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Robbins & Myers 3504 Electric Fan 1920s AC and DC

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Posted 1 month ago

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fortapache
(1484 items)

Robbins & Myers was one of the early big 4 manufacturers of electric fans. The other three were Westinghouse, General Electric and Emerson.
This fan was made in the 1920s by Robbins & Myers. The 3500 series started in 1920. This model is the 3504. The exciting change of which I know is the oil reservoir in the lower center in photo #3.
Other fans from this period had brass blades but this had steel blades with copper primer painted black. The brass age was starting to wane and is pretty much done by 1930.
The exciting feature of this fan is that it has a selector switch for AC and DC which is also the on/off switch. In the early days of electricity there had not been an agreement of AC or DC. New York City was still on DC until the 1930s.
Please note this is not an industrial fan. There is a myth that the open cage fans were for industrial use and it is just not true. These fans were designed for use in a home or office.

Comments

  1. racer4four racer4four, 1 month ago
    I love reading your descriptions Fort, with all of your excitement!
    Do any of these old fans need rewinding or rewiring to work? Do you do that? Please don't admit to anything that may cause trouble if you are not a licensed electrician.
  2. BlackWatch BlackWatch, 1 month ago
    fortapache,

    Beautiful old fan you've got there, I really like it. It sure looks like it's straight from the 20s. Great piece and description, thanks for sharing.

    Best regards,

    -Jamie
  3. nutsabotas6 nutsabotas6, 1 month ago
    Very nice fan !!! Could it have been used, like in a semi truck ?
  4. buckethead buckethead, 1 month ago
    Cool fan...I have many. Cages on old fans were not put on to protect fingers - they were put on to protect the fan blades :)
  5. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you very much racer4four. Almost all of them work. A few have ugly modern cords I would like to replace and I have no license but do a little work anyway.
  6. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you very much BlackWatch. Once again it is my pleasure.
  7. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you very much nutsabotas6. It is DC so it could have been.
  8. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you very much buckethead. Also due to the direction the blades spin you have to put your fingers in the backside to get hurt.
  9. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you
    valentino97
    racer4four
    mikelv85
    TassieDevil
    thegatherer
    JImam
    Newfld
    TheGateKeeper
    Phonoboy
    AnythingObscure
    gargoylecollector
    BlackWatch
    PhilDMorris
    Signaholic
    nutsabotas6
    elanski
    buckethead
  10. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you
    SpiritBear
    MacDaddyRico
    Caperkid
    blunderbuss2
  11. fortapache fortapache, 1 month ago
    Thank you
    EJW-54
    SEAN68
    oktreedude
  12. PhilDMorris PhilDMorris, 1 month ago
    Your fan does still have an industrial look to it, which really makes it exciting. Fantastic find !~
  13. fortapache fortapache, 29 days ago
    Thank you very much Phil. It is a bit robust.

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