Thread Number: 389
The Click-ity Clack-ity Clack Challenge
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Post# 47894   10/26/2004 at 23:10 (7,108 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        

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With the Kelvinator restoration done and splashing away, I’m ready and eager to tackle the next machine so I moved the 1956 Hotpoint into the workshop. Greg (Gansky1) found this washer about three years ago at an estate sale in Omaha and since we’ve given each other machines and he knew I wanted an earlier Hotpoint he was kind enough to give me this beautiful machine. When it was found it appeared to have been taken apart and put back together by some unknown person. I can get the machine to move the agitator back and forth, but the spin clutch which should completely disengage during agitation and engage during spin appears to be stuck half way between the agitate and spin position and makes a terrible “clickity-clacking” sound in either agitation or spin. So its time to go in and take everything apart and see exactly what is wrong. I’m not totally convinced that I’m going to be able to successfully make this washer run properly again, it all depends on what is wrong with the spin clutch. If all the parts are there, but they are assembled incorrectly, then I have a good chance. But if a specific clutch part is broken or worse yet missing I might be out of luck, because I have absolutely no mechanical parts (new, used or otherwise) for this very unusual Hotpoint except for a new pump.

The reason I say this is a very unusual washer is due to the history of Hotpoint Automatics, this design is from the #2 major Hotpoint automatic washer redesign and was only produced for a couple of years. Here is a quick rundown of the Hotpoint Automatic Washer history, all of the years are my best guess, I should be close, but I might be off by a year or so on a few. This information is not written in any one place but I have compiled it from my many readings over the years. If anyone has any further clarifications, revisions or additions they would be very welcomed.

Design #1 1949-1955 Hotpoint outsourced the production of their very first automatic washer to Beam (who also made the familiar Speed Queen design). Their first washer didn’t even have a spin clutch, they used two separate full sized motors of all things, one for agitate the other for spin! In ’50 or ’51 in their second washer model they kept the same similar design but began using the Beam “Fluid Drive” to drive the spin tub and got rid of that silly (and heavy) extra motor.

Design #2 1956-1957 (This is my machine pictured above). Hotpoint continued to use the Beam style transmission but created their very own, completely unique, spin clutch system. The machine used one single solenoid to shift from agitation to spin. When the timer called for agitation the solenoid was energized and it pulled down a lever that engaged the agitator shaft to the transmission and at the same time it used a spider disk the literally move the spin clutch shoes away from the clutch drum which prevented the tub from spinning. When the timer calls for spin, the solenoid is de-energized and a spring pulls the solenoid back up to the off position. This upward movement of the solenoid disengaged the agitator shaft from the transmission and at the same time moved the spider disk upward to allow the clutch shoes to press against the clutch drum and the tub started to spin. All this was done in one quick movement without a need to pause between agitation and spin.

Design #3 1958-1969 In 1958 it appears that Hotpoint completely discontinued outsourcing any of their washer parts to Beam/Speed Queen and completely made their own washer. They designed their own transmission called the “Co-Axial” transmission and once again redesigned their clutch, but unlike in previous models this clutch drove both agitation as well as spin. Their new transmission was now a reversing style in which the motor rotated it in one direction for agitation and the other direction for spin, which means the washer now needed to pause between the wash and spin. For the next ten years other non mechanical changes were incorporated, such as the lint-filter agitator in about ’64 and multiple cycle machines but the mechanics generally stayed the same.

Design #4 1969-1974 The same, pump, transmission, snubber, solid tub ect, were used for this new redesign except for the fact Hotpoint made a major change to the Clutch assembly. The clutch now incorporated a spin brake to bring the spinning tub to a complete stop within 10 seconds. This transmission was called the "Positive Brake Transmission", its the style of machine that Todd in New Orleans recently found. In some high-end models in the early 70’s, Hotpoint made their solid tub slightly larger referring to it as the Hotpoint “16”.

