Thread Number: 90751  /  Tag: Modern Automatic Washers
The Origins of the Speed Queen Classic Top Loader
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Post# 1152465   6/25/2022 at 20:10 (656 days old) by Chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
What is the history behind the current Speed Queen Classic Top Load Design? Who originally created it? If Alliance bought the design from someone else, what was Alliances top load design before the 2000s? Why was the design at one point a failure but not considered a success?

Post# 1152477 , Reply# 1   6/25/2022 at 22:13 (656 days old) by Mrsalvo (New Braunfels Texas)        

Would be interesting to find out that info.
I had read somewhere a while back that they had approached Whirlpool concerning the surgulator agitator design. They were able to secure a near copy of it for their washers. Around that time I learned that Whirlpool loaned them money when they were in a tight spot. It was agreed they would not sell their washers in big box stores. There was an agreement between the companies.
I cannot recall where I read this information, my memory fails.


Post# 1152480 , Reply# 2   6/25/2022 at 22:32 (656 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Reply #1

combo52's profile picture

Hi Barry, interesting theory but I don't believe it for one minute, there wavily agitator is not much like WPs Surgulator and they only use it in the commercial models where it does not affect consumer sales.


There is nothing stopping SQ from going into big box stores except they would lose hundreds on smaller dealers, almost every city in the US has very large independent appliance dealers that sell SQ.


The majority of major appliances are not sold by BB stores in this country.


John L.

Post# 1152481 , Reply# 3   6/25/2022 at 22:48 (656 days old) by DADoES (TX, U.S. of A.)        

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John, what qualifies as a city?  The entire county where I was born and the county where I live both have no independent appliance dealers of which I'm aware, and no big-box stores.

Post# 1152485 , Reply# 4   6/25/2022 at 23:11 (656 days old) by combo52 (50 Year Repair Tech Beltsville,Md)        
Larger Cities In The US

combo52's profile picture

I would imagine cities or a million or more people usually have an independent  but a lot of way smaller cities do as well.


John L.

Post# 1152492 , Reply# 5   6/26/2022 at 00:26 (656 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
All these questions....

launderess's profile picture
Alliance didn't need to get anything from anyone else regarding SQ top loading washing machines. Why is it so hard to believe they used own R&D to update, change or whatever washing machine designs inherited when Alliance got their mitts on SQ from Raytheon?

SQ goes back to days of Barlow & Seelig Manufacturing, who in turn sold to McGraw-Edison Company, then came Raytheon.

Alliance initially by agreement had to remain out of domestic laundry market, but they continued producing commercial/laundromat/OPL machines.

As with Whirlpool, and anyone else, Alliance puts money into R&D to innovate and produce products that suit current market conditions.

For various reasons Alliance continues to product top loading washing machines with central beaters. Thanks to government regulations and market forces what worked in 1970's won't fly today.

There are only two main ways of doing washing; move water through textiles, or move textiles through water.

Wash action from 1957 SQ TL basically thrashes things about.

By 1964 things were better...

Ditto for 1970's

Post# 1152512 , Reply# 6   6/26/2022 at 07:51 (656 days old) by PinkPower4 (USA)        
Speed Queen: TC5 vs TR Series Water Level ?

Regarding the Guaranteed Appliance comparison video. How does she get the water level so low in the TC5? If she took some out, wouldn't the washer try to refill to at least the half tub fill? Hmmm. I'll have to try that. However, it would be nice to have less water for some loads that need to be washed separately, and you can choose a gentler cycle.

Post# 1152571 , Reply# 7   6/26/2022 at 23:19 (655 days old) by Chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
If Raytheon and McGraw Edison were holding the original SQ design, then what did Alliance use for a top load?

Post# 1152575 , Reply# 8   6/26/2022 at 23:38 (655 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
perfect wash

Why did speed queen have to come up with the perfect wash system?

Post# 1152577 , Reply# 9   6/26/2022 at 23:43 (655 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        
We've done this before

launderess's profile picture
In 1997 Raytheon sold off it's appliance divisions, with Alliance Laundry systems getting the SQ and Unimac (commercial) brands, and Goodman Holding, getting Amana domestic appliance, cooking and commercial HVAC. In the early 2000's Maytag purchased Amana from Goodman.

In 1997, Alliance Laundry Systems, granted the Amana Corp, and it's affiliates a license to use both the SQ and Horizon trademarks and trade names until the year 2012. The Horizon trademarks and trade names were given with unlimited use, while the Speed Queen names could only be used for 75,000 home style washing machines, and 75,000 domestic dryers per year. Amana also has the rights to use certain patents, copyrights, mask works, and "know how" for eternity as relating to SQ. Such use was granted in all markets, and Alliance did not believe such use would harm their business.

