My Cadillac 1960 Coupe de Ville Repairs
14 May 2005
Clock repair II
Finally decided to replace my old clock mechanism with the burnt coil with a modern quartz clock motor. Investigated buying a rebuilt or NOS clock but was too difficult to find here and the ones you see is to expensive. Also heard that to get a professional repair and renovating of my old one could cost up to $150,- !!
Then heard rumours about people that replaced the old clock machinery with modern quartz clock motor battery powered and that sounded like a good idea. (Some have even replaced with the radio controlled type that corrects the time by a radio sender located somewhere in Europe, that's cool !
However I bought a quartz clock motor from my favorite gadget shop Clas Ohlson in Gothenburg, cost about $7 incl battery holder and clock hands (that I had to remake and paint to look like the old Cadillac ones). Started to disassemble the old clock and rebuilt according to the below pictures. After about 1,5 hour the rebuilt clock sat in the car now ticking away and also keeping the correct time contrary to the old one. One note I had to delete the clock rear cover as the quartz machinery wouldn't fit but it worked anyway.
As my trunk cover and interior urgently needed a freshening up even if temporary (as I couldn't get hold of a trunk cover that I liked) I settled for a black felt material specially made for car trunks at the local floor cover/carpet shop. OK not the classic car look but my old one was in BAD condition and I must have something for the upcoming summer cruising. I used the old carpets as templates and laid them out on the garage floor, cut them according to the old ones, no big deal at all. Then I contact glued them (only around the edges) and installed them into the trunk and below you can see the process from as it was before and through the job of fitting the new ones.
When coming over some more good-looking trunk carpet in the future I will probably change, but this is how it will have to look for the next summer cruising.
My Cadillac 1960 Coupe de Ville Repairs
The el. clock in my Cadillac was not working when I received the car. Read an article in the CML (Cadillac Mailing List) and removed the clock from the fitting on the dash. This is done by turning the clock gently about 1/4 counter clockwise. Then you can remove it (I had to push from behind the dash) and this is a bit tight spot so you need to have thin arms and/or strong will. When you get the clock out you have to disconnect the power and remove the light bulb socket from the backside of the clock.
To open up the clock there is three small screws on the side of the clock housing that has to be removed and then also the nut securing the cable connector on the back side before you can remove the clock housing. Inside there a clock machinery that was a bit dirty and probably never serviced. I cleaned and lubricated with thin lube oil type CRC 5-56. Then all of a sudden the clock started to run again. GREAT !! I put everything back together and connecting the power and pushed it back into position turning 1/4 turn clockwise and there it sat running like a clock 😉
However this didn't last long after an hour o so it stopped and I had to take it out again.
I fiddled with the thing and at last found what was wrong. The hole for the shaft that's connected to the spring that about every minute wound itself up by an electric impulse. This hole has become worn out after 40 + years of turning. What could I do about this ???
Thinking a bit then I thought I should try to fill the hole with solder metal and then drill a small hole with a sewing-needle thus creating a new bearing for the wheel axle. OK I removed the plate that hold the hole carefully (wouldn't want any spring or small detail falling to the garage floor.)
I did all above heated up the plate with the soldering tool filled the hole completely evened off the surface and let the plate and soldering metal cool off. Then manually drilled a small hole with a sewing needle and assembled the clock again. Tested it with power from my el. battery charger …….IT WORKED !!
Mounted it again into the dash and after 2 months the clock still works !!
A month later
Unfortunately my clock main coil has now suffered a severe meltdown I don't think that this is repairable. (I don't think that this was due to the above repair it's probably due to the age of the clock itself.) Either require a new coil or new clock machinery altogether. Heard about someone converting to a quartz clock machinery but still keeping the original clock face. Perhaps that could be something.
Have heard that you can mount a modern clock mechanism and then connect that to the old Cadillac clock face and hands. I'm investigating this currently the rumour even says that you could by a cheap radio controlled clock and get automatic change between summer daylight saving time and standard time… cool… Will be back as soon as I know more