Clocks, Watches/grandfather clock


QUESTION: My dad built a grandfather clock (from a kit)for my mom in 1985. He used to take care of oiling and all adjustments until his death 5 yrs ago. Since then, mom and the clock have moved twice. A repairman charged $100 to oil and get it going again after the last move. It is now working correctly. However, he says the mechanism needs restoring at a cost of $650. Does this make sense and if so, is his price reasonable?

ANSWER: may be reasonable for your area- do not know. There are different German mechanisms that might be in your clock- many are still being made, thus I do not think restoring is your best value.

He can buy 3 brand new mechanisms from Germany from local suppliers for $650 and have money left over! so why restore? the new ones are the exact same as the original!

But above all - If it is working corectly - run it till it drops and save your money.

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

QUESTION: Thanks for the quick response. What you are saying makes good sense - why fix something that is not broken?
My mom would like to pass the grandfather clock to one of her grandchildren in a few years. Is there any major overhaul that is recommended when that is done? How long can grandfather clocks last if the oiling is done routinely?

routine oiling can be bad for clocks, but some repair people like the routine income!

the back of the mechanism has stamped in the brass, all the info one needs to order a new mechanism.

Before she passes it on- get a new mechanism put in. much better, be like new then-- the wood case after all is what Dad made, not the mechanism.

the original movements last from 20-25 years, then need real help, but very little service during that time (moving them and setting up again can require help from a pro, however)

Clocks, Watches

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Kenneth Saunders


any mechanical clock question -no watches- no battery clock questions and no appraisals-ie: "how much is my clock worth?" type questions please! Attach a photo if possible and note all markings on the rear of the mechanism- thanks 40 years as a professional clock repair person- still a full time clock repair service owner


43+ years as a professional clock repair person- still a full time clock repair service owner.



Awards and Honors
Comment - On a scale of 1-10, I would give Mr. Saunders a 15 on each category. His responses were clear, addressed my questions and concerns in a way that even I could understand, and even sent a picture. He explained what I had and how to resolve the issue. I was amazed at how quickly he replied to each on my e mails. He shouldn't get a gold star, he should get a whole box of them!!! Thank you Mr. Saunders, I will keep you on my e-mail "speed dial". Comment - Ken answered my question regarding how to adjust the proper striking of the hammers on my Grandfather clock within a few minutes of my sending the question to him. He answered my follow-up question the next morning. I would rate him higher if there was a number larger than ten in the selection box. Thanks again Ken Comment - I RECEIVED AN ANSWER WITHIN AN HOUR.OUTSTANDING SERVICE.YOUR RATING SHOULD BE HIGHER THAN 10. Comment - This Man is Fantastic...there is no Scale for a him...if there was...He'd beat the top of Smile....I could never ask for more ....this Man is his Score....

©2017 All rights reserved.