Design #5 1975-1995. Hotpoint completely discontinued producing its own washer and General Electric now produced washers for Hotpoint, using their perforated basket design. Except for some of the esthetics of the machine, a side opening lid and self cleaning filter ring as opposed to using GE’s filter-flo system the machines were essentially the exact same as the GE washers of the time.

Design #6 1996 to Today: We all know what GE started making in ’95 or ’96 so I wont even bother to mention it because, oh forget it, we all know why it doesn’t need mentioning.

Here is a link to the beginning of the restoration album...


Post# 47896 , Reply# 1   10/26/2004 at 23:42 (7,108 days old) by gansky1 (Omaha, The Home of the TV Dinner!)        

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I'm betting all the parts are there...but there was definitely a problem somewhere. When I found it, the previous owner started to take the machine apart and it appears as he got as far as removing the tub, gave up and went out to buy a new Maytag A606 washer in the early 70's. It will be very interesting to see what the problem was. Hopefully it will just need a hose clamp ;-)

Post# 47901 , Reply# 2   10/27/2004 at 00:05 (7,108 days old) by maytagbear (N.E. Ohio)        
Good Luck, Robert!

It is a pretty machine, and I hope you can restore it.

Wonder if Ozzie Nelson would have any insights :)


Post# 47906 , Reply# 3   10/27/2004 at 05:58 (7,108 days old) by Brent-Aucoin ()        
Great Reading!

Loved reading the history on the Hotpoints. I think that these machines are one of a kind!
I am more that sure that you will be able to find what the issue is, and fix it good as new. Your Hotpoint is in such excellent shape!
I was able to watch this very model run at Jimmy's (FilterFlo) house a year ago. I could not get over how quite the machine was. It was such a solid machine. Loved the way the actual case of the machine got hot when it went into spin due to the cabinet being the actual outer "drum" of the machine.
It is a one of a kind machine!
Thanks again for the pictures, and the education on Hotpoint!

Post# 47909 , Reply# 4   10/27/2004 at 07:00 (7,108 days old) by westytoploader ()        

Amazing about the Hotpoint designs! I know the '49 Hotpoint is one of the machines you're after; with the heavy two-motor system instead of a spin clutch shouldn't it last longer? I'm confused as to why these machines are so rare.

As for this one, it's BEAUTIFUL! And the rubber agitator fins are in great shape! As for the clickety-clacking, it seems that many older Hotpoints have spin clutch/brake problems, as you've mentioned about your '62 occasionally indexing during wash, and Todd has said that as well.

Good luck on the restoration!

Post# 47910 , Reply# 5   10/27/2004 at 07:53 (7,108 days old) by peteski50 (New York)        

peteski50's profile picture
This is some machine. The first washer I ever remember watching was a Hotpoint 55 that is in the most wanted (the one with the removeable lid). I am sure this baby runs very simular. I would love to test drive it.

Post# 47912 , Reply# 6   10/27/2004 at 08:40 (7,108 days old) by lesto (Atlanta)        

This is the machine my Mom had when I was born. Robert, you must make a DVD once it's up and running. Love the unique Hotpoint timer and the red agitator.

Post# 47914 , Reply# 7   10/27/2004 at 09:09 (7,108 days old) by Gyrafoam (Wytheville, VA)        

That really is a beautiful machine. The first Hotpoints I remember had that Red agitator but with-out the rubber tips---maybe a later year--don't know when they stopped the red agitator. My cousins mother had those that came later with the black agitator. She must have had three of them in rapid order as it seemed like every time I went to visit there was a different one! She is a very meticulous person, so I always thought there must have been something unreliable with Hotpoints. I loved the noise they mke when they throw the water out of the tub. Like a chooga-ghooga-chooga noise. Good luck with the repair---that should be a fun machine! -Steve

Post# 47917 , Reply# 8   10/27/2004 at 11:37 (7,108 days old) by golittlesport (California)        

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Gotta love those all porcelain inside and out vintage machines. They look brand new after 50 years! Good luck on the restoration! If anyone can figure it out, you can.

