Wheel sticking

Discussion in 'Clock Repair' started by Chris., Dec 5, 2018.

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  1. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Dear Sir/Madam, hope someone can help me or advise me on my clock,I have a Westminster chime clock and found every so often it will miss its chime so then goes out of sinth and then resets on the next two hours, the clock has been cleared and oiled but still sticking, there is a fan like wheel one on left side for the 15 minutes and one on right side, the left my in photo sometimes sticks manly when it sits straight up,does anyone got any information on this please thank you.

    IMG_1223.JPG
     
  2. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    I'll move this to the clock repair forum.
     
  3. Dick Feldman

    Dick Feldman Registered User

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    Your wheel sticking once in a while is likely a series of wheels sticking.
    Your symptoms are characteristic of a worn movement.
    The chime train in most clocks requires the most energy to operate and it is the first to fail from wear/friction/lack of power.
    Cleaning, oiling and adjusting will do little or nothing to remedy wear in clock movements.
    The normal course of action for a worn movement is to replace it with a new one if available or to install bushings at each wear point.
    Best,
    Dick
     
  4. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    You say the fan is "sticking" when straight up, so let's start there. Tha fan blade is held in position by spring tension so make sure it isn't hasn't slipped on the arbor (axle) and that it isn't hitting anything. We need to be a bit more clear just what you mean by "sticking". Do the qtr. chimes start and run sluggishly and "stick" before completing? Or does the fan "stick" just BEFORE the qtr. chimes start? When it "sticks", if you give it a little nudge will it go on and run? Locate the wheel (gear) that drives the fan, very gently try to turn that wheel about 1/2 turn backward. Note it may only turn in one direction and will turn easily, then release it. Does it turn back and abruptly stop at the same place? When it sticks, look at the chime hammers; are any of the hammers partly raised? Does the clock otherwise run OK?

    Yes, a lot of questions but we need to determine whether the fan is actually hitting an obstruction, or whether the chime correction device is locking the time train, or whether it is struggling to get enough power due to excessive friction and wear, or if the hammer drum is out of time causing the chime train to attempt to start under the load of a hammer already trying to lift. It may be "time for a new Timex" or just a simple adjustment

    RC
     
  5. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi, the fan sticks just before in is ready to run it,s get ready to strike and doesn't move ready so when the click sounds it doesn't go,it does when I give it a nudge then it will run fine to it goes in the straight up position or around that position,it will run anywhere else, when I take out the movement and look,cannot see it touching any thing, cannot see any worn privets.once running it runs perfectly fine and at a correct speed.just every so often that fan will stick,in that position.
     
  6. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    This sounds like a chime drum lift point is either starting to lift one of the hammers, or up against it at the end of the pre-chime warning run. Generally, the wheels in the chime train need to get up speed before attempting to lift the first hammer in the sequence for that qtr. IF that is the case, retarding the strike drum slightly may solve the problem. Note that if the drum is retarded too much the last hammer in the sequence may not drop.

    If adjusting the chime drum timing doesn't solve the problem, there may in deed be inadequate power from general wear or some other issues.

    RC
     
  7. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

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    #7 Willie X, Dec 5, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2018
    Let the power down an push back and forth on the 2nd wheel. I think you will see some arbors jumping around in the chime train. What DF and RC said.

    Could be simpler, like a bent pivot high in the train, or a bent arbor, bent tooth, bad depthing, foreign matter in a pinion or wheel gullet, etc.

    Willie X
     
  8. glenhead

    glenhead Registered User
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    If it sticks with the fan (known as the "fly", Chris) in the same position every time it could also be that the fly blade itself is snagging on something. Take a look and see if you can scoot the fly a bit toward one plate or the other on its arbor to make sure it spins completely freely and away from all the other "stuff" that's in there. The fly blade is usually a friction fit on the arbor, with the arbor sort of woven into slots on the fly. I've seen the blades catch on something if the fly is slightly out of its run-free zone. If that doesn't do it, then go on with more robust troubleshooting.

    Glen
     
  9. 124Spider

    124Spider Registered User

    FWIW....

    I had a similar issue in my 100-year old Herschede grandfather clock in 2012--the strike mechanism started not operating properly, even though I could hear it release; if I pushed the fly with my finger, it would reluctantly initiate the strike, and generally finish. Then get stuck again the next time.

