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The last post was a bit negative, so here’s a better one…

pocket1 pocket2

Let’s start with a list of achievements. # The day I took the Gomperts clock back was a resounding success. The nice gentleman customer was very delighted with the end product that he would not let me leave! My friend Brian came with me on the trip to the lovely Belvoir vale and Mr A Reed kept us topped up with tea and cakes and stories of the old days on Lancaster bombers! # I climbed out of an unpleasant predicament regarding a clock service where the customer reneged on the deal. I just got a phone call saying they associated the clock with bad memories and left it to my possession instead of payment. So on eBay it went and it sold within one day for more than my initial fee with my customer! # I have comfortably retained/learnt the information in the 12 volumes of the BHI long distance course. I am not saying I could relate it verbaim from beginning to end but I have carefully gone through it and nothing now scares me. # I have made all the practical parts for the course, they just need a little fettling up. # I have serviced my first pocket watch. # I have now given little clock to my step-father. I made it for him. Due to time constraints the finalising of it is not as high standard as I stipulate on. But I can return to it later to give it that luster and shine. My step-father is happy with it anyway.

Having a bit of a dreadful time…

Well let me start with a funny bit; This mass produced, west minster chime, mantle clock that I have just serviced took one day to do. The following morning I sat watching it ticking away nicely on my mantlepiece with cup of tea in hand. When it started to chime the fourth quarter. Merrily it chimed away – ding dong ding dong, ding dong ding dong, etc to the tune of the great clock in Elizabeth tower on the palace of westminster. When all of a sudden it went – dingdingdongdongdingdingdingdongdong! Really fast! It made me jump out of my skin. So I pounced on it to arrest which ever gear train had suddenly set itself free. After a little scrutiny I discovered the culprit; The little piece of spring steel that holds the fly to its arbor on the strike train had fallen out. So when the strike released of its warn, it raced through as fast as it could. It is remarkable the differance it makes. Having no fly. On the negative side of things I am finding it difficult sourcing a mainspring for the chime side. I bought a new 22x.40x45mm which I am sure should do the job, but I am incorrect, it is not up to it. It drives the train with reluctancy and only when fully wound. So I have been led to ask ‘What are the equations of determining correct spring thickness x length for a given barrel..? The answer as you might have guessed is not easy. I am not a great mathemetician and I need hands on help overcoming this hurdle. Until then it is a case of trial and error and me loosing out on profits. :( You really have to be 100% thorough when servicing a clock. If you cut a corner it will bite you in the ass. Clocks are not friendly things. They don’t like being touched.

A bit of a clock update

Well I have had a fairly constructive weekend. Not massive leaps and bounds but progress non the less.

I have finally made the bell stand for my longcase clock;


It just needs a clean up.

I have also made the crutch for little clock;


I have had two mantle clocks off eBay;


They will be happily tick-tocking soon.

And my bhi materials pack has arrived;


Oh, and I can now sight read, slowly but surely Bach’s BWV 1004 for classical guitar.


Next I would like to make the pallet arbor crutch. But this can’t be fitted until I cut out the top slot in the back plate. Because once it’s soldered on I won’t be able to get it out unless that slot is cut. But; one of my registering pins is right there in the way, and I need it to help me position and depth the striking train. So the striking train has to be done next all the way up to the fly. Then I can cut out the back plate, so that I can work down towards the pendulum.