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About Hermle Clock Movements
Hermle clock movements are among the finest movements made in the modern times. The German made Hermle units typically work night and day for 30 years without much complaint. To go and get it restored like you normally would with any clock after a long time, it is found that is cost is high. This is for good reason as it can be a large task to restore it. But as you see, since its a modern day unit (Post War German) it can be available new for a very good price. Get a new movement instead of a fixed up old one, get it in 3 days instead of 6 months. Save hundreds of dollars doing it also.
Hermle Clock Movement Identification
Most important is the identification of the Hermle clock movement and it requires locating the numbers on the back plate of the movement itself. This can be done by removing access panels, sticking a phone inside and taking a picture, or even a mirror. Use any possible means to get the number of the Hermle clock movement. This information is not in the manual that came with the clock or on the wood case. On the back plate of the Hermle clock movement there are numbers such as 451-050 94 cm. These numbers indicate everything there is to know about that particular mechanical Hermle clock movement.
Identification is the first step
In order to purchase a new Hermle clock movement, the old number has to match up with the new one. In short, the new movement will be exactly the same. It is not a knock off. Generally speaking, all of the existing clock components will fit the new movement. Proper identification of the Hermle clock movement is important when troubleshooting, ordering parts, or discussing compatible components. Thus, when contacting us it is imperative to correctly reference the number on the backplate of the movement. If there is any confusion, send us a picture of the back plate, as close and as clear as possible, and we can help identify which Hermle clock movement is needed.
A new Hermle clock movement is best
To clarify, as previously discussed in several sections, a new Hermle clock movement is always best. A new unit is a fraction of the price of an overhaul. The clock will be up and running much faster than waiting months for an overhaul to be completed. The new Hermle clock movement will last another 30 years. This is not possible with a restored unit.
Ordering the Hermle Clock Movement
With the numbers off of the back plate we can start ordering the Hermle clock movement. This stamp will be right in the brass, so it maybe tricky to get to. Of course, the easiest way is to just use a cell phone and take a picture of the back. If there are side access panels on the clock case it makes it easy. If you do not have a cell phone you can do the mirror and flashlight trick. Either way after you get the numbers off of it, we can narrow down the Hermle Clock Movement to order.
Why match the numbers
With the numbers off of the back plate of the Hermle Clock Movement, we can now match it. Moreover, the movement numbers mean everything for the replacement unit. It tells us all about every aspect of the clock movement. If you match the numbers with the list, it will be the same movement. So, if the numbers from the movement do not match correctly, it will not fit right in the case.
Matching the numbers
All in all, the first thing to do when ordering a Hermle clock movement is to match the movements number's prefix. The numbers prefix is the first set of numbers in the set. Such as 1161-853 114cm, the prefix would be 1161. Click the list of movements prefix 1161 to see all the movements in that 1161 series. You would then see movements such as 1161-053 or 1161-853 Once you have the prefix then look for the last 3 numbers of the movement. Then, from the drop down menu the correct cm length can be chosen. That is all the steps to order a Hermle clock movement.
Hermle Mechanical Clock Movement Availability
Hermle Mechanical Clock Movement Availability is excellent. Clockworks.com stocks all Hermle Clock Movements, with very few exceptions. Some special CM lengths may be a special order. If it's not on the charts Clockworks.com may still have it, just contact us. Please call or email a picture to Clockworks.com so we can help. If a CM option is not in the list, Clockworks.com can still make it up special.
Who is Hermle?
Hermle is one of the largest movement producers in the world today. Not only do they have the most movements being made, but they also have the best part availability. This is good for when you need a component such as a pendulum or a dial, or a complete clock kit. A Hermle Clock Movement generally lasts 25 to as much as 40 years. We usually get calls to replace units that were built in the early 80's or late 70's.
Hermle Mechanical Movement Availability - Why get the new one?
Replacing these units rather than having them go through oiling and cleaning is usually the smart way to go. There are factory improvements, it's brand new, the factory lubricates them, and they are easy to install. The new one would cost a fraction of the price of a restoration on the old unit. Keep in mind however, that there are different grades of the same movement number. Some are cheaper, but they contain plastic parts. The Hermle units that we offer here at Clockworks.com are the best grade available.
