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How to Fix a Tempus Fugit Grandfather Clock

Grandfather clocks can last for years if repaired and properly cared for.
grandfather clock image by MAXFX from Fotolia.com

A Tempus Fugit Grandfather clock is made like any other Grandfather clock, only they were made in Asia, and not in America or Germany. The mechanisms within the clock are the same, for they have a pendulum, chimes, face, hands and inner mechanisms that work in synchronized order within the clock allowing it to function properly. When one part malfunctions, the rest of the clock mechanisms may be thrown out of alignment and will need to be adjusted.

Gently open the back of the Tempus Fugit Grandfather clock with slip-joint pliers. Examine the spring of the clock to see if it is in working order. Oil the spring in the pivot sections or replace the spring with a new one if it is faulty or too old. Use a small pair of pliers to remove it, if necessary. Place a small amount of clock oil onto the gears within the clock, and oil the clock mechanisms once every three years for maintenance.

Examine the weights on your Tempus Fugit Grandfather clock. Carefully remove the pendulum -- which is the piece that swings back and forth -- and set it aside. Check to see that the weights are pulled up and in proper order. Look at the bottom of the weights where they are marked left, right and center; if tangled, adjust the weights so they are in their proper place.

Hook the pendulum back up after the weights are aligned. Make sure the pendulum is hung correctly. The shiny side of the pendulum should always be facing front. Adjust the pendulum bob to regulate the speed of the clock. Push the bob up in order to run the clock faster or push it down to slow the clock.

Check the hands on the clock to make sure they are not touching. If they are stuck, gently move the minute hand away from the hour hand by turning it counterclockwise.

Bend the minute hand towards you if the hands continue to touch or get stuck in place. Be careful not to break off any part of the hand when pulling, and always make sure that the hands are not rubbing against the clock face.

Set the time by turning the minute hand clockwise to move forward in time or counterclockwise to go back. Pause at each quarter hour when moving the minute hand clockwise until the clock chimes or you hear a click. Set the moon dial on the clock next by pressing against it while rotating the dial to the right.

Things You'll Need:

  • Clock oil
  • Slip-joint pliers


  • Never move the hour by itself to set the time. Never move the minute hand when the clock is chiming or striking.
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