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AFCA Forums > Antique Fan Collectors Association > Pre-1950 (Antique) > New member, old GE oscillator, and some questions

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 Posted: Tue Jan 14th, 2020 07:27 am
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Dustin Nulton
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Joined: Tue Jan 14th, 2020
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Hello, I found this neat old fan at the flea market and managed to take it home for $10, it’s clearly missing the original 3 speed switch and  the top of the gear box is pretty well gone, but the gears are there and somebody long ago put a toggle switch on it, so it does work but only the single speed, I can’t tell if the blades are brass or aluminum, they’re painted black, I think aluminum. 
I don’t know too much about these so I thought I’d ask, are the gear box tops the same size across different models or are they larger and smaller based on fan size? I see one on eBay right now but don’t want to get it and it’s the wrong size. Some question but with regards to the switch (if I can find one for less than a fortune), how special were the switches on these? Was it a simple 3 way switch like a ceiling fan or was it like a rheostat? I’d be happy to adapt a regular switch to this so that it will have speeds, if such a thing is possible. Can someone tell me which year it was made?

My goal here is to clean it up, refresh the wiring and possibly a bit of paint and polish for a good usable fan, I’m not sure I want to go nuts on it but we’ll see where it ends up, I love these older fans, I have an old Emerson that I’ve used daily for years, the things just wont quit!





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 Posted: Tue Jan 14th, 2020 12:34 pm
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Lane Shirey
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Joined: Wed Apr 30th, 2014
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First of all, welcome to the forum!   

The “switch” is a little more than just a switch.  It also has a speed choke on it that creates the speeds.  High speed bypasses the choke, and that’s why the fan runs.   The zinc cast oscillator box covers are similar and should fit.  But you’re also missing the potmetal drive wheel.  They’re pressed on and it will be a challenge to replace it.  

Pm me if you’re interested, I believe I  have the parts you need to get it running.  I assume it’s a 16” fan? 

With all fans, it’s best to find them complete and running on all speeds.  Especially with common fans like the one you have, it’s very easy to exceed the value of the fan if you have to hunt down very many parts.  


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