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Antique Clocks/Sessions Mantel Clock

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Question
I have my grandmother's antique mantel clock. It was chiming erratically but I was able to repair that problem by adjusting the stop pin on the gear. Now it will not keep running (ticking). It started out ticking for a few hours before stopping but now only a few minutes. Can you please provide some possible causes and corrections to this problem? Also, I tried to adjust the length of the pendulum swing with the piece of thin spring steel at the top of the rod that sits in slots on a brass fork at the top and it broke. Do you know where I can get this piece to replace it?

Answer
The first thing to be certain of is that it is properly lubricated. There should be a bit of oil on each pivot point. The second thing to check is that the pendulum rod is fairly well centered in the verge rod socket. There should be a small amount of play side to side but not too much to waste energy. If this is not a problem, listen to the clock and see if the spacing between the ticks is uniform.  Sometimes either the verge rod or the pendulum rod will get bent when handling the movement. Also try getting your clock out of level listening for even beats and see if it runs OK when it is out of level. If you do not like having the clock out of level you will have to bend the verge rod to get the beats even when the clock is running on level.

Another thing to check is whether the trip lever is binding someplace. If the clock always with the minute hand in a specific position, this is a sign that this is the case. As you turn the minute hand, the amount of force required to rotate it should be constant and the extra effort required to lift the trip rod should be very small.

Timesavers (www.timesavers.com) has many parts for clocks. Page 91 of their catalog has a number of suspension spring brackets and bridges, etc. I hope you can find one suitable for your clock.

There is also the possibility improper mounting of the suspension spring is causing the clock to stop.  

Antique Clocks

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Tom Williams

Expertise

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.

Experience

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.

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

Education/Credentials
BEE from Cleveland State University

Awards and Honors
Four patents.

Past/Present Clients
Friends and family

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