Flame Height Adjustment – Old Gas Ranges


Do you have a 50 year old gas range? O’Keefe & Merrit? Wedgewood? Something similar? If you do, did you know you can adjust your flame height? That’s right with a greasy 9/16 wrench and a little guidance you can turn your weezy old flames in to towers of mighty blue jet streams. It’ll only take maybe 15 minutes to tune them all and it’s next to nearly almost safe. Are you interested?
Editor’s Note – Please read – 01/09/2010: Our local Gas Guy just left, I called because was concerned about my gas furnace and carbon monoxide. He got right to work with this sensor rig and found nothing. Then he set about my 1952 Wedgewood, checking all pilots, oven operation, venting … you name it, he checked it out from head to toe. For nothing. He was very impressed about how low my emissions were from my oven. He said that these older gas ranges do not have to have the oven vented to the outside. When these older gas ranges did have to be vented to the outside was when they had a heater or a wood burning side to the range.
He says he has more trouble with the newer gas ranges because when you turn on the oven, the flame will be high enough to hit the bottom of the oven. This causes the flame to smolder and create more carbon monoxide. The older range’s burner assemblies are mounted lower and the flame is never allowed to touch any metal and smolder. In other words, we rule.
The moral of the story is to call your local gas company. Mine even has a button to press when you call them so they can come light your pilot lights. They care, they don’t want you to die or get blown up and then die.


Sure you are, that’s probably why you still own your old range. They’re amazing pieces of equipment. A few years ago my oven’s thermostat was going south and ruining our food, poor roast chickens were incinerated. I thought maybe it was time to visit our local Sears and spend 1800 on a new range. That’s what credit is for, right? You bet. Yeah well, to get a gas range that’s as well made and with burners as accurate and adjustable as my old Wedgewood would cost me 2500+ and that doesn’t count the fancy hoods you have to buy. Scratch that idea. I called a local repair shop and they came by and replaced my thermostat for 170.00 total. That, a rechromed griddle and the purchase price of the range came to a whopping total of, $670.00. Envision a new range for that price, no love there pal. No Elvis in that range, nope. And this brings us to today, poor Kalyn’s old gas range has a weezy burner. Just one she says, but I’ll bet you once she sees what she can do she’ll jack them all up. Everyone should have the ability to turn a stainless steel fry pan in to a slag heap, if they want to.
Meathenge is here to help!
You ready? Okay, listen up. You will not have to turn off the gas or open up any dangerous parts of the unit. This is a simple, easy & quick adjustment that nearly anyone can do. All you need to do is watch your knuckles and pay attention. That’s right Billy, you gotta put down your can of beer.


The above image is for reference. While this may not be your exact range, many are quite similar and the guts are usually the same if not damned close.
We’ll be working on the burner set farthest away from us (the Right set of burners). See? Please remove the two cast iron burner grates.

You should be left with something like this, some have this part chromed. Neat eh?
I outlined this one piece with green, see? Please lift it out. Careful, it might be hot due to the pilot light undearneath.

This is where our stoves are probably more similar, the burner section. The green arrows point to where the nuts we’ll be turning are, just to give you a reference point.

And here we are. Click on the image to make it larger and you can actually SEE the nuts in there. There should be 4. Why? Because your two outter burners and your two inner burners (simmer rings) make a total of 4 burners. One nut is for the outter burner and one is for the inner burner.
Turn on the REAR burner and start with either the inner or outter. The two nuts that adjust the rear burners should be on your left there. Use the open end of your 9/16 wrench on one and turn it to the right and see if there is any change. If not? You have the wrong nut, try the next one. The change should be somewhat noticeable. Turn the nuts until the flame gets to your liking, either high or low. It’s up to you. I would suggest not making your simmer rings too darned large, it’s nice to have those on a smaller scale.
And that is all there is to that. When you’re doing the burners closer to you, please watch your fangers. It can get kinda tight in there. When you’re done, put everything back together and relax.

Check out the size of the rear flame there. (In the voice of Elvis, mutter the following). “That’s huge man. That’s really huge.”
Ya know, there are a lot of things you can do yourself on these old rigs. Some require more skill than others, but at least you have the option. If you are interested in repairing or getting parts repaired please contact AntiqueStoves.com. They’re Meathenge approved (I used ‘em) and have some cool resources. One of which being their Antique Appliance Club, go see.
I hope this was useful and hope you don’t set your hair on fire. Take care and good luck!
Biggles

710 thoughts on “Flame Height Adjustment – Old Gas Ranges

  1. I am so excited!!! I read your instructions and adjusted my burners, even my piddly little one that has never had more than a simmers worth of flame for the last ten years. I was a little scared to do it, because to put it mildly, I am not that mechanical. But the instructions were so good, and the stove did look so much like mine that it absolutely empowered me. I didn’t even have a wrench (let alone know what size it would be if I had one) but I used a short pair of pliers and it worked great.
    Thank You so much!!! You are the best. If they ever have a meme for “the other food blogger who has helped you the most” you are hands down the winner for me.
    xoxo
    Kalyn
    P.S. Watch my blog tomorrow for me raving about how wonderful and thoughtful you are, and maybe even a photo of the flames if I can get it to come out with my limited photography skills.

  2. Biggles goes nuts over an old flame

    Ha ha, fooled you. Dr. Biggles has a handy tip for adjusting the burners on old stoves, if you’re lucky enough to have one. Wrench yourself over there and have a gander, as usual he’s cooking up some good…

  3. Good golly; way to go, Kalyn!
    For my house in Mill Valley, we bought an old Wedgwood with red plastic trim. The folks who had reconditioned it (flame adjustment, thermostat, rechroming, etc.) had found a set of old Robert Shaw red knobs for the front. So pretty. Sale made. Asking price.
    I think I had that stove 15 years before I noticed the brand names didn’t match.
    But the happy ending: When we put that house on the market, the buyers wanted to know if the stove was staying with the house. Ka-ching! Sale made. Over asking price.

  4. hey Biggles, been a while since i rapped at ya. But not being the most mechanically inclined person in the world I have to to ask:
    what might one do if one’s sweet-ass Viking range is making a constant clicking noise, even once the flame is lit. I adjust the knob from low flame to high flame, and where once it would stop when the flame was reduced, now 4 of the 6 burners keep clicking. Ever had this problem? The main reason I’m concerned (apart from it being annoying) is that one of the burners quit last week altogether. Maybe it’s related, maybe it isn’t. Any thoughts?

  5. Hey Monkey Boy,
    It’s really good to see you about. I didn’t like the fact you took off and decided to do other things. Even if you think you’re smart enough to be a damned LAW_YER.
    Hey, that clicking noise is most likely the flint striking the box. Modern gas ranges have a START portion on your knob, but once you select something further it should STOP.
    I don’t know, truthfully and if it were my range I’d take off the knobs and start digging around and figure HOW that clicker works and why it doesn’t go back off.
    And by burner quit, how exactly did it quit? No clicking or no gas coming out?
    Biggles

  6. Antique Stoves is in Michigan. Where’s a local place for a Wedgewood? My sister’s stove is on a waiting list for a place in Stockton, but it’s been months and it sounds like it’ll be months more.

  7. i’ve got a wedgewood cooktop and just had it hooked up by a professional today. worked fine while they were here, but an hour later all 4 pilot lights were out. we relit them (so it’s definitely getting gas), but the flames are teeny tiny and the burners won’t come on at all. tried adjusting the nut on one rear burner, and it came on! thought we were in the clear, but when we turned if off the pilot went out, too. any ideas? it was working fine, with giant flames, earlier today.

  8. anyone know how to get the oven going on a ’53 wedgewood? i turned off the gas to clean one of the upper burners and lit the range pilots fine, but i forgot the oven pilot. a day later i remembered to light the pilot (in the back) but the over won’t fire up now–so i must be missing something.
    anyone?

  9. Hey Todd,
    YES !!!
    These old rigs have a safety valve that needs to be reset after you turn off the gas.
    Take the burner covers and griddle out and search for a RED BUTTON on a valve somewhere in there. OR maybe in the compartment next to the oven. You may have to search around, but you’ll find it.
    PRESS the big red button and that will reset the valve and your oven will pop back to life!
    Biggles

  10. My newly purchased home came with a Wedgewood stove with knobs by Robert Shaw. Consequently, I have limited information about the stove. If it helps there are five knobs on the right and two on the left.
    One of the five knobs reads “heater”. I have tried every way possible to turn this heater on to no avail.
    Does anyone have suggestions or point me in the right direction.
    Thank you.

