[Bell Historians] Tucking up vs hanging out 'old style'

Richard Offen richard at ...
Sun Nov 6 16:14:18 GMT 2005

 then simply get a tape measure and measure the distance 
> from both sides then figure out which way to move it then tighten the 
> clapper back up and before fully tightening it just double check it 
the same 
> measurement both sides and away you go. But if its clapper speeds 
you've got 
> a problem with then that's another ball game and then we could 
discuss it 
> off line.Thanks
> T L Blyth

I'm sorry, but I have yet to meet anyone who can accurately set the 
striking of a clapper using a tape measure! You simply cannot be 
accurate enough in the confined space up in the head of a bell.   
Besides, the distance between the staple and the bell is not the only 
factor that can affect true striking.

The only satisfactory way to do the job is to either use one of these 
natty little striking meters that are now available, or do it by ear 
(using a stop watch if necessary to time the difference between the two 
strokes), gradually moving the clapper either with tapered washers or 
using the set-bolts (often referred to as 'twiddle pins') which are 
included on some headstocks. With practice and patience you can get a 
bell pretty well spot on by ear.

Referring back to an earlier posting, the use of coins of the realm for 
the purpose (couldn't that be considered to be defacing a Coin of the 
Realm and therefore illegal?) works quite well for a time, but the 
coins have a habit of falling out, just as the asbestos paper (or 
whatever it was) that Taylors used to supply for the job did!


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