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Pat's Guide to Glasgow West End
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Old cast iron ranges

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Hi Folks,

Hope I've posted this to the right forum. Just a general question on the local history theme that I'm hoping someone can help with…

I have a ye olde cast iron range in my kitchen in Kersland Street - I guess many flats in the West End have the same. I'm just wondering if anyone knows how they work? I've searched everywhere on the web and can't find any information. Maybe I'm too young :0)

The range has an open fire box with a stone grate in the centre, an oven to the right, 3 hot plates on the top, along with a semi-circular protruding "hatch" on the top that looks like it's also been used to burn fuel. There are quite a few levers, hatches and thingamyjigs on the range, and I haven't a clue what they do

Has anyone has come across a site that shows how they work? Or can someone give me a quick explanation? I'd like to know if it's an oven+hot plates, or is it a boiler too? How would it have been started up? What do the levers do? What's the semi-circular thing on the top for?

I can't see a model name, but the range has the marking "Dow's Patent, close and open fire, range acts separately or simultaneously" on it. There's also a marking for the local Glasgow installer, but I can't read it.

Don't worry - I'm not planning to try to get it working. I'm just interested in how it works. It was last used in 1962, judging by the old newspapers in the fire box. Much more interesting to leave it that way I think.

Hope someone can help

Many thanks,

Steve

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Guest westtender

Hi Folks,

Hope I've posted this to the right forum. Just a general question on the local history theme that I'm hoping someone can help with…

I have a ye olde cast iron range in my kitchen in Kersland Street - I guess many flats in the West End have the same. I'm just wondering if anyone knows how they work? I've searched everywhere on the web and can't find any information. Maybe I'm too young :0)

The range has an open fire box with a stone grate in the centre, an oven to the right, 3 hot plates on the top, along with a semi-circular protruding "hatch" on the top that looks like it's also been used to burn fuel. There are quite a few levers, hatches and thingamyjigs on the range, and I haven't a clue what they do

Has anyone has come across a site that shows how they work? Or can someone give me a quick explanation? I'd like to know if it's an oven+hot plates, or is it a boiler too? How would it have been started up? What do the levers do? What's the semi-circular thing on the top for?

I can't see a model name, but the range has the marking "Dow's Patent, close and open fire, range acts separately or simultaneously" on it. There's also a marking for the local Glasgow installer, but I can't read it.

Don't worry - I'm not planning to try to get it working. I'm just interested in how it works. It was last used in 1962, judging by the old newspapers in the fire box. Much more interesting to leave it that way I think.

Hope someone can help

Many thanks,

Steve

;)

Great description!! Havenae a clue how it works, Steve, but you look after that beastie, d'ye hear me?

(Which side of Kersland Street are ye on - the red sandstone side?)

heath_robinson_pancake.jpg

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Guest westtender

PS: post some pics, would love to see this monster! with its "levers, hatches and thingamajigs"!!

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I grew up cooking on a wood range.

First step. Have your chimney cleaned and checked.

My cookstove was a Monarch.

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Check the Broons annuals.................... :rolleyes:

Try Gibson and Goold near West St stashun, they been atra coal fired stuff furr donkeys years

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Hi Stevien,

1st things first---get the lum cleaned!

We have a modern version here in France which burns either wood or coal (or any other rubbish that you have..veggie peelings etc.)

It really is dead simple: in the top (or maybe there is a front door to the firebox) just place the firelighter/crumpled newspaper under some kindling (or small coal pieces with dust) light and stand back in amazement! It will either light if sufficient draught and that is where you have to play around with the levers..it will probably not go first or second or third time but by that time you will have kind of figured out if there is too much draught (or too little) this also depends on the weather outside..too cold, too windy, too damp etc. Don't be frightened by it all and by all means give it a try. Once it gets going it gives out generous heat..and also usefull for any rubbish you need to get rid of only DO Not put plastics in it...bad.bad.

My one is a fairly recent model (French circa 1990's plus) but the principal is the same. If you Google woodburning or coal stoves you will find a wealth of info, albeit mostly American, but the principal is the same. don't be feart!

I hope that this helps but e-mail if you have a problem. Just remember the flue must be cleaned before use. I was brought up with these things and have fond memories of a friends father in a cottage in Tomintoul sitting on his favourite chair with his stocking feet in the oven. Mid-winter of course!

Good luck,

Barry.

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Stevien,

I forgot to mention that ours burns wood mostly but it will work with coal equally.

Just remember that Glasgow (and Kersland St, is a smokeless zone) unlike me!

Barry.

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Hey folks,

Many thanks for the replies!

Westender - yea I'm on the red sandstone side of Kersland Street. The stove looks pretty much like your picture! I'd post a photo if I hadn't dropped my camera in Loch Lomond last week...!

Barry - thanks for the useful info. I've googled again and found some useful stuff. But it looks like I'll have to get the chimbob cleaned etc and get the thing going before I really know what all of the levers do.

