Welcome to learn clock repair!

Clock up of clock gears wheels pinions

For free information on all things horological, please browse the menus and articles on this website.

I am constantly updating the page with full intentions of keeping the information free and available to everybody, but this website does cost me money to run, and I have a living to earn, so please bear with me as I slowly add content during my free time.

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One hundred and fifty-seven million, six hundred and eighty thousand –  The number of times a typical carriage clock will tick in a single year.

 

The escape wheel and pallets of an english lever escapement.
For each tick of that clock, several things happen; the mainspring releases power to the gears, the gear train transmits that power to the escapement, the balance wheel unlocks the lever while the escape wheel impulses, locks then draws it back into position. 

After 3 years, the small amount of oil on the pivots has all but evaporated or dried up. Particles of dust will have mixed with the dried residue forming a grinding paste. As the steel pivots continue to turn, they grind their way into the brass plates, elongating the hole, causing the gears to wander apart.

As the gears wander apart, the carefully formed tooth tips stop functioning as intended and added friction causes them to wear. Dust build up on the teeth embeds itself into the soft brass, causing it to grind away shallow pits in the steel pinion gear with which it meshes.

The tick itself is the sound of tiny escape wheel teeth, hammering against the garnet faces of the pallet jewels, each tick causing miniscule amounts of wear to the escapement.

After five years, the amount of wear caused by these factors is noticeable to the trained eye, and it is perfectly justifiable  for a repairer to recommend a service, but often, fresh oil will improve the situation for a few more years.

So when a customer brings me a clock after ten to fifteen years of good and reliable service, and tells me it works, but is overwound or just needs a clean… well, it drives me to build a website.

And dont get me started on broken mainsprings that just need changing… (more on that to come.)

 

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