    I took the movement apart, cleaned it, rebushed two pivot holes that were significantly out-of-round, put it back together, to no avail; same problem.

    Then I looked carefully, and found that, for whatever reason, the plates were pinching the arbors on that part of the movement. I installed a tiny shim in one corner, slightly increasing the distance in that quarter of the movement, and the clock has been striking without issue for the 6-1/2 years since then.

    Obviously, I don't know if this is your problem; indeed, it probably isn't. But this is just an illustration that all sorts of things can go wrong, even with high quality clocks.

    Mark
     
  10. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    I also had a similar issue, and after inspection discovered that one of the teeth on the pinion had broken off.
     
  11. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi, thank you so much for your help and information,to be honest think you are saying it is the part what lifts the hammer at each sequence on the big wheel at just above the hammers, what I think you are saying is a Drum,just asking what and how to adjust.it.Think I should mark the teeth on each side and see before removing the next big wheel what runs next to it so I can move back one tooth on the drum and replace the big wheel,is that correct,thank you..
     
  12. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    You should be able to loosen this screw after the qtr chime sequence is finished and move the pin drum backward just a tiny bit so that none of the pins are in contact with any of the hammer lifters. Too much and the last note hammer will fail to drop.

    RC

    IMG_1223a.jpg
     
  13. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi,I didn't do that one I did the one at bottom white teeth and moved that one back one tooth.took clip off,to be honest after doing this the clock hasn't stuck yet and at the moment going ok,but know got some information so can play with it and see how it goes.moving the white teeth wheel back is that a similar thing you have told me.can I ask why it is gone out anyway.if it is this.
     
  14. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    IMG_1224.JPG
     
  15. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    At the "white teeth" you only can move by one whole tooth at a time. You won't need to move a whole tooth, just a tiny amount or you will end up with the wrong notes. Loosen the set screw in the drive gear and you can make a fine adjustment. How did it get off in the first place - parts wear. Perhaps something else going on here. It may have been off just a tad when new but then the clock had enough Power to overcome. General wear through out and perhaps a little set to the springs and she doesn't quite have power she once did. And if it was ever taken apart for cleaning, it may have been slightly misadjusted when put back together

    RC
     
  16. Willie X

    Willie X Registered User

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    One thing is odd about this symptom of the fly always stopping at the same position. That is, when a strike train is running normally the fly would always slip on stopping and naturally land in different places, no matter what. The only exceptions would be when the train is stalling or barely turning, or it's soldered to the atbor. This points my thinking back to a, already mentioned several times, power loss. Willie X
     
  17. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi,thank you for your help, after doing some adjustment the clock is running much better now the fly is running faster when spinning,the clock is playing all the notes perfectly at the moment,if it still starts striking again or it doesn't work then I will adjust some more,now got something to look at,thanks again for your kind help and information,have learnt a lot from this,regards Chris.
     
  18. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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  19. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi and thank you for your help on my clock.the clock has been chiming ok but still has not got to 7 days yet on a full wind and found that the fly is still sticking so missing and resets on the next two hours as it should but why it sticks on the up right position,can I ask why this is still causing the striking fault.everything is nice and clean.can you give anymore information please.thank you and is playing all notes right,can send a video what may help.
     
  20. Isaac

    Isaac Registered User

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    It is important that the chime fly is not too tightly bound to its arbor. If the chime fly is not allowed to slip at all when the chime train is starting to run, there will be a significant power loss.
     
  21. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    I wonder if the fly has a bent pivot.
     
  22. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    The fly runs very fast. just when it gets in the upright position when starting to run it does not always get that grip to start so I need to give it a push and then does the chime ok,the fly does slip when you push over to much when it stops,cannot see anything bent,can I put any videos on so you can see it running,would lt be easier, do you have any more information if you don't mind helping me,thanks for everyone's help,
     
  23. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    Sounds like the fly has either a bent pivot or something wrong with its pinion. Next time the fly gets stuck, blacken its upper blade with a Sharpie pen and see if the same blade comes up each time.

    M Kinsler
     
  24. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi M Kinsler,yes the blade does stop in the same place each time it sticks when starting to run in that place.
     
