Oiling the clock mechanism
This is a typical rear plate for a grandfather
clock mechanism. This rear plate has 18 pivot
oil sinks that need to be oiled.
The front plate has the same number of pivot
oil sinks as the rear plate. However, the front
plate is a little tricky to oil. NEVER put oil
on a lever, rack, or snail that is just gravity
driven. They are designed to drop freely, and if
you oil them, you introduce drag to the point and
it will not drop as it is designed to.
The levers that move freely when you lightly
touch them do not require oil. Look behind all
levers and brackets for hidden pivot points.
It is best to trace the power train. Start with
the first wheel and see where that gear connects
to the next gear, or pinion. Every gear and pinion
will have 2 pivot points that require oil.
You have to be careful not to miss pivot points
that are hidden behind levers, or brackets as in
this example. If you oil all of the bushings but
one or two, the clock will run, but those unoiled
pivot points will suffer excessive wear. It is better
to not oil the clock, and stop it, then to oil the
mechanism and miss critical pivots.
Above is an example of too much oil. If you place
too much oil in the pivot's oil sink well, the oil will
drain down the plate until all oil has been drawn
away from the pivot. Also excessive oil on the
plate will attract abrasive particles from the air.
It is very important that you use a good high
grade of clock oil. For about $10.00 you can buy
a complete "Clock Oiler Kit" or for $4.00 you can
an oiler and enough oil to do about 25 clocks.
The point here is that you use very little oil.
Oil also makes a great cleaning agent for breaking
loose the old oil. Flood the old dry oil with fresh
oil, then take a round tooth pick and clean the oil
sink well. Then remove all oil from the plate and the