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    Rory formerly worked as Curator of Horology at the Royal Observatory, Greenwich, where his role included day-to-day management of research and digitization projects, writing, public speaking, conservation, convening conferences, exhibition work, and development of acquisition/disposal and collection care policies. In addition, he has worked as a horological specialist at Bonhams in London, where he cataloged and handled many rare timepieces and built important relationships with collectors, buyers, and sellers. Most recently, Rory has used his talents to share his love of horology at the university level by teaching horological theory, history, and the practical repair and making of clocks and watches at Birmingham City University.

    Rory is a British citizen and currently resides in the UK. Pre-COVID-19, Rory and his wife, Kaai, visited HQ in Columbia, Pennsylvania, where they met with staff, spent time in the Museum and Library & Research Center, and toured the area. Rory and Kaai will be relocating to the area as soon as the immigration challenges and travel restrictions due to COVID-19 permit.

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Seth Thomas 124 Chiming Clock Questions

Schatz70

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Man oh man the chime correction adjustment is not easy. My first half dozen attempts have been, well, unsuccessful. Does anyone here have special tricks that work for them?
 

wow

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When the chime train is in the running position with the levers on top of the cams, the chime correction lever inside the plates should be set so the stop pin is just below the lever cut off tab. Then when the correction lever on the front drops into it’s slot, the lever inside the plates stops the pin.
 
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Royce

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I agree 100% with Will's above method.

I took a slightly different approach where I let the chime correction arm be seated in the slot on the chime correction cam at the 3rd quarter and then set the chime correction lever just low enough to catch the chime correction pin on the bottom of the chime correction lever by no more than 1.5 diameters of the chime correction pin. This works but I honestly like Will's method better.

Be patient, you are almost there!!
Royce
 
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shutterbug

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I find that taking the chime timing cam off is easier. Let the chime run without it until it stops. That stop will be the 3/4 hour chime correction hard stop. Put the cam back on at the 3/4 mark, then adjust the chime drum if needed to the 3/4 hour position. Then all should be well.
 
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Schatz70

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Thank you, thank you, thank you Will and Royce and shutterbug. I think I have the chime correction adjusted now. When the chime side is locked, the chime correction pin is about 1/8 inch away from the chime correction lever (or at least it is on mine) which makes it difficult to judge where to set the height of the chime correction lever. Using Will's method, you can advance the chime wheels until the chime correction pin is right next to the chime correction lever and set the height of the chime correction lever so that it just barely clears the chime correction pin.

It's an ingenious little device. When the chime correction arm is down in the notch of the chime correction cam at the 45 minute mark, the three shorter tabs on the center wheel cam won't unlock the chime side. Only the long tab, which arrives at the hour, pushes the chime correction arm and the attached chime correction lever up far enough to release the chime correction pin and unlock the train. So if the chime side gets out of synch with the minute hand it gets corrected automatically at the hour.

I think I'm good to go. On to the strike side!
 

Schatz70

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Oct 5, 2019
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The hook for hooking the main spring broke off on the strike side main wheel. I'm thinking of drilling a hole through the arbor and making a replacement hook using a nail. Is that the best way to go? Thanks for any help.

ST 124 Main wheel broken hook 2 24 2021 003.JPG
 

Dick Feldman

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Wow!!
60 posts and not a mention of bushings installed or of checking for wear.
Your initial problem was likely friction due to wear due to 70+/- years of use.
With clock repair your number one enemy will be low power due to friction due to wear.
Not dirt, not lack of lubrication and likely not adjustment.
I would predict that you will go thorough all of the motions and end with a movement that will either not run or not run reliably.
You have probably have not solved the initial problem. You will have a clean, well oiled movement that is still worn.

Also,
The click assemblies must work properly every time and every time in the future.
If you left a questionable click assembly, you are likely due for a surprise when you wind the clock sometime soon.
When that click assembly fails, the winding key will spin wildly and tear flesh from your hand.
That cut out on the spring barrel is there for a reason but I do not remember why.

A strict delineation should be made between repair and maintenance.
The two should not be confused.
Thus far, all I have seen is maintenance.
JMHO
Dick
 

wow

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The hook for hooking the main spring broke off on the strike side main wheel. I'm thinking of drilling a hole through the arbor and making a replacement hook using a nail. Is that the best way to go? Thanks for any help.

I see David’s illustration has been posted. That sounds even better.

View attachment 640156
When you drill a hole all the way through an arbor you compromise the strength of the arbor in the place where you drill it. If you do drill it, I think I would drill a smaller hole than the cut-out hole and make a rivet that is large enough to fit snugly into the square cut-out and have a smaller piece protruding through the drilled hole.You could then stake it where it comes out on the other side of the arbor. I probably would use silver bearing solder to secure the rivet in place and then clean it all up.There is a lot of pressure on the arbor at that point, so save as much of the original arbor as possible. Others probably have a better idea.
 