What numbers to getThe movement number has three or four numbers, then a dash, and some more numbers, then a CM length underneath it if there is a pendulum. They are all consistent as they always have the numbers, then a dash, then more numbers. Basically if there is a dash in the movement number, and it's all numbers in the beginning with no letters like "A", it's a Hermle unit for sure. If there is an A before the number then it can still be a Hermle, but with the Seth Thomas name and numbering system.
What the numbers mean
On the back plate of the clock movement you will see the numbers such as 451-050 94cm. These numbers let us know everything we need to know about the mechanical clock movement itself. This tells us if the clock is weight driven or spring driven, if it has a pendulum, the size of the movement and the length of the hand shaft and much more. To match up the numbers to the new movement numbers is to get the exact same movement you have now but brand new. Since the new movement will be the exact same and not some knock off imitation, all of your existing clock components will usually fit just the same as the old unit.
Mechanical Clock Movement Wear
Mechanical clock movement wears out after years go by because the oil turns solid. With age, the mechanical clock movement's oil solidifies and becomes black and sticky. By the time 20 or 30 years go by, the oil has solidified and is creating wear on the brass plates of the movement. So, when this happens, the clock movement will not run correctly. This is when the movement will need a cleaning at least, or be replaced. Of course, a brand new movement is always your best option.
What wear and where
Look at your old clock movement, and see holes in the brass plates where there are small pivot arbors sticking into these holes. These pivots are what the gears of the clock ride upon and as the pivots spin in the solidified oil, this makes the holes oblong instead of round. With the pivot holes oblong, the holes are pinching the pivots and creating resistance in the gear train. With the solidified oil and the pinched pivots, the clock will eventually stop working or chiming.
Invisible clock movement wear
This wear takes place in the holes that are in the brass plates and is hard to identify sometimes. These holes in the brass plates become oblong instead of round and this pinches the pivot arbor going into it. Between this, and the solid oil, the clock ceases to function. To have this repaired is an expensive and long process. To have a mechanical movement serviced can cost two times as much or even three times the amount of the new one. However, once the movement starts having problems due to the oblong pivot holes, something will need to be done. The clock will never stay running otherwise.
New Clock Movement Benefits
New clock movement benefits far outweigh the benefits of a restoration. This section will explain why that is and what the best course of action is to get your clock working.
Getting the movement serviced
Clocks need to have fresh oil after 10 years or so. Then, after 20 or 30 years, a full break down of the movement is necessary. This is all well and good and can be done with the old movement. The movement will run for another 5 or 15 years with no issues but then it will be time to do it again. So obviously this is a new clock movement benefit.
Every time the movement needs to have work done on it or needs bushings, it will last less and less time before it needs attention again. So another new clock movement benefit is that this would not happen. The repair process is expensive because it takes time to separate the plates, remove all the gears, do the necessary work, and then put them all back together again. This process may need to be redone if not perfect the first time. The turn around time to complete an overhaul on a clock movement could be anywhere from 1 to 3 months, and in some extreme cases, a year. It is a slow moving venture that costs twice as much as a new movement would. If a new clock movement is not available, then this is the best, and only, way to handle a clock repair.
Replacing with a new clock movement
If the clock movement is still in production, it is far better to just get the new clock movement. Mass production makes the movement so affordable it will cost a fraction of the price of the repair work. The new clock movement will be the same one but brand new and ready to run 30 years without much complaint. There is absolutely no way to repair an old clock movement so that it is better than new. Even the best clockmaker using the best equipment cannot make the clock movement better than a new one.
A new clock movement is a factory fresh restart. The clock will be like it was originally when you first made the purchase from the store. The new clock movement will be made by the same people, with the same machines, and the clock movement is the same. It is not a close replica or made somewhere else besides Germany. It is the same movement. Not a knock off or replica. So wouldn't it make sense to get the new clock movement instead of chasing the old? The choice is clear and obvious. The new movement will cost a fraction of the price and the clock is up and running in no time.
Movements That Would Need a Repair or an Overhaul
If a new clock movement is not possible, then a repair is most likely the only option. However we will try to convert it to a new clock movement that is close and easy to adapt. If it is not an easy one to adapt, or would take too much case work, then the best solution is to have us work on it.
Another clock movement to consider having restored instead of replacing it is the tubular bell, which is a high end movement. The price of a tubular bell new clock movement makes an overhaul more attractive. This is due to the high price on the new clock movements which is over $1600. Usually the price is less for the new unit but instead these new clock movements are more costly than the overhaul by Clockworks anyway. We can charge a much lower amount for the complete overhaul on these units. Ultimately the choice is yours. There is a good argument in both directions that makes sense on these expensive new clock movements.
