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Clocks, Watches/chimes not operating


QUESTION: I have a hermle black forest clock 451-060h 94cm 66 movement.
I built it from kit from emperor clock co. Was bought in early 90's
just getting to building it as i am retired. clock does not chime or strike at all.clock is level.What is my problem. Thank You. Claude

ANSWER: Claude, there can be a few causes for a functioning failing.  Being stored for 20 years could mean that the oils have become gummy and parts have jammed.  Have you cleaned an oiled it?  Some of these come with a silence lever extending to the right of the movement.  In the up position it is silent, down allows it to chime and strike.  The strike will not work unless the chime completes it's hour chime.  Also make sure the heaviest weight (6.6## is on the chime #right side) of the clock.  Level would not have anything to do with it.  Let me know what you find.

John Newman
The Village Clocksmith
Located in Old Prattvilage
Prattville, Alabama   

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

QUESTION: i have the heaviest weight on the right side and the chime lever in the correct position.since i sent the last e-mail i have found that the clock will not run past it possible for you to e-mail a copy of clock works that show how to oil it. i was a mercedes benz i think i could oil the clock if i had directions. thank you.

Claude, I am away from my shop computer and will be back in my shop Wednesday.  I will send you some oiling instructions and photos if you will contact me at the email address below.

John Newman
Located in Old Prattvillage
Prattville, Alabama

NOTE:  Due to my committment to answering Allexperts questions and follow ups in a timely manner, and the backlog at my clock shop, I am not able to answer personal email questions immediately.  I will try to reply as soon as time permits.  I apologize for the delays.

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John Newman


As much as I would like to offer values of clocks, I am not a certified appraiser and will not venture into giving an unresearched guess. There is very little published information on what I consider to be the value of "modern production clocks". Considerations are what the clock originally sold for, the condition of the case and movement, and particularly the area in which you live, the demand and the economy. ALSO, WATCHES ARE NOT MY FIELD. However, I can advise the clock owner on proper maintenance of a clock to keep it running, small corrections and adjustments and how to move a clock without damaging it. I can also advise on obtaining parts for clocks. It helps if you can send any information on the clock movement which is usually found on the back plate of the movement. I have been a clockmaker for about 35 years and was plant engineer in the mid 90's and later operations and engineering consultant at Emperor Clock Company in Fairhope, Alabama. I now have my own clock shop.


One of my greatest accomplishments was traveling to China to assist a clock factory in building clocks to the standards which we required. With the proper specifications and quality control, some beautiful clock cases were built. The factory people from the wood carvers to the plant manager were very congenial, friendly and I left a lot of wonderful friends when I returned from my trips.

NAWCC (National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors) 30 years Prattville, Alabama Chamber of Commerce

Horological Times, a publication of the American Watch and Clockmakers Instute. Collaberated column author, with Photos and ideas for clock movement conversion article.

Associate of Science Mechanical Engineering Technology Emperor Introductory Clock Repair (Eventually taught a portion of the class after becoming employee)

Awards and Honors
Small Business of the Quarter (Prattville, Alabama) Leadership Class of 2009 (Autauga County, Alabama)

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