Vintage Appliances

Discussion in 'Your Vintage Home' started by Rosie, Dec 2, 2006.

  1. Rosie

    Rosie One Too Many

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    Hi all. Hope this isn't a silly question but, other than having to get a three prong converter for old appliances, is there anything else I should know about them electrically? Do they pull more current? Will they be okay for everyday use? Specifically, I'm looking to get a toaster, blender, mixer and possibly a stove. Any help is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    Other than the obvious stuff like being really careful about power cords -- checking for fraying, dried-out insulation, and things like that -- I'd be very careful with anything that has an automatic thermostat, like a pop-up toaster for example. The thermostats tend to fail when you least expect it.

    If you've got the patience for turning your toast by hand, a manual toaster is a good reliable choice. There's no thermostat or temperature control, and you have to remember to flip over the toast after each side is done, but they're also very very durable. I've been using the same one -- a late-thirties model -- for over twenty years without a problem. I *have* incinerated a few bagels over the years by getting distracted and forgetting I had them in, so it's a good idea not to take phone calls or answer the door while you're toasting!

    As far as stoves go, it's a good idea to stick with a make that's still around to make sure you can still get replacement coils or drip pans. Mine is an old Hotpoint, and parts are still very easy to get. I think I've had to replace the oven coil twice in the eighteen years I've owned it.

    Mixers and other motorized appliances might run slowly at first because they haven't been oiled in a long time. My mixer is an old Sunbeam Mixmaster which hadn't been used in quite a while when I inherited it, but a few squirts of 3-in-1 oil loosened it up. Be sure to test the motor on any appliance before buying it -- if you smell an acrid odor coming out of the casing, don't buy!
     
    Edward likes this.
  3. Rosie

    Rosie One Too Many

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    Great! Thanks Lizzie. I'm actually looking to buy a Sunbeam Mixmaster now. I'll be sure to follow your great advice. :)
     
  4. Phil

    Phil A-List Customer

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    Also, be sure that the appliance is sanitarty. Dust and dirt a fine because they can be cleaned off. Avoid rust no matter what. Depending on the conditions that the appliances were stored, they may or may not be rusted, but the food poisoning that comes from rust is very bad.
     
  5. Rosie

    Rosie One Too Many

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    Thanks Phil, I'll take that into consideration also. :)
     
  6. GOK

    GOK One Too Many

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    This is something I've never thought about before but now you mention it, Lizzie, do you not have grills built into your cookers?

    Ummm, by grill I mean the thing you put your bread under to toast it. I'm not sure that a grill over here is necessarily the same over there! lol

    Generally speaking, even though you can have a separate hob and oven (over here), the oven always has a grill option, so that only the top element gets switched on and is controllable, thereby allowing you to brown your bread (or dish) as much or as little as you like. Do your cookers have these, or do you have to buy separate toasters?
     
  7. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    We Yanks would call that a "broiler," and most electric stoves do have them as a setting on the oven -- although they're intended more for roasting meat than toasting bread! You can use them to make toast if you're inclined, but it's kind of a brute force method, unless you're using a tabletop toaster oven...

    Tabletop electric toasters have been popular here since before WW1, although the pop-up type didn't appear on the scene until the late thirties, and didn't really become common until the '50s.
     
  8. Fletch

    Fletch I'll Lock Up

    Hob = range or cook top, yes?

    Unfortunately we Yanks are a bit behind in the civilized art of toast. We've been sold toasters since the 20s and probably before (I know a toaster collector I could ask).

    A tradition that's long faded here was to put them Right On The Table in your breakfast nook. (I think a few too many nooks went up in smoke.)

    My great-grandmother's 1941 Toastmaster bit it just a few years ago after 60+ years service to 4 generations. I wonder if my mom still has it...:rolleyes:
     
  9. Fletch

    Fletch I'll Lock Up

    Lizzie comes thru again...somebody please pass the apricot preserves. :) Thanks awful.
     
  10. GOK

    GOK One Too Many

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    Aaahh I see - thank you for the info. I don't use a pop up toaster, I use my grill...errr, broiler! That sounds so odd to me - makes me think of boiling food!

    I think it would be such a huge culture shock for me if I had to live in the States! I just about coped with a week in LA and even then I'd got to the point of reciting, parrot fashion, "And no ice please"! lol
     
  11. Miss Neecerie

    Miss Neecerie I'll Lock Up

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    Older gas stoves also have broilers...My mother's wedgewood has one, and we always use it for making grilled cheese sandwiches...open face, just cheese on the bread....mmmmmmm
     
  12. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    My grandparents' kersoene range had what I assume had to have been intended as a toasting compartment too -- a little door at the side that you could open up and slide in some bread, some rolls, or a box of Pilot crackers just before supper. In practicality, though, my grandfather used to use that compartment to keep his feet warm while sitting in his kitchen chair!
     
  13. GOK

    GOK One Too Many

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    LOL! My grandad used to insist his slippers went into the oven 15 minutes before he was due home from work, so they'd be nice and warm for him! lol
     
  14. Rosie

    Rosie One Too Many

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    I use my broiler for making toast also.
     
  15. Lady Day

    Lady Day I'll Lock Up Bartender

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    I have a vintage toaster I got form a thrift store that I have only used once. If I must do toast, I just pop it in my oven :)

    LD
     
  16. The Wolf

    The Wolf Call Me a Cab

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    Those ideas sound better than Elwood Blues' way of putting white bread on a bent hanger on a hot plate.lol

    Sincerely,
    The WOLF
     
  17. GOK

    GOK One Too Many

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    Although not as amusing as Sam's way in Benny & Joon :D
     
  18. VaderSS

    VaderSS New in Town

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    Location:
    Houston, TX
    A friend of mine has an antique toaster that I never tire of watching. When the bread is put in, it automatically drops, then pops back up when done.
     
  19. Dinerman

    Dinerman Super Moderator Bartender

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    anyone use those toasters that look like little tents? do they make good toast?
    [​IMG]

    how 'bout the ones that drop the bread down into a little tray instead of popping it up?
    like this one
    [​IMG]
     
  20. Rosie

    Rosie One Too Many

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    Now THAT is spiffy. Me wanty. :)
     

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