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My first clock purchase

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Posted 1 year ago

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vsc1956
(1 item)

I recently purchased this Waterbury Mantel clock (yesterday). It is 23" wide and approximately 101/2" tall. It chimes every 15 minutes. There is a repair tag in the back door from 1978. I know these clocks are very sensitive...I can get it to run about an hour. Since I only bought it yesterday, I have no idea when it was wound last. I only have a key for the bottom stems. Does anyone have any idea what the three bottom stems are for? The top two stems are smaller (don't have a key for them), but they are marked for their purpose. Any help would be appreciated.

Comments

  1. schallerpen schallerpen, 1 year ago
    The 3 bottom key holes I believe should be one to wind the clock and the other 2 for the chimes, it should be a 8 day movement so that's when you wind it. give them some oil and they'll run forever.
  2. vsc1956 vsc1956, 1 year ago
    Thanks schallerpen! That's what I was thinking, but wanted to make sure. Another question since you brought it up......WHERE do you oil them? I can smell oil when I open the back up.
  3. schallerpen schallerpen, 1 year ago
    It's easiest to just get in touch with a jewelry store or clock shop to clean and oil them if your unfamiliar with clocks but I've been playing with them over 30 years so I do my own with a light sewing machine oil every where there is movement and where all the gears meet up to the frame. Hope this helps you, I've just gotten back into clocks myself after a number of years away from them.
  4. Bruce99 Bruce99, 1 year ago
    Waterbury called this model the "Chime No. 338". It's from circa 1925. Most Westminster Mantel clock movements are constructed so that the large bottom three winding holes from left to right power: Hourly Strike, Time and Quarterly Chime Trains. The small hole is for regulating/adjusting the speed of your clock's time train. If it runs slow, you turn the small arbor towards "F". If it runs fast, you turn the small arbor towards "S". Oiling clocks should only be done with the appropriate CLOCK oil and then only if you know what you are doing. Other oils and so called "lubricants" often quickly evaporate or oxidize leaving behind sticky residues (don't EVER use WD-40!). Clocks should only be oiled if they are clean. Oiling a dirty clock may get it running but if the oil is contaminated with dirt and dust it turns into an abrasive slurry which accelerates wear. You only use a very small amount of oil. Too much oil runs out of the bearing and attracts dust.

    Your clock may be stopping because it needs to be fully wound, or it is not in "beat" or level. If it needs to be wound, it simply wouldn't run very long at all. If it runs for a while and stops it may be out of beat.

    These chiming clocks are somewhat complicated and they require maintenance like any other mechanical device. On the other hand, they are beautiful antiques and provide a lovely, genuine Westminster Chime and hourly Strike...not the digital electronic "tunes" played through a cheap speaker. In 1925 your clock retailed for $72.25. . . nearly $940 in 2012 dollars!

    See: http://billsclockworks.com/opinstructions/chime.htm

    If you're determined to oil your clock's movement, you'll really need to remove it from the case in order to do it properly since both the front and rear plates need to be addressed. Here is a tutorial. It's done on a grandfather clock movement but the basics are the same. See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GaiLSVOxMkc

    Hope that helps.
  5. Bruce99 Bruce99, 1 year ago
    Oh, regarding the winding key, you need a double-ended key. One large end to wind the mainsprings and a small end to adjust the speed. The small end should be used carefully since the speed adjustment mechanism (the regulator mechanism) is relatively delicate compared to the mainsprings. Some folks try to force the mechanism to turn further than it was designed to go and end up stripping the small brass gears involved in its operation. A clock shop can provide you with an appropriately sized double-ended key. You can also find them on eBay IF you know the sizes of the winding and regulation arbors. You'll need to measure them.

    Here is a size guide:

    All sizes in mm starting from small to large
    Key size........ American............ Swiss
    5/0.................. 1.6...................1.25
    4/0.................. 1.8 ..................1.5
    3/0.................. 2.0.................. 1.75
    2/0.................. 2.2.................. 2.0
    0...................., 2.4 ..................2.25
    1..................... 2.6.................. 2.5
    2..................... 2.8.................. 2.75
    3..................... 3.0.................. 3.0
    4..................... 3.2...................3.25
    5..................... 3.4.................. 3.5
    6..................... 3.6.................. 3.75
    7..................... 3.8.................. 4.0
    8..................... 4.0.................. 4.25
    9..................... 4.2.................. 4.5
    10................... 4.4 ..................4.75
    11................... 4.6.................. 5.0
    12................... 4.8.................. 5.25
    13................... 5.0.................. 5.5
    14................... 5.2.................. 5.75
    15................... 5.4.................. 6.0
    16................... 5.6.................. 6.25
    17................... 5.8.................. 6.5
    18................... 6.0.................. 6.75
    19................... 6.2.................. 7.0
    20................... 6.4.................. 7.25
    21................... 6.6.................. 7.5
    22................... 6.8.................. 7.75
    23................... 7.0.................. 8.0

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