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Bill Shampine
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I found a 6 bladed Emerson type 27666 for sale and am wondering how hard these are to work on.  This would be my third fan.  I’ve already restored a brass bladed Sears Roebuck fan (manufactured by Fitzgerald, I think) and a 1910 GE BMY with a burned out coil, with help from Rick Huckabee (who does beautiful work, by the way).  I consider myself pretty handy (systems engineer by trade and a long time woodworker, but fairly new with fans). I’ve heard Emersons can be challenging to work on.
The fan is advertised to run but the cord is frayed and needs to be replaced.   It needs a good cleaning and I would probably disassemble it to rewire cord and head wire, clean rotor, stator (revarnish, if needed), oscillator gear box etc.   What challenges should I expect?  What are common problems with these fans I should be checking for?   There is a crack in the base and the screws to attach the cage to the struts are missing but not seeing much else obviously wrong.  I haven’t asked the seller to plug it in to prove that everything works.  He’s asking $350, which seems high.

Thoughts and advice welcome.  






Steven P Dempsey
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That is a full on retail+ price - it must run, the blades should be balanced, often they are not - getting the blade off is a trick if you have never done one - great fans - low RPMs, smoothy running - try to knock the price down to 250, that is more than fair.

Steven P Dempsey
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27666 on the left - make sure the switch is not damaged.



Steven P Dempsey
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BTW, those screws are available at ACE, I believe -brass

Steven P Dempsey
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Make sure the Oscillating linkage is there & it works



Steve Stephens
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Unless the fan can be shown to run I would think a $250 price would be high considering the cracked base.
Screws to attach cage to struts are STEEL but, on brass cage models, brass.

Steven P Dempsey
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250 = "More Than Fair" with issues - - 6 blades Emersons are rather "Hot" right now - - that base is common & can be replaced.

Steve Stephens
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Guess I have been out of the market too long.   2005 I got a super nice all original 27666 for $120 on ebay out of Missouri and I picked it up on my trip to Fanfair.   But I also see that I bid $277 back then.   They are very nice fans.

Bill Shampine
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Thanks for the advice on price and what to watch for. Any thoughts around how hard they are to work on? I found the GE BMY pretty easy to work on. What challenges should I expect with disassembly/reassembly on this one?

Bill Shampine
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I wish the cage was brass but it’s steel.

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Other than a possible stuck blade and difficult removal, no, they’re good to work on. 

Steven P Dempsey
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I found that model easy to remove the blade, with that big motor - it has a dedicated hole to lock the rotor.

David Kilnapp
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Best way to remove the blade is to do as Steve says. Get a four inch bolt that fits into the threaded hole on the back of the case and turn the bolt slowly until it touches the rotor, then slowly snug it up against the rotor which will immobilize it. Now remove the cage and turn the blade CLOCKWISE to remove it. Now remove the bolt at the back of the case and remove the bolt. Sometimes that threaded hole is covered by the gear case at the rear of the fan. The other way to immobilize the rotor is to put an awl through one of the holes on the back of the case, being VERY careful not to poke the windings. Now turn the blade until the awl finds one of the holes in the rotor (if there is one). That will also do the trick. Emersons and GEs of this period are very well engineered and very easy to work on. You can remove the stator easily once the brass locking bolt on the spindle (in front of the rotor) is removed. That bolt can be unscrewed using a wide blade or chisel. Use the PVC pipe method to remove the stator (use the search function to learn about stator removal). I hope you'll consider joining the AFCA. The dues are exceedingly inexpensive and well worth it considering the beautiful quarterly magazine that comes to paying members not to mention the super helpful, knowledgeable people on this forum!

Steven P Dempsey
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Like I said, this particular model has a dedicated hole under the gearbox to lock the rotor - nice design.I think mine still has the original gold paint on the brass blades.

Steven P Dempsey
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Just took this shot - - I use a T- Handle Allen wrench, or a Phillips Screwdriver





Bill Shampine
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Thanks for all the advice.   This group has given me the information I needed and confidence to go ahead and negotiate a sale for this.  Thanks!   I am looking forward to joining AFCA at the end of this year.  

Noah Britt
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David Kilnapp wrote: beautiful quarterly magazine that comes to paying members
Even better than quarterly, the magazine comes every other month. Membership is well worth it!



Last edited on Tue Oct 13th, 2020 03:01 am by Noah Britt

Alex Rushing
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Best all around usable 6 wing Emmy  first model without the weak start winding issues. First with the long used cone base. First with superior stamped hub blades. The iron hubs tend to break if they ever strike something.I use one bedside every night!











How much did I pay?
Stump with blades, but no switch - $175.
29668 switch in a stump - $100.
Cage w/badge - $50.

