I had my chiming mantel clock repaired. It had a good run, as it only needed servicing after about thirty years or so. The repair itself was a bit of a fiasco though. The clockmaker persuaded me to replace the movement rather than service it–which I’m not sure wasn’t laziness on his part or if he genuinely thought it was a better solution for the long term.

When I got it back, it was never really right, and the chiming mechanism was either damaged or was defective from the factory. The repair had a two year warranty, so I was able to bring it back for him to fiddle with it. It failed again after a few weeks, so I brought it back and he replaced the movement under the warranty. I wonder if I would have been better off if i just insisted he service the original movement. Was this clockmaker incompetence, or just “occasionally you get a bad one”?

What made me post this was the odd combination of driving through town and hearing your home’s mantel clock chiming on the quarter hour as you buzz through neighborhoods. It’s a “normal” sound, but not in that context. With luck, I won’t have that experience again with it if the movement lasts another 30 years. I probably won’t.