What size weights should I use?

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by blueloon, Jan 18, 2015.

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  1. blueloon

    blueloon Registered User

    Jan 13, 2010
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    I've finally gotten back to working on some of my backlog and am in need of some suggestions from the experts here. I picked up this old cuckoo at a storage bin sale, but the woman didn't know where the weights were. The clock is 17" high and 14" wide. I know it's a 1-day, but I don't how big or heavy the weights should be. Got any ideas?
    old cuckoo.jpg bird.jpg movement & whistles.jpg movement numbers.jpg

    I've pulled the whole thing apart and cleaned it. It was filthy! The bent front shaft has also been straightened.
    front.jpg dirt.jpg more dirt.jpg bent shaft.jpg

    I've also got a question about how to get the front wheel compressed on the spring (below) in order to get that pin back in so that the hands move when it runs. It was difficult to remove, but I thought that was just from the dirt.
    spring.jpg
    I'm sure that's what my problem is right now but I don't know how to squeeze that together enough without bending anything. Does anyone have any ideas/tricks about this?

    I know I can count on you guys to come through with some advice. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. leeinv66

    leeinv66 Moderator
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    Moving to clock repair for better exposure.
     
  3. sbasile

    sbasile Registered User

    Dec 18, 2014
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    That is an American Cuckoo Clock Co. cuckoo. I have one almost like it, except the movement inside is a bit different, a tad older, with bushings, and a sad cuckoo bird (missing its movable beak, lol). I don't know about anyone else's but this thing ticks really loud. Has to be the loudest cuckoo I've ever heard. I'll weigh a weight tomorrow (late here) to help if no one else does first.
    accc.JPG '

    I have some marked 875 grams weights on my desk for a quail cuckoo and these are heavier for sure.
     
  4. Randy Beckett

    Randy Beckett Registered User
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    May 23, 2012
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    My clock, which appears somewhat similar to yours in size, age, and movement, uses 875gram weights. I'm pretty sure they or original.

    anniversary cuckoo.jpg
     
  5. blueloon

    blueloon Registered User

    Jan 13, 2010
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    Thanks, guys, for the quick replies. I've got it running (testing) with some weights that I had around here. They are 1135 grams. I'll try some smaller ones when I can.

    You're right, sbasile, this is a loud ticking clock, but not the loudest I've got by far. I'm very happy with the way it came out.

    BTW, I did figure out a way to compress that spring under the wheel on front without bending anything. I used a skinny little spring clamp that fit between the back of the front plate and the front of the wheel and just pushed on it a little more. Have to find creative ways to do things when you have arthritic hands.

    Thanks again for your help! This is by far the best website on the net!
     
  6. harold bain

    harold bain Registered User
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    You can easily make test weights from a tin can and any scrap metal (or sand and gravel) you might have handy, if you have a reasonably accurate weigh scale. Find the minimum weight it will run at, then add about 15-20 percent for reliabililty. I usually go with what weight gets the cuckoo sounding right speed wise. Both weights should be the same.
     
  7. blueloon

    blueloon Registered User

    Jan 13, 2010
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    Thanks! I'll try that.
     
  8. sbasile

    sbasile Registered User

    Dec 18, 2014
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    @blueloon - I feel just awful, my scale is no longer working. Talk about the worst timing, I ordered a new one from Amazon, should be here on Wednesday, it will be the first thing I do with it, promise. I can say just from holding them, switching them and looking them over they are the same weight. I did test out one of the 875 gram weights here and it did run, but didn't keep accurate time. Anything less and the clock stopped.
     
  9. blueloon

    blueloon Registered User

    Jan 13, 2010
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    Sorry to hear about your scale, Stephen. I know I hate it when I go to use something and it's broken. I've had this clock testing now for 5 hours with the 1135 gram weights and it is keeping perfect time. I put the leaf on the pendulum in the same spot where it was before I cleaned it (I could tell by the fading). The cuckooing is just right also. I'll try a smaller weight tomorrow and see if it makes a difference.
     
  10. sbasile

    sbasile Registered User

    Dec 18, 2014
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    Ok, so each weight weighs 1184 gram. I know timesavers has 1170 gram weights available, which would be close.
     
  11. Tinker Dwight

    Tinker Dwight Registered User

    Oct 11, 2010
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    I'm surprised that a one day movement takes
    so much weight. I've never fiddle with one of
    these older movements so I just have to wonder
    where the losses are.
    Tinker Dwight
     
  12. sbasile

    sbasile Registered User

    Dec 18, 2014
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    @Tinker - me too, the pendulum likes to really swing too, probably get knocked out if I got too close, lol. I know the mvmt. is larger than a modern cuckoo and there is more play in the wheels than a modern one. If you didn't count wheels, you'd think it was an 8 day mvmt.
     
  13. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Oct 19, 2005
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    Lots of the really old ones took massive weights to run 30 hours. I have one of them in the shop now.
     
  14. blueloon

    blueloon Registered User

    Jan 13, 2010
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    I've been running it for the last day and a half with a home-made 875 gram (approximately) weight. It seems to keep good time -- maybe losing a minute during that time -- and cuckoos okay (I put it on that side to try it, too). I'll probably run the 1135 gram weights until I find some older 875 gram weights somewhere (flea market season will soon be upon us). I really don't want to put any new-looking weights on it. The chains even have the old-style wire hooks and rings on them so I don't want to make it look too new.

    hooks.jpg

    Thanks everyone for all of your input. This is the oldest cuckoo clock that I've seen, so it's been a learning experience for me from the start.
     

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