But, I had to restore everything. In the restored condition I posted, they sell $500-$800, depending on the level of work.
What you posted is "sort of complete". You will need a replacement base though. If it runs, $300 is what I'd expect to pay + shipping.
If the blades are straight, and not just balanced, then $350 is good.

I recently watched a 71666 sell for $500. They're pricey, because everyone has realized how good they are. I got an offer on my 21666 for $1,500 yesterday. People who have been collecting for a long time don't check the prices these go for, and don't look at restored examples; which sell for double(or triple) than one needing cosmetic work.

Just $0.02 from someone who started seriously buying and restoring fans August 2019. Antique fans never seem to lose their value, unless it is something that is a "fad", like when some fans unexplainably increase in price. Big motor 6 wing Emersons don't have that issue, because they are among the best fans to use and enjoy out there.

Video of my 27666 Oscillating with the Bravi ratchet wheel upgrade(and cast iron Jerry Bravi collar). These should be smooth with no extraneous noise in the gearbox. Of course, mine didn't come that way. I have about 30hrs labor on top of the initial investment.

Last edited on Tue Oct 13th, 2020 05:59 am by Alex Rushing

Steven P Dempsey
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Nice - - I see I need some work on mine! Runs great but looking a bit shabby

Alex Rushing
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Steven P Dempsey wrote: Nice - - I see I need some work on mine! Runs great but looking a bit shabbyRunning great is always #1! IMO!Cosmetics come in at #2!

That is why my restos can get complicated. I always rebuild the entire fan, reassemble, test thoroughly, then disassemble again for cosmetic work.

Your 27666 is nice! And won't require to much work, by the looks of the photo! Nice polishing, paint touchups here & there, new felt, and motor tag/badge cleaning/resto. Then brass polishing if you like, though your blades have a pretty even leathering. Sure wish my mostly factory finish/unrestored 17666 had less inconsistent patina. It actually has pretty ugly patina, if I'm being honest. But, since I've restored the same model, I won't be touching the Unrestored one.

Tom Newcity
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Bill Shampine wrote: Thanks for the advice on price and what to watch for. Any thoughts around how hard they are to work on? I found the GE BMY pretty easy to work on. What challenges should I expect with disassembly/reassembly on this one?
The dedicated hole at the rear of the motor is threaded 1/4-20.  Try to find a hardened steel screw such as a set screw about 3" long.  If the blade does not want to unscrew, jump back on this thread for some more advice.  I have plenty of spare bases, but none with embossed speed setting numbers.  I seldom see them.  

Bill Shampine
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I picked up the fan today and am excited about a new project.   Seller proved to me that it works on all 3 speeds and that the oscillator works.  We settled on $280.  It’s pretty dirty but the paint seems to be in good condition except on the edges of the base.  I may have a buddy weld the crack and touch up the base - not sure yet.   I found some evidence of a crack the looks painted over on the oscillator gear box.   Head wire seems in good shape - not sure if it’s original or not.  One of the cap nuts holding cage strut is just a plain square nut (not a cap) but I’m assuming that easily replaced.   I’m a patina lover, showing the fans age but making it safe and complete.  Plan is lots of cleaning and protecting original finish.   
I feel like I have a team supporting me, which is fantastic! 

Some initial questions.   Is the blade threaded onto the hub (left handed, I assume)?  How does one get penetrating oil onto the hub to help remove the blade?   Once the blade is off, how does the motor housing come apart?  I see another set of nuts under the strut cap nuts.   Are these the only ones to remove to get into the motor housing  or do you need to remove the oscillator box too?  Given the crack on the oscillator box, that’s an area I probably need to tread lightly.  

Thanks again for the support.   




















Tom Newcity
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Good for you Bill.  There are many issues here that need addressing.  First of all, you are going to learn a lot just by doing it.  To give the blade/hub loosening process a good start, remove the gear housing and oscillator drive shaft and apply lots of PB Blaster through the hole where the drive shaft was removed.  Let it soak overnight.  
Remove the blade assembly by first locking down the rotor with a 1/4-20 screw in back of the motor.  The blade-hub  is threaded onto the rotor with a left-hand thread.  So turning it clockwise will unscrew it.  Once the blade and front motor cover are removed, unscrew the slotted round nut to release the rotor.  

Keep us posted.  

BTW:  I think I have an appropriate gear housing for you.  And you will get lots of patina with it.  I will check my inventory tomorrow.  

Last edited on Wed Oct 14th, 2020 12:56 am by Tom Newcity

Russ Huber
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Tom Newcity wrote:   I have plenty of spare bases, but none with embossed speed setting numbers.  I seldom see them.  

You can narrow the date for the 27xxx 12"/16" models with embossed speed numbers and ratchet case(ball detent) oscillator to the 19 fan motor season. By 20 changes were made.








