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1930 GE 12" oscillator in nearly new condition  Rate Topic 
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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:46 pm
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Steve Stephens
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We all have lots of old fans and almost always they show wear and may have some problems.  Yesterday I received what has to be a fan in the best original condition that I have had.  An eBay purchase from last month, I was surprised that there were no other bidders with a starting bid of $150.   Hey, I'm happy to have it for that and yesterday it arrived.  
The seller and his wife did a super job in packing the fan after an initial "I can't get the blade set screw out" and with me wondering if they might have to ship the fan with blade and cage on.  They got it off and packed to perfection for the trip from NY to CA via Fed EX Ground which is my preferred way to ship.  They had not used Fed Ex but tried it at my suggestion as being the cheapest and maybe the best way to ship.
With the fan partially apart I cleaned and waxed the blade and cage then cleaned and waxed the motor and base as well as cleaning and renewing both oil cups and the gearbox.   Put back together with some oil on a few other moving parts I marveled at how smooth the fan oscillated and ran.  No wobble to the blade or any vibration.  It sure is nice to receive what is close to a new fan but one that is 86 years ago.  Even the felt and both cords and molded on rubber plug with GE monograms on each plug prong are original and nearly new looking.   I want to submit photos to our gallery but, in the meantime, here she is.
I had asked to have the neck of the fan "girdled" with a tight protective wrapping in addition to good padding all around the fan which the seller did.   I thought I was unpacking a little dog, not a fan.

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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:46 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Under all those clothes and my sunglasses was this.

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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:47 pm
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Steve Stephens
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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:47 pm
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Steve Stephens
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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:48 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Felt, both cords and GE plug are original and the cords have not faded to the usual tan from this original green color.

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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:49 pm
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Steve Stephens
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The data plate

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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:51 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Look at this attention to detail which the seller's wife did.

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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:52 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Finding the blade/cage and motor/base boxes inside the large box.

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 Posted: Thu May 5th, 2016 11:55 pm
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Steve Stephens
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How full do you fill a gearbox with grease?   I'm assuming that this is the original 1930 factory filling of the gearbox which I have cleaned out and put new grease in.   It's been said to just coat or slightly cover the gears but more probably is better than worse.    The oil cups' oil or grease was not very fluid and the wicks were hardened but in good condition otherwise.  I cleaned the wicks in gasoline, blotted dry and put zoom-spout into the oil cups with their now pliable felt wicks.  What you see here is a 100% original GE fan from 1930 and everything works as it probably did when brand new.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 01:06 am
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Lawrence Smith
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does that fan have aluminum blades? looks like a match for the one I picked up with no tag info, Lawrence 

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 01:30 am
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Steve Stephens
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Ours do look the same at first glance but yours has a cage that is 10 or more years older and all cast iron construction.  Mine is stamped steel construction with aluminum blade introduced in 1930.  What does the back of your motor look like Lawrence?   Is it a star or brass bell oscillator?

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 03:19 am
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Christopher Harding
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Wow! Great find. I saw that listing. Glad you got it.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 08:35 am
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Lawrence Smith
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http://www.afcaforum.com/forum1/42637.html 
Here is the thread when I bought it

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 02:31 pm
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Kevin Lee Clark
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Steve,Nice fan find and a nice find on a seller that cared.Kevin

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 03:09 pm
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Tom Morel
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That's in spectacular condition and packed very well too. Congratulations Steve.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 03:58 pm
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George Durbin
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Nice fan Steve!!
It appears your seller used the ol method I use and recommend!  SPM with SOH!!
"SOFT PACK METHOD" With "STUFF ON HAND"
I have fans going to Beijing,  Taiwan, and the Phillipines in a few days... I will be putting this method to the test!!
:bow:bigfan

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 04:44 pm
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Steve Stephens
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George Durbin wrote:
It appears your seller used the ol method I use and recommend!  SPM with SOH!!
"SOFT PACK METHOD" With "STUFF ON HAND"
I have fans going to Beijing,  Taiwan, and the Phillipines in a few days... I will be putting this method to the test!!
Thanks George & Tom & Kevin,
I have seen enough fans with broken necks that I always recommend some measures be taken to support the base in some way.   I thought a 'girdle' of tightly wrapped bubblewrap built up to the diameter of the motor would do the trick here; the other way you can see below when I ship fans intact.   This is the start of packing and it was shipped to Taiwan via ebay's global shipping program yesterday.  That is somewhat soft closed cell foam used under the neck and it fits tightly.   I usually somewhat loosen the neck screw also so it will "bend" some instead of snap off.

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Last edited on Fri May 6th, 2016 04:45 pm by Steve Stephens

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 04:48 pm
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George Durbin
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I support the neck like you do! Very good idea...
Geo...

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 04:49 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Lawrence, you have what I suspected, a newer "two star" from somewhere in the 1916 to 1919 range, a more durable fan in cast iron construction than my stamped steel "new" GE.   I have seen a few other nearly new looking fans on eBay and elsewhere including a pair of tan 12" Vortys that were beautiful.   And I have small and med. tan Vortys That are in about the same "new" condition but, for some reason, I feel my new 1930 AOU is more unused but maybe not.

