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The Re-enactor's Resource

Discussion in 'The Home Front Woman' started by Lady Day, May 11, 2014.

  1. Lady Day

    Lady Day I'll Lock Up Bartender

    This thread is a place for us to post stores (online or real), forums, or other resources and materials that have great reference for women who are re-enactors, or are looking for period correct materials.

    Please give a brief description as to what the store offers.
    Thank you
  2. St. Louis

    St. Louis Practically Family

    What a great idea for a thread. Here are several excellent sources. I've done business with each of these vendors and can recommend them all very highly. These are all people who do business via the internet. I have a lot of local folks too, but I assume not too many loungers live in the St. Louis area, so I won't list those.

    Times Past Fans: fan repair and upkeep. Very knowledgeable and friendly.

    Kyp-Go makes beautiful reproduction lightbulbs. This is their vendor page (they don't sell direct.)

    Antique Telephone Repair. This gentleman is fantastic -- he does wonderful work, very quickly and charges very reasonable rates.

    Sundial Wire is an excellent resource. These folks are very knowledgeable and friendly. Their wires and reproduction plugs are outstanding.

    Sunburst Bottle is a reliable maker of glass bottles with cork stoppers. If you have vintage or antique bottles around the house, it's a good idea to get a nice assortment of corks so that you'll always have one handy. I like to use their glass bottles for toiletries, household fluids, etc. -- anything I don't want to keep in its modern container.

    Klocikit sells clock parts, innards, replacement movements, and all sorts of neat related things. If you have an antique or vintage clock that isn't running, the pleasant folks at Klockit can talk you through whatever you need. If someone as unhandy as I can repair a clock, then you can too, trust me.

    Finally (at least for now) Acme Notions is a fantastic company. I bought a few little doo-dads from them, and they practically gift-wrapped them. They also included some extra little treats.
  3. Nana Brauner

    Nana Brauner New in Town

    Wow! Great resources. I guess period electric installations are not as secure as modern ones, but it's awesome.
  4. St. Louis

    St. Louis Practically Family

    Oh, you'd be surprised. I use a 1930s flap toaster, a waffle maker, an electric iron, and a hot plate , all from the 1930s. I think if you pay attention to the wiring it's perfectly safe. I don't walk away from those appliances when I'm using them, and I do make sure that the cords are in good condition. If I see a problem with a plug or cord I replace them with modern reproductions. True, I don't care for the modern rayon-wrapped cords as much (they're not as pretty as the older ones) but I agree that they are probably safer.
  5. We also use a number of vintage appliances, including a toaster. (Never heard the term flip toaster, but it's accurate!)

    I don't feel they are any less safe than modern appliances, if you follow a few safety "rules":
    1. Always unplug when done. Old appliances don't have a safety off. in the case of the toaster, it's active and on or unplugged. I was taught to unplug small appliances when not in use, so this is no different for me.
    2. Any radio with an unpolarized plug needs a new plug and some major rewiring, immediately. A polarized plug is where the two flat tines are different sizes, meaning you can only plug it in one way. The reason for this is if your hands are wet, you will complete the circuit with your hand and fry yourself if it is unpolarized and put the positive part of the plug in the negative part of the outlet. What I do is immediately cut off all unpolarized plugs on radios on purchase. Lots of small modern appliances aren't grounded, but they are polarized. This is extremely important with radios, as it involves rewiring to the chassis. I would take a radio to a professional unless you're engineering minded.
    3. Using these appliances is an act of mindfulness, as St. Louis said, you don't walk away. You get brilliant toast out of a vintage toaster, but you don't get it by watching tv. You need to be focused on breakfast.
  6. I've had the same flip toaster -- or "turn-over" model, as they were called in the catalogs -- since 1979, and haven't burned the house down yet. But I make a point of not using it when I'm half-asleep -- that's when the fires are most likely to happen.

    Good advice on radios, and I'll add this: if a radio hasn't had *all* of its electrolytic and tubular paper condensers replaced, it's a hazard -- even if it seems to work OK at first. A lot of AC powered radios had condensers across the line, before the on-off switch in the circuit -- and if these fail, it's a dead short circuit across your power. At best this will blow your household fuse or trip a circuit breaker -- at worst, it could cause a fire. Vintage electronics should be gone over by a competent repair person before being put into regular use. It's easy to learn to do this yourself, and in fact I recommend that you learn to do this, because the few repair people left who know how to do it are very expensive -- but in any event it's got to be done by someone, whether you do it yourself or hire it done. Even if you don't burn your house down, you could easily destroy irreplaceable parts of the radio by failing to follow this precaution.

    Note that there are high voltages inside a tube-type radio, often as high as 450 volts DC. If you poke around without knowing what you're poking, you will get bitten, and it will hurt.

    Vintage television sets have their own sets of hazards, and you shouldn't fool around with these unless you have solid experience working on tube-type electronics.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2015
  7. Nana Brauner

    Nana Brauner New in Town

    Thank you ladies! You have great knowledge on this subject! I have no idea about vintage appliances, but maybe I'll get some in the future, following your advices. They are so lovely!
  8. Heidi Crabtree

    Heidi Crabtree New in Town

    I have been searching for a resource to get a WWII WAVES uniform made. I thought I'd found one online, Warhorse, but after mailing them my measurements and what I wanted, I have not heard a word from them. Looked online and they have a bad rep. Anyone know of another resource?

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