  25. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    Well, with what we know of gambling devices, I'd say that your chime fly does not meet the standards of the Gaming Control Board, for something is making the fool thing stop in the same place every time. If it was mine I would apply my plate spreader, remove the fly, and give it a much closer look. There are only a very limited number of defects that can cause that particular result.

    Mark Kinsler
     
  26. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    I think we need to look beyond the stop position of the fan. Unless someone has glued or soldered it to the arbor it is retained by friction. It may or may not slip when it stops depending on how tightly it is fit. If the fan blade isn't hitting anything, then the fan blade isn't the problem and it's position is irrelevant. So we need to look at some of those other "defects".

    Check the pinions on both fans. On this model I believe that one of the pinions is slightly larger than the other. Any chance they got mixed up? Also make sure there are no broken teeth on the pinion.

    If the pinions are OK and the fan isn't physically hitting something then the fan isn't stopping the strike train, the strike train is stopping the fan. There would seem to be three possibilities; insufficient power (see Dick's comments in post #3), something placing extra demands on the available power, something blocking the chime train from turning.

    Again, make sure that none of the hammer lifters are in contact with any of the pins on te pin drum when the chime train is held in "warning". Check this for all four quarters. This defect will place a huge extra power requirement when chiming actually starts.

    Advance the minute hand slowly until the chime train goes into warning. Locate the warning lever and the stop pin that is arrested by the warning lever. It should be easy to find look at the wheel that drives the fan, turn it backward a quarter turn and let it go. You shoul see a pin contact the warning stop lever. Hold the fan from turning and move the minute hand ahead until the warning stop lever drops away from the stop pin on the wheel. We are looking at two things: first does the stop lever drop quickly? Check it with a probe to make sure it is not stiff at all and drops quick and easy. Next make sure that the stop lever is completely clear of the stop pin when it drops.

    Let us know what you fine.

    RC
     
  27. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    But if the fan always returns to exactly the same position I'd be just a bit suspicious. Fans and the little warning wheels that drive them are subject to damage if the clock is assembled by someone who is inexperienced because you have to reach past them to align other wheels. Thus their tiny pivots get bent and occasionally broken. For that matter, the fan's arbor might be bent in the middle where that groove is cut.

    My personal favorite was the tiny fan whose arbor had broken in two at the groove. The previous repair strategy was to solder the fan blade to each piece of the arbor such that it looked normal and then just put the fan back in place. Imagine my delight when I heated the assembly to remove the solder.

    There were several repairs of that caliber on a New Haven crystal regulator, and I'm still working on the horrible thing.

    M Kinsler
     
  28. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    "A bit suspicious" indeed but irrelevant unless the fan itself is striking something which is reported not to be the case. There are many possibilities because the fan should be able to slip, which it may or may not be doing what it tells us can lead us astray. Perhaps the one thing I neglected to mention is that we should look at the position of the wheel driving the fan and the position of the pinion on the fan arbor - When the system hangs is the driving wheel also always at the same place? If the driving wheel IS always at the same place and if the stop pin is NOT against the stop lever, then yes, I would suspect a problem with the fan's pinion, arbor, or pivot, or even a tooth on the driving wheel. If the driving wheel's stop pin IS always against the stop lever when it hangs, then the problem isn't likely related to the fan, but more likely related to the wheel not being released. But if the wheel is being released but just doesn't start moving, then there is a power problem which could be a cumulative sum of several issues anywhere in the movement as Dick pointed out, or a specific damaged part. We really need a few more specifics before concluding that the entire movement is worn out or that there is something wrong with the fan.

    RC
     
  29. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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  30. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi Mr kinsler, thank you again for your help on my clock,I have got some information on the clock ,I had a look and checked the fly and cannot see anything.nothing touching the arbor with the fly,it also only does it on one side of the fly.like you said mark it with a pen and even on it being straight up it only does it on one side of them,I thought I would just try a balancer clip on what has now worked to get it running.also did find out on the gear wheel for the hammers ,looks so very close on the pinions on the back plate.could this be making it slow up the gear if so how can I bring forward the gear from the back plate as it turns but cannot move it.even when I untighten the screw.thank you again for all your help Chris.
     