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Russ Huber
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The Emerson big motor 6 poles for most part barely get luke warm after hours of operation. Lotsa copper, Enjoy your toy.  :clap:

Last edited on Wed Oct 14th, 2020 04:29 am by Russ Huber

Alex Rushing
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Thank you for the information, Russ! I had suspected mine was a 1919 model, because it had its original ratchet wheel and lock-top oiler(right before the hole and flip top).Never occurred to me to look at the embossed markers until you posted that.
1919 for 100% sure. Sorry about the dust, as it is used every night, all night.


Glad I kept this one complete during resto. Eventually the bottom of the ratchet case made a pile of pot metal on the table. That is why the video shows a steel bottom on the case. Made by Jerry Bravi to save the look of this fan. I don't mind steel cases on my collected restored fans, because I am not looking at the back of them on the shelves. The 27666 back is seen every night/day, so I enjoy the ratchet case with upgraded steel cover!

Bill Shampine
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So the “patient” is on the table and opened up.  Got the oscillator box off and despite the crack, it didn’t fall apart. I found that removing the screw at the bottom of the cam that modifies the oscillation swing was the easiest way to disconnect from the arm.   Used the bolt trick through the threaded hole to lock the rotor.  I used channel locks (with duct tape on the teeth) to gently remove the blades - they came off fairly easily.   I think I would have struggled for days without the great advice here!
Front housing cover came off easily after removing brass caps and brass housing nuts (the cage is steel).  One stud had steel nuts of a different size from the others, so I’ll need to search for a replacement brass nut and a brass cap, which hopefully won’t be too bad.

I’m at the stage of removing the front hub nut with the wide slot.   I’ve gently tried clockwise and counter clockwise but not sure if that nut is left handed like the blades.   Given the direction the motor spins, I would think this is left handed too.  Am I right?




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Not sure I remember which way that nut turns; I think  CCW.   I use two screwdrivers in the slot, side by side and two hands on the screwdrivers, so as to not mar the nut with pliers, etc.

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Steve Stephens wrote: Not sure I remember which way that nut turns; I think  CCW.   I use two screwdrivers in the slot, side by side and two hands on the screwdrivers, so as to not mar the nut with pliers, etc.Do you have a "big arse" flat blade screwdriver?I bought one for taking them off. Before I had pliers with leather taped on the jaws.
Indeed, regular threads on the rotor retainer. CCW off. :)

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Alex Rushing wrote: Do you have a "big arse" flat blade screwdriver?I bought one for taking them off. Before I had pliers with leather taped on the jaws.
Indeed, regular threads on the rotor retainer. CCW off. :)
No sir Alex, I use two regular sized flat blade screwdrivers, side by side at the same time, in the nut's slot.  Or you can look at it as one screwdriver in each side of the slot in the nut.  Hey, it works, at least so far.

Tom Newcity
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Bill Shampine wrote I’m at the stage of removing the front hub nut with the wide slot.   I’ve gently tried clockwise and counter clockwise but not sure if that nut is left handed like the blades.   Given the direction the motor spins, I would think this is left handed too.  Am I right?




That one is made of steel and it comes off quite easily with water-pump pliers.  It is standard thread, so it unscrews CCW.  

Bill Shampine
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I got the hub off using pliers (teeth covered with duct tape) AND a wide bladed screwdriver.  Removed the rotor.  I then took the base plate off and started to remove the coil when the base cracked on the other side (maybe it was weakened already and taking the base plate off was the last straw).
The metal looks poor quality, like pot metal.  If that’s the case, my plan to have a buddy weld it is probably off the table.   Before I start searching for a replacement base, is there any hope of a repair (JB Weld, epoxy, something else?).  I think I know the answer but wanted to check with my “support” team first.













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That is cast iron, and can be "carefully" welded. 


http://afcaforum.com/forum1/36273.html

https://www.afcaforum.com/forum1/40582-2.html

Last edited on Fri Oct 16th, 2020 02:34 am by Russ Huber

Sean Campbell
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Bill, that base is cast iron. It can technically be repaired, but will never be as strong as before. I would keep it as a back up plan and post an add on the BST for a base with raised numbers. You can also try Chad at Antique fan parts. I'd bet he'd have the piece.

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Sean Campbell wrote: Bill, that base is cast iron. It can technically be repaired, but will never be as strong as before.
Guess again, Sean. I have had a number of step up bases repaired by a fairly skilled welder friend using a mig welder. No special rod. You just go easy. Nothing wrong with using a special welding rod either.


This base was missing the fractured piece. The welder fabricated a section of steel and mig welded it in place. FYI Sean, that welded section isn't goin anywhere:D








Bill Shampine
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There is an Emerson base for sale on ebay.  It has the embossed speed numbers.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Antique-Emerson-Fan-BASE-Blade-12-Model-To-Restore-Parts-/154140755161

It’s listed as for a 12 inch fan but I think the ad is wrong and it’s for a 16 inch Emerson.  My base is stamped with 4347 on the bottom.  The one on eBay is a 4348.   The dimensions are also different from mine.   This won’t work for my fan, right?

