Removing a clock mainspring barrel
Letting down the mainspring power
The mainspring let down tool allows the release of the mainspring with the fist rather than the fingers.
This method lets the control the speed of the unwind with the whole fist rather than the fingers. Unquestionably, doing this with a key will result in a painful experience on the fingers.
Of course, if the mainspring is broken, there usually is no worry since there isn't much tension to begin with.
After the barrel is out
Once the power has been let down, the next step is to yank out the winding arbor shaft. The clock mainspring barrel should then fall out the side of the movement. After the barrel comes out, you can see the number that is on the barrel end cap.
Be sure to check the movement for any damage as a result of the mainspring breaking. In particular, inspect the teeth of the gears, as well as the arbor on the next wheel up. This could have consequently been bent.
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