XJ needs to be moved after 20 years... help please

This is by no means essential but it had been bugging me that the clock was always off.
Turns out the one in the parts car I had pulled works great. I took them both apart and used the face off my original one but the clock from the parts car. It is now back in the car ticking away…Another thing fixed!


I took the wheel hub caps out of storage and notices that it had a uniform line of rust where the steel rim hits the cap. I sanded that away and made it clean again. I did not want the rust to speed up the process on the great looking steel rims I spend so much time on.

I have a question: I had my tires balanced but it seems that there is no way the wheels are still in balance with these caps on them. Whats the general opinion on this?

To me, that looks too rough to come out with 1000 or plus grit. I would get it as flat and regular as possible with 400-600 grit then give it a good smoothing with 1200. Polishing with cutting compound\swirl remover doesn’t take much effort after 1200 grit. If you go through, you’re just going to have to redo it, it’ll never look any good anyway if you don’t do something. That finish looks like a combination of too thick paint ( not enough thinners) and too high air pressure. Paint should be about the consistency of cream, slightly nearer milk.

I don’t think there is sufficient weight in the wheel trims to worry the balance of the (much) heavier wheels and tyres.

A Jag with a working clock! Now you’re really tempting fate. That said, the Smiths one in my S1 works too, just need to adjust it, loses about 5 min a week.

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That’s simple - mine varies with the weather, 2-3 minutes a month or so :slightly_smiling_face:
Never ever forget to restart it immediately if it stops.

The quartz uhr shouldn’t care and keep time.

Wheel balancing, tolerance about 5g. Doesn’t matter or do you think all the heavy plastic hub caps are balanced?

Not unusual, Max; the wheels are balanced, those caps are not…

While the caps themselves may be symmetric and balanced - when fitted they may be slightly off center. It doesn’t take much, particularly with heavy caps, to induce imbalance at some speed…

There are no easy solutions, but you could check the caps (and rims) for possible causes - and carefully check if caps are indeed well centered on the rims? It may just be one wheel/cap?

xj6 85 Sov Europe (UK/NZ)

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Never thought about it until I was putting on the caps.

Ah well the one I had was off by hours after a day… So that was not cool. I had not paid attention until recently because I had always disconnected the battery when I left the garage but now that this is getting close to actually being a car again I figured I can leave it on…Call it OCD or what have you but I do look at the clock every time I get in so it was very obvious since it was off by so much.

How does one restart a clock?

I have not really driven it. Just here on the parking lot. This was more of a “while I was putting them on and looking at them…” There is no way that they are balanced once they are on there if the balancing machine puts on 5g on a tire at an exact spot. Just wondering if any of you had problems.

Not OCD, but it’s good that after all your problems, you’re getting down to the small ones. Hopefully, good days ahead.

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On the smiths clocks you pull and release the setting knob. That gets the balance wheel going and this powers the magnet that keeps the wheel going.

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The caps are centered by the bolts. There is no balance problem. Remember it’s a real car and some thought had to go into critical parts like these.


Yes, but this (German, I believe the oldest surviving clock maker in Germany) Kienzle clock as well as the round Kienzle clock in my 1972 E-type both start as soon as they have battery voltage.

The old (English) Smiths clocks do not start unless one does as David suggested and pushes the setting knob in.

The only thing to watch out in this XJ Kienzle clock IMHO is that when using the tiny, easily lost and fragile black plastic knob to set the arms (setting the time) is that it does not fully retract. In that case the plastic mechanical parts clash and can get damaged. I had this happen a couple of times when I had set the arms andthe clock would make louder than normal noise and the arms were not moving, a good thing it has the small arm for seconds so it will be immediately visible if it’s stuck. I had to gently pull / pry the plastic tip of the setting knob to release without flying out and into the abyss (between the console and the seat.

On the E-type I still have factory original battery cables etc so I try to be careful and just unplug the clock +12V feed behind the easily folding dash, but on the XJ6C I disconnect the negative battery cable for longer storage.


I had Mike Eck modernize my Rover’s Kienzle clock, and it’s off by less than a minute a month.

It’s a good idea not to sand more than you need. I had quite a rough surface and sanded quite a lot. I stopped when this happened:

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Oh but your finish is quite amazing! The rest of my car is not that shiny either! What polishing compound did you use?

I started with this (but it was half that price when I bought it):

And then finished with a cheap super market polish that I bought years ago at ASDA in the UK.


The good cheapest on ebay stuff :grin:

The smiths knob you pull and release; the quartz clocks should be exactly accurate…

I disconnect my battery for peace of mind if I‘m away for more than two weeks (doesn’t make much sense I know but it saves the clock contacts). My terminals just need a strong push/ pull and are on there fairly secure. I have made a tag that reminds me to immediately start the clock when I reconnect it.