Post# 47995 , Reply# 9   10/28/2004 at 09:06 (7,107 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
Work continues and gets even more challenging

unimatic1140's profile picture
Well my first task is to remove and examine the spin clutch. According to the repair master, all you need to do is loosen two set screws on the collar that holds that agitator shaft in place (underneath the machine) and pull out the agitator shaft from the top of the washer. Then you can easily remove the clutch assembly, without having to remove the motor and transmission or anything else for that matter. Well of course it wasn’t that easy, it rarely is with stuff this old. It appears that owner of the machine in their quest to “fix it” had used quite a bit of upward force on the agitator shaft and forced that collar right up into the clutch bearing! This pushed up the clutch bearing over 1/4” forcing the clutch plate and shoes downward and out of alignment. Worse yet, this prevented me from being able to access the set screws as they were now up into the clutch housing. So the only solution at this point was to take the entire machine apart working from below and pulling all the components including the agitator shaft out from the bottom of the machine. Good news is it appears that all the parts of the machine are there. The mystery still is why was he taking the machine apart in the first place??? I’m sure he had a good reason, unless you’re one of us, people normally do not take a washer apart for the fun of it.

Now I’m left with the main spin bearing housing under the outer tub, the outer tub boot and wash tub left in the washer. The wash tub is completely stuck to the main bearing housing shaft and I have to come up with some way of separating the two. Normally I would just torch the two and they should separate, but the top of the shaft is surrounded by rubber and I do not have a replacement. This is going to be the next and more serious challenge as I need to separate them without doing any damage to either part, wish me luck on this one.


Post# 47998 , Reply# 10   10/28/2004 at 09:19 (7,107 days old) by frontaloadotmy (the cool gay realm)        


Post# 48001 , Reply# 11   10/28/2004 at 10:35 (7,107 days old) by PeterH770 (Marietta, GA)        

peterh770's profile picture
On the Diagonal Assembly, is there a third belt for spinning?

Post# 48003 , Reply# 12   10/28/2004 at 11:03 (7,107 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
Three Drive Belts

unimatic1140's profile picture
Hi Peter, yes there sure is, its a 3 belt system. Take a look at third picture in this album and you can see the spin belt in the upper right hand corner.


Post# 48009 , Reply# 13   10/28/2004 at 12:49 (7,107 days old) by PeterH770 (Marietta, GA)        

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I missed that! How cool that the belt has "HOTPOINT" on it. What RPM's does it spin?

Post# 48017 , Reply# 14   10/28/2004 at 14:53 (7,106 days old) by Jetcone (Schenectady-Home of Calrods,Monitor Tops,Toroid Transformers)        
Help is on the way!!

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Robert I have just the stuff to loosen your tub from the bearing shaft! After restoring a 1958 Edsel I know what chemicals work and what do not. I'll call you tonight.

It has always been interesting to me growing up in a GE household in Schenectady and seeing first hand how GE worked from the inside why they ever let Hotpoint continue as long as it did with its own platform and not rebadge their own Filter Flo machines as Hotpoints.

Post# 48019 , Reply# 15   10/28/2004 at 15:15 (7,106 days old) by lesto (Atlanta)        

Sounds like you've most likely found the cause of the clickity-clackity. If the clutch plate and screws are out of alignment and the collar pushed up into the plate it's no wonder it was making god-awful noises. Hopefully once you get it reassemebled correctly it will run smooth as silk. I'm still wondering what the heck that guy was trying to do.

I'm trying to oocate a photo taken of me around age 3 or 4 standing on a footstool and peering down into my mom's 56 Hotpoint while it washed. This machine was my intro to the world of top loading automatics - and a solid tub at that!


