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Jiffy Hat Steamer

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16,088
It's just a galvanized funnel that I bought at Rural King. I sewed a cloth sock to cover the mouth and prevent the hat from coming in contact with the hot metal.
I may have mentioned this before up thread or in your thread but I have the tank & hose from an old wallpaper steamer fed into a length of PVC pipe for steaming & bending cedar strips to replace broken ribs & strips on canvas canoes. Screw off one of the end caps & load in the strips. Don't have a pic handy of the set up but this canoe will give you an idea of the cedar strips after being bent & finished.

IMG_1259.JPG
 

Short Balding Guy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,631
Location
Minnesota, USA
I may have mentioned this before up thread or in your thread but I have the tank & hose from an old wallpaper steamer fed into a length of PVC pipe for steaming & bending cedar strips to replace broken ribs & strips on canvas canoes. Screw off one of the end caps & load in the strips. Don't have a pic handy of the set up but this canoe will give you an idea of the cedar strips after being bent & finished.

View attachment 272533

OK I AM NOW IMPRESSED. That is just so cool Jack. I recall our neighbors to our cabin at Long Lake, (Park Rapids area) Minnesota having an all wood canoe that was feather light and so darn cool. As a kid I thought that canoe was everything that could be wished for in a water craft. Quiet, maneuverable, light, easy to use and portage. I am impressed and the pre-teen/teen in me is envious. So cool!

Oh yes, glad the wall paper steamer works.
 

humanshoes

One Too Many
Messages
1,427
Location
Tennessee
I may have mentioned this before up thread or in your thread but I have the tank & hose from an old wallpaper steamer fed into a length of PVC pipe for steaming & bending cedar strips to replace broken ribs & strips on canvas canoes. Screw off one of the end caps & load in the strips. Don't have a pic handy of the set up but this canoe will give you an idea of the cedar strips after being bent & finished.

View attachment 272533
She's a real beauty Jack! I've been meaning to build a steam box for a few upcoming projects, but just haven't had the time. My semi-retirement has turned into chaos and overtime.
 
Messages
16,088
She's a real beauty Jack! I've been meaning to build a steam box for a few upcoming projects, but just haven't had the time. My semi-retirement has turned into chaos and overtime.
If I was building a box shaped setup from scratch I would probably build it on a propane burner assuming you have adequate ventilation. My wallpaper steamer is 110v, takes a bit to warm up & is probably not the most economical to run.
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
So, I have a garment steamer, but am not entirely happy with the results. I'm trying to manage my hobby budget, so I didn't want to spend the $172 a new J-1 would cost with shipping. Looking on craigslist for "jiffy steamer" I found a J-2 garment steamer, locally, for $70. Examining the pics, it looked remarkably like a J-1, except with a hose and an upright rod to hold a hanger. This may be obvious to you all, or even common knowledge in this forum, but it turns out it is the same thing except with casters instead of rubber feet, the removable upright, and a hose instead of hat nozzle. I bought it for $65.

The Jiffy Steamer website is really good! They carry just about every part, and it's easy to navigate and purchase items. I bought the hat nozzle for $15 and a new check-valve cap for the water bottle for $4.50, plus $6.32 USPS first class postage. So, for a total of $90.82 I have a first class garment steamer and hat steamer! Oh, and mine came with the "deluxe" wooden handle steam hose attachment, so bonus!

I would encourage anyone on a budget looking for a steamer to search the local ads for a J-2.
2022-01-21 15.04.13.jpg Screen Shot 2022-01-21 at 3.10.19 PM.png
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
I think mine was run with tap water. I just ordered the cleaning solution from Jiffy, with is acidic, but not vinegar! The recommend against the use of vinegar.

I did so because while mine steams well at times, sometimes it "stalls" and I have to give it a shake to get it going again. I don't know that cleaning is the problem, but it couldn't hurt.
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
I received my Jiffy Steamer parts and supplies today. Their service is excellent. I had made two orders, and they agreed to combine them and refunded me excess shipping. I bought their cleaner, as it's acid-based but not vinegar, and apparently vinegary can harm the unit (maybe the brass parts?). The hat nozzle is solid. It occurs to me, though, that this seems to be shte same thread as a garden hose. I was thinking I could try a brass, adjustable garden hose nozzle on this. Has anyone tried this?

Screen Shot 2022-01-27 at 6.15.38 PM.png
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
And another thing...

I just poured an 8 oz. bottle of Jiffy cleaner into my J-2 steamer. I will leave it for 3 hours. Should I recover this fluid and re-use it, or just dump it?

But here's the big question. The cleaner, in quantity 3 of 8 oz. each, is $18 plus about $18 UPS shipping - so, 12 bucks a shot! Now, you can use tap water and clean periodically, or use distilled water, at $1/gallon, and never have to clean. What's more economical? I think the latter.
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
So, in case anyone's interested, I poured out and saved most of the cleaning fluid, It removed some black flakes; I don't know what they were. I rinsed a couple of times with distilled water, and then filled the jug and turned it on. It steams great! The distilled water was cheap, 98¢ per gallon at Wal-Mart. So, that's what I'll use. The tap water where I live is very, very hard. I may soak it again, with the cleaning fluid, just to see how clean it can be, but it seems fine now.