  11. Hey Ixora,
    The heaters are usually on the left side and the ovens are on the right. If you open the door on the left, get down on your knees and look for a RED button, waaaaaay down, maybe towards the back, press it. If it doesn’t come back, pull it back up, they get sticky when old.
    Now you gotta find the pilot light. Get one of those butane lighter wands and find the hole in the steel where there are some gas lines, the pilot light area. If the pilot light doesn’t pop on, someone has probably turned OFF the heater. This is a good thing because the rumor is they’re leaky old things that should be turned off and not used. Sorry about that! Don’t worry too much though, with all the pilot lights in that range it’ll keep the kitchen toasty warm.
    Biggles

  12. Hi there — Renting a house with a Wedgewood stove that is really neat but seems to heat the entire house even when “off.” Called PG&E and they turned off the range pilot for me (so now I use a lighter to light the burners) because I thought that would help the stove not leak so much heat, but am still spending an outrageous amount on gas bills. Landlord not helpful. Any ideas about how to turn the oven pilot WAY DOWN; or does anyone know if there is a way to turn the oven pilot off and just light it when I’m using it? Thanks!

  13. Hey Kelly,
    Hmmm, well the pilot light shouldn’t be burning that much gas. It’s usually a gas heater/dryer/hotwater heater that are the hogs in the home.
    Even so, you can adjust the flame height easy. Don’t turn it off because lighting a gas oven by hand is not only tough to do, it’s dangerous. I’ve done it with a 1920′s range I had years ago. It’d jump so hard when it lit, the entire range would lift up, not good.
    The pilot light adjustment for the gas range is where the burners are. Take the top off the range, griddle too. If you spend some time looking at the gas lines, you’ll find the big supply line that comes in. You’ll see where it comes to the knobs and at some point you’ll find the lines that end up going back and DOWN to the oven, probably on the right hand side in the BACK. In that line there will be a little nut that you can put a wrench to and turn it. You’ll want to pull the oven racks out, pull the bottom of the oven out and NOTICE the pilot light when you do this. Don’t make the pilot light too low. If it is too low, it may not light the burner or it’ll go out when someone opens up the back door.
    But I wouldn’t worry too much about the pilot light. Try turning down the temperature on your water heater, is it insulated?
    Biggles

  14. Biggles or Kaylin,
    I am also having problems with my Viking range. Not only do the ceramic clickers continue to click once the flame is lit, but sometimes, even when the stove is off, the clicking will commence by itself.
    I couldn’t find the original instructions you had posted for adjusting the flame level. Would you be a luv and repost? Thanks!

  15. NICE TIP ON ADJUSTING PILOT LIGHTS, BUT WHAT IF YOU CLEANED ALL PILOT FEEDS AND ONE OF 4 PILOT LIHGTS NEEDS TO BE ADJUSTED HIGHER BUT YOU WANT TO KEEP THE OTHER THREE THE SAME…
    YOUR SOLUTION SEEMS TO MAKE THE LOW PILOT NORMAL, BUT THE NORMAL PILOTS LIKE MINI FLAME THROWERS.
    PLEASE EMAIL ME ANY SUGGESTIONS?
    JASONCHUSFO@GMAIL.COM

  16. Hi,
    I,m having difficulty with my circa ’50′s Wedgewood stove. It has four burners, a griddle, two ovens and two broiler pans. I performed some work on the floors, having to disconnect the stove from the gas line, afterward reconnecting. I was able to light all four pilot lights. Although all stove-top burners and griddles work well, neither of the ovens will go past the pilot light stage after I turn the Robert Shaw knob to broil… I pressed in the red safety button, hoping this would help. But, the button stuck. Any suggestions? Thanks.
    Bruce

  17. Hi there,
    What a great thread! I just moved into a rented house that has an old Wedgewood stove. The pilot light for the heater doesn’t seem to be lit. When I turn the heater knob, I smell gas, but no heat comes out and I don’t see a flame. So I am concerned that it is leaking gas. We tried pushing the red buttons, but that didn’t do the trick. So I’d like either to light the pilot to the heater, or more preferably, just turn the whole heater off so we don’t have to worry about any leaking gas in the future. Does anyone have any suggestions? The rest of the stove (the oven, the burners and the griddle) are all working fine.
    Thanks!
    Robin

  18. Hey Robin,
    You’ve got a few things going on here. If you turn the heater knob and you smell gas coming out, it means your pilot light for the heater isn’t lit. Open up the door to the heater and see if you can find the hole where you stick in a long match or lighter wand and light the pilot light. If the pilot light doesn’t come on? It was turned off on purpose and they should have cut the gas to the heater as well. It’s easy to turn the pilot light back on, but don’t.
    I’ve had two different technicians tell me the heaters on these things are leaky old beasts that need to be turned OFF and not used. Mine is turned off and not used.
    Please scour your yellow pages for someone who can come turn that off for you, or call your local Gas & Electric Company to see if they’ll do it for free.
    As long as your knobs on the front is in the OFF position, you should be safe. But for the future, it should be permanently turned off. Maybe in the coming weeks I’ll see if I can’t figure out how and post about it.
    Take care and thanks for stopping by!
    gp

  19. Hey Mike,
    I’d need a little bit more to go on. What exactly is the problem? Generally speaking, you adjust your oven using the knob on the front of the stove. I’m not trying to be an ass, but that’s how it works. If your oven has problems holding temperatures or wildly fluctuating temperatures? You probably need a new thermostat.
    If your knob and oven temp don’t match? Such as when you turn your oven on to 350 and it’s at 325 or 375? This you can adjust by REMOVING the knob on the front of the stove. Just carefully wobble it off, gently now. There should be a good sized spring there, remove that too.
    LOOK right on the middle of the bare section coming out, where the knob was? Look CLOSELY and you’ll see a little set-screw and gauge with a metal pointer. You can adjust that to your knob markings will match your oven temperatures. Neat eh?
    I hope this helps,
    Biggles

  20. I have a 1988 Tappan gas range and oven combination. As I was preheating the oven to bake pumpkin pies on 12/24, it simply stopped working. I can’t hear the gas “hiss”, it doesn’t light with a match and I haven’t a clue what to do next. The pilot light has never been visible, so I can’t tell if it’s on or off. Ideas?

  21. Hey Susie,
    Dang, 1988 is quite a bit newer than what I’m used to. It may not even have a pilot light.
    And if you’re not hearing gas rushing out, then the pilot light isn’t the problem. Some safety valve has probably been tripped, for some reason or another. You’d have to poke around and see if you can find a reset button, either around the burner section on on the back somewhere.
    I would think if it was a safety valve that was triggered it was probably for a good reason. Call a repair person!
    Sorry I couldn’t be of more help.

  22. So what’s the deal about the pilot to burner connection? It seems to be that I get enough flame in use with the knob on high but sometimes the burners have trouble lighting initially – if I’m not careful, I’ll leak gas fumes especially on the front right. My wife only likes the front left burner almost exclusively as it’s more reliable in lighting. Pilots themselves are reilable in that they never go out. And the burners light best on low gas flow and most likely to fail to light at full throttle.
    And I’m curious about those butterflys in the gas feed to the burners just behind the adjusting nuts you have so elegantly outlined in the main article. What do they do and why are they adjusted so more of less of the little window is exposed to the interior of the feed pipe? I keep thinking they’re what needs adjusting for the initial lighting problem.
    And then there’s the back burners that we seldom use because of the grates having the solid center section. I assume they are like that because of the lack of aluminum clad stainless cookware back in the days of yore helping to spread the heat to thin pot bottoms. Does anyone trade in parts for these old Wedgewoods where I could get the backs like the front griles?
    Thanks for the great lead article Dr Biggles

  23. Hey Robert,
    Thanks for stopping by, excellent questions.
    On your first question about pilots, lighting and so forth. It’s tough to know because I’m not there. But there are pilot tubes that faciliate the lighting of your burners. These aluminum tubes get holes and can basically just wear away. I would investigate this first, maybe they’re misaligned? Mine usually are. Over time you can do some collecting and maybe find some replacement parts. During the mean time, use matches to light the stove, no biggie.
    In regards to the second question about the butterfly valves. Those are for the air to fuel mixture. I have some excellent technical notes as to how to adjust those and I have no idea where they are. I’m looking for them so I can post the information. Feel free to play with them, just make damned sure you take note of where they are originally. This way you can return them to the way they were before you screwed them up. At least that’s what I do. They could give you a hard time for the lighting of the burners, but I don’t think that’s your culprit.
    In regards to your third question. Those two pesky metal discs as your grates are called heat diffusers. You can buy ones from your local fancy pants kitchen supply, I have several including those built in to my stove. No, it doesn’t have to do with the lack of thick aluminum discs on the bottom of cookware. Cast iron and standard aluminum cookware from the time does just fine. It has to do with finicky cooking/baking. Those discs are the best when simmering soups & stews for long periods of time with literally no scorching, this is especially good when simmering beans. I’ve found them great for delicate sauces as well, nice. These old stoves were built with real home cooks in mind, where it was necessary to really simmer things low with no scorching.
    Embrace your range, it’s your friend.
    Biggles