Post# 48021 , Reply# 16   10/28/2004 at 15:45 (7,106 days old) by Gyrafoam (Wytheville, VA)        
Question on those old Hotpoints----

I remember seeing those old solid-tub straight vane agitator Hotpoints at the appliance store in the early 1960's and some of them had a shallow plastic disk---somewhat like a filter pan---but neither deep enough or perforated---so they must have been a dispenser of sorts??? Does anyone remember such a thing? I seem to remember the agitators were black but the little pans were either red or orange. Kind of like upside-down Frisbee's with a hole cut in to fit over the agitator! I also remember some kind of plastic ring/filter? that fit over the agitator of early 60's Whirly's, that did not have the "Magic-Mix Filter"! Anyone know anything about that? -Steve

Post# 48026 , Reply# 17   10/28/2004 at 16:28 (7,106 days old) by westytoploader ()        

Correct me if I'm wrong, but my opinion is that they were used for detergent. In a video of Robert's '62, the water spray was strong enough to dissolve the soap and of course overflow the mixture in the plastic pan. Here's the link to the video (Hotpoint rinse fill).


CLICK HERE TO GO TO westytoploader's LINK

Post# 48027 , Reply# 18   10/28/2004 at 16:29 (7,106 days old) by peteski50 (New York)        
Question on those old Hotpoints----

peteski50's profile picture
Those pans you are speaking of on the old hotpoints were for dispensering detergent. Actually as the machine was filling with water it would overflow the detergent from the dispenser into the tub. In my openion it was essentially useless!
The filter underneith did catch some lint but was no great shakes.

Post# 48030 , Reply# 19   10/28/2004 at 16:57 (7,106 days old) by gansky1 (Omaha, The Home of the TV Dinner!)        

gansky1's profile picture
Robert - I believe you just turn and pull upwards on the agitator shaft tube. This porcelain tube is separate from the wash tub and joined under the rubber gasket/collar at the bottom of the wash tub. They were all in pieces when I found it, I guess he was trying to remove the agitator shaft for a still unknown reason.

Post# 48035 , Reply# 20   10/28/2004 at 18:29 (7,106 days old) by Gyrafoam (Wytheville, VA)        
Thankyou to Westytoploader and Peteski!

Thanks for the response! Now I remember! That was sort of a dumb gimmick but, hey-- it sold a few more machines. I don't ever remember seeing a white pan like that in Westytoploaders link, in any event, that machine looked like new--must be fun to play with. Thanks fellas! -Steve

Post# 48059 , Reply# 21   10/28/2004 at 22:32 (7,106 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
If it was only that easy!

unimatic1140's profile picture
Hi Greg, the porcelain agitator shaft tube came out very easily. The problem is the spin shaft is completely sized in the wash tub support hub, at least with the tub installed in the washer. It also appears that the previous owner at some point had siliconed the wash tub to the tub support hub and I cannot even separate the tub from the hub. Of course to remove the tub you don’t need to take out the 6 bolts, you just need to remove the large nut holding down the center and the hub & tub is suppose to pull off of the spin shaft together as one unit. See the picture at the link for a better explanation.

Good news thankfully I do not need to go any further with removing the tub. I was worried that there might have been a tear in the outer tub boot and that is why the previous owner tried to take the machine apart. Well since I couldn’t get the tub out I decided to test the boot by filling the outer tub full of water and not a drop leaked! YAY. So I’m going to forget about removing the tub for now and concentrate on the clutch and reassembly. Stay tuned, who knows what’s going to happen.


Post# 48068 , Reply# 22   10/29/2004 at 00:28 (7,106 days old) by gansky1 (Omaha, The Home of the TV Dinner!)        

gansky1's profile picture
Well, it sounds encouraging so far - you haven't seen any visible signs of any clutch problems?

Post# 48296 , Reply# 23   10/31/2004 at 22:27 (7,103 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
Its spins during spin as well as wash :(

unimatic1140's profile picture
Well I now know what is wrong with the Hotpoint. The clutch spider has worn down to the point of not being able to disengage from spin. Check out the link below for a further explanation. The clickity-clack was happening from abuse from the previous owner and that was not the original problem.

