Tag Archives: clock repair

Junghans Mantel clock. Bim Bam Clock. Ca 1930.

‘Bim-Bam’ striking Junghans Mantel clock. 8 day.

Junghans Mantel clock

The clock was very clean when I received it except that some grease or oil had hardened around a couple of the time train pivots causing the clock to stop intermittently.


Junghans Mantel clockI recall feeling particularly lazy on the day I repaired this clock not wanting to do any more than the bare minimum to get the thing working. I dropped both the mainspring barrels out (easy on these newer designs) and pulled the plates apart just enough to clean the time train wheel pivots without disturbing the Strike side.

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My Workshop

This is my machining workshop … and my home from home!

My Home From Home

As one may see from the photos, I have other interests outside of horology such as radio control model boats built from wood, model steam engines, and any other interesting mechanisms that come my way.

The machine-shop  is equipped with four lathes, a milling machine, two drill presses, a bench grinder and some other miscellaneous tools. Due to the dust issue, all woodworking and air tools are located in the garage. My machine shop occupies two rooms built off of my garage. I am very lucky in that it has central air conditioning and heat.

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Update: Problem with Regulator’s Maintaining Power Spring

The maintaining power spring on my best clock  failed after a few months.

Maintaining Power Spring

I was never really convinced that this spring would hold up.

A New Tack

I disassembled the movement and set about redesigning a completely new spring. I decided to go with a new concept and come up with a better design. The photos attached show the old spring and the new design. The new spring was built from an off the shelf spring I purchased from a local hardware store. I cut and filed it to fit without having to temper or heat the metal, as I did not change the form of the original spring.

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CONCLUSION: Vienna Regulator project. Ca 1860.

The more I dug into this Vienna Regulator repair project the more problems I discovered:

  • Ratchet (click) on winding barrel brokenvienna regulator repair project
  • Pallet retaining screw broken on verge
  • Winding barrel ratchet lever bent
  • Porcelain dial center retainer corroded beyond repair
  • Case required complete disassembly and rebuild.
  • Add correct weight and cable

It would be easier to list the only item not needing repair….The pendulum!!

Upon inspecting the case, I found a number of Phillips head screws had been used in prior repairs, to hold the case together along with a couple of steel braces. Also, there was an excessive amount of glue. It looked as though this clock had taken a dive off a wall at some stage in its history. The hinges were also rigged.

vienna regulator repair project

Repaired Movement

vienna regulator repair project

I have never had to disassemble a clock case to this degree before. I broke down all the parts and completed the clean-up to remove all the old glue and refinish the joints correctly then reassembled. I only had to refinish a few areas where the old finish was beyond saving. The overall result was very pleasing and the case is now back to original.

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English Astral Coventry Fusee Wall Clock. Ca 1890.

A high quality English Fusee clock.

Time Only Fusee movement during cleaning. Relatively few parts. Easy to work on.

The Fusee chain was missing when I purchased this English astral Coventry fusee wall clock, I wasn’t sure if it would have originally had a chain or a cable drive to the fusee cone. After examination, I determined that it would have been a cable drive. Some points that led me to this were:

  • Three holes in the mainspring barrel to accommodate a cable. A Chain would fit in a slot.
  • A recess hole in the back of the fusee cone to accommodate a knot and, again, no slot.

Fusee cone

On occasion it is possible to determine whether the movement was originally fitted out with a chain or a cable by examining the Fusee cone grooves. If the bottom of the groove is rounded, it was machined to accommodate a cable. If the groove has a flat bottom, it was made for a chain.

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Vienna Regulator. Viennese Wall Clock. Ca. 1860

This clock is a time only Vienna Regulator (Vienna wall clock or Viennese wall clock in the U.K.)

Viennese Wall Clock Vienna Regulator

Lots of work to do on this one…way more that I thought when I purchased it.

The case needs to be reworked as sometime down the line attempts at resotration have been poorly done. The door hinges are not original, nor are they remotely similar to the originals. The joints are badly glued or screwed together… You get the picture.

The movement also had a major problem. When I inspected it, I found that the click spring was broken, not a particularly bad problem with most clocks. However, with this one, the click spring is part of the winding barrel assembly. A new click spring was not an option.

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UPDATE: Dutch Warmink skeleton clock project

Here’s an update on my Dutch Warmink skeleton clock project.

dutch warmink skeleton clock

dutch Warmink Skeleton Clock

This one is now assembled and the pendulum leader was fabricated from two 5 inch Hermel leaders cut and soldered together. I have determined the leader length. However, I was disappointed to find that this is only a 30 hour movement.

In retrospect, I should have guessed this with only three wheels in the train! I am not satisfied with my leader fabrication because the pendulum has a ‘kick’ at the end of each swing arc (impulse).

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Restoration Project: Ansonia Open Escapement Movement. ca 1870.

Never know when you are going to come across a gem such as an Ansonia Open Escapement Movement. I purchased a box of old movements at a local auction. When I got the box home and had time to sift through, I found that most of the movements were beyond repair and could only be used for spare parts. However, there were two Ansonia movements. One was complete and one was missing some wheels and levers.

I decided to undertake a project and try to make one good working movement using parts from both movements.

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French Morbier Comtoise Grandfather Clock. ca 1850/60. (movement and face only)

This Morbier Comtoise Grandfather Clock is obviously a marriage of an original Comtoise Morbier movement and a newer hand crafted case. I purchased this clock mainly for the case. Which is exceptionally well crafted.  It appears to be a handmade case of the highest quality.Morbier Comtoise Grandfather Clock

The movement was fitted with a single bob pendulum that was also fashioned specifically for this case.

When I inspected the movement I noticed upon attempting to wind the clock that the winding arbor on the time train side would spin without engaging the ratchet wheel and the weight would not raise.

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