Why is this happening? The movement was just restored! Do the contacts need cleaning already?
Every SWCC owner asks that question eventually. It turns out that it is normal. Consider the sequence that occurs at winding:
1. Cam lifts hourly contact and just touches mating finger contact
2. Vibration from motor causes cam to back off slightly
3. Contacts disengage and winding stops momentarily
4. Movement advances cam further until contact occurs once again.
5. Winding commences again. Sometimes, the above can and does repeat.
The above sequence will continue until tension on the contact is more than the vibration can affect. At this point winding, which is inevitable, finally occurs and completes. Customers sometimes observe that this effect comes and goes over time.
Should you worry about it? Absolutely not! Your clock will not stop because of this. Should you clean the contacts? It’s rare that this will have any lasting effect.
Now, if the movement has never been restored, contacts are coated with filth and grime from decades of neglect, then it is possible that this could be a sign that the clock is about to give you problems. But with a newly restored clock, this is not a sign of trouble, even after several years post-restoration.
Some customers will notice that the hesitation comes and goes. It might hesitate now, and in a few months it is no longer hesitating. One possible reason for this is end shake. The arbors in clock movements have some end shake, and they do move from front to back normally. This could affect how pronounced this issue is. End shake is normal; it cannot be eliminated without risking binding.
If your clock is powered by one of our regulated battery products such as the Model 1900R2 or R3, hesitation or drawn-out winding may also mean that it is time for a battery recharge. Nonetheless, hesitation due to contact effect is the more likely explanation. But, if you are unsure when the last time you charged (Model 1900R3) or replaced the internal cells (Model 1900G), it might be a good idea to do that.
After perhaps 3-4 years, it is a good idea to have us look at your movement, clean contacts, touch up oil, and inspect for any problems that might be developing. This is normal maintenance.
One final note: The design of the contacts used in most Style A/B/C rotary (and even the early vibrating motor) movements was completely different than the design of the contacts used in the later Style F. With these movements, the active contact would fall off an insulator “cliff” and touch down on a platinum pad, completing the circuit. It was not a gradual ramp. These rotary movements do not hesitate at wind, ever. But, it was a much more expensive contact arrangement and SWCC abandoned it when they converted over to the Style F movement.