Thread Number: 71229  /  Tag: Irons and Mangles
Paging Launderess: Should I re-home this?
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Post# 942719   6/9/2017 at 18:50 (351 days old) by jkbff (Happy Rock, ND)        

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I stumbled upon this for $150. I told the owner I could pick it up next week when I have a day off.

Do you think it would be worth it?

There was another one, pretty ... singed looking for $80.00.

Anyways, I thought I'd ask here first to see the opinions I'd get.

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Post# 942729 , Reply# 1   6/9/2017 at 19:53 (351 days old) by Michaelman2 (Atlanta, GA)        

Yes, if you have the space and you learn how to use it ( you may already know). Parts are somewhat available for this model. There are several videos produced by Ironrite in the 1940s and have been posted here numerous times. Watch them, they will teach you how to iron various items on the ironer.

I love pressed linens and there is nothing better for flatwork. The films give a detailed tutorial for shirts and other garments.

To use one of these the item to be ironed must be slightly damp ( linen, really damp to wet).



Post# 942732 , Reply# 2   6/9/2017 at 19:58 (351 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
Looks like an Ironrite "85" model

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If it is in working order and near enough you can collect in person (thus saving shipping costs), then have at it. Though would offer seller less and see if they will take the bait. There isn't exactly a huge market for vintage ironers, so unless seller is beating them back with sticks you may get away with haggling them down.

Should you decide to go for it remember one thing in shifting these beasts; do not under any circumstances lay on side, back, or front. The gearbox is filled with oil and unless removed prior to shipping can and likely will leak if machine is not kept level. When originally sold Ironrite ironers arrived crated (in two sections, the top and bottom/legs), without oil. The latter was added later when the thing was set up in its new home.

Post# 942742 , Reply# 3   6/9/2017 at 20:38 (351 days old) by Gyrafoam (Roanoke, VA)        

I have some. They are cool old collector items, however, other than for the novelty of it, I wouldn't spend a day doing it like our housekeeper did back in the day.
She and those who were used to using them, made it look easy. Everything was perfect.
It takes good coordination and someone who can take the heat.
Not for me!

Post# 942747 , Reply# 4   6/9/2017 at 21:16 (351 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
Actually IIRC By The 85 Ironrite Model

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Along with 95, 890 and other late model units all switched to single knee lever controls. That made things immensely easier in terms of movement coordination.

As with all single roll domestic ironers learning how moist things need to be in order to iron dry with one pass is half the battle. Once you get that down pat and learn proper folding and movements you'll be whipping out not just linens but shirts and other things on an Ironrite in no time.

Just to be clear regardless of domestic or commercial things ironed on a mangle/ironer were never meant to replicate the best hand ironing. As with so many other things there is a trade off when going with machine ironing versus hand, something individuals must decide for themselves if worthy.

Ironer ironing for instance is famous for the odd creases/cat whiskers. Also for leading edges (hems) not always being true or having "mangled" creases.

Better laundries will hand finish items that are machine pressed/ironed. Others simply fold, package and return things as they come from the machines.

Main issue for all domestic ironers is large flatwork. Back in the old days of Simplex and Thor you could get domestic units with rollers of 42" or greater width. This allowed for doing bed sheets with only one (or none depending upon width) fold. Table linens by and large could be process with a fold at all.

Even with an Irornite the issue remains. Whenever you fold something once, twice or more and put it though an ironer the feeding becomes difficult. This is usually because the layers feed into the machine at different speeds.

As have stated previously according to my vintage Consumers Reports (1940's and 1950's) ironers with under roll feeding consistently rated at top of the list in terms of overall results and ease of use. At that time the only two such models were by Ironrite and Bendix.

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