Wringer Washer Repair

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In previous post 'Washing Clothes', I had got off subject a bit and asked about replacing rollers on the wringer of a wringer washer. Gerbil had suggested old stock at appliance shops, boat rollers, and mop bucket rollers. Well I tracked down an appliance parts place on web that listed wringer washer parts although they werent specific about brand. One of the rollers sells for $90 or so and other $80 or thereabouts. Ouch. Heck I even found ads selling complete good Matag wringer washer for $85 to $200 with everything looking and functioning fine. Even one ad for a new unused oldstock Matag wringer washer all original but no price given. Bet could purchase it for less than Lehmans sells modern new one for. However I got to thinking about it and its possible that one could buy bulk straight radiator hose (appropriate diameter sold by the inch) and cover some homemade (on lathe) wooden rollers of the appropriate size. Maybe put wooden rollers in freezer and warm the hose by boiling it in pot of water so could get a good tight friction fit. Where there is a will there is a way I guess.

-- Hermit John (ozarkhermit@pleasedontspamme.com), May 20, 2000


T think your on to a great idea there, Hermit John ! Maybe, Lathe pieces of schedule 20 plastic and just put a knurl finish on them. Might work ? I like Lehmans, Cumberland, and L.L. Bean but they think a little too highly of their goods for my mindset.

-- Joel Rosen (Joel681@webtv.net), May 21, 2000.

I found a wringer washer on ebay for $5! You have to live in Canda to get it though! Also, they did have some rollers up for auction!

-- Jennifer (KY) (acornfork@hotmail.com), May 21, 2000.

I have no experience with working plastic or even where to buy it although it sounds like good idea. Should be very durable. What is purpose of using the hard rubber on the original anyway. There is not any give so if its just to grab clothing why wouldnt just plain wood rollers work with maybe shallow saw kerfs along their surface. [I'd suggest using steel pipe, but rust stains could become a problem. - maybe an epoxy finish?]] Need to find a wood like cypress or teak that handles water well for lifetime service although I would experiment with cheap wood first and use it until it failed. Would have to reuse shaft from original wringer rollers. I've never taken one apart to see whether it goes clear through or just stuck into the ends of the roller. The wood roller could be split, shaft installed and then glued back together or ends drilled if shaft doesnt go all way through. Seems some hand crank wringers used to have rollers made of wood. Ah another project to experiment with. Just me, I've been using laudrymat for many years now and bring wet clothes home to line dry. Have to pick up wringer washer to experiment with next time I see one super cheap at an auction. I used to have a gasoline powered one, but too much to move cross country, so I sold engine and left washer behind.

-- Hermit John (ozarkhermit@pleasedontspamme.com), May 21, 2000.

John, Your idea sounds good, seems like a lot of work when you can buy a good used washer for such a cheap price. I have bought several used ones that lasted for years. also if you put an ad in a local weekly sale paper like Good News or Big Nikel I bet you could get one for parts even cheaper or free. Good luck! karen

-- Karen Mauk (dairygoatmama@hotmail.com), May 21, 2000.

I see no problem with wood rollers--great idea ! You got me thinking---What about the rollers off a mop wringer bucket ? Maybe ? Steel dipped in epoxy is an excellent idea ! or Stainless steel rollers off an old grocery store truck unloading system ? Invention is- 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration ! (Edison)

-- Joel Rosen (Joel681@webtv.net), May 21, 2000.

I would think that anything besides rubber rollers would be too hard on buttons, even the ruber ones will break them. When I used a wringerr washer years ago it would crush the snaps on the pockets of my bib-overalls. The raidiator hose sounds like the best plan to me.

-- Hendo (redgate@echoweb.net), May 21, 2000.

This is a timely post I just got a 1920s maytag and im the prosses of rebuilding it . I'm worred about taking off the agitater because I cant tell were the cap starts and the agitater begins. but the moter is fine so are the gears but the rollers are shot bunch of good ideas thanks Shaun

-- shaun&terri (shaun-terri@juno.con), May 21, 2000.

You haven't found him (or to politically correct, which I pretty much abhor!) or her yet. Somewhere out there, in your neighborhood, is a "countryside type" person that thinks as we do. Ie - "junk is something you throw away the day before you really need it!" I know you can find what you need. Ask the little guy appliance repairmen. You'll find it! GL!