Clockworks = The best repair service
We would love to do the clock movement overhaul here at Clockworks and we do the best job. There are two ways to fix clocks; the easy way and the hard way. We only repair clock movements the hard way with no short cuts. Even with new clock movements, we inspect them and make sure all is well before shipping them out. It is even more important for us to do your repair than another company because we do not go to your house. There is no one being intrusive in your home and possibly damaging your clock case.
The clock movement itself is the only item that gets sent to us. No components need to be sent since we have everything else here such as weights, dials and pendulums. It is a great advantage to have Clockworks work on your clock movement for this fact alone. A clock supply depot such as us does not need to wait for parts. We possess everything we could possibly need to complete a thorough, professional clock repair right here. If a new clock movement is not possible, then this repair is your best and only option.
The new movement
New clock movement benefits usually do indeed outweigh the repair option. The movement will already have lubrication with clock oil so there is no need to oil it. The new clock movement comes with cables and pulleys, or chains, the leader, and suspension spring. This is everything that comes out when you remove the two screws that are under the clock movement, besides the dial and weights.
Once you get the hands and the clock dial out of the way (instructions are sent via email) it's only a matter of removing the two screws from underneath. The new clock movement can then be put in by someone with experience in 10 or 15 minutes. A person with no experience will take longer, but the point is that it isn't hard to do. This is definitely a new clock movement benefit. There are some instances where a clock case was made in an annoying way that makes it more difficult, but for clock movements that were in a mass production this is not the situation. This relates more to a few individual clockmakers who's design of the case makes it more tricky to get the new clock movement in or out.
Summary of New Clock Movement Benefits
A new clock movement is typically less than half the cost of an overhaul. It will also be on its way to the customer instantly instead of months later. A new clock movement will last the longest of any other choice.
Hermle Clock Movement Aliases
Hermle produces clock movements but the use of aliases is quite prevalent. The movement could have a stamp with any name but really it will be made by Hermle. Some companies bought so many movements that they were able to get their name on the movement instead of Hermle. The following is only a partial list of names that could be on the clock movement.
The best Aliases in Disguise
Seth Thomas and Mason and Sullivan had not only their name, but also their own internal numbering system. Their stamp and number was on the movement instead of the Hermle number. Since it is not a Hermle number, the number would need to have a conversion to the real number. Correspondingly, this is done with the Mason and Sullivan chart, or the Seth Thomas conversion Chart. However the Seth Thomas chart is not very accurate, please see instructions on that page.
Best to replace the movement
It is best to replace the clock movement if either of these names are on the movement automatically. Of course, you do not have to think and decide if a repair is better, the answer is a simple no. These companies went out of business a long ago and the life of the unit is over. Ordinarily, the lifetime is 25 - 30 years before it needs an overhaul or replacement. In fact, if ST or Mason Sullivan is on the movement that would indicate the clock is about 40 years old or more.
The other Hermle Clock Movement Aliases are easy
All in all, Hermle Clock Movement Aliases on other clocks use only their name, and not their own internal numbering system on the Hermle movements. So basically if the clock is of post war German origin you can just look at the number and forget the name. Additionally, the numbers will indicate what movement it is. If it is a Hermle movement there are 3 or 4 digits then a hyphen, and then 3 more digits. For example, 1161-853 or 340-020 or 351-060. If the numbers look like this it is made by Hermle.
Other Names Used
- S. Larose
- Mason & Sullivan
- Tally Industries
- Seth Thomas
- Howard Miller
Hermle Number Examples
Below are some typical examples of the Hermle clock movement numbering system. If the clock numbers are similar to this, it is made by Hermle.
- 451-050 94cm
- 451-030 66cm
- 341-020 45cm
- 1151-050 114cm
- 451-053 94cm
- 1161-853 114cm
- 141-070 45cm
- 351-050 55cm
- 1161-850 94cm
- 241-070 94cm
Hermle Clock Movement Directory
Above all, the Hermle clock movement directory is to get to the correct page that contains the proper clock movement. Of course, this is an important first step when ordering a new clock movement. Thus, Hermle mechanical movements have numbers on the back plate starting with the below few numbers. Then a dash (-) follows and then some more numbers. For example: 340-020 131-070 1161-853 351-020 and so forth. So, if the clock says something like 1161-053 drop the second half and click the 1161 button below. Then this will bring up the page where you can find the 1161-053 movement. Also, this is where the rest of the 1161 series can be found.