Any suggestions??? I have one idea, but I would be interested to hear what others think too.


Post# 48316 , Reply# 24   11/1/2004 at 07:01 (7,103 days old) by gizmo (Victoria, Australia)        

Could you take the worn out part to an engineers workshop (such as someone who re-manufactures vintage car parts), get them to build up the worn metal by welding, then machine the restored area back to shape including restoring the groove. This sort of operation isn't unusual with vintage car repairs and the like. I even had a motor shaft restored once, a Hoover front loader washer had a siezed bearing and the shaft had turned inside the bearing, wearing a groove in the shaft. A motor rewinder welded the shaft to add metal, then put the shaft in a lathe and turned away the excess metal to give a perfect repair. It only cost me a bottle of decent white wine.


Post# 48320 , Reply# 25   11/1/2004 at 08:32 (7,103 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        

unimatic1140's profile picture
Hi Chris, that's a great idea, I was thinking of trying a machine shop as we call them and see if they can do something. I have one idea I'm going to try first, but I'm not confident its going to last. I'll post pictures of it tonight.

Post# 48342 , Reply# 26   11/1/2004 at 17:24 (7,102 days old) by laundramatt (Youngstown, Ohio)        

Looks like the perfect time to try this site out.

CLICK HERE TO GO TO laundramatt's LINK

Post# 48384 , Reply# 27   11/2/2004 at 13:06 (7,102 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
YAY for Machine Shops

unimatic1140's profile picture
Good news on the Hoptoint. I took the clutch and jaw to a machine shop today who said they can weld a new band on my clutch spider and will make the part like new. All for $10 no less! They said I might have to wait over a week because they are really busy, but at least I'll be able to get if fixed. I will post pictures as soon as I get it back from them. Hopefully sooner than later.

Post# 48413 , Reply# 28   11/2/2004 at 19:52 (7,101 days old) by Brent-Aucoin ()        

Exciting news Robert!
Did you tell it what it was for?
I bet if you did, they were more than excited to get it redone for you!
What a great source for you if you should run into any other issues that require that type of work done for you.
Did you ever have other issues in the past with rebuilding your machines where this would have come in handy?
Very happy for you!
I just love that machine! One of a kind!

Post# 48417 , Reply# 29   11/2/2004 at 20:01 (7,101 days old) by Jetcone (Schenectady-Home of Calrods,Monitor Tops,Toroid Transformers)        
Cool site

jetcone's profile picture
Laundramatte That is a cool site have you used them before??

Post# 48419 , Reply# 30   11/2/2004 at 20:19 (7,101 days old) by laundramatt (Youngstown, Ohio)        
Cool site

No, I haven't used the site. I stumbled on it somehow one day.

I hope it helps someone out some day.

Post# 49065 , Reply# 31   11/12/2004 at 08:45 (7,092 days old) by pulsator-power (connecticut)        
The Hotpoint

Robert- how are you coming along with the hotpoint?
Any further info?

Post# 50346 , Reply# 32   12/2/2004 at 16:05 (7,071 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
Update on the Hotpoint

unimatic1140's profile picture
Well for those who are wondering about the progress on the 1956 Hotpoint its been a bumpy ride. To refresh everyone’s memory, the clutch spider locking groove had worn away, so it was no longer interlocked with the Male Jaw (as shown in this picture). So I took the clutch spider to a machine shop and they welded metal onto the groove and ground the new metal down perfectly smooth to form a new ring. I put the two parts together and they locked together perfectly, YAY! I greased up the parts as specified and reinstalled the entire clutch assembly. It worked perfectly, at least for 15 minutes until I noticed that it was starting to not grab and pull down the clutch spider again, DARN! So I took the clutch assembly apart again and would you believe it the new welded part held up perfectly, unfortunately it wore the all the metal off the top locking grove of the Male Clutch Jaw in no time flat! So now I have the reverse of where I started, the Male Clutch Jaw is the bad worn-away part.

