Jauch Drop Octagon – one problem I cannot address…..yet!

Jauch wall clock
Jauch German drop octagon wall clock

We often cruise the HiBid sites. While they may be wholly Canadian I am sure there are similar sites in the US. HiBid are a hosting service for antique online auction companies and from time to time clocks come up on estate sales.

One day in early February 2017 we were on a Nova Scotia HiBid auction site and noticed a Jauch drop octagon with a PL42 movement. I made what I thought was a reasonably good bid. We had errands to run that day so I just left the bid, got home later and realized and surprised that I had won. It was a good purchase. After running for several weeks I opened the case up and discovered its hidden secret.

Time only movement
Time-only Jauch movement

The clock easily runs a full 8-day cycle but it gains about 5-7 minutes at the beginning of the cycle and loses the same at the end of the cycle. A dramatic difference! A properly functioning clock is designed to run at an acceptable rate of + or- 1 minute per week but this depends on adequate power to the escapement with very little fluctuation in that power.

Scored pivots and worn barrel arbor holes are real issues for this movement. The pivots are small, a light touch with a buff stick and a minimal polish along with pegging and round broaching the holes should be the first steps in reviving this clock. Bushing work is also quite possible. The barrels are another matter. If worn, they require bushing. The cap is too thin to bush without making a thin flange or leaving the bush a bit proud and peening both sides. The barrel is narrow and it is said that they really get the wobbles when worn.

This is an inexpensive German movement but finely made and well engineered. An overhaul should result in a good long run.

I took the movement apart and discovered two things. One, it needs at least 3, perhaps 4 bushings and secondly, there is a significant gap in the barrel cap as seen in the photo below.

Barell showing a very wide gap
Barrel cap showing a wide gap caused by wear around the arbour, weak point of this movement
Front plate is removed
Front plate is removed showing going train

The real issue for me is the barrel cap. I can attempt to bush the cap but the bushing would likely not hold unless it is peened. The gap is causing an unbalance in power transmitted through the gears as a result of the wear. The soft brass barrel cap is definitely a weakness of this movement. The result is the erratic running described above and a wobble in the pendulum. I contacted a gentleman in Arizona who would be prepared to correct the wear by installing two new bushings on the gear side and cap of the barrel. The cost is 1 1/2 times the value of the clock so I have decided against that option. It is just not worth it!

1 Day Later

I installed 3 bushings. The front side of the escape wheel arbour, the front side of the second wheel and the minute shaft. I re-assembled the movement, oiled it, adjusted the pallets, reinstalled the worn barrel and have put the movement back into its case. It is now running and in the next week or two I will see what effect new bushings will have on the running of the clock. My hope is a marginal improvement given the worn barrel.

A barrel repair will have to wait until I have the proper tools.