  24. I just purchased and installed an O’Keefe & Merritt, one of the 600 models (4 burners, a center griddle, grillevator and glassless oven), from the 40′s/50′s. We have been looking for a long time for an affordable O’Keefe & Merritt like this to replace our spent Wedgewood 3-53. I want to use it NOW, but I have 2 problems when I turn the gas valve on.
    1. I can’t figure out how to light the stove top pilots. I see the little boxes where the pilots are but can’t seem to get them to light. I know the burners are working because I can manually light them.
    2 – When I opened the grillevator to light the pilot it sounded and smelled like there was an awful lot of gas coming out. So much infact, that I was afraid to even attempt to light the pilot. Also, there is a little triangular door, near where the gas begins its ascent to the grillevator burner, that is open. Is this ok?
    Do you have any advice . . . please?!
    Thanks,
    Brian

  25. Hey Brian,
    Hmm, let’s see. Regarding question #1. If you’ve found the pilot light for the burners and putting a match to them doesn’t ignite them, they’ve been turned off. There would be several reasons for that, one of which being they’re leaking and were shut off due to a safety issue. Or, people turn them off to save money on gas or they don’t like the top of their stove so damned hot.
    Regarding question #2. I don’t have any experience with the Grillevators in O&K stoves. I can tell you this though, you should NOT be getting massive amounts of gas coming from anywhere with all your knobs turned OFF.
    You need to do one of two things. Either find a local place that will come out and repair it or call your local gas & electric company and see if they’ll come do a gas check on the stove. Our local gas company will do it.
    I hope this helps,
    Biggles

  26. The flame height adjust info has already been tremendously useful. Thank you Dr. Biggles !!!
    I have two questions for you and the group;
    1. As regards the rear burners that have circular iron plates on them (as in your pictures above). What are they intended for? What are they NOT so good for? I modified some old burner grates in the meantime so as to get 4 ‘normal’ burners— due to my naivety in how to use these!
    2. How can I get my oven to stay lit? — basically to cycle on and off under control of the thermostat.
    I’ve used it for 5 years sucessfully. Usually it makes a single loud “boom” as reaches terminal temp. I’ve always lit it by hand at a hole at the center bottom of the oven– inside the door.
    I don’t believe there is any oven pilot light– but there must be some way for it to relight, no? Recently I light the oven, it comes up to temperature then the oven burner cycles off and never roars back on again. Then my bread -or- cookies never finish baking. Yikes!
    My range top pilot lights work fine and stay lit– no issues there. I’ve never found the “RED KNOB” that you referred to above in the post asking “how to get the oven going on a ’53 Wedgewood”.
    Mine is probably a “cheapo” Wedgewood and is in a rental duplex of the same age. It has 4 knobs for burners and an oven knob for the Robertshaw thermostat. Has an electric light on the rear, “pie safe” storage area left of the oven. Only one gas line per burner (vs. 2 each as described above). Have been down on hands and knees with a lamp. Pie safe storage area is empty. Nothing in there. Hmm… I’ve wirebrushed and cleaned up all parts of the oven/broiler burner. Have run out of things to try.
    Any ideas?

  27. Hey Bill,
    Welcome and thanks for the kind words.
    Let’s see, question #1 – Those solid grates are heat diffusers so you don’t burn your melting butter or pot of beans. You can use them for anything, even boiling water. It’ll just take longer to get the job done. I agree, one of those would be plenty, I don’t need 2 !!! Since you’re in Palo Alto, you should be able to find some nice replacements. Apple Appliance in Berkeley, Reliance Appliance in Berkeley and there are others. Or even CraigsList might be a good place to start.
    2. Well, if your oven is popping on at least once, even lit manually, your Red Knobs are working and don’t need to be found at the moment. It sounds as though your pilot light isn’t working or has been turned OFF. Sometimes people do this to save on gas or because it needs repair and they don’t want to bother. Howver, your oven shouldn’t be completely going off! You really should call Apple Appliance in Berkeley and see if they’ll come out. They don’t charge an arm and a leg and it’d be nice to know everything is cool. My guess is that you need a new oven thermostat and the oven pilot needs to be looked at and checked. I had Apple come out and replace my oven’s thermostat maybe 3 years ago and it was only 170 bux total. And now? It’s within about 3 degrees of what the knob says !!!
    You could also call PG & E, they’ll come out for free and check it out.
    Yeah, call PG&E first, that’s free.
    Biggles

  28. Ah, gotta love the ‘net! I have a near identical W’wood (w/all chrome top!) and stumbled on your posting and comments, just as I was about to dive into my “new” stoves’ lack of enthusiasm. Seems it was set up for LP rather than natural gas, and I have to open the orifices on the sucker and let it breath a little better. Nice to see some pictures and text for guidance and reassurance. Thanks!

  29. Dear Dr. Biggles,
    It’s nice to see an online resource for the use and care of these great old stoves.
    We have an old late ’30s-early 40′s Wedgewood that looks exactly like the one in the photos above. It has four burners, a griddle, two ovens, and two broiler pans. Everything was fine until a little fire in one of the broiler pans (too much grease don’t you know). It burned itself out and the pilot light as well (I turned the gas off). Since then, even though I’ve relit the pilot light and pushed the red button safety valve, the oven and broiler on that side don’t work. Everything else: the stove burners, griddle, and other oven and broiler are fine. I thought that perhaps soot had clogged up the gas holes but that doesn’t seem to be the problem.
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

  30. Hey Overbroil,
    Just so you know, I’m not a technician, just an avid fan. With that in mind:
    That was a little fire, right? Not something we need to be concerned with, right? Cause if it is, it’s time to call a real technician or your local gas company.
    Since I’m not familiar with the 2 oven rigs, I don’t know exactly. I would look for a 2nd safety valve. I just have 1 oven and my stove has a separate safety valve for the heater and oven. But where would it be? Maybe just the one then.
    Have you tried pressing the button several times and making sure it isn’t stuck?
    Have you looked behind the range to see if there’s a second button in the rear?
    Biggles

  31. We bought a red 1940,s stove and had it restored, I cooked on the griddle and now I can’t get the griddle clean. I have tried baking soda, etc, do you have any suggestions and how would i avoid this in the future

  32. Hey Red,
    To answer your question directly? Don’t use it.
    I had mine rechromed 4 years ago and it looks worn now too.
    There are several things you can do.
    Clean it with Bon Ami (NON abrasive) when it gets cool enough to clean. Attempting to clean a griddle when cool is too hard.
    Or do what I do and use Bar Keepers Friend on all surfaces.
    If there are some tough spots, such as cooked on oil? Heat up and scrape clean, easily.
    Don’t use standard bleach cleaners with harsh abrasives, it’ll wear off your enamel and chrome.
    Biggles

  33. Comment:
    Hi, great site. I have an O’Keefe & Merritt 4 burner, I’ve turned off the pilots to save propane and stay cool. I have adjusted the flames in the past, and they’re fine, except that every morning when I go to light the burner under the kettle it lights, then pops and goes into some kind of blowback, with a hollow, deep hissing sound, like Darth Vader taking a deep breath. I turn it off, light it again and it’s fine. Any way to prevent this?

  34. Hey Paul,
    Sounds cool, yet probably gives you the heebie jeebies.
    I don’t have any experience with propane stoves at all. Could be a weak pressure regulator, but I just don’t know. Sorry mang.
    Biggles

  35. thank you thank you for how to adjust the anemic flame for my lower right burner on my 1950 O and M. When the top gets back from rechroming and I turn it back on I’ll do this right away. Great site!!

  36. this is a great thread. i found exactly what i wanted (flame height adjustment) while looking for “butterfly” gate adjustment…to increase my flame heights!
    and my (probably overlong) addition hereto:
    two weeks ago i bought a 1953 western holly continental 37 stove, with porthole and broyl-oven. while i didn’t take it down to *every* component part, i took off all the porcelain and cleaned it before putting it back together. took the doors apart and off, cleaned the entire stove inside, and all the chromed parts. got it all back together without a hitch, and the clock is even working (mostly, the timer part doesn’t work, but i’ll get it working soon).
    saturday we roasted a chicken, and it was outstanding. the heavy metal and thick porcelain reradiate heat such that it browned all over, evenly. yesterday my wife said we needed to figure out how to get the flame to come on higher, so i started looking today…and found this thread!
    some things:
    1. baking soda mixed with vinegar (white or cider, makes no difference except for odor) makes an outstanding cleaning solution for 50 years of baked on grease and grime. a thin paste of the stuff (beware of the foaming!) applied with a toothbrush scrubbed off with a green 3M pad and robert’s your mother’s uncle (altered britspeak for “you’re in good shape”).
    2. an open plastic container of ammonia (purchased at the local drug store) in the oven overnight, followed with an application of the vinegar-baking soda solution cleans the oven perfectly well. i still have to go over some spills on the face of the oven with easy-off, as i did on the lower edge of the inner oven door (when it was off the oven).
    3. new insulation is a good thing, too. the outer skin of our oven gets pretty hot, but the insulation is grease-soaked, 50-year-old fiberglass. i’ve ordered some new 2″ insulation (range insulation from mcmaster-carr) for half what antique gas stoves charges. i’ll try it in the doors, and will be able to tell how it works by comparing with the sides of the oven…should make the oven bake more evenly as well.
    and, 4. the pilots for both the broyl-oven and the main oven/broiler have three “parts”. the first is the ever-on pilot, the second is a gas jet lit by this pilot, and the third is a gas-mixing area that lights upstream of the first two. if your oven isn’t lighting, make sure the jet is clean…it throws out flame to make contact with the gas coming out of the racetrack. i think the third pilot is heating the thermocouple (as part of the safety system) that will open the gas only when the thermocouple gets hot enough (if the ever-on pilot is not lit, it won’t open the gas; if the jet is clogged and not throwing properly, it will turn on the gas, and eventually light, but you’ll hear a mild explosion in your oven that’s rather startling…actually, you don’t want this to happen, so clean your jets!
    and, finally, a question. you say there’s an adjuster to make the temperature inside the oven the same as the temperature markings on the knob…how about if the temperature difference increases as the temperature increases? ie, at 200degF on the knob it’s dead on, at 300 it’s 10degF low, at 400 it’s 25degF low, and at 500 it’s 50degF low. anything to do about this other than have the thermostat rebuilt?
    thanks for a great thread!
    best,
    bill kasper
    felton, ca