Hermle Clock Movement Directory, Number starts with.....
If Not Listed
If the old Hermle clock movement is not found on these pages do not give up hope, we may still have a conversion available or we may be able to create it out of what exists. However, we need to know the movement number. So please email your movement number. Of course a picture of the back plate is also helpful. Moreover, if your movement numbers do not look like the Hermle movement numbers it may be made by someone else. Additionally, the mechanical movement identification page will assist you with determining who made the clock. In any event, this is for post WW2 modern mechanical clock movements made in Germany only. Whatever type of movement you have in your clock should be identifiable by the markings that are on the back plate.
Hermle Mechanical Clock Movements
Hermle mechanical clock movements are among the finest movements made in the modern times. The German made Hermle mechanical clock movements units typically work night and day for 30 years without much complaint. To get an overhaul, like you normally would with any clock, is found to be a much higher cost. This is for good reason as it can be a large task to restore it. But as you see, since it's a modern day unit (German Post War) it can be available new for a very good price. So what happens is you get a new movement instead of Restoring the old one and you can get it in a few days instead of 6 months. You will save hundreds of dollars doing it also.
Examples of Hermle Clock Movements:
Hermle clock movement identification is quite consistent. Since they always have the numbers, then a dash, then more numbers it is easy to discern a Hermle movement above all others. Basically if there is a dash in the movement number, and there are all numbers in the beginning with no letters like "A", it's a Hermle clock movements for sure. If there is an A before the number, then it can still be a Hermle, but with the Seth Thomas name and numbering system.
How old? Hermle Movement Date Codes
Dating a Hermle clock movement by decoding the date code stamp. This is to know when the movement was made and decide if the clock has lived its life and is time for a new one. After finding the Hermle movement date code, it can be figured out how old the clock movement is with the below chart. If the clock is over 20 years old it is time to replace it. If the clock is under 20 years old is the only time to consider fixing the movement.
Date Code System Change
Prior to using Hermle movement date codes, early movements before the year 1987 have just the stamp of the year on the back of the clock movement, 81 just means 1981. From 1987 on they used letter codes instead of numbers to represent the year made. Such as the year 1988 is only marked with the letter A instead, and 1989 is the letter B, and 1990 as the letter C etc.
|76 = 1976||77 = 1977||78 = 1978||79 = 1979||80 = 1980||81 = 1981||82 = 1982||83 = 1983||84 = 1984||85 = 1985||86 = 1986|
|87 = 1987||A = 1988||B = 1989||C = 1990||D = 1991||E = 1992||F = 1993||G = 1994||H = 1995||I = 1996||J = 1997|
|K = 1998||L = 1999||M = 2000||N = 2001||O = 2002||P = 2003||Q = 2004||R = 2005||S = 2006||T = 2007||U = 2008|
|V = 2009||W = 2010||X = 2011||Y = 2012||Z = 2013||AA = 2014||AB = 2015||AC = 2016||AD = 2017||AE = 2018||AF = 2019|
Hermle clock letter codes
The intent of this post is to explain the Hermle Clock Code Letters that follow the movement number on Hermle movement. Sometimes customers think that if the new movement does not have the same letter as the old unit that it will not be the same. This is not always the case. This is what follows a typical Hermle number marking such as 1151-053S. For example, the explanation is for the S at the end of the number. Often, you can ignore this clock code letter or letters when replacing a movement with Clockworks. Thus, the movement number is the most important thing to match up when replacing the movement. Matching the movement number will ensure the purchase of the exact same unit as what was in the clock. Here are some definitions of the code letters that follow the movement number.
Old unit verses new code
Hermle Clock Code Letters on the new movement may or may not be the same. This is not usually a concern at all and therefore ignore the letter for the most part. Most of the time, these letters indicate a specific production run of the movement. The features of the movement will be the same, such as if there was a second bit before and the movement number did not have an S, but the new one does have a code letter S. If there is a concern on whether the letter is relevant or not, please send an email and Clockworks will be happy to help.
- DB = Dead Beat
- CS = Small Suspension -OR- Seconds and Made in Germany
- C = Engineering Code
- D = Engineering Code
- H = High Bridge
- N = Low Bridge
- K = Calendar -OR- Made in Germany
- S = Seconds -OR- Kit Format 132-071
- SE = Swiss Escapement