You are here:

Antique Clocks/Pendulum clock stops running


My pendulum clock (works bought thru Emporer Clock) stops. Chimes work perfectly. Not out of level (levelled by eye, not with level), time chain not binding, hands not binding, last oiled about 6 months ago. Stopped running after I moved. Suspension spring good. Odd thing is that if I move the minute hand forward and get the pendulum swinging, it will start to "tic-toc" and the pendulum continues to swing. The moment that I stop putting forward movement on the minute hand, the clock stops - no tic-toc and the pendulum eventually ceases to swing. I am stumped. The works are about 38 years old and the clock was built by my father.

Some clocks, particularly older ones where the verge rod or the pendulum rod may be slightly bent, run best when they are slightly out of level. You can check this by listening to the beats as the pendulum swings.  The beats should be even, if they are not the level can be changed slightly until they are equal.

There is a possibility the gear train may have high friction if the weight is not capable of driving the movement. Sometimes, moving the clock will allow the gear and staff to move longitudinally causing it to wedge if the pivot hole is worn. The only solution here is to rebush that pivot.

Sometimes the chain will bind in the sprocket when a clock is transported, it may bind to a chain retainer or get caught on one of the gears. This is usually fairly easy to fix. In some cases, I have had to remove the movement to unsnarl the chain.  

Antique Clocks

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Tom Williams


I can not think of any questions I cannot answer in regard to repairing antique clocks or radios. However, I am sure there are a few I have not heard and may not be able to answer. If I cannot, I will say so. I have been repairing them since I was a young child.


My experience includes repairing CooKoo clocks, Westminsters, BimBam, almost all antique clocks. I do a bit of repair on battery clocks where the value is sufficient to warrant working on them. I also repair antique (tube type) radios - all makes.

Indiana Historical Radio Society, Illinois Valley Antique Car Club, Military Vehicle Preservation Association

BEE from Cleveland State University

Awards and Honors
Four patents.

Past/Present Clients
Friends and family

©2017 All rights reserved.