Silk suspension

Discussion in 'General Clock Discussions' started by rgmt79, Jun 7, 2017.

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  1. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

    Jul 23, 2016
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    I understand that a pendulum with silk suspension was typical in Austrian clocks around 1800. Can anyone show me a picture of a silk suspension?
     
  2. JTD

    JTD Registered User
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    If you google 'Images for silk suspension pendulum', you will find photos, and in particular a very clear drawing which is actually from this board (but it's easy to find with Google). This drawing shows you exactly what you need to know.

    JTD
     
  3. Burkhard Rasch

    Burkhard Rasch Registered User
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    [​IMG]That´s the french version.HTH Burkhard
    Sorry I cannot copy the pic here.
    B.
     
  4. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Thanks JTD, I found the drawing and it explains everything:) Now I know how to repair the suspension, where the silk thread is missing, as per pics below...I was wondering how the "fast/slow" mechanism worked and now realise that the silk thread would have been wrapped round the arbour.

    Richard
     
  5. Robert Gift

    Robert Gift Registered User

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    #5 Robert Gift, Jun 8, 2017
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 16, 2017
    [MARQUEE][/MARQUEE]How interesting!
    Surprised to see two adjustment knobs in the photos.
     
  6. JTD

    JTD Registered User
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    Re: Original Silk suspension from 1800s ?!

    I can only see one movable post (no knobs). The square one is fixed.

    JTD
     
  7. DeanT

    DeanT Registered User

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    Here's the French version. Pendulum isn't attached in the photo but you can see the loop through which it hangs via a small hook. Also has cycloidal cheeks to help regulate the swing of the pendulum.

    Cheers



    [​IMG]
     
  8. DeanT

    DeanT Registered User

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  9. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Heres a picture of an Austrian Grande Sonnerie that I repaired a while ago. Hopefully you can see how the silk suspension is threaded. Its worth noting that it had the tension washer on the inside of the front plate to provide enough tension so as to not un-ravel

    [​IMG]
     
  10. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Re: Original Silk suspension from 1800s ?!

    Yes, JTD is correct Robert. The pics below show the arbour which is controlled from the small end of a double key through the small hole just above the 12 o'clock position on the dial. The silk is knotted and fed through a hole at the other end of this arbour then wrapped around the arbour a few times and then fed through one of the 2 holes on the fixed post and then after creating a loop for the hook at the end of the pendulum rod is then fed back up through the 2nd hole in the fixed post and secured with another knot. This allows for the pendulum to be raised or lowered by simply turning the arbour with the key, one way for "fast" and the other way for "slow".

    Richard
     
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  11. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Hi ClipClock, thanks for your input. Do you have any more photo's of your Austrian Grand Sonnerie? I'm about to start work on a similar movement, see attached photo's and would appreciate any advice/comments you can give about potential problems that I may encounter. Also, do you have the name of a maker and date for your movement?

    Richard
     
  12. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Hi Richard, there was no maker on my clock, but the movement looked very similar indeed to yours.

    I've got to say I loved working on it, just such a beautiful little thing! I got caught out by not realising it had stopworks (which I gather is relatively unusual as they are very often removed). Check out if yours has them. They look like this (pic pre-cleaning!)

    [​IMG]

    If it does then you need to rotate them out of the way so you can completely let the springs down. Otherwise you will have my 'situation' where I thought it was let down, lifted the plate and all the little wheels got catapulted everywhere :D Luckily I retrieved them all and no damage, but also NO photos!

    I didnt find the internal timing difficult but the front plate is a little awkward to get things striking exactly when you want them. It would be worth making little discreet timing marks if it doesnt already have them. (I didnt and it took quite some fiddling to get it right)

    But overall it was an enjoyable experience! Mine was a portico clock. Heres the front plate of the movement

    [​IMG]

    Good luck with yours, it looks like a lovely clock! (Sorry for the giant pics)
     

    Attached Files:

  13. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

    Jul 23, 2016
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    Thanks Clip Clock, especially for the warning about the stopworks, I have something similar on a Seth Thomas movement. I didn't know that clockmakers from the early 1800's had invented this device.

    1) I don't have the movement to hand while I write this, but the photo below indicates that I might have them too.

    2) There are a lot of similarities between our movements, but not from the same clockmaker I think. Your movement is more flamboyant in style with curved shapes to the levers and their springs.

    3) Also, I'm not sure if you have a calendar mechanism? The photos below show my back plate with calendar wheel and with the calendar wheel removed.

    4) How have you cleaned and protected your movement to keep it so nice and bright?

