reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

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pqtex
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reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by pqtex »

My 1980's GE electric freestanding stove/oven is becoming unreliable. I like the look of the various old vintage stoves, and I have seen some on craigslist within a couple hours drive (haven't seen any local) that commonly list for $600-800 for unrestored and $4000 up for restored models. My stove is the 30" standard size stove, but have room for a 36" or 40". I want a larger size than what I have now because I cook a lot and I have the room for it, and I already have a large vent-a-hood from what had been there in times past. I have electric now, but can go with a gas stove. When I moved in, I had the plumber update the existing gas line to the kitchen, so that's ready if I go with gas.

I would love the looks of an old vintage stove in my 1913 farm kitchen, but I'm afraid of buying a used appliance (no guarantee) for as much as a new one (with a guarantee). This would be my functional stove--not just for looks, and it would get heavy use.

So, my question is how you Old House people feel about the vintage stoves in terms of durability and function as opposed to the newer safety features and easy cleaning and continuous grates. I mean, the cheapest vintage ones I seem to find cost as much as a new stove, and there is no guarantee it wouldn't break down right after buying it. And there is no way I can afford a restored one. With a new stove, I could also get one that is a gas stove with electric oven, which seems to make sense to me...but I don't know if it's really important.

Any advice? I hope I can find the right stove for me before mine goes out completely.

Any favorites for reliability among the old ones or suggestions for new ones that would fit the style of an old house?

Edit: I changed my search criteria on Craigslist and came up with a couple of stoves in the $400 range...including a white wedgewood, 1930's or 40's for $400 that looks pretty good.
Last edited by pqtex on Mon Aug 09, 2010 11:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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My great-grandparents' 1913 farmhouse

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brick1101
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by brick1101 »

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Last edited by brick1101 on Sat Feb 01, 2014 5:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

farmermiller
Posts: 130
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by farmermiller »

Here mine, a 1925 Roper gas stove. I had a girl friend tell me once it was her or the stove.Dang,i love my stove.And the girl friend she left.
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moonshadow317
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by moonshadow317 »

If you're going for a vintage stove, get gas. It's definitely easier to repair and better for cooking. I like to say I bought my 1935 Tudor just to get the Chambers that was in the kitchen :D I love to cook and my stove gets a workout every day. When we first got it I took it apart cleaned and painted the parts that were paintable. I purchased a copy of the original owners manual off ebay and that helped a lot. They don't make em like they use to!
That's for sure

Here she is

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Karen
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pqtex
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by pqtex »

moonshadow317 wrote:If you're going for a vintage stove, get gas. It's definitely easier to repair and better for cooking. I like to say I bought my 1935 Tudor just to get the Chambers that was in the kitchen :D
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There is one exactly like that for sale about an hour away from me. No price given though, they just say make reasonable offer. It looks pristine, but yellow isn't my color.

I also found a stove advertised as a 1930's-1940's Wedgewood stove for $400. The photos make the stove look brand new, inside and out, but it almost looks TOO good. The seller told me it is 36" wide, but it just doesn't look it. My current stove is 30" and it looks to be that size. I don't have a model number yet to look it up.
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I'd like to find a 40" stove, whether I buy vintage or new. That would fit my space and allow room for a small cabinet to the left of the stove. I already have a vent-a-hood that is 40" wide that is who knows how old. Older than my current stove, that's for sure, but it still works. Doesn't vent to anywhere but inside a cabinet and through the hole in the cabinet back into the room right now though! LOL.

A new stove in the 40" width seems to push the price way up.

I found a really cool Chambers Imperial Stove on Craigslist...looks to be about 5 feet long! Has been in storage 3 years, said to have some minor rust. Has it advertised for $4,000...ouch! Wouldn't fit anyway!
http://houston.craigslist.org/atq/1881181292.html

And...OH! I just saw this one that wasn't posted earlier today! 1950's Chambers for $150! http://houston.craigslist.org/app/1889979581.html Too late to call about it tonight. Is the oven big enough to cook a turkey or put in a big casserole pan (like a lasagna pan)? It looks almost like Moonshadow's but in white!

Any preferences out there on the best vintage stoves if they have previously been adequately cared for?
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My great-grandparents' 1913 farmhouse

Too bad the spam got so bad. Some of us have been spending time at the new community for folks with a love of old houses at wavyglass.org

pqtex
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by pqtex »

moonshadow317 wrote: I love to cook and my stove gets a workout every day.
What about using your stove for canning? The weight of the pressure canner full of water and jars is pretty significant...
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My great-grandparents' 1913 farmhouse

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rehabbingisgreen
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by rehabbingisgreen »

Wow I love that huge stove. Too big for our kitchen and pocket book but love it anyway.
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PowerMuffin
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by PowerMuffin »

I have a Chambers that is not cleaned up yet, so I haven't used it. I paid $40.00 for it off of CL. But these are considered to be the Cadillac of old stoves and there are several forums out there that support these stoves with technical advise, parts, manuals, cook books, stoves for sale, etc. Here is one that I frequent: http://www.chamberstoves.net/

It is worth investigating before you decide. I love cooking on gas, so electric is not an option for me. I am excited to get my stove up and running; it needs a lot of cleaning though and has taken the back seat to more pressing issues.
Diane

pqtex
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by pqtex »

PowerMuffin wrote:
It is worth investigating before you decide. Diane
I have decided to keep looking for a while. If I buy a vintage stove, or even a brand new one, it will probably be the last one I need to buy, so I want to get what I really want. Price will be an issue, and I will have to keep an eye on that.

My current stove works although one burner has become tempermental and possibly unsafe. I probably damaged something by all the canning I did this summer. It isn't the coil, but I should have bought a heavy duty canning burner. At any rate, I can safely use all other burners and the oven while I look for what I really want.

Despite the age of my house, the 1929 stoves pictured don't fit the style of my house or decorating. I have a few family antiques, but my house is fairly ecletic. I do like the rounded corners and big look of the 40's and 50's stoves. I want one with a griddle or grill and I think the pot shelves are really cool. I should probably get a white stove, and would be quite happy with it, but I adore the cobalt blue and red ones I've seen.
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My great-grandparents' 1913 farmhouse

Too bad the spam got so bad. Some of us have been spending time at the new community for folks with a love of old houses at wavyglass.org

jsmit
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Re: reliability/function vintage stoves versus new

Post by jsmit »

I bought an electric 1948 Hotpoint off ebay for $75 last year. I wasn't even looking for an old stove, but just happened to come across it while browsing one day. It took a lot of cleaning, but now looks almost new. The only part that doesn't work perfect is the oven, but then I don't do a lot of cooking. The thermostat isn't very accurate so it takes some tweaking to get the temperature right. The door and handle also get pretty warm, so it might not be good if kids were around. It's also a lot smaller than most modern ovens. I have a large convection microwave that I use for the few times I need an oven. I think that someday when I redo my kitchen I could put in a wall oven and just use my old stove for the cooktop.

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