  37. Hey Western,
    Thank you so much for taking the time to lay that down. Excellent reference material.
    Nope. The thermostat will have to be rebuilt and set by a pro. If you mess with the adjuster screw that’s recessed there on the front of the oven thermostat you’ll make a real mess of it. If your oven temperature is steady, just make a note of what knob reading means what oven temperature, you’ll be fine. If however, you set your oven temp to 350 and it flucutates from 200 to 550 every 30 minutes, you’ll most certainly need a new stat. That’s what mine did and the new stat is wonderful.
    Even so, I’ll put the Taylor Oven Thermometer in every 5 roasts or so, just to see. It’s not so critical for chicken, but for bread? You bet.
    Biggles

  38. yep, it’s the first way. we’ll keep charting it to come up with known accuracy, and have an oven thermometer inside to insure it. maybe have it rebuilt at some point for s&g.
    great site, btw. has anyone actually made a meathenge model? some short ribs, a slab of filet, and maybe some sausages…mmmmmm.
    w

  39. i was thinking a literal “meathenge”, aping stonehenge, but made out of various cuts of meat. maybe set it on a wheatgrass (mown, of course) base. matchbox cars and a little parking area/interpretive center made from old take-out containers.
    could be a laugh…but i don’t make models, much. maybe if i get the right cuts of meat together, i would do it…

  40. Hi!
    I just bought an awesome late 40′s model Wedgewood. After scrubbing for 40 days and 40 nights to get the dear ol’ lady clean, we lit her up and she is wondrous! The only challenge I now face is to either repair or replace her knobs. She has the kind that have the metal ring around the back describing what the knob turns on. I HAVE the knobs, the the piece that holds them onto the metal piece that turns the burner on has broken. Can they be repaired? Or do I have to replace them? Thank you SO much for any information you may have! BTW, I purchased this chrome-topped beauty from a woman who had her for 25 years for all of $50.00! I am over-the-moon happy!! Again, thanks!!! Cynthia

  41. Hey Cynthia,
    You’d have to send me an image of the piece that needs repairing, I’m not quite getting the picture. My oven knob is the only one that has a metal ring around it that tells what’s going on.
    If it isn’t a deal breaker, I would stick with what you have for the moment and keep your eyes open in the local paper to see if anyone is tossing an old range out and see if you can grab what you require. Or contact http://www.antiquestoves.com / http://www.classicstoves.com and see if you can buy what you need. Surely they can lead you in the right direction.
    If you are in a large metropolitan area, maybe there is a local antique stove repair person that might have a stash. I’m in the San Francisco area and there’s quite a handful of them locally. Take care and enjoy!
    Biggles

  42. Hey! Great site. I’ve learned a lot.
    Do I need a new thermostat? With a thermometer inside the oven, the inside temperature and the intended temperature (that indicated on the knob) conincided for about 45 minutes, and then the temperature inside the oven rose to an incinerating level. Is there a feedback problem?
    Thanks!
    Debbie-Doo

  43. Hey Debbie,
    YES, you need a new thermostat. If the knob and oven temp don’t match, that’s fine. Just take notes. However, if your oven temp goes from 275 to 550 in 35 minutes and back again, you need a new thermostat.
    It’s not a big deal and shouldn’t cost much. Please find a local place or dial in http://www.classicstoves.com or http://www.antiquestoves.com. It’s worth every penny to restore your old range versus buying new.
    To get something even remotely close would cost you over 2500 dollars if not double that.
    Take care and good luck,
    Biggles

  44. Thanks for your help – I am new to the wonders of these beautiful beasts. I just inherited one upon move-in.
    I just want to clarify: I left the knob at 350 degrees and the oven cooperated for awhile and then the heat rose very high; it did not drop.
    Is it possible to do enamel repair? There are several sections on this O’keefe & Merritt that have chipped and someone has gobbed over the areas with some porcelain repair that is the WRONG color!

  45. Hey Dr.
    Well, hmmm. What you’re going to need to do is to sit down and figure out what temperatures you use on your range. I use 300, 325, 350, 375 and 450, usually.
    Put a good quality, Taylor brand is good enough, dial thermometer in the oven and set your knob to 300. Wait 30 minutes and check the temp, mark that down on paper. Continue and see if you can get the oven temp to where you want it no matter what the knob says.
    If you can maintain an oven temp that works for you, such as if the knob says 425 and the oven sits at 450, then you’re okay.
    However, if you notice that even when you set your knob to 425, hoping for a 450 oven and THIS TIME hovers over 475, then you have a problem.
    You can get items reporcelained. However, it’s not as sturdy as the first time. And least this is the rumor I hear. I would search around and see if you can find some stuff that’s the right color. Again, contact those urls to see what they can do for you. One of them has an antque appliance club you can join. This might be a good idea because they will then hand out free valuable advice! In any case, it’s a labor of love. Take your time and it’ll come together.
    Biggles

  46. We just connected a Wedgewood stove in our kitchen, turned the gas on and the pilot lits for the top burners, but cannot figure out how to light the ovens, any tips? I have pictures if this would help.

  47. Thanks for a great series of threads and lots of very useful info.
    I have a wedgewood (came with the house) stove with heater. Like most, the heater on this unit is disconnected. A technician will be coming out to connect it back up. From the posts that I’ve read, it seems like it would be best not to as they tend to leak — are there any modifications that can be done to prevent this? It would be nice to have a heater in my cold kitchen.
    —- appreciate any thoughts. Thanks!

  48. Hey Bruce,
    I haven’t stuck my fangers in to the heater portion, so I don’t know from hands-on experience. Two technicians from 2 different repair places (use Apple in the East Bay) and they both said not to hook them up and wouldn’t entertain the idea of working on them. I asked if they knew of a modification to remove them so I could USE the hole for storage. No luck there either.
    The only way I’d have that thing reconnected is if myself or some trained technicial fully inspected it. And even then you’d have to keep a close watch on it. On second thought, I think I’d buy a small space heater.
    Biggles

  49. Hello! I found lots of great tips, but not the one I’m looking for. On the one that mentioned the stove pilots that did not work, you said they must be turned off, but didn’t mention how to turn them on. My college aged son and friends moved in to our old home with an old O’Keefe, and when the gas company came out, they noted that only the right side stove pilots lit. Oven, grill and broiler pilots all lit. That was a month ago, and now none of the stove pilots light. Lighting with a match was fine when I was the one doing all the cooking. But with college kids in and out, I wouldn’t trust one of the “guests” not to try and heat something up, and not recognize how to light the burner. My son, of course, would assume EVERYONE lights their stoves that way. So, how to turn the pilots ON, and/or how to adjust them is what I’m looking for. Thanks so much!

  50. Hello! I found lots of great tips, but not the one I’m looking for. On the one that mentioned the stove pilots that did not work, you said they must be turned off, but didn’t mention how to turn them on. My college aged son and friends moved in to our old home with an old O’Keefe, and when the gas company came out, they noted that only the right side stove pilots lit. Oven, grill and broiler pilots all lit. That was a month ago, and now none of the stove pilots light. Lighting with a match was fine when I was the one doing all the cooking. But with college kids in and out, I wouldn’t trust one of the “guests” not to try and heat something up, and not recognize how to light the burner. My son, of course, would assume EVERYONE lights their stoves that way. So, how to turn the pilots ON, and/or how to adjust them is what I’m looking for. Thanks so much!

