots of pegging of holes, broaching the holes, using a jeweler's lathe to polish pivots. I hear of ideas over time and incorporate the good ones when I can. It's a work in progress!!!

    Kurt
     
  7. Kevin W.

    Kevin W. Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Apr 11, 2002
    21,470
    176
    63
    I work at the Veritas Tools machine shop.
    Nepean, Ontario, Canada
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    Simple dish soap can clean. But you need to get rid of water, after wards, alcohol bath, compressed air, put in the oven to dry.
     
  8. Wayne A

    Wayne A Registered User

    Sep 24, 2019
    98
    11
    8
    Retired, process controll systems
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    More than one way to clean a clock! Have a copy of Rabushka's book, and the Horolovar repair guide, lots of information there.

    Depending on if I want to remove the lacqure coating or not and I almost always do remove the lacqure as it can greatly darken the brass and old oil seems to get under it making discolored patches. I use an ultrasonic bath with glug of Zep Orange de-greaser and couple healthy squirts of Dawn dish washing soap. In about 25 minutes the lacqure has floating off like a bad sunburn peel. Polish with Meguiars GoldClass Carnuba Plus car paste wax. Shines like a brass mirror. Don't put everything in the ultrasonic though, never put face plates in it and only some base plates depending on there construction.

    Other times I just use a spray bottle of rubbing alcohol and old tooth brush, tooth pic's and Windex as well, neither seem to damage lacqure. Will use Brasso on surfaces without cracks, then water wash and polish them.
    Using a pin vise chucked in a battery drill to polish pivots and other small threaded brass parts. Small brass parts that are threaded I screw onto threaded stock chucked in the battery drill, makes polishing them easy.
     
  9. Burkhard Rasch

    Burkhard Rasch Registered User
    NAWCC Member

    Jun 1, 2007
    4,677
    99
    48
    Male
    General-and trauma surgeon
    Twistringen
    Country Flag:
    Region Flag:
    as said the mainsprings in these should not be serviced/cleaned/oiled.They are locked up in their barrels , the edge of the barrel is crimped over the barrel cover,so access is only possible by force leading to the destruction of this crimping.To get the barrel cover back safe in its place after that is allmost impossible , believe me I speak of my own hard experiance:whistle:.For this reason the barrel assembly incl. the arbor must not be submerged in any cleaning solvent since this will find its way into the barrel destroying the lubricant and the spring without a chance of getting it out again.All other parts can be either put in an ultrasound cleaning machine or cleaned by hand. I use a cleaning solvent with some sort of detergence and a small amount 2% of Amonia,rinse with hot water afterwords and dry . I peg all the holes with toothpics , assemble and oil the pivots , allso verry little oil on 2-3 escape teeth.HTH
    Burkhard
     

Share This Page