Well , I have one which I got in Germany years ago, which uses the
Frankfurt time signal, which must be at least 500 miles away. It works
fine and I have no problem with the signal - you must be in some sort of
So do I - a Phillips. It has the best alarm time setting interface
I've ever used (a speed sensitive wheel) and has only one problem -
it's resolutely accurate to the squillisecond, only an hour ahead.
There's no way to move it off the German time zone !
It would be an incredible Faraday cage to stop 60kHz (my house is
infamously proof against GHz radio, but nothing is proof against this
sort of LW), but it is sensitive to all manner of interference from
electrical gear. Try leaving it on the top floor of the house, until
Die Gotterspammerung - Junkmail of the Gods
Everything is ok and working fine now. I checked at around 7pm last
night and it had updated itself to the correct time, so it must have
been due to the maintenance work on the transmitter. As previously
mentioned, the maintenance work is scheduled to complete on the 20th Oct
so there will probably be more downtime until them. Thanks for all the
The MSF transmitter at Rugby provides a time signal service on a very
low (60kHz) frequency from a highly accurate atomic clock.
IIRC, the time data are transmitted once per minute so it should not
take more than a couple of minutes for the clock to synchronise. It's
up to the clock to decide how it uses the signal, and it may choose to
compare successive time codes before changing anything to reduce the
risk that interference affects the setting.
The signal is susceptible to local interference and the level may be
low if you are a long way away. However it should be OK over most
of the UK.
You could try taking the clock outside on the side of the house that
faces in the direction of Rugby and you could also try rotating the
clock. Depending on the design, the built in antenna may be
It may simply be that the problem is in your first sentence ("cheap"
and "Littlewoods") and you have a second dud clock.....
To email, substitute .nospam with .gl
I have got an Oregon Scientific MSF alarm clock, and it will only pick
up MSF in certain areas of the house. My bedside table is a place it
does not work! 10cm either way and it works. I would try leaving it in
different places in the house, you will probably find the place you have
it now is in an MSF "dead spot" or there is too much interference there.
Given the "outages" link in my other post and my clock's failure to
reset itself, it would be interesting to know if anyone has
successfully had a radio-controlled clock reset itself since around 9
Yes thanks for the link. Looks like problems solved. Still no update but
I rang the number on the NPL site and a recorded message confirmed the
MSF signal was down from 9am 6th Oct until 9am 20th Oct, but will be
working overnight whenever possible.
HELP, I've now encountered another problem! I decided to swap my RC
clock for a slightly better model which also displays the temperature.
However, the clock is now showing the time at 1 minute faster than
it should be! No matter how many times the clock updates itself via the
msf signal, the LCD display is always showing 1 minute fast! I first
noticed this when I compared the RC clock to the time shown on BBC
The hour display and the seconds are spot on but the minute reading is
fast by 1 minute! To double check I even rang the speaking clock and,
sure enough, my RC clock was out by exactly 1 minute. I tried manually
setting the clock to the correct time but as soon as it goes through the
update cycle it reverts back to being 1 minute fast! Anyone know what
could cause this, although I suspect my RC clock must be faulty.
I have no idea what might cause that, but just to eliminate the
remote/silly possibility that the Rugby signal is out, I checked my RC
clock against the computer (which I set over the internet from a
different source) -- they're exactly aligned, so that's not it......
Yes it was a digital display. I took it back today and changed it for
another model and thankfully everything appears to be spot on. I did
however buy a cheap RC wall clock for the kitchen which has an analogue
display. It was strange to see the fingers zapping round on their own
as I inserted the battery. The only problem is there is a little play
in the minute finger, so at quarter past the hour it looks a minute fast
and at quarter to the hour it looks a minute slow. Still, can't grumble.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.