Thread Number: 77864  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
Found a 1974 Ward's Signature Washer/Dryer set in Avocado!
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Post# 1018978   12/24/2018 at 10:09 by drh4683 (Chicago western suburbs)        

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Here's an estate sale find Wards Signature washer dry set in Avocado. The machines have late 1973 and early 1974 date codes. These were made by Borg Warner. They were still in service in the laundry room of the original home, but appear to have been hardly ever used and almost out of the box fresh still. I tested them out before disconnecting and everything was working well like it should. That clutch brake on these Borg Warner made washers will certainly startle you when they kick in! That loud SLAM as it resonates inside the washer housing. LOL! Glad I was able to save them as these are almost non-existent today.

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Post# 1018979 , Reply# 1   12/24/2018 at 10:12 by whitetub (Montreal, Canada)        

Gorgeous... Enjoy this Christmas gift...

Post# 1018980 , Reply# 2   12/24/2018 at 10:15 by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        

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Wow!  What a great find!  Congratulations and Merry Christmas!

Post# 1018981 , Reply# 3   12/24/2018 at 10:35 by stricklybojack (San Diego, CA)        

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Post# 1018982 , Reply# 4   12/24/2018 at 10:35 by 48bencix (Sacramento CA)        
Very Handsome set

Thank you for the presentation. This is a very handsome looking set and the condition is really hard to believe. Did they go to the laundramat? Very good find of the Montgomery Ward brand.

Post# 1018985 , Reply# 5   12/24/2018 at 10:57 by Washerlover (Lake County, California: Wines With Altitude)        

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Doug, thank you for saving these beautiful machines! I had the same set in Harvest Gold until 2015. The washer is truly awesome — the dryer may give you a bit of an exterior lint problem. The dryer itself is pretty fast, but the blower fan tends to push lint out around the gasket of the door (that was my experience anyway) and into the laundry area.

Have fun, love them in avocado green!!

Post# 1018986 , Reply# 6   12/24/2018 at 11:11 by DaveAMKrayoGuy (Oak Park, MI)        

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What a marvelous set! Now you got me wishing for such a find...

Please do your darndest to keep them always in tip-top running condition and use in the best of health...!

— Dave

Post# 1018987 , Reply# 7   12/24/2018 at 11:35 by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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I always thought Wards machines of that time were handsome units.  There was a Wards catalog store in the next town but I don't recall anyone who had a Wards set other than family acquaintances of which the Mr. worked at said catalog store (as I was told).  I briefly saw their set one time, it was older models, completely different console style.

Post# 1018989 , Reply# 8   12/24/2018 at 11:47 by Unimatic1140 (Minneapolis)        

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Wow those are in amazing condition! Great find and so rare to find them nearly unused!

Post# 1018993 , Reply# 9   12/24/2018 at 11:52 by Ultramatic (New York City)        

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Astounding condition! That wash tub just sparkles! Merry Christmas!

Post# 1018996 , Reply# 10   12/24/2018 at 12:18 by goatfarmer (South Bend, home of Champions)        

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Beautiful set you got for Christmas!

Post# 1018997 , Reply# 11   12/24/2018 at 12:19 by norgeway (mocksville n c )        

BEST washer ever made!

Post# 1019001 , Reply# 12   12/24/2018 at 13:10 by turquoisedude (Ogden & St-Liboire (where??), QC, Canada)        

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That's an amazing find for sure! Congratulations on your find and happy washing!

Post# 1019004 , Reply# 13   12/24/2018 at 13:47 by Yogitunes (New Jersey)        

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what a fantastic find, plus in excellent condition.....

enjoy in good health....

Post# 1019005 , Reply# 14   12/24/2018 at 14:11 by Gyrafoam (Roanoke, VA)        
That 1970 "Deuce"

in the background looks pretty clean, too!

What a great set. That is a wonderful find!

Post# 1019006 , Reply# 15   12/24/2018 at 14:13 by RP2813 (Too many people know the way)        

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When did they start going with the burp-o-lator pan on Signature models?  My mom's '67 had the rear-mounted lint filter instead of the pan.

Post# 1019010 , Reply# 16   12/24/2018 at 16:12 by kd12 (Arkansas)        
Big Green Buick

So did you snag the green Electra to go with your Avocado set?

Post# 1019011 , Reply# 17   12/24/2018 at 16:58 by twintubdexter (Palm Springs)        

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The washer & dryer are nice, book look at that bee-you-tee-full Buick Electra!

Post# 1019014 , Reply# 18   12/24/2018 at 17:27 by rinso (Meridian Idaho)        

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Had a similar set later in the '70's. The washer was great for my dirty work clothes. I had the model that allowed me to select wash and spin speeds separately. I washed most other clothing on a gentle wash-normal spin setting. They came out great. The blower dryer, AKA positive air flow, was very speedy, but as mentioned, spewed lint into the room and all over its insides. It needed frequent dismantling and cleaning. 

Post# 1019045 , Reply# 19   12/25/2018 at 11:40 by appnut (TX)        

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Doug, congratulations on another amazing find!! I think these were possibly next to TOL since there's not an extra rinse option, but I could be wrong. If possible, I'd love to see close-ups of the panels so they're legible, the timer dials, and then the cycle chart under the lid. Do these have illuminated panels--fluorescent lights?

