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Lighting Fixtures, Switch Panels and Meters Antique lighting fixtures, bulbs, switches, meters and controls.

Lighting Fixtures, Switch Panels and Meters

Old Hammond Synchronous Clock


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  #1  
Old 01-23-2017, 07:10:08 PM
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Default Old Hammond Synchronous Clock

i have this old 40's-50's art deco Hammond clock that won't keep running. It's been in the basement for years and I figured I'd have a go at it. The prime mover is a coil that inductively couples to a framework and then to a clamped on motor. Inside the sealed motor can there is a star wheel and reduction gears. The motor then drives another gear train that operates the hands.

The problem is that it'll run for a minute or few then stop.

As it's 70 odd years old I assumed the oil in the motor had congealed. I melted the solder blob off the side figuring it covers an oil fill port. Yup I was right. I drained what I could by shaking it. Then shots of carb cleaner into the hole to flush out gunk. I did this numerous times giving it time to soak in. I put very light oil back in and soldered the hole up to seal it. *No idea as to how much should be in it..

If I spin the gear with the motor out it turns freely and through the reduction train will continue for ~5 seconds. Put it back together, give the starter a spin and it'll run for a short while.

Ok clocksmiths, plz chime in.
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Old 01-23-2017, 07:48:20 PM
Radiomike Radiomike is offline
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Default Re: Old Hammond synchronous clock

I have some old Telechron clock motors that responded well to lubrication; I use special clock or watch oil. It is possible one of the gears has worn to the extent it no longer meshes. A possible alternative is a heat induced fault in the coil, that is easy to check. There is a man offering a rebuild at around $150.
http://www.telechron.us/hammond.html
Perhaps this book on Amazon may be a bit cheaper, check your local library.
https://www.amazon.ca/Hammond-Synchr.../dp/0984671803

Interesting that Hammond started with clocks and motors but became best known for the "Hammond Organ". This uses a synchronous motor, gear wheels and inductive pick-ups to create the unique tone.
Mike
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Old 01-23-2017, 09:56:46 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: Old Hammond synchronous clock

I love old synchronous clocks. I also have a Hammond, one of the ones in the Art Deco tombstone shaped Bakelite cases. Mine gave the same symptoms as yours.

Unfortunately, as I have learned from a friend who is heavily into antique clock repair, these motors were not designed to be serviced like a conventional clock, but rather to merely be replaced. Of course that isn't an option now, not that we would want to loose the originality or suffer the low quality of something new.

As with conventional clocks, the bushings and pivots are most likely worn out and need to be renewed. This can surely be done, but requires the necessary surgery of taking the case apart. I have a few of them that need this service as well.
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Old 01-23-2017, 11:18:29 PM
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Default Re: Old Hammond synchronous clock

The motor assembly has been running on my desk for a few hours. but if I stop it it takes a lot of spins to get it going. I wonder if there's an electrical equivalent to a shot of ether. Hmm,,, a short pop of 220?
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Old 01-23-2017, 11:23:41 PM
Vanman Vanman is offline
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Default Re: Old Hammond synchronous clock

That's how mine was difficult to start and would not reliably stay running long term. Overvoltage might make it start and run just fine but will no doubt burn out the exceedingly fine windings quickly! So not a viable solution.
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Old 01-24-2017, 12:52:34 AM
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Default Re: Old Hammond synchronous clock

Other projects take priority but maybe I'll go johnnyc on it and unsolder the whole thing.
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Old 01-24-2017, 02:50:19 PM
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Default Re: Old Hammond Synchronous Clock

Since it's all apart, why put it aside and lose parts.
I unsoldered the fill port again, drained the oil and did a few more fill and drains with contact cleaner. Then I squirted 1.5 ml of very light oil similar to 3 in 1 oil into it and soldered the port closed. It now stars with a minimum turn of the starter. I didn't go full Jc resto on it as it could use some veneer work to mint it out. With my woodworking skills it'd look like crap when I got done with it.

As it only uses 2W, I'll put it in some usable location.
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Old 01-24-2017, 04:12:46 PM
Power Power is offline
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Default Re: Old Hammond Synchronous Clock

Furniture touch up stick can make those marks almost invisible.
I use the ones by Minwax with excellent results.
Do not use the ones that look like crayons.

Glad you did not unsolder cover. I tried it years ago, when my eyesight and control were excellent. It is extremely difficult to keep all the gear shafts in their bearings and align the cover.
Alignment needs to be very precise, probably more precise than can be done by hand.
Not only rotation, but centering of cover in pot, and depth must be to thousandths.
Even with multiple fine scribe marks, I could not get the alignment perfect, and there was binding.
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Old 01-24-2017, 07:09:32 PM
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Default Re: Old Hammond Synchronous Clock

^ It's missing a couple small pieces of veneer and the long strip that goes over the hump is cracked. It's really not worth putting money into it but maybe some day someone will.
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Old 01-25-2017, 11:25:12 AM
Frank DeWitt Frank DeWitt is offline
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Default Re: Old Hammond Synchronous Clock

You might get some help, or even some parts over at http://mb.nawcc.org/forumdisplay.php...ctric-Horology

That's a nice clock and certainly worth fixing.
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Old 01-30-2017, 02:57:47 AM
Tracy T Tracy T is offline
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Default Re: Old Hammond Synchronous Clock

My main clock is old and noisy but still keeps time. I may have to look for a solider spot and try to oil mine. You definitely have a nice clock there!
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