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  • Hello WatchUSeek! We are hosting an Ask Me Anything with Ian Schon of Schon Horology and Schon DSNG beginning on Tuesday, February 23rd at Noon, EST and closing on Thursday, February 25th at Noon EST. If you don't know of him, Ian is a desginer maker and was a senior product designer at IDEO. He is an engineer, designer and machinist who manufacturers his own watches, and also pens! If you've ever wanted to ask a question directly to a one-man watch maker, don't miss out! You can find the AMA here.

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Discussion Starter #1
Hello!

I'm usually posting on the other watch forums, but I've noticed this forum for clocks, and as luck would have it I've got a problem with a clock.

Or rather, my wife's clock has the problem. It's a keywind Seth Thomas carriage clock that was given to her late father as an anniversary gift from his employer back in 1977 (that's the date on the plaque attached to the back of the case). When he died in 1997 the clock was given to her, so it has great sentimental value to us. When we first got it, it seemed to work just fine -- the Westminster chimes on the hour and quarter-hours and all the rest. Some time back (I can't recall exactly when), my wife used the key to wind it up as she always did, but the clock stopped. She thought at first that she had missed something, but all three winding points (not sure what you call them) were tight and wouldn't turn any more.

Opening the back of it, there's an instruction sheet taped inside the door that identifies it as a model #1306 "Kingsbury". The movement is stamped with the following:

Made in Germany for Seth Thomas Division, General Time Corp, Thomaston, Conn USA
A401-003
Two (2) Jewels
7610

I don't know much more about it than that. I can probably post some photos if that would help with identifying it.

I've tried looking for a local clockmaker, and there aren't any around me within a 60 mile radius. Before I haul it off to someone, I would like to understand from those of you who are much more knowledgable than me what could have caused the problem we are having, whether or not it's repairable, and (obviously) how much I should expect to pay someone to repair it. Any information or advice would be greatly appreciated!

Mike
 

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Has it ever been service since 1977?Just like a mechanical watch they need to be service once in a while.Clock movement's use what is called a bushing instead of jewels that help the gears move.A older friend of mine ask me to get his clock service for the same reason he had it for a long time never had it serviced the guy who work on my clocks open up the back all the bushing had to be replaced a total rebuilt due to all the ware some one correct me if I am wrong they will remove the old bushing and press in new one's then the gear's will not be loose in the movement.Clocks I collect once in a while I still got a lot to learn about them.If it get service and oiled more often the bushing last longer and cheaper on the service of the clock when it needs one.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
IIRC, it was serviced once in the early 90's before it was given to my wife. Not sure what was done to it at the time, but it was working pretty well when she finally brought it home.

Hope that helps.

Mike
 

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Hello!

I'm usually posting on the other watch forums, but I've noticed this forum for clocks, and as luck would have it I've got a problem with a clock.

Or rather, my wife's clock has the problem. It's a keywind Seth Thomas carriage clock that was given to her late father as an anniversary gift from his employer back in 1977 (that's the date on the plaque attached to the back of the case). When he died in 1997 the clock was given to her, so it has great sentimental value to us. When we first got it, it seemed to work just fine -- the Westminster chimes on the hour and quarter-hours and all the rest. Some time back (I can't recall exactly when), my wife used the key to wind it up as she always did, but the clock stopped. She thought at first that she had missed something, but all three winding points (not sure what you call them) were tight and wouldn't turn any more.

Opening the back of it, there's an instruction sheet taped inside the door that identifies it as a model #1306 "Kingsbury". The movement is stamped with the following:

Made in Germany for Seth Thomas Division, General Time Corp, Thomaston, Conn USA
A401-003
Two (2) Jewels
7610

I don't know much more about it than that. I can probably post some photos if that would help with identifying it.

I've tried looking for a local clockmaker, and there aren't any around me within a 60 mile radius. Before I haul it off to someone, I would like to understand from those of you who are much more knowledgable than me what could have caused the problem we are having, whether or not it's repairable, and (obviously) how much I should expect to pay someone to repair it. Any information or advice would be greatly appreciated!

Mike
Chances are the oil is likely quite thick if not completely dried up and the bearing surfaces may have been run dry. To get it running will take at a minimum complete disassembly, cleaning and reoiling of the movement. You may be faced with some damage to the escapement and it may be more cost effective to replace the entire movement rather than repair it. Only a clock maker will be able to tell you for sure.

Because it's an heirloom it's certainly worth the money to get it running again.
 

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Dear,
What you are looking at is a Franz Hermle 4/4 Westminster chime clock.
with a so called floating balance (the 2 jewels are the bearings of the balance). with pin lever escapement.
These clocks made in the late seventies have all one commen problem:
The springbarrels, the brass quality was very poor and very soft.
And the steel quality used in their arbers (the winding axe) was of very soft steel wich was chromed for its hardness.
If I have such a clock in my shop it is alway nesecery to refitt all the bearings of the springbarrels.
nowadays, (here in Europe) you can order these barels new.
made of better quality.
Furthermore you wil encounter that at least 6 bearings of the clock may need to be serviced, new bearings needs to be fitted.
In general you will encounter a complete overhaul of the movement.
likely the 3 springs will needs changing too.
It is important that if you go to a clockmaker to refitt such a clock that you have some foreward information.
Generaly you will encounter around 240/270 euro's in the cost, I don't know the Euro/Dollar rate at the moment but it is a quideline.
I hope I have been of asistance for you!

nice day,
RJ van Melle.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Just a quick update on this clock:

Working with a clockmaker in Ohio, I arranged to ship the clock to him to replace the movement. He refurbishes Hermle movements, and had one ready to install the moment the clock arrived at his door. It's been back in our home for about 10 days, and in that span of time it has drifted only +1 minute. My wife is overjoyed to have her father's clock working again!

I will gladly recommend this person to anyone in the U.S. whose clock needs servicing. He does quality work and his prices were very fair (at least to me). PM me and I can provide details (his name, e-mail, and telephone number).

Mike
 

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Just a quick update on this clock:

Working with a clockmaker in Ohio, I arranged to ship the clock to him to replace the movement. He refurbishes Hermle movements, and had one ready to install the moment the clock arrived at his door. It's been back in our home for about 10 days, and in that span of time it has drifted only +1 minute. My wife is overjoyed to have her father's clock working again!

I will gladly recommend this person to anyone in the U.S. whose clock needs servicing. He does quality work and his prices were very fair (at least to me). PM me and I can provide details (his name, e-mail, and telephone number).

Mike
So glad to read that heirloom is back doing what it should be.:-!
 
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