Repair question for Verdin sidewalk clock mechanism

Discussion in 'Tower, Monumental & Street Clocks' started by Jeremy Woodoff, Mar 2, 2017.

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  1. Jeremy Woodoff

    Jeremy Woodoff Registered User
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    Jun 30, 2002
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    I wonder if anyone is very familiar with the movements supplied for sidewalk clocks by Canterbury International, a California company that I think used Verdin mechanisms. This is an antique 2-dial Howard street clock with a reproduction head and electric movements installed about 15 years ago. I have been told by Canterbury that these clocks use two movements per dial, one for resetting and one for running. There is a simple controller in the base that has three switches: a 3-pole 3-throw master switch and a 1-pole 3-throw switch for each of the movements. Both movements reset properly, but neither will run in the normal position.

    If the time motors are really not operational, then the entire movement and hands have to be replaced, the cost of which will be difficult if not impossible for those responsible for the clock to meet. However, there is some thought that the problem may lie with the controller. If both time movements stopped at the same time, it would make sense to me that the problem is with the controller; unfortunately, no one knows when the time movements stopped working or whether they both stopped at the same time.

    My thought is that an electrician, not a clock repair person, could troubleshoot the controller and determine whether it is working properly. If it isn't, it should be a simple matter to replace it; if it is working then we know that the time motors are bad and a full replacement will be needed. This type of controller is not made by Verdin any longer, but I think the switches could easily be replaced with standard parts.

    If anyone out there has worked on these before and might have some advice on how to proceed or what the likely issues are with a clock of this age, I'd appreciate hearing from you!

    Jeremy
     
  2. ElectricTime

    ElectricTime Registered User
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    Sep 28, 2002
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    I think we can help can you email me photos of the clock switch assembly or even better of the clock movements, to tde@electrictime.com
     
  3. BLKBEARD

    BLKBEARD Registered User
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    Nov 15, 2016
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    HVAC, MECHANIC
    CT
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    My advise would be...........
    Prior to engaging the services of an electrician, do the leg work. Try to secure a Schematic Diagram and a Ladder Diagram. This way you can email these to an interested electrician, they can review them, and come up with a game plan prior to a service call. This way they're not going in blind. Time is money. If the Electrician has to visit the site, look it over & research these himself/herself it will cost you more money. It also will aid in vetting an Electrician. They may tell you It's right up my alley, or Sorry that's out of my wheel house. i would think in your situation you need to seek an electrician who specializes in "Machine Shop Electrical" or the like.

    All electricians do not have a lot of exposure to mechanical switching diagnostics, motors etc. it's kind of a specialty segment.

    The Diagrams might be inside the clock. But might be to foxed & mildewed to be readable.

    Good luck
     
  4. Jeremy Woodoff

    Jeremy Woodoff Registered User
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    Jun 30, 2002
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    Thanks for that advice, Blkbeard. There is a wiring diagram in the clock, which I have photographed. I also tried the switches in all combinations of positions and noted the results in a table. Good idea to make sure any electrician we bring in is familiar with this type of work, to avoid wasting time and money.Jeremy
     
  5. gvasale

    gvasale Registered User
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    Mar 30, 2005
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    work in a machine shop, not as a machinist
    webster, Ma
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    Got any photos of the motors?
     
  6. Jeremy Woodoff

    Jeremy Woodoff Registered User
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    Jun 30, 2002
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    No photos of the motors. The clock is unusually tall, as a section was added to the post to keep the head out of reach of trucks. This makes accessing it a bit difficult. However, Thomas Erb of Electric Time has kindly offered to send his technician to take a look next time he is in the area.
     
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