French madness

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  • #48742
    brutusamiga
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    • Topics Started: 4
    • Total Posts: 14

    Guys (and girls) I desperately need your advice.

    About three months ago I serviced a French time and strike clock. Everything went well and after testing the clock for three weeks it was returned to the customer. I month ago he returned it to me stating that it stopped after winding it. My initial though was that the clock was probably moved and is now out of beat.

    Well, it turned out that the customer was right. The clock stops after winding it. It is a mission getting it to run after it has been fully wound. By that I mean it will run for about 2 minutes and then stop, so you have to swing the pendulum about 15 times. Then the clock will run and if I wind it every 5 days it will keep running. The problem only occurs after day 8 when the clock stops and need to be rewound.

    I was told to rebush T2 and T3, which I did. This did not solve the problem.

    I have never given up on a clock, but this one is driving me mad.

    The mainsprings have been cleaned and lubricated with Keystone light.

    I had to reinstall a new mainspring hook.

    Please tell me you understand the logic behind this problem.

    Bernard

    #54578
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Hi Bernard,
    Bob has suggested taking the pallet arbor out of the clock, use something to stop the train moving, wind the clock partially and see how the escape wheel takes off, then do it again fully wound and note if there is any difference.
    just a couple of questions, did you make a new hook for the barrel arbor or the barrel? Have you checked the barrel and barrel cap for wear as the french clocks do tend to wear the barrel holes quite oval and also the end shake of the barrel arbor in the barrel?. How did you clean the mainsprings? Are you sure they are not sticking? I clean mainsprings with scotchbrite to make sure any burrs are removed.
    If the clock is under full power and you have wear in the barrel cap or barrel arbor holes this will allow the barrel to lean slightly and could be enough for the barrel teeth to jam with the intermediate pinion. Too much endshake in the barrel arbor would also help to jam it up. Once the clock has unwound a bit there wont be as much pressure and could be allowing the clock to then run.
    Good luck and let us know what you find.
    Paul.

    #54579
    brutusamiga
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 4
    • Total Posts: 14

    Thanks for your advice.

    Some friendly people on NAWCC told me the problem might be using Keystone lube and that I should use Slick 50 One Lube. So now two spray cans are on their way to South Africa at 3-4 times the cost of it in the US. With so many people in favour of Slick 50 One lube, I am convinced it is a good investment.

    I use steel wool to clean mainsprings and put them in the ultrasonic cleaner for 10 minutes at 50 degrees C using Historic Timekeepers (from Timesavers). Then I stretch them out, lube them and wind them a couple of times in the winder.

    Now the interesting news. There was excessive wear in both the barrel cap and barrel arbor holes (both barrels). This caused the barrel to tilt to the right on full power. After rebushing both holes there is no more leaning. How could I have missed this 😳 ???

    Thanks for your help. I think you were spot on.

    Please mind my grammar – I am Dutch.

    Bernard

    #54580
    arutha
    Participant
    • Topics Started: 85
    • Total Posts: 1536

    Hi Bernard,
    I know Bob likes that slick 50 and says it is very good. Your cleaning method for your mainsprings is also fine. Glad you found the problem, quite often when you put the barrel back together you dont always feel the play but on close inspection you can almost always see the wear.
    Well done on getting it sorted and thanks for letting us know.
    Paul :)

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brutusamigaFrench madness