Mechanical and Electrical Devices for the Housewife (Mar, 1931)

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Mechanical and Electrical Devices for the Housewife

Water is boiled in eight minutes and an oven heated in six minutes with this new electric stove, which delivers three degrees of heat. The heating element nestles in a bowl shaped reflector which directs all of the heat towards the utensil.

Equipped with motor and power head, to which are fitted devices for mixing dough, chopping meat, etc., this table is a complete kitchen workshop in itself. It is finished in white enamel.

Messiness is avoided by use of this stand for a food and meat grinder. It is placed on the kitchen table.

This combination dining table and kitchen cabinet is especially suitable for crowded apartments. A number of handy drawers and shelves are provided. The table, which has a porcelain top, slides back into the cabinet when not in use.

A hand operated machine for home dry cleaning is shown at the right. The corrugated inner bottom of the machine retards the garment’s movement, so that the fluid is thrown over and through the fabric.

The last word in home entertainment is represented in this “Filmophone radio,” a combination radio, phonograph, and movie projector with talkie equipment. The records are played in synchronism with the film. The cabinet is shown at left.

Using the attachment shown in the insert, an electric iron can be converted into a hot plate. The new electric stove, shown above, uses two 150-watt lights in top and bottom to cook, broil, steam, bake, fry or roast any kind of food. Insulated walls retain the heat from the lamps. The stove comes furnished with a wide variety of utensils—enough to cook a meal for ten or twelve persons.

  1. Kosher Ham says: January 31, 201112:07 pm

    Combination radio, phonograph and movie projector– it will never catch on!

  2. Myles says: January 31, 201112:42 pm

    Kosher – not sure if the entertainment unit is the “last word” in home entertainment, they couldn’t envision any improvements ever?

    The first cabinet with the slide out table looks interesting, but how deep must that cabinet be to accomodate that table? If it is 4 feet deep or so, it may not be the best solution for cramped apartments.

  3. Toronto says: January 31, 20113:03 pm

    Myles – the table generally only slides part way in. In the “closed” position, it’s an eating counter for one person. Open, it seats 2.

    As to the stand for the iron, I rigged something similar once – grilled cheese was about all it could do, and you had to wrap the sandwich in foil.

  4. John Savard says: January 31, 20116:45 pm

    Two 150-watt bulbs… make an oven.

    A real oven, not just the Kenner Easy-Bake toy oven.

    This says something about energy conservation.

  5. DouglasUrantia says: January 31, 20118:25 pm

    my oven has a light in it. Does that make it a toy oven?

  6. Greg says: January 31, 20119:39 pm

    Why is the eight minutes to boil water supposed to be impressive? I’m guessing gas cookers did a better job than that, even in the 30s…

  7. Toronto says: January 31, 201111:31 pm

    Eight minutes is *much* faster than a lightbulb can do it.

    Actually, my mini “Trangia” camping stove takes about 8 minutes to boil 2 cups of cold water, from a standing start. Eight minutes was probably pretty acceptable for a low-power device. And it has the toaster-oven attachment, to boot!

  8. Kosher Ham says: February 1, 201111:32 am

    The phonograph doesn’t even have an electronic pick-up– it’s strictly acoustic, like a Victrola.

  9. Marcus says: February 1, 201112:45 pm

    Kosher – that looks like a pretty typical horseshoe magnetic pickup. I think by 1931 it would also be unusual to find a mechanical reproducer in a “modern” radio-phonograph.

  10. Charlene says: February 1, 20111:06 pm

    Myles – in this sense “last” is used to mean “latest”, not “final”. it’s a pretty common use of the word.

    And have any of you actually timed how long it takes to boil six cups of water in a microwave or kettle? Not many people boiled two cups at a time back then – a standard teapot holds six cups.

  11. Kosher Ham says: February 2, 20111:27 pm

    I’ll have to check. I have a friend who restores and collects antique radios. One example he has is a combination phono/radio. The radio is a TRF unit running on batteries and the phono is mechanical. The pickup needle angle could be adjusted for the various types records made in those days.

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