Here's the next step in packing the R&M 1404 in the photo above; strapping it to the plank of hard styrofoam using packing tape covered with duct tape in three locations along the fan.  It's not going to go anywhere.
The vertical angles of hard styrofoam extend from the top of the "plank" to the top of the box and will keep the plank in the bottom even if the box goes upside down, etc.  Then I follow up with paper packing which is more to hold the styrofoam in place than to cushion the fan.
I place a piece of styrofoam or, more often, the softer closed cell foam,  between the hub center and under the cage badge.  This, in theory at least, will support the cage from being bent back and wrapping over the blade and bending that too.  If my strapping method works that should not come into play but it's extra insurance.

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Last edited on Fri May 6th, 2016 04:53 pm by Steve Stephens

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 04:56 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Last photo of the R&M nearly ready to go.  From here I used crumpled newspaper to fill all voids and not packed too tightly as the plank and strapping tape that will hold the fan in place.  Under that newspaper is some heavy brown packing paper fitted tightly to keep styrofoam blocks in place. It's always worked in at least 20 fans shipped including several 16" cast iron and brass ones.  Sometimes I do pack conventionally with blade and cage removed.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 06:08 pm
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Tony Burnham
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Hi Steve,
That is one of my favorite GE fans. I have one about the same condition, but my pot metal oscillator is busted. I'm thinking of putting it together to have it for show only. Great find.
Tony

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 08:11 pm
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Steve Stephens
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I had this one which was in very good condition and is the model that followed my new one.  After this model for two years, 1932-33 (Form AN) and 1934-35 (Form AQ unless AN was continued), came one with guard wires 3 up and 3 across the front of the guard.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 08:13 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Rear view

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 08:17 pm
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Steve Stephens
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This may have been my very first fan acquired c.1970 and all original.  Form AE, 1925-26 (this one is 1926) and last with cast iron base and first with stamped steel motor.  I sold this one some years ago; two many fans syndrome.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 08:19 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Side view, Form AE.  At least some if not all 1925 Form AE 12" models had a fabricated oscillator frame riveted together from strap steel.  GE would return to the cast iron frame in  1926 and for the rest of the AOU fans until or through 1939.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 08:30 pm
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Dan Foley
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Wow, Steve! What a gorgeous machine. It's always cool when an antique fan pops up that's still in like-new condition.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 09:34 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Here is the 1925 Form AE I mentioned a few posts above with the fabricated oscillating frame that is riveted together and used only for 1925 it seems.   This fan I saw on eBay, a very nice and all original fan.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 09:35 pm
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Steve Stephens
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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 10:19 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Another photo showing the riveted and fabricated oscillator frame which had been cast iron before 1925 and would return to cast iron in 1926.   This fan has both original cords and plug and original felt.  Stamped steel motor, cast iron base.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 10:24 pm
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Steve Stephens
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And, while I am "AOU-ing" I will add my nice original finish brass bell oscillator, Form AB, 1922 photos.

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 Posted: Fri May 6th, 2016 10:25 pm
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Steve Stephens
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All cast iron construction, these models may have been the best quality of GE AOU oscillators.  The brass bell was always painted, same color as the fan.

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 Posted: Tue May 10th, 2016 04:39 pm
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Rob Byledbal
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Last edited on Tue May 10th, 2016 04:41 pm by Rob Byledbal

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 Posted: Tue May 10th, 2016 04:40 pm
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Rob Byledbal
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Steve Stephens wrote: I had this one which was in very good condition and is the model that followed my new one.  After this model for two years, 1932-33 (Form AN) and 1934-35 (Form AQ unless AN was continued), came one with guard wires 3 up and 3 across the front of the guard.That's the wrong blade on that fan Steve. GE did not apply kitty hair before 1939. :P
Congratulations on finding your beautiful new find. What a survivor!!

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 Posted: Tue May 10th, 2016 07:46 pm
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Steve Stephens
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Rob Byledbal wrote: ... kitty hair...Oh, yes, that kitty hair.  The bane of my collection and impossible to even get a photo without at least a few fine hairs showing in the photos even when I think they are all gone.  I gave up trying to be perfect so people will now know that I have cats...and fur or hair...all over the place.  Thanks Rob.  I also love the GEs but not all of them.  12" pancakes are my favorites and the Loop oscillators come in next.   Usually I prefer stationary fans but the loop handle on the AOUs make a lot of sense and easy to move the fan.   I have too many AOUs, especially 16" ones.

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 Posted: Wed May 11th, 2016 12:12 am
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Rob Byledbal
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Steve Stephens wrote: Rob Byledbal wrote: ... kitty hair...Oh, yes, that kitty hair.  The bane of my collection and impossible to even get a photo without at least a few fine hairs showing in the photos even when I think they are all gone.  I gave up trying to be perfect so people will now know that I have cats...and fur or hair...all over the place.  Thanks Rob.  I also love the GEs but not all of them.  12" pancakes are my favorites and the Loop oscillators come in next.   Usually I prefer stationary fans but the loop handle on the AOUs make a lot of sense and easy to move the fan.   I have too many AOUs, especially 16" ones.The love of a furry friend still trumps even the most beloved fan.

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 Posted: Wed May 11th, 2016 12:28 am
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Steve Stephens
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At times the cats (a cat at least) tries my patience and love for them when they "mark" onto my brass fan blades.  Instant bad patina.   Fortunately the instances of that happening have been few.

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