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How to disassemble quartz clocks

Updated February 21, 2017

Quartz clocks are found in homes all over the world. Regarded as an accurate timepiece that requires no adjustments, the quartz clock has replaced mechanical alarm clocks in bedrooms and decorative clocks in living rooms. In fact, just about any size or shape case can accommodate a battery-operated quartz clock. With the exception of minor details which may be unique to the case that a quartz mechanism is installed within, a quartz clock can be disassembled with a few tools in a relatively short time.

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  1. Access the battery compartment of the clock and remove the battery. If the clock case is enclosed, remove the screws that secure the back panel with the appropriate screwdriver.

  2. Open the front panel door if the quartz clock is equipped with one.

  3. Remove the sweep-second hand from the centre tube by puling it straight out with your fingers. Grip the hand at its centre hub to avoid bending it.

  4. Remove the minute hand retaining nut with your fingers. Turn the nut counterclockwise while holding the minute hand near its centre with your other hand. If the nut is tight, loosen it with combination pliers.

  5. Remove the minute hand from its arbor.

  6. Remove the hour hand by turning it slightly in either direction while pulling it forward. Grip the hour hand at its centre hub when pulling.

  7. Turn the quartz clock retaining nut counterclockwise with the combination pliers until it is loose. Remove the nut the remainder of its distance with your fingers. Hold the quartz movement from the rear while removing the nut.

  8. Remove the quartz movement from the clock.

  9. Locate the locking tabs on either side of the quartz clock movement.

  10. Insert the tip of a flathead jeweller's screwdriver into the locking loops that the tabs are in and pry them up just enough for the tab to pull out.

  11. Hold the quartz clock movement horizontally in your hand because once the tabs are free, the two-halves can be separated. Lift the upper half slowly from the lower half.

  12. Raise the individual gears from their respective plastic bushings with tweezers.

  13. Remove the two battery contact strips from their slotted retainers in the battery compartment using the tweezers.

  14. Locate the locking tabs that hold the printed circuit board in place. Bend the tabs slightly with the jewellers screwdriver and remove the board from the movement housing to complete the disassembly.

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Things You'll Need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Combination pliers
  • Flathead jeweller's screwdriver
  • Tweezers

About the Author

Max Stout began writing in 2000 and started focusing primarily on non-fiction articles in 2008. Now retired, Stout writes technical articles with a focus on home improvement and maintenance. Previously, he has worked in the vocational trades such as automotive, home construction, residential plumbing and electric, and industrial wire and cable. Max also earned a degree of biblical metaphysician from Trinity Seminars Ministry Academy.

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