Vintage Ice Cubes

Discussion in 'The Display Case' started by MB5, Dec 6, 2007.

  1. MB5

    MB5 One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    205
    Location:
    Oregon
    This is the best Ice tray I have ever used. Just lift up on the lever, pull out the separator and dump the cubes. I was concerned about freezing my hand to the tray at first, but it has not been an issue.
    I also have a Frigidaire Ice Ejector that uses a similar system, but don't use it for fear of shattering the plastic cube container.
    In the top right of the first photo you can see part of a Swing-A-Way cube crusher.

    Does anyone else have vintage Ice trays?

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  2. Miss Crisplock

    Miss Crisplock A-List Customer

    Messages:
    448
    Location:
    Long Beach, CA
    Not anymore.

    But remember, if you take out the separater you can make fudge in them!:eusa_clap
     
  3. Lady Day

    Lady Day I'll Lock Up Bartender

    Messages:
    9,083
    Location:
    Crummy town, USA
    We had those growing up :) From my Granny's old fridge. They made great orange-cicles

    LD
     
  4. kpreed

    kpreed Guest

    I have used the metal (aluminum?) trays, for many, many years. I was told they came in some ice boxes from the factory too. Must be why mine are marked "Crosley"
    Now with most new machines having ice makers, I guess a ice tray will be a rare thing soon.
     
  5. BegintheBeguine

    BegintheBeguine My Mail is Forwarded Here

    My dad procrastinated and never got the ice-maker wired up, so yes i still use Quickube and other ice cube trays, including new plastic ones. Some were brought in the moving van when we moved up North from Georgia in the 1960s! No shortage of ice at my house, those Martinis aren't going to chill themselves. Possibly a cute story, years and years ago I was hosting a party for some visiting New Zealanders and they wanted to help in the kitchen with the cooling of the Constant Comment tea (yummy mixed with vodka), but hadn't the foggiest how to operate the Quickube. :)
     
  6. hotrod_elf

    hotrod_elf A-List Customer

    Messages:
    448
    Location:
    New Berlin WI
    I don't have vintage ice cube trays.....But I do have vintage ice crushers....some are shaped like rockets.
     
  7. scotrace

    scotrace Head Bartender Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,227
    Location:
    Small Town Ohio, USA
    There really is no way to get those nice clear cubes at home, is there?
     
  8. The Wingnut

    The Wingnut One Too Many

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    I've got a couple of those from a Philco. They tend to bust the ice into irregular chunks. Otherwise, they're neat.

    Scotrace: Put HOT water into the tray. This slows the freezing process, making the ice less 'granular'.
     
  9. LizzieMaine

    LizzieMaine Bartender

    I have the ones that came with my 1945 Kelvinator refrigerator -- the same kind of lever action as shown in the pic -- but I don't use them. The water here is awful, and it makes very bad ice. But I have fond memories of sticking my tongue to such trays as a misguided little girl!
     
  10. dhermann1

    dhermann1 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    9,158
    Location:
    Da Bronx, NY, USA
    When those trays are really cold, popping the ice out with the lever can make the cubes shatter. A trick to getting solid cubes out of them is to run a little cool water over the tray before you bend the lever. This warms the metal slightly and makes the surface of the ice melt a little, thus easing the ejection for the cube.
    Sheesh. I must be getting old. It seems VERY odd to me to think of an aluminum ice tray as an antique. [huh]
     
  11. Viola

    Viola Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,469
    Location:
    NSW, AUS
    Oh, that's cool, I've never seen one of those.
     
  12. Vintage Betty

    Vintage Betty My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Messages:
    3,300
    Location:
    California, USA
    Ay-yi-yi! I grew up with them, and have some somewhere. They rock (pun intended)

    VB
     
  13. Vornholt

    Vornholt One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    170
    My parents used those for years. Still do, in addition to some of those new fangled plastic thangs...:D
     
  14. Miss_Bella_Hell

    Miss_Bella_Hell My Mail is Forwarded Here

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    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    A friend gave us like 4 of them. Way better than the new ones. However if you fill it up too far you're in danger of breaking the handle!
     
