How to Fix a Wind-Up Clock

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Wind-up clocks are complicated devices with lots of moving parts inside of them; with so many moving parts, there are a lot of things that can go wrong. The part of a wind-up clock that has all the gears is called the “movement,” or the “clockworks.” Fixing a wind-up clock can be very easy if all you want to do is replace the movement. It is a more difficult venture if you want or need to keep your original movement, as this requires the delicate repair of a complicated instrument.

Movement Replacement

Remove the back of your clock and look at the back plate of the clock’s movement to identify what kind of movement you have. Locate the manufacturer’s name. Common manufacturers include Hermle, Kieninger and Urgos.

Order a replacement movement from the manufacturer. Carefully remove the hands, the dial, the pendulum and the weights from the movement using a pair of tweezers.

Remove the movement from the clock and slide the new one into place. Carefully return the hands, dial, pendulum and weights to their original positions.

Movement Repair

Repairing the movement allows users to isolate and fix problems resulting in specific performance defects. If your clock has stopped ticking, check whether the hands are touching the dial or one another. If they are, use a pair of tweezers to bend the hands slightly so they are free to move.

When the hands are moving fine, check the pendulum to see if it touches any other objects as it swings. If it does, the problem may be that the clock is not level. Always make sure the clock is sitting on an even surface. Another reason may be that someone has installed the wrong type of bob, which can cause the pendulum to hit the movement as it swings. Consult the manufacturer to discover which kind of bob you need and order a replacement.

If your clock still does not work, a thorough cleaning is in order. Sometimes dry oil can obstruct the workings of the clockworks. Wipe away the dried oil and inspect the inner workings for wear. If there is a lot of wear, you may need to order a replacement movement.


About the Author

John Shields has written marketing materials and media releases since 2009. In 2010, he received a Master of Arts from York University. He currently works as an intern for a charitable criminological research organization. Shields is chiefly interested in writing on law, politics and public policy.