Since I wasn’t ready to give up quite yet, I took the entire clutch assembly to a local coil/spring shop where I had them make me spring to fit in the depression between the Spin Pulley and the Clutch Spider. So now instead of having the clutch jaw pull the spider down, the spider is spring loaded and when the agitate solenoid is engaged the clutch spider is forced down by the spring. I then used a stronger spring on the solenoid return arm so when the solenoid is de-energized it can return the spider up to its normal spin position, overcoming the pressure from my newly made spring. It appears to work perfectly, I think the setup makes the clutch assembly slightly louder when running, but it none-the-less works! I will take a picture of this and post it tonight if I get a chance.

Now on to the timer issues with the machine.

Post# 50353 , Reply# 33   12/2/2004 at 16:49 (7,071 days old) by lesto (Atlanta)        

Good heavens, Robert. What a frustrating ordeal. But I'm so impressed with your knowledge about these things. You always seem to think of a good, alternate plan to get around obstacles like this.

What is the timer problem? Does this model have the funky Hotpoint two-part dial where one part sets the wash time and the other is the main control? Also, does this model have the separate "short cycle" which I believe is painted in yellow on the dial?

I can't wait to see the latest pics. Once it's all complete, please consider including this beautiful machine in the dvd collection. Seeing and hearing it in operation will be like steeping back to my childhood watching the one in my Mom's kitchen.

Post# 50358 , Reply# 34   12/2/2004 at 17:20 (7,071 days old) by partscounterman (Cortez, Colorado)        

OHMIGAWD Robert-You are my hero!

Post# 50366 , Reply# 35   12/2/2004 at 18:16 (7,071 days old) by gregm ()        
timer issues

Robert, I have had GREAT LUCK with T & E timers in MI, if you need the contact info let me know, congrads on your persistence with this beautiful machine. All the reading, history, photos have been very interesting to me --gregm

Post# 50368 , Reply# 36   12/2/2004 at 18:57 (7,071 days old) by drmitch ()        

I still don`t understand why it wore the clucth jaw so fast! Are these parts out of alignment or was there another cause? Good luck Robert!

Post# 50371 , Reply# 37   12/2/2004 at 19:41 (7,071 days old) by Brent-Aucoin ()        
What did you do?

I just read your post.
It is amazing at how such a beautiful work of art, can have so many problems.
I hope you get it all worked out on this machine.
It is in such good shape. Not to mention, it is such an interesting machine to wash in!
I know it will all work out for you!

Post# 50383 , Reply# 38   12/2/2004 at 22:41 (7,071 days old) by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        
So Far So Good

unimatic1140's profile picture
Hi everyone, the link will lead you to the latest picture in the album showing the clutch with is new re-engineered spring system.

Don, I'm not sure what caused the Male Clutch Jaw to wear down so quickly, while the agitator shaft forces everything into alignment, the two metals might not have been compatible.

Thanks Greg, I've used T&E for many years now too. While they do not stock Timers like MTS, they seem to do a better, more professional job with rebuilding them, if you send your timer into them. The problem with the Hotpoint timer was in the Escapement device. I took it apart tonight and was able to fix it myself. The Escapement is the clock like assembly that makes the CHUCK sound and advances the timer one increment. The two pressure bars had become weak, luckily I had other escapements to take apart and find good parts to use.

Les you are correct, this timer allows you to set the wash time separately at 15, 12, 9 6 or 3 minutes, as seen below, its set for a 12 minute wash in this picture.

Next its the water systems, I'll keep everyone posted.


Post# 50384 , Reply# 39   12/2/2004 at 23:06 (7,071 days old) by kenmore1978 ()        
clutch improvements

Gee, Robert, too bad you weren't an engineer for Hotpoint back when they made these washers! You're a genius!

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