  51. Thanks for the great info! I’m surprised there isn’t some fan page that details all this stuff in an easy to use format. I have a Wedgewood that is nearly identical to yours, but the top is all chrome… well, it was once, anyway.
    Just a quick note to say that I’ve successfully calibrated the knob for the oven by using the adjustment screw. Basically, you want to calibrate it to 350, because that’s the most common temperature. This was a long time ago, but if I remember right, I just stuck an oven thermometer in there, and played with the settings. It wasn’t all that hard to do… well, maybe I just got lucky.
    The area under the top of the stove is incredibly disgusting with old congealed grease and whatnot on my stove. I’ve done some cleaning, but I’m a little concerned about cleaning all the tubes and so on. Is this worth doing? Will I screw something up if I try to do this?
    BTW, I would LOVE to see the adjustment procedure for the butterfly doodads on the wedgewood. If you find it, please post it.
    Paul B.

  52. Hey Paul,
    I’m still searching each week for the booklet I have on the butterfly adjustment thingies. I’ve only had it for 3 or so years, can’t believe they’ve gotten THIS lost.
    Not sure how to answer whether the under the top area of your stove is worth cleaning. While it doesn’t need to be spotless, I think it should be relatively clean.
    Checkit. Your burner assemblies are simply RESTING in place. You can actually just lift them out and slip them off the gas attachment. Those aluminum feed tubes need to be handled with care though. Start by lifting up on the rear part of the burners first, you should be able to figure it out. Once those are out, you can clean up a little easier.
    Biggles

  53. wow, i cant express how glad i am to have stumbled upon this site.
    here’s the deal:
    my boyfriend and i just moved into a beautiful, very old apartment building, it has a FANTASTIC tiny wedgewood gas stove in the kithen. its small, four burners.. very cute..
    the problem.
    i dont know ANYTHING about gas stoves!
    the stove TOP works fine, but when you turn the knob for the oven all we get is GAS!!
    no heat, just gas audibly pouring out..
    lots and lots..
    i dont know how, or if it needs to be lit!
    and the boyfriend would be really angry if i blew up the new apartment, any help would be GREATLY appreciated!!
    thank you!!

  54. Hey Amy,
    Well, this could be an easy one.
    Open the oven door and completely remove the wire rack, set to the side.
    Remove the pan that IS the oven’s floor. It should just lift right out, probably even a finger hole or notch to help out.
    Now you’re looking at the guts of the oven’s burner assembly. Most likely towards the rear of the oven, down behind the large burner assembly is the PILOT LIGHT. Follow the gas lines with your eye balls, take a moment. Follow the gas line TO the burner assembly, some place close should be the little pilot lite. Put a lighter or match to it, WITHOUT THE OVEN BEING TURNED ON !!! Move the match around a bit until you find it, should just pop right on.
    Or call your local gas company and they’ll probably come out and do it fer free.
    Biggles

  55. Great site! My stove is just like the one pictured. Didn’t know so many people were so in love with old stoves like mine. Just got mine back together after 3 months of cleaning, but I can’t get the pilot in the oven to light. I’d like to see a closeup picture and/or some detail of the pilot, to know how to be sure the orifice is open.

  56. Your info is very helpful–I plan to use it on our circa 1952 Wedgewood. It may be time for a “frame off” restoration after all these years (oven light/clock/etc. don’t work), but it will be worth it. Gas! It seems so, so… right! Looks like I’ll need to have the safety valve for the oven and broiler rebuilt, but that’s not so bad after 50+ years of continuous service. The only other thing I can think of with that kind of lasting performance is me. ;-P

  57. Hey Rock,
    Mine is a 1952 as well. They’re amazing ranges and can do a wonderful job, even when in poor condition.
    You’d be surprised what a lot of cleaning and adjusting and rechroming can do for it. It’ll take a little time and some effort, but you’ll be glad you did.
    Have fun!
    Biggles

  58. Hi Dr.Biggles, we have a 40″Wedgewood Double Oven. Not sure of the year. It looks as if all of the pilot lights are lit but we are smelling a little more gas than usual. Could you identify where all the pilot lights are on this type of stove? We think we may be missing one and are new to these types of stoves. Any thoughts? Thank you!!!

  59. Hey Rachel,
    Each oven should have its own pilot light, the right & left side of the stove top burners should each have their own pilot light. Unless you have a heater or some other accessory that would require a pilot, that should be it.
    I would turn off the gas and call your local gas company. They’ll usually come out for free and sleuth it out. Don’t mess with gas baby!
    Biggles

  60. I have new tappan. I am a rookie cook. But I was cleaning the range. For some reason, I feel heat coming out of the oven? The manual stated to just turn the knob to off position. I still feel the heat. I also the saw the bottom of the oven lite up. Well the “flame” at the bottom is down. But i still feel the heat. Is it still on? I new to gas ranges….so i am learning as i go….any info would be appreciated!

  61. Hey Roland,
    A new tappan?
    Then you have a manual. Please read through the manual to see if you have a PILOT LIGHT. If you do, then your gas range will be warm 24 hours a day. If not, please consult a technician to make sure you and your family are safe!
    Biggles

  62. I have a vintage tappan 1950 stove and cannot get the pilot light to stay lighted. I push in the red safety button in the back but as soon as I let it go the pilot goes out. What am I doing wrong?

  63. I have an old wedgewood stove that the oven doesn’t work. The only number I have is 842blk -T. Can someone help me with this?

  64. Hey Charlene,
    You’re going to have to give me more to go on than, “oven doesn’t work”.
    Is the pilot light going?
    When did the oven stop working? Or did it never work?
    Did you read through the comments here and check for the RED BUTTON safety valve that needs to be pressed?
    Please inform.
    Biggles

  65. This is a great thread…but where are these elusive instructions everyone keeps raving about? I’d love to see the instructions (with pics) that Kalyn used…I think I have the same problem! Could you give me the direct link?
    Thanks!
    Soñita

  66. Also having problems with my Wedgewood oven Pilot Light. This is my second Wedgewood so am familiar with “Red Button”, but have looked everywhere and this model doesn’t seem to have one. Before I go crazy looking for it some more, do you know if there were any models possibly made without this feature?? Can light oven pilot manually, but is very scary. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks

  67. The Red Button only stops the oven from coming on. The pilot lights should come on when the gas is turned on.
    Maybe some of the older ranges didn’t have the red button, it should be nestled in with the burner assembly up top, somewheres.
    The oven’s pilot might need adjusting. I’ll send you over an image.
    Biggles

  68. I have a Magic Chef Stove older model, the oven do not heat up although the pilot light is on and i could smell a little gas.

  69. Question – I have a 22 inch Wedgewood 4-burner plus oven. Oven has started sooting which tells me it’s not getting enough air. How to check this and adjust. (I’m nowhere near a service center so must do it myself.) Thanks

  70. Hey Ted,
    Is it sooting up when the burner is on? Or is the pilot light doing the sooting?
    The oven isn’t anywhere near air tight. There should be plenty of air getting in there. Is the exhaust from the oven blocked, choked?

  71. The oven on my ’50′s vintage Wedgewood has started to shut down during use. I can hear the safety? valve tripping when it does this. Pressing the red valve button will allow restart, but only after the oven cools a little it seems. I’ve seen this problem mentioned in the thread, but no definitive solution. Anyone successfully dealt with this problem before? It appears the valve is the culprit, or could it be the thermocouple?

  72. Hey T-bone,
    This problem is beyond what I know.
    If I had to guess, it’d be the safety valve. Since that’s most likely the less expensive of the two to replace, I’d opt for that one first, heh.
    Sorry I couldn’t be of more hep. Take care,
    Biggles

  73. My apartment has a tiny little apartment sized Wedgewood. Don’t know the year, though that’d be interesting to find out. I have very much the same situation as Little Miss Amy, the range has a pilot and all the burners work fine but I have to match light the oven every time I use it. I think the oven just doesn’t have a pilot light at all. There’s a sticker on the front of the oven that says “WARNING NO PILOT Adviso sin pilot So. Cal. Gas Co.” I don’t like match lighting it every time I use it. This worries me greatly, especially because I have to lay on my stomach and stick my hand into the broiler to reach the hole where I’m supposed to light it. Did Ww make hand-light ovens or is it likely someone turned off their pilot and I can turn it back on?

  74. Hey Valentina,
    I don’t know, it would depend on the year of the range. I know I had a ’30s range years ago that was a hand-lit oven situation. Scary stuff.
    If you’d like to send pictures of your range, I could probably have a look, for sure.
    But you’d be better off seeing if you have a local antique appliance company that could come out and have a look. Or call your local gas company and see if they’ll come out, it’s usually free!
    Biggles

  75. I have 1950′s Wedgewood, double oven, wide grill in the middle. I want to clean it under the top. I figured out how to take out the burners and clean them, clean and adjust the nuts and oxygen intakes. But I cannot figure out if I can somehow just lift the top off or at least up far enough to clean it well. I called one of the stove places and the person couldn’t tell me if it would lift up or not.
    BTW, I found mine in a yard sale, in brand new condition-looked like it had never been used for 50 dollars.

