My Howard Miller grandfather clock has the self adjusting beat and it has been running non-stop since 1996. When I overhauled the movement 2 years ago, it needed a couple of bushings on the second wheels but the escape wheel looked new.
It is very easy to put the clock in beat by giving the pendulum a good swing so it almost hits the side of the case. When you over swing the pendulum like this, the pallet hits the bottom of the escape wheel between the teeth. This causes the clutch on the crutch to slip in one direction. As the pendulum swings the other way, the pallet on the other side does the same thing. As the pendulum swing decays, the clutch slips a little less each time until the pallet no longer hits the bottom of the escape wheel on either side. At this point, the clock should be in beat.