Thread Number: 73884  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
POD - 12/29
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Post# 975965   12/29/2017 at 08:56 (297 days old) by Frigidaireguy (Wiston-Salem, NC)        

I have this exact duomatic thanks to Jerry Gay. I will say that the capacity is limited due to the fact that the drum is small. If it was your only machine and you were using it for a family it would take lots of loads to get the laundry done.

Post# 975983 , Reply# 1   12/29/2017 at 10:31 (297 days old) by Yogitunes (New Jersey)        

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that thought might be why bigger capacities are wanted today, it may take over an hour for a load, but you will get a lot done in that time....

I do like the thought of once you start the machine, you return to a completed load, ready for folding....

but yeah, would take twice as long to do a it has to wash, then dry...compared to separate units that would get the laundry done faster..

this would fit the bill for the time frame, to have two machines in one footprint...

Post# 975991 , Reply# 2   12/29/2017 at 11:54 (297 days old) by hydralique (Los Angeles)        
Totally cool machine . . .

I don't think I've ever actually seen one of these Duomatics but from the photos it looks really handsome. The concept of a combo has always fascinated me, plus it would ameliorate one of my bad habits: occasionally I put a load in the washer and then forget about it for several hours, ugh! How nice it would be, as Martin suggested, to open the door to freshly washed and dried clothes.

Post# 975995 , Reply# 3   12/29/2017 at 12:44 (297 days old) by Yogitunes (New Jersey)        

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also.....I know that many of these combos didn't have a high rpm for spin.....

but in a way, that is factored in, as you want the clothing to fall and tumble freely after the final spin for the drying portion, a high speed spin would leave the clothing plastered to the drum...

Post# 976005 , Reply# 4   12/29/2017 at 13:58 (297 days old) by RevvinKevin (So. Cal.)        
Spin speed

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With the exception of Bendix, the other early combos (that I know of) were limited to 200 - 225 rpm. I believe Bendix spun at 500 - 515 and the '61 and up Kenmore combos were 525 rpm.

I would think that, had technology allowed, they could get away with a 700 - 800 rpm spin and the clothes will still come off the drum while turning slowly. I have a small LG combo (10-15 years old?) and that has a max spin of 1400 rpm, but I have yet to see anything release from the drum after being subjected to those speeds!


Post# 976006 , Reply# 5   12/29/2017 at 14:18 (297 days old) by twintubdexter (Palm Springs)        

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Well, I guess if you were singing along with Bing Crosby you could sort of count your Duomatic as a "blessing"...but I wouldn't let The Pope know.

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Post# 976022 , Reply# 6   12/29/2017 at 15:30 (297 days old) by scoots (Chattanooga TN)        
I have the next model year.

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Here's the 1960 Combo. Atomic age panel-in-panel control board styling. I got this four years ago and it cost me a FORTUNE to transport down from Knoxville because my helper flaked out on me and I had to spot-hire professional movers. It's not in working condition, but I hope to have the money this year to ask John to look it over and assess repair costs. In the mean time, it lies under cover in a dreamless sleep like Sleeping Beauty.

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Post# 976025 , Reply# 7   12/29/2017 at 16:04 (297 days old) by RevvinKevin (So. Cal.)        
1959, 1960 and now 1961

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Interesting how the control panel design changed every year.

I bought this '61 Duomatic from Ben, that it's *still* in transit.....

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Post# 976042 , Reply# 8   12/29/2017 at 19:57 (296 days old) by IowaBear (Cedar Rapids, IA)        

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That 1960 control panel is truly over-the-top awesome!  What a great machine to restore.


The POD says $370 MSRP for the 1959 model, that's just over $3100 in today's dollars. 


Who bought these machines?  Did stores offer credit back then or were they mainly for the wealthy?

Post# 976045 , Reply# 9   12/29/2017 at 20:19 (296 days old) by cuffs054 (MONTICELLO, GA)        

Yogi speaks the truth. The only problem I had with my Equator combo was the final spin was so fast that most of the time the clothes would stick to the drum and never let go for the dry cycle. So the old guys may have had the correct idea all along.

Post# 976071 , Reply# 10   12/30/2017 at 00:40 (296 days old) by wft2800 (Leatherhead, Surrey)        

Not sure how fast the RCA-Whirlpool combo spun, but I know the Speed Queen of the same era spun at 515rpm - 10rpm faster than the old 36" Duomatic. Not sure about these. The 27" units were also built in the UK and badged "LT" or "LTA" (the latter having a rapid-advance timer). They were produced up to the early '70s, when Fisher-Bendix in West Kirby closed down and the LTA etc were superseded in the Bendix lineup by a range of Italian-made Philco machines (none of which was a combo AFAIK).

Post# 976072 , Reply# 11   12/30/2017 at 00:51 (296 days old) by wft2800 (Leatherhead, Surrey)        

Incidentally, my Bosch combo (made c.1999, not sure exactly when) spins at 1400rpm (two full-speed spins at the end of the cycle, no messing about, once the load sensor says OK, it accelerates straight up to max rpm, stays there for several minutes, then slows to a stop, tumbles, redistributes, then spins back up to 1400) - there then follows several minutes of slow tumbling at the end of the spin, which dislodges everything from the drum, and once it's done that, the blower fan and a heating element next to it kick on, and drying begins. Or at least, it should - the element is likely dead (replacement not yet ordered), the fan disintegrated (NLA - luckily, I got a secondhand one on eBay! Yet to fit it though...) - oh, and the shock absorbers have packed in completely. Plus the control board is a bit dicky, it's a lottery as to whether it'll run or just die when switched on... that's going to be the big project for the new year!

Post# 976074 , Reply# 12   12/30/2017 at 01:36 (296 days old) by tolivac (greenville nc)        

Love the "Master Control" on the controls bridge!!!We need this "Master Control" for our Masrter Control room at the VOA site!

Post# 976182 , Reply# 13   12/30/2017 at 17:25 (296 days old) by Gyrafoam (Roanoke, VA)        

My '62 gas Duomatic does just fine. No matter what I put in it ,it always comes out clean. The tub holds the same size load as my mid nineties FridGEMore.

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