  76. Hey Doe,
    You’re killing me! Holy cow, and I thought I got a good deal.
    Well, as you know the griddle lifts out along with the cover plates around the burners. Then the burners lift out. I believe the rest of the top is just screwed down. And you may have to unscrew the back off as well, where the clock and timer is. It isn’t tough, but it can get tedious and it’s quite a job. Especially if the screws have rusted tight. I would consider just doing what you can with the way it is. Those stoves can be taken to pieces, completely. So, it all comes apart.
    Biggles

  77. I have a “Char glo” mfg. by Waste King Universial some time in the 70′s. It is a built in Bar B Q in my house. The firm has appartenly gone out of business. And since the Bar B Q is built with used brick and has it own chemminy i would like to get it working like it did in the old days. Problem being it has cold spots and the flame does not seem to travel the full lenth of the metal pipes. They in turn heat the grill which is a heavey metal. Not sure how to proceed. Is anyone familiar with this unit and can you give mae any advice. I should mention that it has a pilot light. It also use the rock bricketts.

  78. Hey Bill,
    I don’t but maybe someone who reads this thread would know.
    It sounds as though you may want to turn off the gas to that unit and start removing pieces to see if you can clean, adjust and figure out how it all goes together. Maybe if you took pictures of the installation and took it to a local hardware store, they might be able to lead you in a direction. Or find an antique appliance company online and ask them. http://www.antiquestoves.com or http://www.classicstoves.com?
    Biggles

  79. sticky knobs…
    we’ve got a ’53 wedgewood stove and one burner suddenly takes A LOT of effort to turn off. details below:
    turning ON: counterclockwise from 12 to 7 o’clock positions. it is a little tight turning on, once past 10 o’clock turns fine.
    turning OFF, it glides from 7 to 10 and then from 10 to 12 it is a real bear to turn off.
    never had this problem until recently. i lifted up the hood to see if anything was sticking, but i couldn’t really tell by looking.

  80. Love the thread, Dr. Biggles.
    My question is about adjusting the oven burners on vintage (40/50s) Wedgewood (2 oven, 6 burner unit). I recently switched from LP to Natural Gas…and using your helpful guide, successfully adjusted needle valves for top burners. But the oven burner flames, while working, are not as high as they were with the propane. Seems they need to be “turned up.” But is there an adjustment for this? I see notes on thermostat setting in previous posts, but this would not change actual flame size, correct?
    Thanks for your comments.

  81. Hey Todd,
    DAMNED MAN !!! I missed your post, I’m SO sorry.
    The lube in your knobs has gotten old and needs to be cleaned, lubed and put back together.
    I did it on my range, but it isn’t for the light of heart. You have to turn off the gas, disassemble the front of your range and really dig in there. Plus you can only use SPECIAL lube. I bought online 4 years ago and now cannot find.
    You need to contact http://www.classicstoves.com or http://www.antiquestoves.com and see if they have it and some instructions. The best thing to do would be to call a technician, if one is available.
    Sorry I missed you!
    Biggles

  82. Hey Dave,
    Yeah, propane is under higher pressure than natural gas. I have some jpg images for you, please find my email address from the front of meathenge there. I think it’s on the bottom left. I’ll send them to you.
    Biggles

  83. Hey Dr. Biggles: Any thoughts on the adjusting the oven after switching to Natural gas from LP? My previous post was July 10.
    Thanks for any info.
    Dan

  84. Amazing list–thank you! We have a classic “Slattery” stove, circa 1960 or so. I haven’t been able to find out much about the brand, except that they were made in Brooklyn. I’m wondering if you have any advice for the problem we’re having, which I didn’t see on here already…
    We’ve been using all the burners and stove on a near-daily basis for about three years (the previous owner bought it original and almost never used it). Over the past month, though, we noticed the oven temperature keeps getting lower, even though we have the guage cranked to the maximum. The flame itself is now barely staying lit, even when set to broil, and appears to be getting too much air mixed in (it goes a bit yellowish here and there). We tried adjusting the set screw/gauge behind the oven knob, but it doesn’t affect the flame height at all. We weren’t able to find a red reset button anywhere under the lid or in the back of the pots and pan storage cabinet, so perhaps this model doesn’t have one?
    Any thoughts or advice would be *greatly* appreciated. Or, if you think I should call in a repairman, do you know of any good resources for finding a good one (in Brooklyn, NY?)
    Thanks very much!

  85. Hey Kate,
    I’m sorry, but I don’t know how that stove is put together. I don’t know of anyone local to you that would be able to help, I would start asking around.
    I’ve found that the repair people for these older stoves are pretty cool people. They know you don’t want that new crap and are here to make sure your old equipment keeps on going. I would expect to have your oven’s thermostat replaced. Sure it’ll be a few hundred bucks. But what’s the alternative? A new range? For 1800? No, spend a few hundred bucks and get your old unit back in tip top shape. It’s worth every penny.
    xo

  86. Hey. Great site. Thanks for all the info.
    Here is my problem. I have a Universal stove circa 1959. I disconnected it to clean but now the oven pilot won’t go on. The burners work. I pushed the “red button”. No soap. If I push the red button and hold it down I can light the stove, but the second I release the button the gas shuts off.
    I read in one of your postings that the gas to the pilot should be on all the time but mine seems not to be. It is directly connected to the “red button” assembly thingy.
    Any ideas on what’s going on her. It worked great before.
    Thanks RoseMary

  87. Hey Rosemary,
    Tough for me to know from here, but it sounds as though you have a bad safety valve. Call your local gas company to see if they’ll do a free inspection and may be able to get it going again, for free!
    It does sound like a bad valve though. What you’re describing is exactly what it’d do, or not.
    Biggles

  88. Thanks for getting back so quickly. I really appreciate it.
    I’ll call the gas company to do an inspection. But then what?
    If the saftey valve is shot, can it be replaced with a modern one, or would I have to find an old part somewhere?
    RoseMary

  89. I have a 1949 Wedgewood. The model number has a 63 stamped over two of the numbers. It is either a M8638A05 or a M8?58A05. Any idea why the stamped over numbers? It is a 40″ with dual ovens, 4 burners with gridle, chrome top, but doesn’t have clock or large back like some.
    Also, we got it home and the right oven doesn’t work. The pilot light lights, but even after pushing the red safety button a few times, the oven doesn’t lite, I even tried with a lighter.
    I did notice when cleaning it that the right oven is much cleaner, so maybe it hasn’t been working for awhile. Any ideas? Maybe a bad safety switch?
    And have you found the tech sheet for the butterfly valves yet on the burner tubes?
    Thanks for all your help. This is new to us and we love it so far.
    Does the griddle always stay hot because of the pilot lights?
    Thanks for your help,
    Gary

  90. Hey Gary,
    Ack, no idea for the stamped over numbers. Unless it was a floor model that never sold and could have been upgraded. It’s tough to know.
    40″ with dual ovens? You stinker! That’s the one I want!
    Yeah, could be a bad safety valve. It could have also been turned off by the previous owner. See, many people are all freaked out about old gas ranges being leaky and dangerous. So, they spend time and money having pilots turned off and unused portions of the range turned off. If I were you, I would call my local gas company and ask if they have someone who can come out and take a look, usually for free. If not, it’d sure be worth paying someone to get it up and going again. I do have some images that show you how to adjust the oven flame height and so forth. But you REALLY don’t want to be screwing around with such things unless you know what you’re doing or have nothing to lose. That 40″ range is a true gift from the oven gods and should be cared for like a rolls royce.
    And no, I haven’t found the tech sheet yet. I thought I knew where they were in the garage, but NO. If I get a hold of them, I’ve got your email and will contact you directly.
    Yup, griddle and basically the whole stove stays warm because of the pilot lights. It’s a lot nicer in the winter, for sure. But it also makes a GREAT proofing area for baking breads. You’re going to LOVE it. Also keep in mind, if you fry or cook something in the evening and don’t clean up the range before bedtime, the warm stove will cause those aromas to permeate the kitchen and house. Try to wipe it down quickly each night!
    Biggles

  91. I have and use a beautiful 40′s O’Keefe & Merrit gas stove with a chrome top and griddle in the middle. I sware I can taste [and smell] a [metalicy] chrome fumey odor in the kitchen [while the stove is not in use] generated from the pilot lights hitting the chrome, [which I'm sensitive to], unless it is simply the pilot light fumes [which are lit now]. The oven is vented. Can I safely shut off the gas for the pilot lights [stove top] and light the burners with a match when I turn them on?
    Thanks, Fumey

  92. Hey Fumey,
    I know EXACTLY what you’re talking about. To me, it was more of a kerosene smell, but yes. And it isn’t a reaction from the chrome, that isn’t possible with a pilot light.
    My smell was solved when the technician came by and adjusted the height of the pilot light in the oven, I had it too low and it was smouldering (manky fumes).
    Yup, you can turn off the pilot lights for the burners. Pull off the cover plate on the right side burners. Find the butterfly valves, close to you there. Look at the pair one over from the far right. Just to the left, should be a smallish slotted screw. I believe if you turn that to the right, the pilots will pop right off.
    Take care and good luck!

