Music boxes are such awesome and classic devices to have but can also be difficult to repair when they have issues. There are several parts of a music box that can develop a fault and there are different ways to fix them yourself without having to contact a professional repairman.
These parts may include the cylinders, combs, or our major concern, the spring. We’ll be discussing several ways to fix a music box spring in this chapter, it could come for you in handy.
To get the right repair of a music box, you must ensure to know the nature of the problem it’s having and of course, what is causing the problem. The spring, for instance, is responsible for powering the music box. When a music box is being winded up, the spring is automatically compressed which then makes it absorb the energy of the box.
As the spring unwinds, there is an orderly release of energy that thereby turns the cylinder and causes the music box to make a sound. You can fix your music box spring in the following ways:
- Pin-point oiler
How to go about it
You can start by carefully winding the music box key in the facing direction to reverse spring damage wounded too tightly. Apply a few drops of the lubricant to the bottom of the winding key. Leave the lubricant for a few minutes then wind the key to play music. If the problem still persists, move to the next step.
Add, using a pin-point oiler, a lubricant drop to the base, center, and top of the endless screw which is connected to the music box’s air brake.
Your music can play way too fast due to over-lubrication. No calls for alarm, you can easily correct this by making use of the pin-pointer oiler to apply 30 weight motor oil on the same screw. Here’s another method of fixing your music box spring.
- Spray lubricants
- Rubbing alcohol
- Jeweler’s screwdrivers
- Cotton swabs
Fixing Music Box Spring
- Look out for what could cause the spring to develop a fault. If the spring is old and had turned rusted, it will affect the movement of the spring, if it is only too tight, it will turn slightly. If the spring is tightly wound, you can proceed carefully and gradually because you can’t be carefree during this process as it can cause the music box to suddenly release its components with high tension.
- If the spring is rusted or old, you can add lubrication to it, a light lubricant like the WD-40 would be more effective and less damaging to other components. You should give it a bit of time, say like 2minutes, which will help the lubricant mechanism.
- Dismantle the case of the music box carefully if the spring is tightly wounded. Loosen the key and the base of the music box with a screwdriver and carefully pry out the cylinder and spring with the tip of the screwdriver.
- Hold down the metal music box to remove the spring, gently unscrew the side screws of the spring. Add just a few drops of the WD-40 if screws are stuck and rusted. Slowly and gently pry the spring off until finally separated from the music box cylinder.
- Do a measurement of the length and width of the old spring and make a replacement purchase of the same size. Attach the new spring to the cylinder of the music box by compressing its ends with your fingers, then place it in the holder right beside the cylinder. Screw back the holding screws into the right place while holding the spring in place to avoid its poping out. Replace the spring component and the cylinder into the music box case and attach again, the key and the base.
Technicians who repair music boxes might tell you that repairing music boxes are tedious, yes only if you need mechanical skills to make repairs. It might need a gentle and focused process but most of its parts have DIY solutions.
If you are dealing with an old music box that has been abandoned in the attic for a long time, you can take it to a repair shop if it’s not coming on, to check if it can still run and if the lubricants in the machine are still in good condition.
However, when fixing a music box spring by yourself, pay full attention and ensure you do not damage some parts that can not be replaced without breaking the bank in your music box.
Some of these parts may include the combs as this may be very difficult to find. Ensure not to touch the comb with your bare hands else, the comb may oxidize which will automatically cause the disks or wheels to stick, resulting in their damage. Try not to remove any part of the music box without tension release in the mainspring.
Steps to fix a Music Box Spring
- Ensure you are buying the appropriate lubricant. Rather than some pointless lubricants that add more problems to the spring, you can get an Alum-a-lub around you or online to get the best result. It is a specially recommended lubricant for music boxes rather than regular and everyday lubricants that don’t work for blocked mechanisms.
- Tactically lubricate the mechanism. You can carefully locate an entry into the music box to access this mechanism. This process has been discussed in one of the methods- by removing the screws to open the machine and adding the lubrication to cover its base, center, and top area where you leave for twenty to thirty minutes after.
- After this process, you can slowly and gently turn the key backward to unwind the spring of the music box and then release the governor. If after this step there are no changes, you can then proceed to the following step.
- Pat the bottom of the music box gently for few times repeatedly and see if the process will unwind the spring. Do this carefully without too much force and if nothing happens still, you can move to the next step.
- Find a way to access the governor of the music box. This is the part of the music box that spins to ensure the production of even song speed. You can manually move the governor with a cotton swab or your finger which will automatically restart the music box and fix some problems.
- After the music box has restarted and starts to work again, endeavor to wind it up and replay many times to fully restart the music box. If nothing happens after all of these, you definitely need to have it checked by a professional repairer.
Even though the music box has been around since way back to 1796, it has not experienced the feeling of extinction. It is quite the device if you ask me. However, several methods to fix the spring of a music box have been discussed above, you can doubtlessly depend on our procedure and if none of them works for the spring or the music box, there might be a threatening bigger problem so you might as well take it to an expert.