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We bought an Ethan Allen Grandmother's clock about 35 years ago from Ethan Allen.  Unfortunately I raised the outer 2 weights too high and now they are stuck there.  The middle weight is OK.  How do I lower the outer 2 4weights? Thanks!

Hi John,
Usually it's not raising the weights too high. Your clock is 35 years old and I don't know if it's ever been cleaned or oiled...and if so how recently.
Oil attracts dust and that dust make an abrasive dirt inside the mechanism. That dirt
wears out the brass plates. Once the pivot holes are worn to a certain point the
clock just will not run anymore. When a clock is worn then it usually stops after the clock is wound so people think that they wound it too tight. Winding the clock takes the pressure off the gears for a little while and they get a chance to breath and relax. Once the weight is put back on the gears the pivot finds itself a bit deeper into an already worn hole. Then it doesn't want to go anymore.

Having said all that the clock is not chiming the quarter hour (right weight) so it is not striking the hour (left weight). The time is going which is why the center weight is moving down.

You can try to oil the movement to see if that will loosen the dirt up enough to give you more time with the clock. Look up how to oil a grandfather clock on line. Just do the best you can with the movement in the case focusing on the right side of the movement. You can use any fully synthetic oil including Mobil One or other oil. I found a 0 15w that I use. I also use a hypodermic needle to apply a ~small~ drop of oil in each pivot hole or on the shoulder of each gear inside the movement. A thin wire will also hold a drop of oil so you can apply it to each pivot hole. You can use anything you can think of that will do the job. Keep trying to get it to run for a few days while the oil loosens up any hardened dirt.

If you have a bonnet the pulls off thats good. If not you can go through the side panels that remove.

If that doesn't get the clock going you will have to call in a professional. You may need a new movement or have that movement rebuilt. It's a big job. When someone asks me "Is it worth it?" My answer is always about how you feel about your clock. It's still cheaper than buying a new one and if you love your clock it IS worth it.

Oh, one more thing. Check to see that the clock is not on silent.

Hope this helps,
The Clocklady

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Marilyn Bellotti


This is for advice only. ~Most~ repairs need a professional. If I can help you with an adjustment that can set your clock back in order I will try. I can not write a chapter on clock repair. I will point you in the right direction and you will have to do your own research on how clocks work for more intense repairs. -No Watches -No Appraisals. Search ebay for past sales for that information.


29 years repair experience

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