  93. WOW, what great information!
    My friend just bought a house that has a 1940-50′s Wedgewood… with orignal S/P shakers, and working clock!
    The only thing that’s not working is the griddle. The griddle knob turns, but no gas can be heard to the griddle. Verified using a match that no gas is coming through the valve. Took apart the griddle, and no obtructions… did not remove the griddle valve.
    Is there a separate safety valve (red button) for the griddle? All other gas ignited burners/oven work. Pilots are lit.
    Also, the front burner only has flame at the base (before the simmer cap) but never lights the rest of the burner. Air/fuel “butterflies” didn’t make a difference. Can the above trick using the 9/16 wrench open it up to light easier from the pilot? It lights fine from a match.
    Great tips! I’m bookmarking this one.

  94. Hey Trevor,
    If the burners are working, the griddle should also pop on. Someone at some point in the past most likely had the griddle turned off. And the only logical reason, I believe, would be that for some reason the griddle is leaky and dangerous. Or they didn’t use it and figured it would be best if turned off. In any case, when I get home I’ll take a look because I can’t remember how it all comes together.
    As far as the burner not lighting, is the aluminum tube that goes from the pilot to the burner intact? Check for holes and maybe being off kilter a bit might do that.
    Jacking up the burner may help, but if it looks fine when lit from a match, then it’s something else.
    Biggles
    ps – I’ll stop by again later with more info about the griddle.

  95. I have a question about pilot lights on new stoves. Can they be turned off in favor of match lighting? Or are there new safety features that prevent this? Do brands differ on this feature?
    Thanks,
    Sheri

  96. Trevor,
    Safety first! You may want to call your local gas company and see if they can come out for free and turn it on for you. They can check for leaks and make sure it’s safe. Someone turned it off for a reason, we want to make sure it wasn’t because it was bad.
    That being said …
    The griddle burner is a simple beast and has the same adjustments the burners do. Grab a wrench and see if you can open the sucker open a bit per the instructions above.
    Take care,
    Biggles

  97. Hey Sheri,
    When you say NEW, do you mean brand spanking new? Or just newer than a 1952 wedgewood?
    New stoves have electronic striker thingies that ignite the gas flame. Neweer stoves vary and you’d have to open up your stove to see if there are ways to turn off the pilots. Each stove will vary a bit and over the years things change and regulations get stricter. Depending on the year and quality of stove I would have to say probably not. Standard consumer model gas ranges just got cheaper and cheaper and cheaper. This is why we hold this older ranges so close, they’re awesome!
    Biggles

  98. I bought a Oden/BeautyRange for $75 at a house sale.It has 6-burners 2-glass door ovens 2-broilers fold-up covers for the burners.Was being used until the occupant passed and the gas was turned off.We are in the process of putting it in the kitchen.Also picked up an old ventahood off of E-bay that will picked up on a ride to Georgia.The stove itself is in very good condition.Oven temp-control knobs has the Robertshaw script on it.The model # is A-11164.Would anyone happen to know what the year is and where I can get some info please. Thank You

  99. Hey Jerry,
    Heh, you used passed and gas in the same sentence, excellent.
    Well, you got me. I’ve never heard of such a beast, but that doesn’t mean much. You may want ot visit http://www.antiquestoves.com and join their Old Appliance Club. I was a member years ago, it’s nice. They have a newsletter and most certainly you could write in and see what they know.
    Somewhere on that gas range is a little metal tag that could very well have the year it was made on it, most certainly a serial number. Try taking the top cover off where the burners are and look around inside there, that’s where I’d start.
    I’d love to see a picture of it when you get it installed and working. Thank you for stopping by!
    Biggles

  100. Hey there,
    Thank you for having time to help mankind with the union of flesh and taste buds.Picture, Man with snack tray.
    well I hope you are not tired of answering requests to crawl behind your wedgewood.
    However, if you please….
    I have a damn near twin to yours and I’ve a question, ER three. The stove is working great and is clean as can be. The oven and broiler are not working. The pilots are on, and I’ve adjusted the flames, but almost all the wiring has been removed. Is there a flame safety switch magnet thing behind or inside your oven? I’ve traced out the oven door switch and it tested OK but beside that, all the wiring is missing..
    DO you know if the oven needs any AC to work??? I have a basic diagram in my head.
    (1)AC from outlet splits to stove top lamp switch and oven door switch.
    (2)A. stove lamp switch to stove top lamp to neutral.
    B. oven door switch to oven lamp socket to neutral.
    Could you please check if there is a porcelin flame safety switch mounted to the back cover or in the oven. If there is more wiring to some thing I don’t know about? I moved into a house and a friend gave me his stove and I love it, but almost all the electrical harness has turned to dust and/or has been removed.
    The stove top switch,oven door switch and oven lamp socket are here, without the wires. The serial plate model numbers are as follows. All the writting has vanished and just the stamps remain. M# N8358AG12
    then the BTU’s are 24000/9000/19000
    Then at the bottom is 23231. I do hope your not out enjoying life and in need of another trip behind your wegdewood, DID that come out wrong? Sorry, either way Thank you in advance for any help.

  101. Hey Wookie,
    Well, the wiring in those things were had all cloth insulation or at least something similar. And it was probably removed for safety reasons and not replaced cause they prolly didn’t know how or didn’t care.
    Broiler and oven use same flame, so that narrows it down.
    I don’t have any oven lamp or switch on my door to activate such a thing. And no, the oven/broiler action don’t need no power to activate. I’ll bet you dimes to dollars that it’s the gas safety switch for the oven/broiler.
    You need to find that pesky shiny red button in your stove somewheres. It’s either in the compartment somewhere hidden to the left of your oven or located with the burner assemblies some place. Push it firmly and release. If it doesn’t come back, grab it with your fangers and pull it out.
    If that doesn’t do it, the valve itself is bad and needs to be replaced. You’d want to contact http://www.antiquestoves.com or http://www.classicstoves.com to see if they can get you a replacement.
    As far as rewiring your rig, I’m not much help. I haven’t done that yet on my stove and have no pointers other than you gotta use heat resistant wires. But it sounds like you could take care of the job easily enough.
    Thanks for stopping by man!
    Biggles

  102. Great site!! I have learned how to adjust the burners’ levels on out 40′s vintage Wedgewood, but the problem is that on the left side the rear burner works fine (so the pilot must be good), but the front burner will not light without a match. Once it is started it works fine (although a bit small in flame size). Should I just continue to adjust front burner or is there some possible problem with the “connection” to the pilot for just the front burner?

  103. Hey Carl,
    Get the burner lit and adjust up a bit, until you like it. Then turn off and try again to light without a match.
    If it don’t light, you’ll need to inspect those aluminum metal tubes that go from the burner to the pilot. Check for holes, mal adjustment and make sure you HAVE one. There should be one for each burner.
    What do you see?

  104. I really enjoy looking at your site! I have both foodie friends and photo friends that I will give your URL to. Me, I am quickly becoming a stove person. We recently bought a stove just like yours, but with a chrome top. It is in great shape and I have been told it is in perfect work in condition. Because we purchased it for when our house remodel is done I haven’t been able to hook it up yet. I have taken the opportunity to take all the chrome off, remove the burners and send everything out for re-chroming or to be reporcelained (sp?).
    I have two questions. The people that we purchased the stove from had a chimney that came out of the stove and into the wall duct. Since we are planning on installing a exhaust fan over the stove in the new kitchen can we skip the chimney?
    Also, I am going to replace the oven door springs. One is broken and the other just old. When I removed the broken spring the bottom metal piece with the holes that the spring hooks onto came out of the slot in the door. The metal piece doesn’t look broken, and I cannot figure out what kept it connected to the door. Any suggestions on how I reinstall the spring and the metal piece?
    If it helps, I can send pictures.
    Thanks for hosting such a great site.
    - Y
    I a

  105. Hi Dr B
    Finally, some useful info on the web about old stoves. Your thread answers some great questions, and makes me feel less in the dark about using this beautiful old stove we’ve gotten.
    My problem isn’t so much with the hardware, everything seems to work – it’s in knowing if how we’re using it is the way it’s meant to be used.
    It’s an old 22″ Wincroft of indeterminate age. It doesn’t have any of the whistles and bells this post mentions. No thermostat, no little red buttons, no gas pressure regulator. It does have a pilot light for the 4 top burners, though it lights only the rear two. It’s basically a pipe coming in, and then it lights on fire in the respective places that should light on fire. We light the oven burner manually, it clearly doesn’t have a pilot (unless I’m really missing something.) Pretty much, if you turn the gas on to the oven accidentally and don’t light it, it turns into a bomb. There’s no way to regulate the temp in the oven except turning the gas down – is that normal?
    Should I be putting a regulator on it? What kind of safety systems are available for old stoves like this? Should I revel in the fact that I can boil water almost immediately, or should I fear the day our kitchen explodes?
    Jay

