1. Forcing hands or other parts
If a minute hand or something else offers resistance, showing who’s boss is one of the quickest ways to break a clock.
2. Pulling winding chains at an angle
A good way to jam the weights is to pull winding chains at an angle and never straight down. Pulling them fast will also help jam the weights.
3. Pulling on jammed weights
If a weight is jammed, pulling it free is a sure-fire way to strip a ratchet wheel. Of course, the clock won’t wind after that.
4. Leaving it in direct sunlight
Nothing bleaches a finish or ages wood like constant exposure to the sun. Southern windows are typical locations for this sort of abuse.
5. Storing it in the attic
Wide variations in temperature and humidity will loosen the joints and veneer of a clock until the case falls apart. Basements, garages, and out-buildings are equally destructive.
6. Spraying it with WD-40
Just because it works great on doors does not mean it will work on clocks. When the lubricant dries your clock will be gummed up with green gel.
7. Avoiding oil changes
Over time, the oil in your clock collects dust and copper oxide. This abrasive sludge will grind and slow your clock’s pivots until it seizes. This is like never changing the oil in your car and taking it to a mechanic after it stops running.
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