1970 clock current draw


Jul 17, 2019
Has anyone checked their clock's current draw? I'm seeing like 100 millivolts from the clock.
I know it killed my battery. Just like to know what's correct, or if it's time for a rebuild, if they can be rebuilt. Thanks!


Staff member
Lifetime Gold Member
Feb 26, 2004
Bloomington, MN
A factory clock should not draw power continuously.

It should spike every minute or two when the mechanism inside closes a circuit and "rewinds" it.
Between rewinding cycles… It's running on spring energy.

A Quartz conversion is available to replace the guts of the clock.
That type DOES draw a very small amount of power continuously. But I don't know the millivolts.

Are you sure it's the clock drawing power and something else on the Battery circuit?

Jim Streib

https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/albums
Apr 6, 2004
Saint Louis, MO USA
On my 70's Nova factory clocks they used a solenoid to activate the windup spring and would only draw power when the spring was unwound and then for only a split second when the solenoid activated and then the current flow stopped and the clock spring was wound up.

Is yours even working ?.

If it's not working I wonder if this draw is from the solenoids activation coil being energized continually when it should only be that way for a split second to wind the clock spring up.



Jul 17, 2019
I disconnected the clock, and the draw went to 0. It's original, and probably worn, which would increase draw. It would also stop working from time to time.
BTW, who make the quartz kit? Thanks!


Veteran Member
Gold Member
Oct 3, 1999
Beavercreek, Ohio, USA
One thing about the factor clock that like Twisted said does the rewind function. The major killer of these types of clocks is a low battery. Once the battery gets below about 11 volts the rewind mechanism doesn't fully cycle and there are electrical contacts at the end of a spring loaded arm and they will instead of making good contact, just sit and arc which will burn the contact points (like what are on a set of ignition points). If the car is going to be stored, disconnect the battery or keep a battery tender on it. There is also a fix where you place zener diode in-line with the 12V power to suppress arcing.


Jul 17, 2019
The car is 50 years old, and I've had it for the last 2, so who know what happened. BTW, can the contacts be cleaned?

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