Thread Number: 69483  /  Tag: Ranges, Stoves, Ovens
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Post# 923677   2/24/2017 at 22:56 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR)        

A family locally is selling what I believe is a 1955 GE Liberator range. It needs a bake element in the large oven and a broil element in the small oven. Pretty clean otherwise. They say everything else works fine. Going to go see it tomorrow. They are only asking $150. What do you all think? Any suggestions on the oven elements?

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Post# 923687 , Reply# 1   2/25/2017 at 00:59 by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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Seems like a fair price for such a clean stove.  Is the bake element missing?  It would probably help if you had the old one to match up. 


New elements should be available from any nearby appliance parts house.  If you have a smaller independent parts dealer, the knowledge level will likely be better than a large operation where the staff relies on computer screens and can't do anything without a part number.


Not that long ago I was able to get a replacement bake element for a '49 Westinghouse from an appliance parts place near me.  It had to be manufactured, but only took a day, and it wasn't expensive.

Post# 923689 , Reply# 2   2/25/2017 at 01:20 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR)        

Yeah...picture shows the large bake element missing. Hoping I can find one. Seems like I should be able to. I will learn more once I get to see it up close tomorrow. I have been looking for a double oven vintage range for some time. We have a perfect spot for a 40 inch range. Plus it will look really nice with my GE monitor top (later retrofitted to square top). Wish me luck.

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Post# 923744 , Reply# 3   2/25/2017 at 10:58 by appnut (TX)        

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Like your dishwasher.  Would appreciate a picture of it when you are able to.

Post# 923749 , Reply# 4   2/25/2017 at 11:55 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR)        

Old dishwasher in that picture. Long gone.

Post# 923750 , Reply# 5   2/25/2017 at 11:56 by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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That later style unit on your monitor top was meant to be.  With its original unit, it would never fit under those cabinets. 

Post# 923754 , Reply# 6   2/25/2017 at 12:40 by twintubdexter (Palm Springs)        

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Is it just me or does anyone else think that General Electric range looks so very nice and comfortable with those laminate metal-trimmed counter tops and those light cabinets? I especially like the sliding cupboard above. Then again it could be that I imagine it will probably be replaced with something in god-awful stainless steel.

Post# 923787 , Reply# 7   2/25/2017 at 17:20 by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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Joe, I'm betting that entire spotless kitchen will soon fall victim to a total gut job.

Post# 923802 , Reply# 8   2/25/2017 at 20:34 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR)        
Actually...I was pleasantly surprised

The couple selling the range were in their 40s and were really enjoying their 1955 home. The rest of the kitchen looked like a time capsule and they obviously understood the value of keeping it that way. I do think they are moving on to a more modern range, but it was clear that the kitchen was not being updated. They were quite nice. I did buy the range. It was nice to actually be able to test it in their kitchen and know that it had been in use. It does need some things fixed, but for right now I am thrilled to have found it. I am open to all suggestions about where to find parts. I did download the manuals from here last night and they were even the exact year...1955. A good day, all in all.

Post# 923806 , Reply# 9   2/25/2017 at 21:33 by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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So glad the kitchen is loved instead of hated.

Post# 924095 , Reply# 10   2/27/2017 at 19:01 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        
Post the Serial #

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I believe your range is from 1954. The 1954 had control knobs with that open style grooved pointer in the center. I have one exactly like yours. When I bought it I received the original operating manual with it which had a date of January 1954 written in it. The 1955 Liberator gained the meat probe in the large oven with the temperature readout located between the two lower knobs in the backsplash. 1956 gained the Automatic Griddle. 1955 & 1956 had a solid black pointer in the center of the knobs.

Have you tested the Automatic Calrod (left front burner) to see if it works correctly? It uses the earlier hydraulic style components/thermostat for heat regulation as opposed to the later Sensi-Temp automatic burner which was electrically controlled. The earlier style was more reliable and its not uncommon to find them still working. The Automatic Calrod on the 1958 GE I got last November still works correctly.

This post was last edited 02/27/2017 at 19:24
Post# 924123 , Reply# 11   2/27/2017 at 23:01 by Stan (Napa CA)        
I have

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The same fridge

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Post# 924149 , Reply# 12   2/28/2017 at 08:31 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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What a nice kitchen. Id guess original to the house? So many people today wouldn't give the idea of ripping that out a second thought.

Post# 924251 , Reply# 13   2/28/2017 at 22:30 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR)        
It was a little hard to read...

But the SN appears to be 1J408W1M3. According to the book I downloaded here, the "M" says it is 1955. I did download all applicable 1955 GE books available here, including the parts catalog.

I know that the Auto Calrod burner works....but I have not played with it enough to know if it works correctly. I will update later when I know more.

The first thing I am looking for is pretty trivial, but I would appreciate any suggestions. The range only had three of the four adjustable feet. Here is a picture of one. The threads are 3/8-24, which has made it somewhat illusive in the short attempt I made searching the net. I intent to visit my local appliance repair/parts place, but have not yet gotten there.

Secondly are the bake element for the large oven and the broil element for the small oven. I think I saw the small oven broil element at one online place, but would appreciate suggestions for the large oven bake element. It has the three prong connector. See image. I think there are places that will custom make one, but again I would appreciate suggestions.

I am looking forward to this adventure. Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

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Post# 924259 , Reply# 14   2/28/2017 at 23:09 by rp2813 (The Big Blue Bubble)        

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A leveling leg for a refrigerator might have the same diameter and thread.


I don't know if you can buy bake elements "off the shelf" for your oven, but if not, the made-to-order option is a common alternative and similar in cost.  Sometimes there's no other way to get an element replaced, but the good thing is that a made-to-order type will perform just like the the old one, and won't be some kind of universal one-size-fits-all compromise.   


You may not even need the old element to ensure proper dimensions for the new one.  When I had the element replaced on the '49 Westinghouse, the old one (a previous replacement) was a little smaller than the original.  The made-to-order one was slightly larger, which was correct, but the parts house guy sent it back and asked for the same size as the one I left with him.  So, it seems the manufacturing facility knows the correct dimensions for the various makes.

Post# 924334 , Reply# 15   3/1/2017 at 08:48 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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The number you posted is the model number. The serial number would start with two letters. They designate the month and year of manufacture. It could be a 55 with the 54 style knobs. GE could have been using up stock of older parts. Here's a link to GE date codes:

I also have a 1953 GE two oven range. It was in need of a new bake element in the small oven when I got it. I found one on ebay. Have you looked there? I didn't know oven elements could be custom made. That's good to know. Thanks for the info Ralph.

This post was last edited 03/01/2017 at 09:43
Post# 924351 , Reply# 16   3/1/2017 at 10:52 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR) mistake

Teh serial number is UM15450A.

Post# 924352 , Reply# 17   3/1/2017 at 11:02 by ken (Ulster Hgts, NY)        

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I don't find U in GE's date codes but M is code for year 1955. Its strange to me its not equipped with the meat probe. I thought all 55 Liberators had that as a new feature that year. Could be that its not a Liberator. Maybe someone else can decipher the model # as to what model it is. GE did offer many models any given year. This may have been a less expensive two oven model with less features than the TOL two oven Liberator. Maybe the less expensive models used the older style knobs?

This post was last edited 03/01/2017 at 12:08
Post# 924356 , Reply# 18   3/1/2017 at 11:23 by k5carrillo (McMinnville, OR)        
The 1955 GE manuals I downloaded here

do not mention a meat probe. I noticed the "U" was missing from the decoder too, but the "M" and "408" are good indicators. In any event, I am enjoying it a ton and looking forward to learning more and finding ways to restore as many features as I can. Thanks.

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