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Antique Clocks/weights on Pearl cable driven grandfather


QUESTION: My clock is keeping time correctly, and the middle weight is descending as usual, but the ones on the left and right are not moving. Do you know why?

ANSWER: It sounds like your clock is not chiming. The outside two weights are for the chime and hour strike functions.  If you have these turned off or they need lubrication only the center weight which powers the time function will descend.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Yes, I realize it is not chiming, but the lever that chooses the various chimes is not on SILENT. The left and right weights do not move when it is set on Westminster or St. Michaels. Here are 2 observations:
1. The left and right weights are not hanging quite as straight down as the middle one. The bottoms of them toe inward just a little bit.
2. The lever will not stay up if I raise it to SILENT or WHITTINGTON. It slides down to ST. MICHAELS before stopping. Then I can move it downward to WESTMINSTER. I hope this is clear enough for you to evaluate the problem. Thanks.

It sounds like you have a problem with the fork that shifts the sleeve containing the chime wheels or chime wheel followers. Sometimes the lubricant will become gummy or a little bit of rust may form binding the sleeve onto the shaft. If the fork bends, it will often completely prevent the chime from sounding. Then, since the chime triggers the hour strike, that weight will not go down either. I would also check the linkage between the chime selector lever and the fork. Although, I doubt there is nothing wrong there. If you are unable to correct the problem, please take a close up photo of the chime wheels and I will get back to you after I look at it. Send the picture to my email address at  

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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

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Four patents.

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