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November 9, 2013 at 6:06 am #48720
I have a clock with a Black Forest movement that does not run more than a few seconds. So I guess that cleaning and lubricating will help solve the problem, however I do not have any experience with this kind of movement. It has wooden plates and I wonder if I should go in the same way as a “traditional” clock with metal plates or are there some special techniques I need to be aware of? Also I would be happy if someone knows a book on repairing Black Forest movements that he recommend.
Here are some pictures of the clock. I don’t think the dial and movement where originally together, since the movement is clearly a Black Forest movement and the dial is not typical for such a movement (as far as I know, I am far from an expert). Furhtermore the name on the dial is clearly a Dutch and not a German name.
Any help or comments are welcome!
November 9, 2013 at 7:06 am #54312david pierceParticipant
I do not work on clocks, only watches, so I can only comment on what I would look for. First, the movement is dirty and needs to be cleaned up. Second, many of the parts look noticably worn especially around the escape wheel. Third, I would check to see if any of the parts are bent, especially around the pivots. Third I would check for racking in the frame due to possibly being dropped or stored under something heavy. For a mechanism like this to work properly, the pivot holes and bushings must all be parallel to each other. A wooden frame is going to introduce other elements into the precision of the mechanism such as instability due to glue or fastener deterioration. Also, wood being wood moves with humidity and seasonal changes. Also, It looks like there is rust on some of the parts. There is a product called RUST FREE (phosphoric acid) than can be purchased from woodworking supply stores such as WOODCRAFT. With that and some SCOTCH BRITE you should be able to clean most of the rust off. Someone with actual clock experience can certainly add to this but to me it would lean more toward a restoration project as opposed to a repair.
davidNovember 9, 2013 at 8:37 am #54313
Thanks for your reply David. I do have some experience in clock restauration, but never worked on clocks with wooden parts. My question is more about this new element, what is different on a clock with a wooden frame and more specifically a Black Forest movement as opposed to a French or English clock with metal frames for instance. Thanks for the advice about rust remover, I use Horolex Rust Remover from the material house, also based on phosphoric acid but probably more expensive than the stuff found in woodworking supply houses. I will definitely look into that. It will probably be a different brand overhere in Europe.November 9, 2013 at 11:32 am #54314aruthaParticipant
That dial could be original, they did lots of different styles with those black forest clocks. Look where the dial fits to the movement, if you cant see any other signs of dial fixing you probably have the original dial. These clocks could be bought as kits so a clockmaker could put any dial on he liked.
I have only done a couple of these and yes you pretty much treat it as you would a standard clock. The pivots are generally a little looser in the pivot holes but not by much. As you have probably already noticed the pivots run in brass bushes which are pressed into the wood “plates”. If you do have to replace any bushes I would advise fitting new ones with a very slightly larger outer diameter bush to the original to make sure it stays in place. You will find the original bushes may be cut through their length, this is to allow them to open out slightly to help them stay in position. Before you fit your new bushes, if you have to fit any, score the outsides up a little to help them stay in place. Otherwise you are looking at a standard clock service, make sure you peg out the bushes well and get them nice and clean. It is also not unusual to find the teeth quite worn, on one of the ones I serviced one wheel in particular had the teeth worn almost half way through and it was still running!I ,am sure you wouldn’t but don’t put the wood anywhere near clock cleaning solution, just give it a bit of a polish.
Paul.November 9, 2013 at 10:44 pm #54315
Thanks Paul for the advice.
There are no signs of dial fixing indicating this is not the original dial. I have been looking at pictures of Black Forest clocks and they do have a type with so called “shield dials” like this one, but they are almost always painted. Anyhow, original or not, it is a nice dial.
I do not understand the little brass dial in the middel. It has numerals from 1 to 12 around and turns with the hour wheel. Can someone explain what the purpose is?
JanNovember 10, 2013 at 8:39 am #54316Bob TascioneModerator
At first glance I thought that center dial was a center setting dial for an alarm but I see no indication from your photos that the necessary components making up the alarm assembly are in place nor any indication that they ever were. I may be wrong though. It could be for something entirely unrelated to an alarm but not sure what that could be. I know that a lot of clocks with alarm function came out of the Black Forest. The Postmans alarm being one of them was popular and sold in large numbers to the English market.
BobNovember 10, 2013 at 12:51 pm #54317aruthaParticipant
I didn’t notice the alarm mechanism wasn’t there, I would agree with Bob, it is usually the alarm setting dial. We might be able to help more if you can remove the dial and let us take a look at the front of the clock.
Paul.November 11, 2013 at 1:20 am #54318
Here are some pictures of the motion works of the clock. The brass dial was just sitting on the hour wheel arbor. So I guess that it does not serve any purpose other than keeping the dial original.
This would then prove that dial and movement do not belong together originally.
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