-- Brad (homefixer@SacoRiver.net), May 22, 2000.

The radiator hose would be the most closely matched to the original. Anything else would probably work but without the safety of the original. There was/is a reason those old rollers were rather soft and thick rubber coverings. Hands and fingers! I wonder how many people have had their hands or fingers caught in those raskels? When they were wooden it had to have broken some bones! A person might be able to put a couple hoses together-one inside the other over maybe a wooden or sch.20 pvc as a base. The last I knew Speed Queen built and sold a quality wringer washer that wasn't outragously expensive. Check with your local, small time, serviceman and see what he can find for you. Most old time country folks used these and would most likely have it stored in the barn or smokehouse. Back when the automatic washers came out seemed those folks didn't get rid of those old standbys. They saved them for future use if the "newfangled" monster failed! Good luck with your hunting! Matt. 24:44

-- hoot gibson (hoot@otbnet.com), May 22, 2000.

Hoot Gibson: Maybe its my memory since its been over ten years since I used one of these, but I remember the rollers as very hard rubber. Possibly a little bit more give than wood or steel, but not by much. [The real give in the rollers is from a spring mechanism to allow the roller shaft to move and let the clothes through but still sqeeze the water out. This is enough pressure to do serious damage to any fingers/hands getting caught.] That hard rubber is nothing I want to get hit with or get my hand in. I think I will try wood first, then if necessary, cover it with the radiator hose if it destroys all my buttons, zippers, etc. To those suggesting purchase: Can still get good condition wringer washers in northern midwest and maybe elsewhere although I'm sure many get scrapped as older folk with them die off. Here in ozarks it seems people used them up. I havent seen a really good one in some time and I go to lot of auctions (my one social activity). Still many show up as scrap out in the weeds at some auctions. These sometimes have good gearboxes, but the wringer rollers and dolly are usually deteriorated badly and many times the wringer is gone completely, letting water into the gear box. Real waste for an efficient machine that if treated well could last a hundred years.

-- Hermit John (ozarkhermit@pleasedontspamme.com), May 23, 2000.

Hey HJ! Thanks for that info--I've never run across any of the hard rubber ones. The only ones I remember were the soft rubber type. Maybe these were not original, don't really know. I do know the replacements we used to buy for the old Maytags were the soft type. Also maybe people had a choice. At any rate, as you said, nobody wants to get their hands/fingers caught even in the soft type. Oh, for all those we junked years ago for a quarter! How about Prince Albert backer cans? Those raskels are worth a fortune now-I now know where my fortune went! hahaha. Matt. 24:44

-- hoot gibson (hoot@otbnet.com), May 23, 2000.

Hoot Gibson: Could be the couple I had personal experience with had rubber hardened by age. I really cant remember about the rollers that my mother's Maytag had when I was a kid. Not something a kid pays a lot of attention to and I was instructed not to play with the wringer. Still seems they were hard rubber, but dont remember that wringer being as hard on overalls as one I had ten years ago. Maybe Mom just knew how to run overalls through wringer better than I did.

Dad used Prince Albert in a can. So those cans are worth something now huh? I swear I dont understand what some of these antique collectors do with some of this stuff that they cart away from rural auctions. Some of its more or less worthless for any practical purpose although nice curiosity for a museum. On other hand I've seen lot of old tractors, cars, and other machines scrapped because the owners had to have the latest new and shiney instead of patching, adapting and doing maintenance. Just heard on news about a new generation of automatic washers that are suppose to be super efficient and only cost $1000 each. Doubt they are any more efficient than an old wringer used with common sense. Same way those old pre-war refrigerators with the compressor on top were super efficient and lasted forever.

-- Hermit John (ozarkhermit@pleasedontspamme.com), May 24, 2000.

Seen in an antique store week before last the small cans were priced at $8.00 if they were empty. Full cans were $25. The Large,round, P.A. cans were $20 empty. Didn't have any of those full that were priced. Coffee tins were also expensive---and old Rex was priced at $25 and it too was empty. I've thrown away a fortune in the past. Both my boys cut their teeth on a p.a. can about 30 years ago.

-- hoot gibson (hoot@otbnet.com), May 24, 2000.

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