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Helpful Tips


Helpful Tips

Your clock gets adjusted in shop to a level reference point, meaning that when you set up your clock you just need to make sure it’s level.

Start up your clock with a gentle push of the pendulum to till it begins to tick. Clocks need to be level to allow an even tick-tock. This creates a more reliable timekeeper, and prevents loss of power which makes the clock stop.

Regulating is the adjustment (usually the pendulum) to allow proper time keeping. We regulate your clock in shop prior to giving it back to you. What does this mean? There are two different ways of regulating a pendulum. To start out, set the correct time and monitor whether it’s gaining or loosing time and then adjust the following ways. (A good rule of thumb is to allow 24 hours in between adjustments. Also remember that spring driven clocks may run slower as the spring unwinds)

  1. Some clocks have a small hole near the 12 on the dial, and through this hole you would insert the smaller end of your double-ended key and either rotate left or right. If your clock does not have an F for faster or S for slower to guide your turns, usually counter-clockwise is slower and clockwise is faster.
  2. Many clocks have a nut at the base of the pendulum that you and screw up or down or make the pendulum shorter or longer respectively. The shorter the pendulum the faster it will run, and the longer the pendulum the slower it will run. If you are looking at the hand nut from above, turning it counter clockwise will make it run faster or gain time, while turning it clockwise will make it run slower or loose time. Make only slight adjustments per day. Some clock models, one complete 360 degree rotation of the nut is one minute per day.
  3. 400 Day Clocks: These types of clocks can have many variations but generally ball type pendulums have a serrated adjustment nut above the balls and often marked with arrows showing which direction of a turn corrects for “fast” or “slow”.
  4. Balance Clocks (Clocks without Pendulums): Clocks with balance movements are not as sensitive to the clock being level or off balance. To adjust the timekeeping on these clocks, there is often a piece that looks like the top of a flat head screw that is usually above the back brass plate. Using a small screwdriver, rotate the screw according to the diagram stamped on the plate. (usually clockwise is faster, while counter-clockwise is slower). Another form of regulating common on some older German movements you adjust a three fingered brass disk over top of the silver colored balance wheel. With your thumb, stop the wheel and gently keep it in place. Then while holding that wheel, use a small screwdriver, pencil, or pointed object to move the fingered brass wheel either left or right. Again, following the directions stamped onto the back brass plate.

Never move the hands backwards. This cause stress on the clock, hands and even cause the number of times it strikes to not match the time that the hands are reading. If you do need to set the correct time, slowly advance the hands and stopping at the 6, and pause to allow it to strike, and then continue to move the hands to the 12, and pause again. This method can be a little longer of a way to set the time. Another method is to stop the clock by stopping the pendulum, and then restarting it when it reaches the time the hands are showing. For example, if daylight savings time ends and you fall back an hour, and your clock is reading 8:30, stop it and start it again in an hour.

Is your clock striking the wrong hour? Watch our how-to video to learn how to correct it.

If you ever need to move your clock, from a wall, or a shelf, first stop the clock by stopping the pendulum’s motion, remove the pendulum and any weights if it has them. Then proceed to move the clock and then replace the pendulum and weights. These items when jostled around in or around the case can cause damage to not only the case but also the movement. Tip: If your clock has chains take a twisty-tie or string through the chains close to the case to prevent the chains from slipping out and giving you another headache.


Should you ever require to move your tallcase/grandfather clock, it is best to have us assist you with moving it.


Feel free to give us a call or email us if you a have any other questions about the operation of your clock. We’ll be delighted to help you.

717-521-7129 ·