Can't wait 'til I receive the aluminum hat block, and try to iron the creases out of that brown Dobbs Fedora. I tried again tonight without it and it seems a lost cause as it is.
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,712
Location
vancouver, canada
So, in case anyone's interested, I poured out and saved most of the cleaning fluid, It removed some black flakes; I don't know what they were. I rinsed a couple of times with distilled water, and then filled the jug and turned it on. It steams great! The distilled water was cheap, 98¢ per gallon at Wal-Mart. So, that's what I'll use. The tap water where I live is very, very hard. I may soak it again, with the cleaning fluid, just to see how clean it can be, but it seems fine now.

Can't wait 'til I receive the aluminum hat block, and try to iron the creases out of that brown Dobbs Fedora. I tried again tonight without it and it seems a lost cause as it is.
I have found the only really effective way is to soak the hat, stretch it out over the block and then give it some shots of steam. It is the soaking that is the key. Many times the steam is just not enough you need to soak it first.
 

Short Balding Guy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,631
Location
Minnesota, USA
So, in case anyone's interested, I poured out and saved most of the cleaning fluid, It removed some black flakes; I don't know what they were. I rinsed a couple of times with distilled water, and then filled the jug and turned it on. It steams great! The distilled water was cheap, 98¢ per gallon at Wal-Mart. So, that's what I'll use. The tap water where I live is very, very hard. I may soak it again, with the cleaning fluid, just to see how clean it can be, but it seems fine now.

Can't wait 'til I receive the aluminum hat block, and try to iron the creases out of that brown Dobbs Fedora. I tried again tonight without it and it seems a lost cause as it is.

Excellent posts about your progress with the Jiffy Steamer. Inspired I ordered some Jiffy cleaner for mine. I use only distilled water, but my Jiffy Cleaner has started sputtering. Since entropy is real, I suspect time has built up some residue from my frequent uses. The steamer works, just has an occasional sputter.

Black flakes - some mineral residue. ?? If they disappear with cleaning - all good.

Before my crown blocks arrived, I successfully used a stainless steel cooking pot on the inside, small diameter, and worked the felt sides with a metal spoon on the outside. It worked mostly, but was a lot of effort. The crown blocks work much better. But now I can see that I need crown blocks in different sizes and even different tapers. ;) Never ends! :)

I will stay tuned as I am curious to see your block set-up at work.

Cheers. Best, Eric -
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
Excellent posts about your progress with the Jiffy Steamer. Inspired I ordered some Jiffy cleaner for mine. I use only distilled water, but my Jiffy Cleaner has started sputtering. Since entropy is real, I suspect time has built up some residue from my frequent uses. The steamer works, just has an occasional sputter.

Black flakes - some mineral residue. ?? If they disappear with cleaning - all good.

Before my crown blocks arrived, I successfully used a stainless steel cooking pot on the inside, small diameter, and worked the felt sides with a metal spoon on the outside. It worked mostly, but was a lot of effort. The crown blocks work much better. But now I can see that I need crown blocks in different sizes and even different tapers. ;) Never ends! :)

I will stay tuned as I am curious to see your block set-up at work.

Cheers. Best, Eric -
Thanks, Eric. The crown block is "out for delivery," should have it by 2:30 p.m. or so, Eastern time. We'll see!

My steamer sputters at start-up, but not after. I'm getting a full head of steam in 80 seconds from cold! (Just timed it. Yes, I'm an OCD engineer.)
 

Short Balding Guy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,631
Location
Minnesota, USA
Thanks, Eric. The crown block is "out for delivery," should have it by 2:30 p.m. or so, Eastern time. We'll see!

My steamer sputters at start-up, but not after. I'm getting a full head of steam in 80 seconds from cold! (Just timed it. Yes, I'm an OCD engineer.)

Engineer - lots of us on the forum. I should have guessed from the technical writing and understanding of Entropy.

Belfast's add of soaking the felt I have not tried. I have a Borsolino Featherweight that has a distorted and crazy crown. I am going to take the advise and wet (in doses) and then steam. This crown has been driving me crazy to get in "order."

My next project is to figure out how to "stiffen" some light weight fedora brims that are floppy. Frequent wearings and in no small part my steaming have them changing brim shape in the wind. Sometimes I wonder if the apparent wind when chasing my dog has them changing.

Good on you engineer. Hope you get the deliver on scheduled time. Eric -
 

jviss

Familiar Face
Messages
79
Location
Massachusetts
Eric, if you haven't already, check out Kevin's youtube videos. He's a lifelong hat salesman, now at JJ Hat Center in NYC. They are long, but entertaining. He has at least one on stiffening hats. The secret ingredient: hairspray. You can buy hat stiffener for a lot more money, but why bother?
 

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