    Richard
     
  14. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Hi Richard, yes it looks like yours has Stops too! You'll find you have to let down the springs to the point where it stops and then put a click or two back on, then rotate the stops to allow you to continue to let down. The stops are just slightly sprung from the under side so you can prod them easily to move them. Hard to explain, but once you watch them being rotated you'll see what I mean!

    No mine didnt have the calendar function, gosh you have even more to set up!

    The movements do look a little different I agree

    Because mine was an visible movement I ended up lacquering it. It was a royal pain in the backside, but it did look very pretty when I finally finished! I used very thinned down lacquer and spent ages cleaning out the pivot holes etc.

    Good luck with yours, I'll be interested to follow your restoration, it's a lovely clock!
     
  15. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Thanks:) Actually, the clock is not mine unfortunately, it belongs to a friend and I have offered to help him restore it. I will post updates on a new thread. Do you have a picture of your finished clock, I would like to see it?

    Richard
     
  16. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    There you go, there was a LOT of polishing and lacquering to this one!
     
  17. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    Very impressive but Is this a spot the difference game Sal?

    The one on the right has the decoration of the righthand pillar going the opposite way to the one on the left.
     
  18. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Oops looks like I put one of them back wrong way up.... or down, after cleaning. Too funny, I never noticed. Guess I didnt consult the 'before' picture when reassembling the case :D Hey ho :)
     
  19. shimmystep

    shimmystep Registered User
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    Boom, and the dirt is gone! Nice and bling. Good job, did you lacquer it?
    Good spot Nick!!
     
  20. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Not so much boom, more several endless interminable days later lol. Yes it was all lacquered :)
     
  21. shimmystep

    shimmystep Registered User
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    that'll save you doing it all again in 2-3yrs :)
     
  22. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Very nice ClipClock:) What lacquer did you use?

    Richard
     
  23. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    ClipClock, can I ask how you were able to let down the springs? It would seem that the ratchet mechanism in inside the barrel. Normally it would be necessary to lift the click away to allow the spring to unwind with a let down tool, but that's not possible here.

    Thanks,

    Richard
     
  24. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Hi Richard, you have to remove the pallets and let it run down (I controlled it by slowing the escape wheel) , same with the striking, lift the lever to trigger endless striking

    Because, like mine, yours has stops you will then need to let those down. If you look between the plates as you are letting the springs run down you'll see the winding arbors have a finger which rotates through the stops. It moves the stops with each rotation until it hits the end. So what you'll need to do is put a little wind back on, or leave enough, such that you can keep nudging the stops (with eg a little screwdriver) so the finger can pass without hitting the end...... hmmmm so hard to describe, does that make any sense!?

    They are gorgeous movements, I'm jealous, but those Stops are a pain in the backside :D
     
  25. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Thanks ClipClock, everything you said makes perfect sense and I followed your advice successfully when running down the springs for the 2 strike mechanisms. However, when it came to the main going spring, I removed the pallet assembly, but the escape wheel did not move, or at least very slowly when I prompted it. I assumed that this was because the spring had already been run down...BIG MISTAKE!!! When I started to separate the plates, all hell let loose!!! It is clear now that the spring had run down to the stop and I should have checked this. Unfortunately, I did not get away as lightly as you did with your similar experience, but hopefully not a total disaster. The main gear has shed it's teeth and the main minute arbour has a slightly bent pinion...everything else seems to be ok. I will visit my local clockmaker next week to see if he can help me out. It looks like the teeth were cut on an outer ring which was subsequently heat shrunk onto the main brass hub containing the ratchet mechanism...if that can be removed and a new ring added, then maybe it won't be too expensive to repair. Strangely enough, it looks as though there has been a repair here before, I say strangely, because I cannot find any evidence that this movement has ever been dismantled before...

    I will keep you posted,

    Richard
     
  26. ClipClock

    ClipClock Registered User
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    Oh dear, so very sorry to hear that! Such a beautiful clock, hope you can get everything fixed again!

    Those Stops are 'fun' to re-set as well.....
     
  27. rgmt79

    rgmt79 Registered User

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    Hi ClipClock, I just read the thread about the trials and tribulations you went through with your clock last year and OH BOY I wish I had read that before I set about dismantling my movement. However, what you and others have posted there will be invaluable to me when it comes to getting it all back together...don't go away, I'm sure to have lots of questions:)

    In the meantime, I didn't have any luck with my local clockmaker/repairman, in fact he was very condescending and smirking as if to say that you amateurs should not play the professionals game. He offered to fix it, but only if I gave him the complete clock. So, I'm looking at other options...maybe someone on here can help me out...if you know anyone (or anyone else reading this) who has the machine capability to cut me a new wheel, and is willing to help, please let me know....

    Thanks, Richard
     
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