I JUST MOVED THE CLOCK, NOW THE CHIMES ARE SLOW OR STOP: This
is a common problem when three weight clocks are moved. In most
cases, you will find that one weight is heavier than the others.
The heaviest weight almost always is to be hung on the right hand side
of the clock. Clocks with large pendulums may have two heavy
weights. With these clocks the heavy weights are mounted on the
right and center chains or cables. Many manufacturers stamp L, C,
and R on the weight bottoms for left, center, and right to help you
install the weights in the correct location.
MY CLOCK KEEPS STOPPING AT THE SAME TIME: Look very closely at
the hands. They bend very easily and can touch other hands, dial
decorations, or the door glass. Gently straighten the bent hand
or call your friendly local clock expert.
MY CLOCK IS OVERWOUND: No, I'm sorry, but it isn't. When
a spring wound clock is fully wound, the spring surfaces are pressed
together tightly. If the spring lubricant is old and sticky, it
can prevent the spring from unwinding, so the clock has no power.
If the lubricant is this tacky, the clock is long past due for a
complete disassembly, cleaning, and movement overhaul.
MY CLOCK RUNS FAST OR SLOW: Mechanical clocks provide some
means for adjusting the speed. Pendulums typically have a nut
below the pendulum bob. Tightening this nut raises the bob and
makes the clock run faster. Loosening the nut makes the clock run
slower. You may need to gently press down on the bob to ensure it
lowers, quite often the nut loosens and the bob remains stuck in
place. I recommend only turning the nut one full turn at most and
waiting a day or two to see if addditional correction is needed.
Many mantle clocks have a small adjusting square near the 12 or below
the hand shaft. The winding key should be double ended, with a
small square on the longer skinny end. This is used to turn the
adjuster. Usually clockwise makes the clock faster,
counterclockwise makes the clock slower. Some clocks have an F
and S with arrows to make this clear. As with other adjustments,
a single full turn at most and waiting a day to two to judge the effect
Copyright Virginia Clock Repair / Stan Stocker, Clockmaker