  31. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi RC, thank you for your information on my clock.also checked the fly and it is on a friction so not glued and if you push it does move up and then catch on plate so move back on and is so free it moves fine .also checked stop leaver and stop pin.the fly goes into warning ok when not in that upright position and the leaver then drops fast and leaves the stop pin completely and not touching the pin or leaver,also did that check on hammers also nothing come up on each quarter chimes on each part to finish for the hammers being lifted so cannot see anything there,two things I can say is that the gear on the back plate with the screw is well back and looks very close to pivot hole with pinion so wanted to pull it forward a little but cannot move forward even when you unscrew it.do I need a press to pull forward? also found it only does the sticking on one side of it being in the upright position.I marked it with a pen so only sticks on the pen side.also tells me something in the fly is not right.not sure now what to do,I did try a balance clip on that side what sticks and has stopped the sticking with the balance clip on.if I want to remove the fly do you have to dismantle movement.can the blade come off,if I try a replacement one.left side fly is smaller them the right side fly. right side fly is a little bigger.thank you again Chris.
     
  32. R. Croswell

    R. Croswell Registered User

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    I've never seen a stock fan so out of balance that it would prevent the chime train from starting.

    you might try completely letting down the power on the chime side and check that each arbor (axle) has a little end shake. Then apply power by hand in both directions and look for any pivot that jumps from side to side in the pivot hole. Unless the fan has been physically altered I would continue looking for a mechanical problem. If it hasn't been disassembled and cleaned, including removing the springs, this may be the next step, and while apart the fan and related parts can be inspected and checked individually and together between the plates.

    RC
     
  33. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    RC is right. The clock will really need a proper tear-down, cleaning, pivots polished and bad holes bushed. During that process the chime-starting problem will likely be cured without much extra attention. The gear that runs the chimes on the back of the clock is unlikely to be rubbing on the plate even if it looks quite close; try slipping a bit of paper behind it to check.

    As for moving that gear on its shaft, it is a known natural phenomenon that anything fastened with setscrews on a grandfather clock becomes essentially welded in place, which is really handy during disassembly. Fixes include twisting and prying, preferably without destroying both the gear and the shaft. When it comes time to polish that pivot, you can file down the burr caused by the setscrew. This last is a satisfying fix right up until you discover that it hasn't done a bit of good; the gear will still hang up on the shaft when you go to adjust it. (I just got finished wrestling with one of these on a particularly cursed Smiths-Enfield. They should have stuck with rifles.)

    If I was braver I'd broach out the bore in the gear, which would likely cure the problem, but I never do.

    M Kinsler
     
  34. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi Mr Kinsler, thank you again for your help and tried the paper and it does catch on teeth.
     
  35. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    Well, if the chime gear is indeed rubbing on the back plate of the clock that would certainly cause trouble with the chime train. Check to see if there's any end-play in that gear's shaft.
     
  36. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi Mr Kinsler, I have included a photo of gear looks like there is some space it can come forward,like I said it doesn't move.not sure why but like I said I put a balance on the fly and has worked,now removed it and now still working fine with out anything,not sure what that balance has done,maybe trying to pull that gear forward is now free from pivots.could something changed in having the balance on it.?

    IMG_1269.JPG
     
  37. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    I'm afraid that there's nothing in your photograph that looks familiar, including that white plastic gear on the bottom. Can you send a few more pictures showing the whole movement, including whatever it is that we're seeing in this photo?
     
  38. Chris.

    Chris. Registered User

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    Hi Mr Kinsler, I am sorry I haven't sent you a good photo of my movement and will try some better photos,I had a second look at the stop point and the wheel with the pin on and see it wasn't getting the swing on to go to the warning and it being released so found Out it could be adjusted and after some time in setting it up back into sequence as it was playing all the wrong notes,so once I set that up again and see that the wheel with the pin on to go to warning had a much better speed to the stop position and now release the fly in any position without any sticking will see if it gets to the seven days on one wind to see if it still runs,it is the best it has ever been since,thanks again for all your help.

    IMG_1270.JPG IMG_1273.JPG
     
  39. kinsler33

    kinsler33 Registered User

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    One way to check the performance of these balance-wheel clocks is to use a marking pen to put a nicely-visible black dot on the top surface of the balance wheel. This will enable you to judge the rotation of the balance wheel, which ideally should travel one full revolution after the clock has been running for maybe five minutes. The clock will typically stop when it's tipped more than a few degrees due to friction in the floating balance's bearings.
     
  40. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    Is the issue still that it's getting out of sync, or is it stopping?
     

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