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Bill Shampine wrote: There is an Emerson base for sale on ebay.  It has the embossed speed numbers.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Antique-Emerson-Fan-BASE-Blade-12-Model-To-Restore-Parts-/154140755161

It’s listed as for a 12 inch fan but I think the ad is wrong and it’s for a 16 inch Emerson.  My base is stamped with 4347 on the bottom.  The one on eBay is a 4348.   The dimensions are also different from mine.   This won’t work for my fan, right?

Yes it is for a 16".  You can tell by the 1/2" rise above the speed control switch opening.  

Bill Shampine
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An AFCA member has a base that seems to be a match.   His is a 4347-2 and mine is a 4347-1.  Does anyone know the difference between a -2 and a -1?    Picture of the 4347-2 is on the right.   The one on a left is a 4748-2, which I think is for a 16 inch fan.








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I will guess that both bases are identical and made with pattern number 4347 with the only difference being that Emerson had at least two separate patterns for the same piece with numbers 1 and 2, a common practice when more than one pattern existed for the same item.

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Bill,
I have a 27646 parts fan that has the 4347-1 base.  PM me if interested.

Do you also need any other parts?
  Motor grommet extension which is unique to the 27XXX's.
  Base pan with felt bottom retainer ring which is unique to the 27XXX's.      Green felt which is proper for the 27XXX.
  Appropriate gear housing which is unique to the 21, 24, and 27XXX's.
  Speed control and/or parts.  
  Speed control rebuild.  

Last edited on Sat Oct 17th, 2020 04:14 pm by Tom Newcity

Tom Newcity
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Steve Stephens wrote: I will guess that both bases are identical and made with pattern number 4347 with the only difference being that Emerson had at least two separate patterns for the same piece with numbers 1 and 2, a common practice when more than one pattern existed for the same item.

Do you think it could have anything to do with the speed positions being numbered 1,2,3 or 3,2,1?  I have seen them both ways, and Bill's is numbered 3,2,1.

Sean Campbell
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Russ, I’m glad to be proven wrong there! That’s an outstanding repair. :shock:

Bill Shampine
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I found a local welder comfortable working on cast iron and the results are very good.  He cut a V groove along the crack and used silicon bronze rod to fill it.  I’m still working on refining things with a Dremel but feeling very positive that I will be able to keep the fan all original.  I did not plan to repaint everything and need to decide how to cover the repair to best match the rest of the finish.   Advice welcome.



William Dunlap
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That's how I repair them. It is usually referred to as "brazing" but more accurately bronze welding. Nickel silver rod is also used, which ironically has very little nickel and no silver at all, and is also considered "soldering" as is brazing.

Cheers,
Bill

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You could get the base powder coated or sent it to Rick Powell to get japanned.

Bill Shampine
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To be specific, I’m looking for advice on how to refinish the base but to make it look “old” to match the rest of the fan.

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Update on my progress.  I found a local welder that works on cast iron and he did a great job fixing my base. Used silicon brass rod for the repair  I wanted to keep the fan original, if possible, plus I wanted to retain the embossed numbers.




I used some automotive body filler to get it perfectly smooth.  I used a primer and then Rustoleum Advanced formula gloss black.   I really wanted to keep the fan looking old and struggled with how to get the new, shiny base to match the rest of the fan.   I was able to tone down the shine with a 3M finishing pad (that I use when applying finish to wood) and it did a great job.


I used a small wire wheel to remove the loose rust on the cage and struts and then applied a boiled linseed oil and mineral spirits mix that rat rod builders use to protect patina on cars.  Spent a lot of time gently cleaning up the badge using “bar keepers friend” and Q-tips dipped in water.  I also used toothpicks dipped in water and barkeepers friend to get in all the corners.   Cleaned the blades but kept the patina.   Quite pleased with the results.














This one is going to be a daily runner in the bedroom.  It’s quiet and has a nice hum.  The only challenge I still have is the oscillator adjustment cam.   If I put the oscillator cam into a wide sweep, it clicks back to a small sweep or no sweep.   I had taken the cam apart to give it a good cleaning and then but a little Red and Tacky grease on the inside of the cam but maybe I shouldn’t have to give it more friction to keep it in place?


I want to thank everyone for their help and encouragement!    This is a terrific group - still planning to join at the end of the year.


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Another one saved! Good work, Bill!
The spring may be tired in the wheel. But, just stretching the spring might cause stress in the pot metal.

Have you contacted Jerry Bravi about a steel plate for the wheel base?
I would definitely not use a ratchet wheel on a daily runner without the steel Bravi cover for it.


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