Thread Number: 82951  /  Tag: Vintage Automatic Washers
POD 5-11-2020 WH 1958 Speed Dryer
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Post# 1071917   5/11/2020 at 05:58 (1,439 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        

Westinghouse used the concept of "CURRENT" in their appliance advertising and literature to emphasize efficiency and economy of operation of their heating appliances. This ad talks about the "DRY" button shutting the dryer off as soon as the load is dry to avoid wasting current. Older Westinghouse range manuals talk about cooking with the current off to promote the economy of electric cooking. Westinghouse uses "current" like some people in the electric industry use the word "Hydro" and seems more concerned with economy of operation than other brands. I would wonder it had to do with George Westinghouse and the actual generation of electricity, but he had the concept of a corporation to make electric appliances taken away from him during a financial panic when his enmity with certain people like Edison in their battle over direct current versus alternating current resulted in bankers taking his company away from him and giving it to different people with better financial footing.

This post was last edited 05/11/2020 at 07:28

Post# 1072026 , Reply# 1   5/11/2020 at 20:50 (1,438 days old) by jeb (Mansfield Ohiio)        

Maytag used to advertise the "gray Ghost" wringer washers could be bought with a gasoline engine to use now and when "current" came to your area you could switch to an electric motor.

Post# 1072116 , Reply# 2   5/12/2020 at 10:38 (1,438 days old) by kd12 (Arkansas)        

Looking at the ad, I was a little stumped on how the air circulated in one of these if not being blown through a perforated grill. Was there just a large air duct blowing hot air inside? I've never actually seen a 1950s Westinghouse in real life (sad trombone), so I'm not familiar with how these models work.

Post# 1072162 , Reply# 3   5/12/2020 at 16:09 (1,437 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        

The heater box was under the center of the drum, kinda flat and the air blew in through a grill in the front of the sloping transition piece between the door and the drum in what WH called "Direct AirFlow" into the tumbling fabrics and out through the back of the drum. Eventually there would be a lint collector within the machine and before that there was a lint collector on the back.

Post# 1072285 , Reply# 4   5/13/2020 at 10:19 (1,437 days old) by kd12 (Arkansas)        

Tom, thanks for the explanation on that. Makes sense now.

Post# 1072298 , Reply# 5   5/13/2020 at 11:56 (1,436 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, Theres a Lady on Stage)        

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Many early electric appliances with heating capabilities (irons, dryers, etc...) did not have thermostats and would simply continue heating long as they were turned on/plugged into outlet.

While this obviously wasted electricity it also was extremely dangerous. Irons scorched and or burned fabrics not to mention started fires. Early dryers already known for high heat (better to bake all that remaining water out of laundry that was poorly extracted either by machine or wringers) could also scorch fabrics and or burn things down under certain conditions, and yes used more power than they should.

Idea of appliances that turned themselves off after desired temperature was reached, or in case of laundry was dry meant Her Indoors didn't have to spend time hovering over. Just like today where virtually all modern dryers have moisture sensors one can load the things, choose a cycle, hit start then go about one's business.

Public dryers at laundromats waste huge amounts of energy because people put far too much money in and dryer runs far longer than it needs to in consequence. Since such dryers tend to run hot things left in there longer than they should emerge shrunk, and baked to death.

Various other appliance makers offered "miser" or "eye" appliances indicating they were frugal with electric usage because they shut themselves down (or least turned off/down heat) under certain conditions and or time.

Post# 1072333 , Reply# 6   5/13/2020 at 14:45 (1,436 days old) by Gyrafoam (Wytheville, VA)        

I saw one of these in use all the time, back in the day. I don't know just how "economical" it was to operate. What I do remember was looking through the glass down past the protective wire cage to see the element glowing red. The interior was white enamel that tended to yellow over the years along with some of the scorched clothes.
Many of the items came out just too hot to touch, especially jeans.
It was a VERY effective clothes dryer!

Post# 1072399 , Reply# 7   5/13/2020 at 22:33 (1,436 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Early Clothes Dryers

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Were really about as efficient as dryers are today, and dryers were never sold for home use without thermostats and either timers or other automatic controls to shut them off.


When a dryer runs longer than needed to dry clothing it only gets so hot, it should not damage clothing, also a dryer running with dry clothes in it only uses about 1/4 the amount of heating power as it does when it has wet clothes in it, still not ideal but they do not destroy clothing if used correctly.


John L.

Post# 1072638 , Reply# 8   5/15/2020 at 09:09 (1,435 days old) by turquoisedude (.)        

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Not to hijack this thread but lookee what I got on Wednesday!!

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Post# 1072656 , Reply# 9   5/15/2020 at 10:57 (1,435 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        



Not to be all nationalistic about it, but is it a  Westinghouse made in Canada or a Westinghouse made in the United States of America?

Post# 1072672 , Reply# 10   5/15/2020 at 13:13 (1,434 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

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Dryers made today are supposedly better BUT dont offer any true low heat settings. In the 1956 Whirlpool Imperial dryer you can have a true low heat setting when you select the delicate fabric guide setting, and wont have to worry about clothes especially delicates being scorched in that dryer :)

Post# 1072683 , Reply# 11   5/15/2020 at 14:46 (1,434 days old) by DADoES (TX,U.S. of A.)        

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Not quite exactly. My dryer (which is 10yo) targets 127F for low temp. Checking the temp at the exhaust hood (with no clothes) with an instant-read thermoment, it read varying between ~108F and ~130F. It has two heating elements, only the lower-wattage (1,400) element operates on low to reduce the heat-input blast.

Post# 1072686 , Reply# 12   5/15/2020 at 15:49 (1,434 days old) by Maytag85 (Sean A806)        

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I mean there are some newer dryers with lower wattage heating elements in them that offer a true low heat setting but a majority of dryers still have higher wattage heating elements in them

Post# 1072708 , Reply# 13   5/15/2020 at 20:02 (1,434 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        

Many modern dryers use a thermistor or two to control the heat. They are infinitely more responsive than the old metal disc thermostats that they replaced. Even dryers with one stage heating can give temperatures suitable for delicate fabrics and there are solid state controls that, when set for delicate fabrics can pulse the element on and off. Over the years, there were dryers with one heating element that had a bias heater on the thermostat that, by heating the capillary tube, held the operating temperature down when set for low or delicate heat.

Post# 1072790 , Reply# 14   5/16/2020 at 06:38 (1,434 days old) by turquoisedude (.)        
Canadian Westinghouse

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Tom, it was built in Canada at the factory they used to have in Hamilton, Ontario. 

By building appliances in Canada, they were not subject to import duties and tariffs that would apply to appliances imported from the USA. And items such as a washer, dryer, or dishwasher were considered "luxury goods" and taxed higher.  John Inglis figured this out early on and parterned with Whirlpool to build Whirlpool-clone washers and dryers in Canada under the Inglis brand name.

History of Canadian Business lecture ovet...LOL 

Post# 1072850 , Reply# 15   5/16/2020 at 17:54 (1,433 days old) by Tomturbomatic (Beltsville, MD)        
Thank you. Interesting

We had excise taxes in this country and appliance manufacturers lobbied hard against them, but it was only covered in trade magazines.

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