Post# 1019050 , Reply# 20   12/25/2018 at 13:25 by cfz2882 (Belle Fourche,SD)        

man,what awesome machines!Parents bought same design MW dryer in 1980-lasted 18yrs until motor seized:1/2 hp motor in the dryer(twice hp as other dryers of the era)was heavily loaded and would overheat and trip off if not cleaned of lint buildup about once a year.1980 version had ball-bearing fan hub,but a ~1974 might still have sleeve bearing fan hub that may need lubed.Only mechanical weakness of these washers that comes to mind is the pump-they are quite prone to debris in drain water stripping fins off the turbine pump impeller.1n 1979,got to experience a Laundromat full of Norges-what an awesome din these machines created :)

Post# 1019087 , Reply# 21   12/25/2018 at 22:15 by Washerlover (Lake County, California: Wines With Altitude)        
Burp-O-Lator Pan

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My grandmother’s ‘62 Wards Signature (Norge made) washer had the burp up agitator/filter pan...I do not know the history of Montgomery Wards’ washing manufacturers other than Norge and Westinghouse, I believe. Someone please chime in if I am mistaken...

Post# 1019088 , Reply# 22   12/25/2018 at 22:16 by mrsalvo (New Braunfels Texas)        

Congratulations! Amazing find. Anyone would be proud to have this set. One of my absolute favorite sets. That washer was no nonsense and did a fabulous job on any article of clothing. The dryer...was there any larger capacity available?!! We had both the washer and dryer and to this day remains the benchmark in my book. And in avocado to boot!
Please post videos, but all means!


Post# 1019120 , Reply# 23   12/26/2018 at 09:19 by norgeway (mocksville n c )        
Secret to making them LAST!

Let the washer stop spinning before raising the lid, that brake Will stop the tub, but its not really a good idea, that is the best washer for really nasty clothes ever devised, and the dryer has the biggest drum of any,thus it wrinkles clothes much less than any dryer ever made, the positive airflo dries faster too, overall the finest laundry equipment ever built, this washer will outwash anything ever built, and a bigger load too, these agitate almost twice as fast as Maytags do.

Post# 1019144 , Reply# 24   12/26/2018 at 16:57 by delturner (USA)        

Yep, these washers really beat the heck out of the clothes. Things did come out clean and they spun the water out better than most too. They were noisy though and did a lot of clanging when spinning. The dryers were real linters as far as linting up the room they were in. Instead of like most dryers that sucked the air through the drum and out the exaust, they blew the air thru and the door seals were not that great and let a lot of air blow around the seal into the room with lint. The dryers were big in capacity, but not any bigger than the biggest Whirlpool made dryers. The dryers didn't stand up too well in service either. Norge made decent machines, but there were better choices back then.

Post# 1019146 , Reply# 25   12/26/2018 at 17:54 by RP2813 (Too many people know the way)        

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Delturner, you are too kind!

Post# 1019150 , Reply# 26   12/26/2018 at 19:25 by toploadloyalist (San Luis Obispo, CA)        

Would like to see a closeup of the consoles and washer lid instructions.

Post# 1019155 , Reply# 27   12/26/2018 at 20:37 by DaveAMKrayoGuy (Oak Park, MI)        
For us fans of Wards, '70's and Avocado!

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Yes, show us more...

-- Dave

Post# 1019173 , Reply# 28   12/27/2018 at 06:05 by Yogitunes (New Jersey)        

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never thought about it much...

but then was informed by a few guys who bought them, did so because it was the only one that had a 1 HP motor....

they wanted something that would handle heavy work clothes....and a good size capacity for its time....

probably accounted for the machine being loud....

Post# 1019178 , Reply# 29   12/27/2018 at 08:00 by gansky1 (Omaha, The Home of the TV Dinner!)        

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Really beautiful set, congrats on the rare find. No visible effects of damp or humidity on the aluminum panels, lid, etc. is telling of an easy life and a dry laundry room. Norge/MW machines were hit and miss, either they ran forever or were gone in less than 10.

Norge did make a robust and effective washer that sounded like a hay baler when running. I had one in the garage for a while and in the summer with the door open, saw a couple of startled dog-walkers when the brake solenoid snapped. We live in a smallish valley, so the sound would echo around the neighborhood, sharing that Norgey goodness.

I had a '68 MW set, found behind Lowes, and used it for a short while in the basement. The washer started spewing oil into the water and the dryer was, as Tom so aptly described, slowly "flocking" the whole room like a Christmas tree, so I returned them to the scrap pile.

Post# 1019198 , Reply# 30   12/27/2018 at 11:45 by eurekastar (Amarillo, Texas)        

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With people talking about the dryers blowing lint everywhere, it reminds me of the dryer we had when I was a kid.  It would do the same thing.  I don't remember the brand, but my parents bought a lot of stuff at Montgomery Ward.  Maybe it was a MW dryer. 

Post# 1020083 , Reply# 31   1/4/2019 at 08:59 by jetcone (Schenectady-Home of Calrods,Monitor Tops,Toroid Transformers)        
Those are beautiful

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what a great find on a rare bird enjoy !

Post# 1021326 , Reply# 32   1/16/2019 at 04:11 by dishwasherfan (Phoenix, AZ)        
What a find.

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The washer/drier & the buick where well cared for, what an incredible discovery.

Post# 1021680 , Reply# 33   1/19/2019 at 08:32 by polkanut (Wausau, WI )        

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Would MW washers of this vintage come with a suds-saver option?

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