In particular:

In short there was nothing stopping Alliance from developing top loading washers for commercial/OPL market, and that is just what they did. When Maytag bought Amana from Goodman they made Speed Queen sign a non compete so they couldn't sell SQ laundry appliances for domestic market for five (5) years. Said agreement expired in 2005, and shortly afterwards SQ entered domestic laundry market.

Early domestic offerings were just basically same SQ washers and dryers sold for OPL market. At least for front loading washers this caused problems that caused SQ to rate poorly compared to say Maytag's Neptune and Whirlpool's Duet.

Post# 1152583 , Reply# 10   6/27/2022 at 00:07 (655 days old) by WindRivers (Wind River Range, WY)        
TC5 Water Level

PinkPower4, in regards to the low water level in the TC5 in the video, I haven't tried it, and would be interested if you have, but I think if you took some water out after the machine started agitating that it would not add more water back in.

I think that's one way the electronic controls work differently. Once the machine fills the electronic controls switch the machine to agitate. The fill function for the wash is complete and the electronic brain moves on to the next function and and no longer monitors water level. With mechanical controls the water level is what activates or deactivates filling and agitation, so if it looses water it will start filling again.

Post# 1152585 , Reply# 11   6/27/2022 at 00:25 (655 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        

launderess's profile picture
Speed Queen "Commercial Homestyle" washers and dryers.

"Homestyle" in commercial/industrial laundry trade refers to top loading washers with central beaters. This obviously is a reference to their once dominate place in American homes. Alliance further chose to use "homestyle" for their introduction to domestic laundry market to distinguish those front loaders from their commercial cousins. This even though machines were basically same under the bonnet.

OTOH nearly from start from "steam" or "power" laundries of late 1800's through industrial washers and later washer/extractors all have used h-axis design washing machines.

Post# 1152599 , Reply# 12   6/27/2022 at 06:07 (655 days old) by Chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
@Laundress, great info, I can not thank you enough! :)

Post# 1152600 , Reply# 13   6/27/2022 at 06:10 (655 days old) by Launderess (Quiet Please, There´s a Lady on Stage)        

launderess's profile picture
"Regarding the Guaranteed Appliance comparison video. How does she get the water level so low in the TC5? "

Several commentators to that video asked same question, none received a response.

General theory is Alliance and or Guaranteed Appliance did "something" to get water level that low for purposes of making video. Maybe filling washer with a hose or buckets of water, then tricking it to start agitating.

Post# 1152624 , Reply# 14   6/27/2022 at 11:35 (655 days old) by GELaundry4ever (Nacogdoches, TX, USA)        
tr series

Why did they come up with the tr series? What made them decide on this new series?

Post# 1152628 , Reply# 15   6/27/2022 at 12:55 (655 days old) by WindRivers (Wind River Range, WY)        

"Regarding the Guaranteed Appliance comparison video. How does she get the water level so low in the TC5? "

I think it's because the electronic controls don't work as people have come to expect with mechanical controls as I attempted to explain above. If so, there's no "tricking" to it. After the machine starts agitating, remove some water, and as the controls has passed the fill stage it doesn't go back and start over.

Again, I haven't tried it, but I do have some idea how the electronics work.

Post# 1152679 , Reply# 16   6/28/2022 at 02:37 (654 days old) by Chetlaham (United States)        

chetlaham's profile picture
All the more reasons here to use EM timers.

Speed Queen was better off using a wash plate and actuated brake in their TR series to replicate this:

30 second increments-

Energize Yellow wire (motor counter clockwise) for 28 seconds

Pause 2 seconds

Energize Red wire (motor clockwise) for 28 seconds

Pause 2 seconds

Energize Yellow wire for 28 seconds.

Repeat sequence for 15 minutes.

Energize blue wire (drain pump + clutch/brake solenoid) for 2 minutes.

Energize Red wire for 2 minute for spin

Red and blue contacts open, Grey (cold water valve) closes for 4 minutes.

Yellow energizes for 28 seconds

Pause 2 seconds

Red energizes for 28 seconds

Pause 2 seconds

4 more increments.

Energize blue wire for 2 minutes.

Then also energize red wire for 6 minutes.

Open all contacts, break timer line 30 seconds latter.

In total 72 increments, 8 SPST contacts are needed:

0M= Push Pull (Black)

2M= Timer Line (Orange)

4M= Drain Pump & Solenoid (Blue)

6M= Fill Select (Pink)

8M= Fill Select (Brown)

10M= Cold Water Valve (Grey)

12M= Motor Reverse (Yellow)

14M= Motor Forward (Red)

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