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Thread: Quartz battery clock movements

  1. #1
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    Default Quartz battery clock movements

    The little brass clock in my Pilot House died. It was a brass clock with a quartz movement run by a double A battery. Do most clocks use the same movement? In other words is the difference in price on a clock for something other than the movement?

    Does a cheap knockoff clock use the same movement as an expensive brand name one? And by expensive I'm not talking about high-end but just more than the cheapest one
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobcat View Post
    The little brass clock in my Pilot House died. It was a brass clock with a quartz movement run by a double A battery. Do most clocks use the same movement? In other words is the difference in price on a clock for something other than the movement?

    Does a cheap knockoff clock use the same movement as an expensive brand name one? And by expensive I'm not talking about high-end but just more than the cheapest one
    Cheap ones might not be so accurate. Be aware that the stem may be a different length, and that the diameter of the three shafts that take the hands can vary so that the existing hands might not fit the new movement.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    just for grins, why not just type in the movement's numbers and see what ol' google spits back?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    I am thinking of replace the whole clock, not just the movement. (There are reasons) So the issue is do I buy twice as much for one clock versus another, if they both use the same cheap movement?
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    There are 3 main manufacting districts (Swiss, Japanese, Chinese). First 2 are pretty much guaranteed good, although there are variations between producer quality. China is a crapshoot.


    If if the movement doesn't say where it's made, it's Chinese.

    Also, sometimes if it says Swiss or Japanese manufacture, it's still Chinese......
    Last edited by Decourcy; 12-21-2019 at 02:43 PM.

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    Does it matter? Only if you are doing celestial navigation. Get one that looks nice if a whole new clock. Or one that fits if putting new gizzards into old case.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Bear in mind that any movement made in China may very well be made in one of the slave factories of that now facist country.

    Your call though.


    I would disagree with the above post. Yes, I think it does matter. That's why we buy good tools, even though we would likely be able to get by with cheap crap for the number of times we use them. A good movement is the difference between about $0.25 and $20. The manufacturer that uses whichever movement is desired then adds gewgaws to match the chosen price point.
    Last edited by Decourcy; 12-21-2019 at 03:20 PM.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    These are the choices in life that can fill landfills and fill oceans with plastic. Little choices every day.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    You can buy those movements in most of the craft stores like Michael's. They run about eight bucks. As Nick said, you may have to change the hands to fit the stems, but when you buy a movement, they generally come packaged with hands, so make sure the hands fit your face, too.

    The manufacturers generally all use the same movements and unless they are top end clocks, they are going to use the cheap movements. I must have replaced a half dozen of them over the years. Frankly, I don't consider buying a cheap battery clock movement to be anything I'd be getting my politically correct panties in a bunch over. There's enough else to worry about in the world.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by Decourcy View Post
    Bear in mind that any movement made in China may very well be made in one of the slave factories of that now facist country.

    Your call though.
    I agree.

    And which brand of smart-phone do your own, if any?

    Just sayin'.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Cleek View Post
    I agree.

    And which brand of smart-phone do your own, if any?

    Just sayin'.
    iphone. Purchased before I really knew what was going on. My blinders were on. Won't buy another. I'll do without rather than support China.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Did I stray into the bilge? I think you guys need a time out here. Not sayin' that I disagree...

    So I have a clock that my wife wants me to fix and you got me nearly thinking. I searched for Swiss movements and got this made in USA site that seems to have a bit more information about what you are buying and how it might fit. https://www.clockparts.com/premium/ Looks promising, but I have no experience with them.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by MN Dave View Post
    Did I stray into the bilge? I think you guys need a time out here. Not sayin' that I disagree...

    So I have a clock that my wife wants me to fix and you got me nearly thinking. I searched for Swiss movements and got this made in USA site that seems to have a bit more information about what you are buying and how it might fit. https://www.clockparts.com/premium/ Looks promising, but I have no experience with them.
    I have used several US manufactured clock movements from clockparts.com to fix broken clocks, and they have all been excellent. There is a good choice of movements, shaft lengths (to suit different face thicknesses) and clock hands.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements


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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    Buy used...
    The ad was fairly convincing, but if you read the not so fine print, it is not a Seth Thomas, vintage or used.
    ...vintage reproduction. This martime clock is reminiscent of a Chelsea, Seth Thomas, or Corsair-style clock,... Ships brand new with our 100% customer satisfaction guarantee.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Google "clockworks.com". The movements are cheap and surprisingly accurate, but not chronometer accurate. I have no idea where they are made.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by MN Dave View Post
    The ad was fairly convincing, but if you read the not so fine print, it is not a Seth Thomas, vintage or used.
    Nor is it a "Chelsea" or "gimbaled" or "vintage." (Whatever "vintage" means.) Just another "Made in China" (or India, or Pakistan) fake sold on eBay by these offshore manufacturers. eBay is full of that crap. The machine tool stuff is really the worst.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by ahp View Post
    Google "clockworks.com". The movements are cheap and surprisingly accurate, but not chronometer accurate. I have no idea where they are made.
    That worked as a url. This page lists their movements and most of the origins: https://www.clockworks.com/clock-movement.html It looks like some names like Seth Thomas have been sold, so the origin varies over time. It is a shame that good names can be sold to less less reputable... (insert rant here).

