Tick Talk Tuesday #18 – Is my Mauthe balance wheel fixable?

Tick-Talk Tuesday is about the letters and comments I have received from you, the reader, concerning your clock, issues you might have had, challenges you face or a clock you would like me to profile and my responses to your questions with advice on your particular clock concern. For those comments and questions that stump even me, I consult within my clock circles for the best possible answer

BJ writes,

“What did you do to fix the balance on the older Hermle movement?  My local clock man would not repair and I love the sound of my clock.  The spring has come away from the top – ok, I took out to try to adj the inner ring and dropped it.  ( it was  losing an hour a day.)  anyhow, the fork also looks to have been bent.

Is this fixable?  I’ve seen a few clocks on-line but did not know if they can be used to repair my movement easily.”

Hermle balance wheel escapement
Hermle balance wheel escapement

My reply,

“Platform escapements and balance wheels are the work of watch-makers. I am not surprised your clock maker would not repair it. In my case I did not have to re-attach the spring but did have to adjust it. If the spring has pulled through the upper block, you could try threading it back in and in give it a little solder to hold it. If it is snapped off, that is much more difficult. Even  if you were to get it back in, that would change the dynamics of the helical spring which is now slightly shorter. You can easily bend the fork back to where it was.

You have some options.

  • Find a donor movement on eBay or Craigslist. If it is exact, and the same model number the parts are interchangeable. However the fact that it is on eBay may mean that the clock is worn and you are no further ahead.
  • Go to a site such as Clockworks and compare your model number to the best fit for a new movement (if you are prepared to go in that direction) or
  • check Timesavers to see if they have a replacement balance wheel.

If you should get it up and running or if you find a donor movement you may find the above article to be of some help.”

BJ writes back,

“Thanks for the article. I wonder if I can get a watch maker to take a look.  Good idea.”