How to Adjust a Franz-Hermle Grandfather Clock

Updated April 17, 2017

A Franz-Hermle grandfather clock needs to be adjusted properly in order to work correctly. The clock--which is often 6 to 8 feet tall and encased in wood--has an intricate set of inner and outer mechanisms that work in synchronised order. If the inner mechanisms are not functioning correctly, then the outer mechanisms--such as the pendulum and hands on the face dial--may not work correctly as well.

Set the Franz-Hermle grandfather clock on a level floor--in the spot where the clock will be permanently placed--when adjusting the mechanisms. These types of grandfather clocks should not be moved after adjusted, because moving the clock can interfere with the functioning of the clock's mechanisms.

Stand the clock against a thick piece of wood that is screwed against the wall, or on a totally flat floor surface, so that the clock doesn't shift. Place a piece of wood or carpet under the front feet, so that the clock case stands evenly and sturdily against the wall.

Look to see if the gut lines are still intact on the winding barrels, and not dropped onto the winding spindles. Undo the gut lines if they have dropped, and put them back in their proper place on the barrels. Take the pulley wheels off if necessary, by first removing the guts of the seat board with a small pair of pliers if needed, and then remove the pulley wheels. Replace the pulley wheels before twisting the guts back onto the seat board by hand.

Check that the mechanisms inside the clock are in working order. Examine the spring, and adjust it if necessary. Oil the spring in the pivot sections with clock oil, or replace with a new spring if it is not working, or rusted. Check the gears, and oil the gears in sections where there is friction. Make sure to oil these mechanisms once every three years.

Examine the outer workings of the clock. Make sure to adjust the pendulum bob, so that the shiny part is in the front. Adjust the pendulum by pulling it forward slightly, so that the pendulum is not hitting against the backboard of the clock case.

Hang the weights next, making sure they are in the proper place. Look on the bottom of the weights, where they are marked front, left and centre. Franz-Hermle grandfather clock weights can become tangled, and will prohibit the clock from working correctly if they are tangled.

Move the pendulum to get it swinging once the weights are set. Gently grasp the bottom of the pendulum, and move it either to the right or left to make the pendulum swing, and listen for a tick-tock sound. Bend the thin wire rod on the pendulum slightly, if the clock ticking sounds irregular.

Set the time on the clock by moving the smaller minute hand on the clock face counterclockwise on the hour you want the clock to chime, then move the big hand around the clock face dial counterclockwise once, to the 12. Listen for the chime to strike, and don't over wind.

Things You'll Need

  • Small pair of pliers
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About the Author

Linda Stamberger began writing professionally in 1994, as an entertainment reporter for "Good Times Magazine." She has written online copy for The Volusia Community website and is the author of "Antiquing in Florida." Stamberger studied creative writing at Southampton College, where she won a partial writing scholarship.