I got a quote for re-lining a flu recently - about £1000. Think I'll have to wait until the Kellogs Credit Munch has finished before I can afford that.

Thanks again.

Steve

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Hey folks,

Many thanks for the replies!

Westender - yea I'm on the red sandstone side of Kersland Street. The stove looks pretty much like your picture! I'd post a photo if I hadn't dropped my camera in Loch Lomond last week...!

Barry - thanks for the useful info. I've googled again and found some useful stuff. But it looks like I'll have to get the chimbob cleaned etc and get the thing going before I really know what all of the levers do.

I got a quote for re-lining a flu recently - about £1000. Think I'll have to wait until the Kellogs Credit Munch has finished before I can afford that.

Thanks again.

Steve

You could pop into the The Tenement flat Steve. The last time I was there they were giving a very descriptive demostration of all the household gadgets. It was like visiting ma grannies. I could have just curled up in the kitchen recess bed, so I could... loved it. :lol:

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From memory lighting old Rayburn stove.

Open flue about 1/4

open air intake in under grate 2 or 3 turns

close oven by pass

put in paper & sticks with thicker bits of wood on top add 1/2 cup of deisel

light with long spill, hurriedly close fire door. DO NOT PEER IN

wait till hear it starting to roar close air intake open flue when roaring stops open fire door & add fuel

OR

If heating gently open fire door & add fuel

OR

If remains cold swear!!! rearrange sticks & paper re light & follow steps above resist tempatation to add more deisel

Fuel could be coal, coke or wood.

Adust air intake & flues till everything got to required temp.

Adjust oven temp by opening or closing bye pass

Sim with hot water

At night put on fuel close air intakes & flue : should be ok till morning when you open everything to get good going draught.

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Guest thomas

Don't be put off by the quote for £1000. You only need a chimney sweep, not rebuilding the chimney. Generally, these old buildings (even if they have been modernised) hold up well (try writing that about Glasgow Harbour in 50 years time).

We wanted to put a gas fire in our living room and we received quotes that would have made your eyes water (we didn't go ahead for other reasons) but a chimney sweep quoted something like £130 to clean it, as he reckoned it hadn't been done in over 50 plus years. He also offered to drop the price for cash...

Apart from the 'smokeless' fuel issue - you should consider reinstating the old thing, for I guarantee you it will be 100% better than the crap on the market now. Heating, cooking and copper kettle - so much more environmentally friendly in the long run.

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Hallo, Thomas, good to hear from you.

Agreed re the chimney thang. When Mr T and I moved in to our home 18 years ago, we asked advice on the useability of the open lums. Three firms quoted big money to instal a liner, one well-kent firm of sweeps just said, it needs a clean, £100 should do it. And they replaced the worn wee twirly bit on the roof where the smoke comes out gratis.

We got some great new neighbours upstairs last year, they also had folks in to assess the state of their lums. And again, grave advice to line the chimneys at a cost of £1000+. They just called the sweep.

All this winter we've both been burning a combination of mostly smokeless with a bit of smokey coal to get the thing alight. Oh plus junk mail, of course. :lol:

There's a wee bit of wear and tear in the communal chimneys, meaning the smoke from our fires can kinda drift down into the chimneys of the house next door.

But hey. That'd be karma :P

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Apologies for going of subject Rolo, just curious to know did you ever get sorted out with your neighbours for the tree felling

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Not exactly, Maggs, to be honest. :P Didn't go very well at all...

Out of seven flats in the two buildings, only one neighbour (upstairs there) could be assed to even respond.

I got the homoungous beanstalk taken down anyway, paid the bill, then asked again politely for contributions of oohhh..massive sum of £20 per flat. Again no bstrd helped out, even though left unattended the thing would have affected not only the light but eventually the structure of their properties.

Anyways, the lovely folks upstairs were concerned that nobody else had chipped in and kindly shelled out 50% of the cost.

We are pragmatic. Our homes are now filled with natural light and our walls ain't buckling with tree roots.

And what goes around, comes around, shirley? :lol:

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Hallo, Thomas, good to hear from you.

Agreed re the chimney thang. When Mr T and I moved in to our home 18 years ago, we asked advice on the useability of the open lums. Three firms quoted big money to instal a liner, one well-kent firm of sweeps just said, it needs a clean, £100 should do it. And they replaced the worn wee twirly bit on the roof where the smoke comes out gratis.

We got some great new neighbours upstairs last year, they also had folks in to assess the state of their lums. And again, grave advice to line the chimneys at a cost of £1000+. They just called the sweep.

All this winter we've both been burning a combination of mostly smokeless with a bit of smokey coal to get the thing alight. Oh plus junk mail, of course. :P

There's a wee bit of wear and tear in the communal chimneys, meaning the smoke from our fires can kinda drift down into the chimneys of the house next door.

But hey. That'd be karma :P

Doon here the twirly thing ur called "grannies"

Mibbe seen itsra WE they'll be called grandmama ur even grandemere :lol:

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