  19. #19

    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Go to the woodworker supply places, like Klingspor, Woodworkers Supply, etc. I got several from WWS, seems like they were $5 ish. Lots of variations listed.

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by Decourcy View Post
    There are 3 main manufacting districts (Swiss, Japanese, Chinese). First 2 are pretty much guaranteed good, although there are variations between producer quality. China is a crapshoot.


    If if the movement doesn't say where it's made, it's Chinese.

    Also, sometimes if it says Swiss or Japanese manufacture, it's still Chinese......
    Where are German movements on this spectrum? Weems & Plath use German quartz movements in some of their clocks.
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    I have Weens and Plath on my boat, and a set like this in my house.
    The clock keeps perfect time over a year or so. When my wife was working (20 years ago) and had to be at work at 0600 she commented that was the most accurate clock in the house.
    When I purchased them they were not big money.

    This set I have in the house (without the mount)

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Weems-and-P...temCondition=4

    My dad has a wall mounted Chelsea that was purchased new when they were still in Chelsea, Mass. it's battery powered movement looks like any other.
    Last edited by Canoeyawl; 12-23-2019 at 01:53 PM.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    I ended up ordering a Weems & Plath clock, one that hinges open in the front and uses a AA battery. Some of the clocks used oddball batteries and required one to unscrew them from the bulkhead to change the battery or change the time.
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Is there really much difference in these ‘quartz’ clock movements? They do work on the principle of the harmonic oscillation of a quartz crystal (which is constant), so the circuitry is just counting vibrations.

    I guess that’s all to dry for me, and that’s why I have all mechanical wind up stuff. Chelsea, Salem, Hamilton....

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    I suspect the difference among the movements is durability and the ability to work in a wet marine environment.

    In many respects the quartz movement is no different than the mechanical movement you favor. The quartz movement counts oscillations of quartz mechanical movement counts oscillations of the balance wheel, pendulum, or another mechanical device.
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Yeah, quality control and design affect longevity. Now how to know who does the best job for a reasonable price...

    As for how they work, this seems like a decent overview: https://www.explainthatstuff.com/quartzclockwatch.html It has a link to explain pendulums, but it doesn't explain the hairspring or balance wheel at all. https://brianlawswoodenclocks.blogsp...spring-to.html

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Interesting articles. Thanks for posting them. I have a skeletal mantel clock and you can watch it took over the seconds
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by ahp View Post
    Google "clockworks.com". The movements are cheap and surprisingly accurate, but not chronometer accurate. I have no idea where they are made.
    Made in China. The movement looks like the usual cheap clock movement with the CE logo. Appearance is decent. I think that it was a bit overpriced. I'll have to see how long it lasts and if it keeps time.

  28. #28
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    I got my new clock. Weems and Plath, made in Canada with a movement stamped made in USA
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    And now for the rest of the story. The clock started to run slow --- odd for a "quartz" movement--- and the stopped completely. A fresh battery did not bring it back to life until I rotated the battery. Then it ran for a bit and stopped. Rotating the battery did nothing and put the clock down. A few minutes later it started working. Who knows how long it will continue to tick.*

    There's a lifetime warranty, but I have to send it back to Annapolis and then it's an eight week turn around....

    *stopped again, in a few minutes and no amount of twiddling the battery will bring it back to life .
    Last edited by Bobcat; 05-06-2022 at 06:43 PM.
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  30. #30
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Well that’s frustrating. As a super long shot you might try removing the battery and lightly scraping the faces of the contacts where the battery touches.

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    https://www.klockit.com/?gclid=EAIaI...SAAEgISJvD_BwE


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  32. #32
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Roughing up the contacts did nothing, but it was a long shot

    The clock is going to Weems & Plath under warranty.
    What's not on a boat costs nothing, weighs nothing, and can't break

  33. #33
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    All symptoms point to a poor electrical connection somewhere; if its not the battery terminals then somewhere in the clock internals.....

  34. #34
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Quote Originally Posted by Bobcat View Post
    The little brass clock in my Pilot House died. It was a brass clock with a quartz movement run by a double A battery. Do most clocks use the same movement? In other words is the difference in price on a clock for something other than the movement?

    Does a cheap knockoff clock use the same movement as an expensive brand name one? And by expensive I'm not talking about high-end but just more than the cheapest one
    Again: Google <clockworks.com. They are surprisingly accurate and cost 12 to 15 bucks.

  35. #35
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    Default Re: Quartz battery clock movements

    Dead, dead, and never called me “Mother!”…

    Sold by Sewills in Liverpool as “English Made”, German movement.

    Advice welcome…




    Last edited by Andrew Craig-Bennett; 05-09-2022 at 11:21 AM.
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