Tall case clock stops

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by clockman230@comcast.net, Apr 14, 2017.

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  1. clockman230@comcast.net

    clockman230@comcast.net Registered User

    Jan 30, 2005
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    This tall case clock runs well; however, when the weights are at the same level of the pendulum bob, it stops. The case does not have any movement. I am puzzled. please give input.
     
  2. Jasons34

    Jasons34 Registered User

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    First make sure the weights aren't brushing the pendulum Bob. Also are you 110% positive the case isn't moving? There is this "bahavior" that occurs when the weights get to about that point. It causes the weights to seat a bit which then can cause problems with them rubbing the pendulum. This is a common problem on carpet is the case is not secured well enough
     
  3. Rob P.

    Rob P. Registered User

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    Could be lots of things besides sway. The cables could be overlapped and/or bird nested. The cables could be so short you run out of length. There could be some sort of stop on the drums. There could be some sort of restraint on the weight pulleys (like an extra cable) to prevent the weights from falling and damaging the case if the main cable should break. The weights could be rubbing or bumping the pendulum.

    Lots of things. You need to investigate everything. Something is either robbing the power or interfering with the escapement/pendulum/suspension.
     
  4. harold bain

    harold bain Forums Administrator
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    Anchor the case to the wall and see if the problem goes away.
     
  5. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    If it always stops when the weights and pendulum are the same length this is the first thing to do. (actually it's the first thing I do before I put the movement in)
     
  6. clockman230@comcast.net

    clockman230@comcast.net Registered User

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    The clock was running fine not attached to the wall. I changed the suspension spring to prevent wobble in the pendulum and the wobble has improved, but the clock stops when it reaches the level of the weights.The clock is in beat.
     
  7. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    We have no idea where in the 350 odd years since longcase were first produced that this clock was made but if you can access the clicks you could try getting the weights below the pendulum and restarting to exclude sympathetic
    oscillation from the mix.

    (If you are going to do this I suggest removing the large weights and adding something just big enough to retain tension while carrying out this operation)
     
  8. Jasons34

    Jasons34 Registered User

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    Ok so you get the weights to the same exact point each time before the clock stops. If you could remove the dial so you can examine the movement at that present time to see if the cable is in fact birds nested. Also what happens when you start it back up? No power? Slows to a stop? Does it go out of beat?
     
  9. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    The time has come for some pictures. Or just a clue as to the clock's identity.
     
  10. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Harold has the correct solution to the problem. What you have is sympathetic vibration. The pendulum causes the cabinet to rock slightly (usually too small to see) which in turn makes the weights start to swing. Eventually they will go circular, and hit the pendulum when it's in their vicinity. If you don't want to anchor it to the wall, try putting a block of wood between the case and the wall. That will hold the case steady, and the problem will disappear. If you can move it close to the wall so it leans against it, that will work too.
     
  11. clockman230@comcast.net

    clockman230@comcast.net Registered User

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    The clock is an 18 th century tall case with a nest of bells made by Robert Fleetwood. Once the pendulum and weights are not on the same level, it works fine. There is definitely a problem maybe sympathetic but why was it working fine for years and now there is a problem ? What other issues would cause the clock to stop ? The cables are fine as well as hands etc.
     
  12. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    Just think yourself lucky it has survived this long in your care without being properly installed and get it fixed to the wall.

    Obviously something changed, but that doesn't really matter because it should be installed properly.

    It's very easy to do, just fit a batten to the wall so that you can screw the clock to that.
     
  13. clockman230@comcast.net

    clockman230@comcast.net Registered User

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    Pendulum wobble

    With or without the crutch, which drives the pendulum, there is wobble at the attachment of the suspension spring to the pendulum rod. The spring is not bent or broken. I do not understand why it wobbles. This wobble , when the pendulum is at the same level as the weights,will stop the clock. There is no wobble in the case; it is secured to the wall with a foam pad. Please give me some input.
     
  14. Jasons34

    Jasons34 Registered User

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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Is this an antique or modern clock?
     
  15. wow

    wow Registered User
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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Sounds like suspension spring is too thin. Try one a little stiffer or thicker.
     
  16. clockman230@comcast.net

    clockman230@comcast.net Registered User

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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    This is a 1780 tall case London clock
     
  17. wow

    wow Registered User
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    #17 wow, May 22, 2017
    Last edited: May 22, 2017
    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Still sounds like a suspension spring problem. A thicker spring should help.
    Timesavers sells suspension sheets in a variety of thicknesses. You may need to make one with a little thicker sheet.
    Another thing to consider is the width of the spring. A little wider spring will decrease the amount of wobble.
     
  18. leeinv66

    leeinv66 Super Moderator
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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Is there any movement (slop) between the suspension spring and the brass block fitted to the bottom end of it? Because the pendulum is so long, the slightest movement anywhere on the suspension will be greatly magnified.
     
  19. harold bain

    harold bain Forums Administrator
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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Have you anchored it to the wall as previously directed??
     
  20. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Pendulum wobble is usually a result of conflicting inertia. The crutch must be parallel to the floor, and 90° from the back of the movement. The crutch opening can't be too tight. Give those two things a look, and report back
     
  21. Kevin W.

    Kevin W. Registered User

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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Posting 11 Jasons34 , The clock is an 18 th century tall case with a nest of bells made by Robert Fleetwood.
     
  22. novicetimekeeper

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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    Is this thing still not fixed to the wall?

    What may have changed is that after so long not installed correctly the case has weakened.

    What has not changed is the suspension feather.
     
  23. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    I see a lot of grandfather clocks on carpeting, and I'm interested in the methods used to anchor the clock to the wall: the foam block in particular because it wouldn't mar the customer's living-room wall.

    What sort of foam would you use for such a block, and where would you get it?

    What's a good way to attach it to the back of the case? Glue, I guess, but what sort?

    Are there other methods for preventing the clock from swaying that can be readily installed in the home of a skeptical customer?

    Thanks.

    M Kinsler
     
  24. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User
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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    any sort of foam block sounds as if it might not be sufficient. I can't see the objection to fixing a clock correctly, it isn't as if you need to move it frequently. Modern clocks are rather different, I don't know anything about them, but if you are dealing with a customer with a 2-300 year old clock open the door and point to the holes in the backboard. That's how it is supposed to be installed.
     
  25. Jasons34

    Jasons34 Registered User

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    Re: Pendulum wobble

    I wonder if he has the same issue I had with mine just a few weeks ago. It wound up being the anchor was tilted a bit and was hitting the EW on a slight angle causing a slight wobble. I had other issues but lowered the back end of the block and it fixed the issue. One way to check that is to watch the anchor assembly and see if the arbor slides front/back as it rocks. Also look at the bottom block of the suspension rod where it slips through the loop to see if there is too much space between
     
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