Cuckoo Clock Maintenance, Black Forest Clock Service, Repair and Commissioning of a Cuckoo Clock
We only stock cuckoo clocks from manufacturers who are members of the Black Forest Clock Association (VDS) (Hönes, Hubert Herr, Anton Schneider, Trenkle, Hekas and Rombach & Haas). In this association, the most renowned manufactories of the Black Forest have joined forces to provide customers with a clear and reliable quality mark for original Black Forest clocks. The VDS has developed a quality certificate for Black Forest clocks, which is only awarded to mechanical clocks. This certificate is not available for quartz clocks. The quality mark is only awarded to clocks that have been manufactured exclusively in the Black Forest. In order to offer a high level of service to international customers, the association has acquired service partners all over the world.
Every Black Forest Palace clock comes with a 24 month guarantee.
Each cuckoo clock undergoes extensive testing by the manufacturer before delivery. Therefore, it is extremely unlikely that there will be any technical problems. Due to the sophisticated technology and the generally very high quality level of Original Black Forest Clocks, warranty cases are extremely rare.
However, should a problem arise with your cuckoo clock during the warranty period, please contact us.
Cuckoo Clock Care
Cuckoo clocks do not require any special care. The modern movements are very sophisticated, low maintenance and easy to service.
Mechanical cuckoo clocks should be serviced every 3-5 years, as recommended by most manufacturers. This service ensures consistent accuracy and a longer life (usually at least 30 years) for the clockwork. Most local clockmakers can carry out this service for you.
If a problem arises with your Black Forest clock after the warranty period has expired, there are several ways to resolve the problem.
- You can try to have it repaired by a clockmaker of your choice.
- You can contact the manufacturer. We are happy to contact the manufacturer for you and try to find out the best way to proceed.
If a repair requires new parts, a local clockmaker may not be able to help you and it is advisable to contact the manufacturer directly.
Assembling, setting up and shipping a cuckoo clock
Each cuckoo clock comes with assembly and installation instructions. Please read the instructions carefully before unpacking your Black Forest Clock. If you have enough space, it is recommended that you keep the original box, as it is ideal for shipping your cuckoo clock. Most importantly: Once you have removed the small bag underneath the clock, which contains the chains, never turn the clock upside down as the chains may fall off the wheels. Find a nice place in your home for your new treasure.
In order not to shorten the life of the cuckoo clocks, you should only expose them to a normal environment. Temperatures below 5° C, high humidity, lots of dust/dirt or moisture are not suitable for cuckoo clocks.
As cuckoo clocks are relatively heavy due to their massive construction, a stable wall mounting is necessary. The mounting height should not be too low so that the weights/chains do not touch the floor. Otherwise the cuckoo clock will need to be wound more frequently.
To ship a clock, pull on the chains until the hooks are down to the bottom of the box. Put a piece of wire or thread through all the chains as close to the box as possible. Roll the chains in a piece of aluminum foil and secure the bundle with tape, thread or rubber. This will prevent the chains from jumping off the gears and getting caught in the work.
Insert a piece of paper into the spring at the back of the box lid. Pack the clock in an oversized box and stuff it with newspaper (do not use polystyrene flakes), then wrap and label the pendulum and pack with it. Please do NOT send the weights. If there are numbers on the weights (275 or 320 etc.) write them on a piece of paper along with your name, address, telephone number, email address and a description of your problem and seal the package.
Problems with cuckoo clocks and how to solve them
- The clock was set up, but the cuckoo (and the music for musical cuckoo clocks) does not work.
Please follow the instructions carefully when unpacking the clock. If the clock still does not work, please check the following points:
- Have the clamps inside the clock been removed as described in the instructions?
- Has the cuckoo door been opened? A small hook on the side that protected the door during shipping must be turned.
- Check the position of the night shutoff switch. Often the night shutoff has been activated and the cuckoo and music do not work. Some clocks have a switch on the left side of the clock, others have a hook under the cuckoo. Check both positions of the night switch and make sure that the switch/hook is not somewhere between "ON" and "OFF".
- A chain has jumped off the gear.
If one of the weights keeps falling to the ground, the chain has jumped off the gear. Repairing this is not easy and requires some patience. To fix this, pull the remaining chains all the way up and unhook the weights. Hold the remaining chains in place by pulling a piece of wire through them. Make sure you do this as far up the box as possible. This is very important, otherwise the other chains will also jump off the wheels. Take the cuckoo clock off the wall and open it from the back. Turn the clock around and try to balance the chain on the gear wheel again.
- The cuckoo clock runs too fast or too slow.
The pendulum is responsible for how fast your cuckoo clock moves. If your clock is running too fast, you can correct this by moving the pendulum arm down a little. If it is too slow, you can move it up. This should also be described in your instructions. Remember that moving the pendulum three millimeters is equivalent to changing the time by three minutes in 24 hours.
- The clock stops.
Make sure the cuckoo clock is hanging straight on the wall. The clock must be exactly vertical to allow the pendulum to swing freely. You must "listen" to the clock to see if it has a regular tick-tock rhythm. Adjust your cuckoo clock using your ears rather than your eyes. Do this by moving the cuckoo clock left and right until it has a regular tick-tock rhythm. The clock does not strike on the full and half hour, but at other times. In this case it is not the cuckoo that is wrong, but the minute hand is in the wrong position. To set the hand correctly, loosen the hand nut, set the minute hand to the full hour and retighten the hand nut.
- The clock strikes the wrong time (e.g. five times at seven o'clock, etc.).
In this case, it is not the cuckoo that is wrong, but the hour hand is in the wrong position. To set the hand correctly, gently pull it towards you by its stem. Then set the minute hand to the full hour. Depending on how often the clock strikes, adjust the hour hand and then push it back to its original position. CAUTION: If your Black Forest Clock has wooden hands, you may need to glue the hands in place after adjusting. Do not use too much glue. After the cuckoo has sung, the door will remain open.
- After the cuckoo has sung, the door will remain open.
If you open the back of the clock, you will see a thin wire running from the bottom of the clock to the cuckoo. This wire is used to move the cuckoo when it calls. It is not connected to the cuckoo, but usually ends at the cuckoo's tail. Due to transport, it is possible for the wire to run over the cuckoo. If this happens, the wire will block the cuckoo and the door. To fix this, you can simply guide the wire carefully around the cuckoo so that it ends up under the cuckoo's tail. This is quite easy if you open the little door, because the cuckoo will move forward.