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Royce

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Wow!!
60 posts and not a mention of bushings installed or of checking for wear.

JMHO
Dick
Dick, you position is quite correct IMHO, however, OP states that he replaced 7 bushings in post# 26. I believe the OP has attempted to address wear issues he found in order to have a reliable clock after reassembling and testing. Only time (pun intented) will tell.
Royce
 
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Dick Feldman

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Dick, you position is quite correct IMHO, however, OP states that he replaced 7 bushings in post# 26. I believe the OP has attempted to address wear issues he found in order to have a reliable clock after reassembling and testing. Only time (pun intented) will tell.
Royce
In the last 30 years or so, I have not seen a 124 that required only 7 bushings to make it a long lasting, reliable repair.
It sounds like that movement has been sorely beat up with previous repairs.
Nails are made from very poor material and are not suitable for clock work.
If one has ever tried to turn that material in a lathe, the truth would be quite evident.
Nails were designed to be driven into wood with a hammer.
With time, I believe the click lesson will likely be learned as will the reliability issue.
With all of the time involved to disassemble and assemble one of those movements, I would not buy into a less than high quality repair.
But, then again, it is not my clock.
D
 

Schatz70

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Oct 5, 2019
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When you drill a hole all the way through an arbor you compromise the strength of the arbor in the place where you drill it. If you do drill it, I think I would drill a smaller hole than the cut-out hole and make a rivet that is large enough to fit snugly into the square cut-out and have a smaller piece protruding through the drilled hole.You could then stake it where it comes out on the other side of the arbor. I probably would use silver bearing solder to secure the rivet in place and then clean it all up.There is a lot of pressure on the arbor at that point, so save as much of the original arbor as possible. Others probably have a better idea.
Thank you, Royce and Will. The threads that Royce references say either drill through the arbor and tap the hole and use a screw or drill through the arbor and use a nail. I like Will's idea - I think what I'm going to do is start with a finish nail and shape the head to make the hook and turn down the other end to fit a small hole in the arbor and peen it on or rivet it on. This is going to be ticklish. From what you are saying, the smaller the hole I drill in the arbor the better off I'm going to be.
 

Schatz70

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Oct 5, 2019
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Nails are made from very poor material and are not suitable for clock work.
If one has ever tried to turn that material in a lathe, the truth would be quite evident.
Nails were designed to be driven into wood with a hammer.
Dick, how would you repair the broken hook on the strike side main wheel arbor (see picture in post #59 above)? What approach would you take, and what materials would you use? Thanks for any advice.
 

Dick Feldman

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Dick, how would you repair the broken hook on the strike side main wheel arbor (see picture in post #59 above)? What approach would you take, and what materials would you use? Thanks for any advice.
My first preference would be to build a new arbor from good quality machinable steel or to check with David LaBounty for a used one.
He has a vast inventory of good used parts.
The second preference would come from David LaBounty on the repair of the spring hook mentioned in the link above. (reply number 60)
David is one of the most qualified clock repair people in the USA.
All three trains of that clock movement have been through the same treatment and have been wound the same number of times over the last 100 years or so. My advice would be to make sure all three click assemblies are up to snuff as well as all of the spring hooks. If it were my clock and important, I would add an additional click assembly to each main spring.
That clock movement has not worn in only 7 places over its lifespan. One of the marginal pivot holes that has not been bushed will fail with time. It only takes one loose pivot hole to stop the clock.
JMHO
Dick
 
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shutterbug

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I think a small hole, threaded, and a machine screw shaped for the hook and staked on the other side would be a good option for the repair if you can't find a donor movement or part. If you use a nail, you'll have to find one with a "collar" under the head so it leaves the head proud of the arbor.
 
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wow

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If you have a tap small enough, like Shutt said, a threaded hole with a machined screw should be more secure, but if not, making a rivet will work. Like Dick, I am not sure I would use a nail because of the softness. A machined screw with a large head could be shaped to a hook so it would catch the hole in the spring and probably be stronger. Those arbors on a 124 are rather small diameter so be careful.
 
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MuensterMann

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Mar 23, 2008
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I have a winding arbor that I use for ST124s (wind to the right) to get the mainspring out of its cover. However, the center portion with the hook is too wide (large diameter) and I have to open the inner coils too much to get it inserted into the mainspring. So, I am looking for one that has a small diameter. Any hints of where I can find one? I would rather find one than make one.
 

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