  15. fatwoul

    fatwoul Practically Family

    Messages:
    922
    Location:
    UK
    Yes.

    Domestic ice is made in a different way to the machine ice in bars and restaurants.

    The ice in a domestic fridge freezer compartment is frozen in thick blocks, which allows the air to become trapped as it freezes. However, the machines that restaurants and bars use have a chilled plate, over which water is gradually poured, allowing it to freeze in thin layers at a time, trapping much less air, and leaving clearer cubes.

    It's the same way ice forms on puddles in the winter - slowly, and in layers - which is why that ice also looks clear. I'm guessing that the ice on large masses of water like lakes is not clear because show usually accompanies a freeze deep enough to ice over a lake, so the result is a mixture of ice and compacted, refrozen snow, which contains lots of air.

    The solution - albeit a time-consuming one - is to try to mimic nature as closely as possible.

    Take a large, inch-deep tray, because it helps if the ice is able to form more slowly, and the tiny bits of water in an icecube tray freeze pretty fast. Clear a shelf in a freezer, put the tray in dead-level, and then pour as thin a layer of water as possible (maybe 1/16th-1/8th inch) into the tray. Allow that layer to freeze completely before pouring a second layer. Continue until the tray is full, which could take a week or more. The ice should be clear, or at least clearer.

    You then, of course, need to chip at the ice to put it in drinks, and upon first inspection the rough-edged chipped ice will probably look frosted, because of the surface scoring that happened when you were chipping. However, as soon as the ice is put in a drink and begins to melt, the scratched surface will melt, leaving (hopefully) a clear ice cube.

    You can try it wil an ice cube tray too, but in order to accurately fill each little cube with water in small layers, you'll probably need a 5ml syringe.

    I tried this years ago and it worked well, but I'm tempted to try again, just for giggles. I will need to go and get some syringes. All the ones I have are full of old fish medicine, which really shouldn't be going in a food freezer. lol

    Yes, this will help too, not only for the reason you describe but also because hot water holds less suspended oxygen than cold water does (something else I know from my fishtanks). However, if trying the layer method, you might find that the hot water melts the ice below it and defeats the purpose. In the layer method, it is best to stick to water that is room temperature, perhaps a touch cooler. Again, it's a matter of mimicking nature, and in nature, the new water attaching itself to a puddle or icicle would already be quite cold.
     
  16. The Wingnut

    The Wingnut One Too Many

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    Excellent explanation, fatwoul - once again, The Man Who Knows TM!

    These trays might actually be perfect for the layering technique, since the dividers are separate from the tray itself.
     
  17. Shaul-Ike Cohen

    Shaul-Ike Cohen One Too Many

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    Location:
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    low-tech solution

    Unless you have a pro machine, your best bet is to boil the water before, maybe several times. I let it cool down to room temperature - can't bring it over me to put hot water in a freezer, so I wouldn't know about this effect in addition. The point of my boiling is decalcification, descaling. The backside is you've got the stuff in the pot then, but that happens with your tea water as well.

    Try it!
     
  18. Miss_Bella_Hell

    Miss_Bella_Hell My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Messages:
    3,961
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    You guys talking about spending a week to make the perfect ice cube have ISSUES. lol
     
  19. Dr. Shocker

    Dr. Shocker One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    284
    Location:
    Ventura
    you mean they make another type.....got two in the freezer and a third tray only as my ice tray gotta keep that booze chilled
     
  20. Miss Brill

    Miss Brill One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,199
    Location:
    on the edge of propriety
    I found 2 of the old trays awhile back. They were .50 each, and are much nicer than the plastic ones. My new fridge has an ice maker, but I haven't hooked it up yet. I'm not handy. ;)
     

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