Cuckoo Clock Not Striking

Posted on    Posted in  turned_in_not  Repair Help

New cuckoo clock movement not striking

The following is for when the new cuckoo clock movement will not go into striking mode for the hours. The bird will not come out and the clock will not indicate what time it is with the cuckoo call. Here are some guidelines on what to check in this situation.

Latch the cuckoo door

There is a wire above the cuckoo door. This closes and locks into place. This is for either shipping the clock and also for chime shut off.

It is a small wire that stops the door. Turn this wire either in the way or out of the way of the door. Be sure it is out of the way so the door can open and it can cuckoo.

Check the silence lever

There may be a silence lever if the cuckoo movement has one. The silence lever is on the side of the cuckoo clock movement and sticks outside of the clock case.

Push it down for cuckoo on and up for cuckoo shut off. Just move it to the opposite direction and see if the clock will strike out the cuckoo calls.

Sometimes the movement has a silence switch that does not stick outside of the case. But it may still be on the movement itself. Simply look at the back of the clock with the back panel off. Here is where you may see the silence switch.

As you are facing the back of the movement, look for a lever on the right side near the top. Not all cuckoos have this feature. Many manufacturers silence the cuckoo just by locking the bird door.

Clock chain resistance

Be sure nothing is in the way of the chain that drives the striking side of the cuckoo clock. One weight controls the time and the other the strike.

If the chain is rubbing anything, like the hole in the bottom of the cuckoo case, it will not run. It would be equivalent to not having enough weight to make it run.

The chain that holds the weight should be straight from the ratchet wheel and down without rubbing anything. Also the side of the chain that there is no weight can't be caught up on anything as well.

This is the side that you pull to raise the weight on the other side of the chain loop.

Bellow lift wires in the way

On a new cuckoo clock movement install, you have to bend the lift wires so they do not get caught up on each other. Because the bellow wires could be hitting each other and creating resistance if they got caught up on each other during the travel.

These just get bent this way or that way so they can go up and down with the bellow tops. When bellow tops are broken or torn it can cause this to happen also.

Bird arm position

The arm that the bird rests on could be bent in a way where it is trying to go forward too much. Therefore it hits the front of the clock case instead of the position where it opens the door.

The intent is for it to open the cuckoo door only and not hit the front of the clock case. Furthermore, it will only cuckoo if the bird arm is able to be all the way forward with no resistance.

Cuckoo door opening wire

When this wire is too long, it will try to open the bird door too much. The cuckoo strike cannot start if the bird door is open too much.

The solution is to make the door wire shorter or put a bend in it. Putting a bend in this wire so it has a hump instead of straight will be the same thing as making it shorter.

Cuckoo Clock Not Striking Conclusion

Resistance causes the cuckoo to not go into striking mode. There is only 4 or 5 gears that have to spin around to make the clock cuckoo. However, it will not function if there is any resistance.

These 4-5 gears need to spin to have the bellows lift and open the cuckoo door at the same time. These spinning gears dictate a lot of action and any resistance in any part will stop it from working.

The content of this website is copyright by Clockworks and written by James Stoudenmire in year 2022

↑ Back to top

Ask a Clock Question

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Gary Novak
Gary Novak
1 year ago

Hi. My cuckoo clock bird does not come forward far enough. Everything else seems to function well.

Shop By Brand

Shop Hermle

Find the perfect Hermle movement for your clock.

Howard Miller

Find the perfect Howard Miller movement for your clock.

Shop Kieninger

Find the perfect Kieninger movement for your clock.

Seth Thomas

Find the perfect Seth Thomas movement for your clock.

Shop Urgos

Find the perfect Urgos movement for your clock.

Ridgeway Clocks

Find the perfect Ridgeway movement for your clock.

Our Associations