  106. Hey Yvonne,
    Sorry for the delay in responding. I was off-planet for a few days!
    Thank you so much for the kind words. And that new stove sounds GREAT. OH CRAP !!! Did you pop out the temperature device in the griddle before you took it to the chrome people? Call now !!! They’re notorious for losing those things. Mine is long gone, sniffle.
    You can skip the chimney. But you should have a few feet on there to point it up in to your exhaust hood, that’s what I’ve done. But you may want to do some research about your hood. Some have multiple inputs and you may be able to have both!
    As far as the door springs go, that apparently is a tricky situation. I have 1 broken one as well and haven’t torn in to it yet. So I am NO help there. If I run across any info, I’ll post it up!
    Biggles

  107. Hey Jay,
    Have you ever read the magazine, Mad? Ever read Spy vs Spy? Then you know what a bomb looks like and brother, that right there is a hugeass time bomb from hell. Turn the gas off right now and call your local gas company to come out and inspect the stove.
    I think it’s time to hit the local paper for a new antique stove.
    Biggles

  108. This might seem like an odd question, but what is the origination address of this blog’s website. I can’t seem to find any of the posts, instructions, photos that people are commenting on. I’m about to undertake a restoration task on an O & M 5850 Aristocrat stove and this seems like the perfect site. I can get to the food portion of your site, but can’t find the stove portion.
    Thanks.
    Savvy

  109. Not disappointed at all.
    Never saw that before.
    Great site!
    As soon as my stove arrives from New Mexico, I’ll start at it. However, my tried and true O&M 4 burner, oven, broiler, trash burner as all of a sudden become tempermental. Oven won’t stay lit. Pilot remains but burner goes out….just started tonight……….I think she knows!

  110. Hey Savvy,
    Excellent and glad.
    Dang, that’s kinda creepy. Maybe you should roast a nice chicken or turkey in her to let her know all is well.
    The new 5850 range you’re receiving, I was wondering. Is it funky and in need of restoration? Or you just need a new project?
    Biggles

  111. Hi. Wow, great site. Who knew this stuff could be so fascinating?
    We’ve got an O’Keefe & Merritt Scultura that came used with the house when we bought it in 1985. The model number is A7? or A7-36? or A7-367273… Anyway, it has pilot lights, four burners with a griddle/5th burner option in the center.
    Everything has been great all these years, but 3 last weeks ago the oven wouldn’t light. A few days later it worked fine. Since then, nada.
    It looks to me that when the pilot light extends it doesn’t envelop the sensor bulb. I don’t see how the sensor valve could have moved out of position, but I gather that is a possibility. I also gather that if the pilot is dirty, it would limit the flame size (short of the sensor bulb).
    Could you please tell us all how to adjust the position of the sensor bulb, and how to clean the pilot?
    Thank you for your help and interest. Love your site. –David

  112. Hello,
    I just came across your thread and appreciate all of your shared info. I want to adjust the height of my oven pilot or turn it off altogether. Can you show a picture of where this adjustment would be? I own a 40-50s O’keefe-Merritt. Thankyou so much. Judy

  113. Hey Judy,
    The adjustment screw is behind the knob on your oven thermostat there. But I left my schematics telling you what screw is what at work. Please email me at the email address listed at the front of meathenge.com proper and I’ll get that right to you first thing Monday.
    I don’t suggest you turn off your pilot light due to the fact your stove wasn’t meant to be lit manually. Unless you only use your oven twice a year, than that would be okay. Let me know. The pilot shutoff screw for the oven is located on the top of the range where the burners are. Take care,
    Biggles

  114. Hello!
    We have a problem with our Wedgewood Gas Stove, which we’ve had for over 20 yrs.
    It was in the home we bought some 20 yrs ago. The model # is N9166A-3, Oven # 24,000, and Serial # 45227B. For some reason the gas regulator (at least that’s what my husband calls it) has stopped
    functioning completely. Up until yesterday, I was able to get it to work by
    manually pushing the button…but this no longer works.
    I did a Google search and came across your awesome site, and found another site that is loaded with all kinds (antiquestoves.com)
    of very cool stuff…but dit NOT see replacement part for Gas Regulator….
    Could you offer any advice, please?
    Thank you for taking the time.
    Desperate in Corona del Mar – Lost Without my Wedgewood……………….

  115. I forgot to mention that I can send you pictures of the part I’m refering to…and of my actual stove. I’d need your direct email address though…tried going to http://www.cyberbilly.com but got an error message from my computer about “could not perform this functio…”, which has to do, probably, with installation (done by hubby).
    Thank You ;-)

  116. I have a Wedgewood Stove that I’ve been using for about a year now. I think it is a 1953 model. Everything has worked just fine until recently when my oven quit working. I was pre-heating the oven a few days ago and it just went out and would not light again. I can’t even get the pilot to stay lit. I tried lighting the pilot and it will stay lit as long as the red button is being depressed, but as soon as the red button is released, it goes out again!
    I purchased a new thermocouple and installed it, thinking that it might be the problem, but nothing has changed. The pilot still goes out as soon as I let go of the red button. Any ideas on why I can’t get the pilot in the oven to stay lit. The stove burners are all still working as they should. It is only the oven that I am having trouble with. Thanks for any assistance you can provide.

  117. Hey Francoise,
    It sounds as though both you and Neal have the same problem. Your gas safety valve (not sure if that is the technical term for it) is bad and needs replacing. It’s lost its ability to function properly and shuts your oven down. You need to contact the fine people at http://www.antiquestoves.com or http://www.classicstoves.com and get a new one.
    I suppose when mine goes out, I’ll see if they can be opened up and cleaned.
    Biggles

  118. Wow, great site! Can’t wait til you find that tech article about the butterfly valves. I bought a 30″ early 50′s O&M offa eBay about a year ago. It was in fantastic shape, I thought, “all I need to do is clean the oven and it’ll be perfect!” So I did. But then I noticed that the area under the top was all greasy rusty yucky etc. I kinda tried cleaning it but… well suffice it to say, withine a week I had the entire stove disassembled down to the last screw. I took that rusty under the top panel to a sandblaster and then had him powder coat it. I sent my burners and grates to california and had them reporcelained. I had the knob rings and crumb tray handles rechromed. I spent almost a month (whilst waiting for that stuff to get done) derusting all the little hidden spots where rust forms (the places you can’t see, like behind panels). I used wire brushes on a drill. I carefully painted the bare spots that were left with high temp paint. I went over my oven and pilot valves with wire brush and steal wool until they gleamed. Then I took them apart, cleaned them, and put em back together with the magic stove grease. I mounted them on my powdercoated plenum with gas thread seal goop. I polished all my knobs with plastic polish until the shined, and I repainted all the numbers. Lucky me, the porcelain on the stove was just fine. I even found new metal strips for the centers of the knobs. Then I bought a bunch of stainless screws and washers and rubber washers of the same type as the rusty ones that had been on the stove. It took about 5 hours to go from a pile of parts to a FABULOUS new old stove. Hooked it up, and it’s worked perfect ever since. So why do I tell you this? If any of your readers even have the slightest bit of mechanical inclination… (like me, I’m one notch above mechanic-bozo) it’s very low tech and very fun and easy to do! There are some good web resources for parts and info (like this one!), and of course, the gas company can inspect your work if something goes awry. Thinking about cleaning up that old stove, and getting her ready for another 50 years of service? Do it! Biggles, let me know when you get that tech sheet! Thanks! Mike in Seattle.

  119. Hey Mike,
    Ebay, ain’t it great?
    I lucked out with my range. I bought mine off CraigsList and placed an offer before I sawr it. The picture they used turned out to be a stock image and NOT the stove I bought. But I took it anyway and even under the burners was clean. Someone’s gramma had it in the original house and everything. It’s been exceptionally good, so far. Thanks for stopping by and congrats on all the hard work!
    Biggles

  120. Lots of good info on this site! Thanks.. My problem is we came across a free O/M 1953 stove, My husband was so excited to be the first person to get to it , he failed to ask questions. Well we have a beautiful original, but its fitted for LP gas , we have natural. We did find a local to sell us new orfus caps, all top pilot work, all burners accept right front work, i hear no gas coming to it when turned on. PG&E was no help here. Also oven pilot won’t light, but we can light oven, by holding in red button, holding match to pilot for a minute, then turning on oven knob, when we here the gas , can light oven with match, then it bakes well. Takes all of 3 sets of hands and a brain to light it…. can you help here….Pleeese.. PS. not yet gotten around to see why broiler doesn’t work. PG&E also thinks there should be little pins behind the orfus caps to adjust gas flow, there not there. is there a kit I can buy for this and where?

  121. Hi, I read numerous queries on your site about oven temperature. My husband and I purchased a cottage that has a Real Host gas range. We cleaned it up and the burners work great as do the pilots. The problem is that no matter how we turn the oven knob, the flame around the oven burner does not get bigger–even on broil. Is this because of some adjustment or does it mean we need a new thermostat? The oven temperature gets to around 350 degrees but not much higher. The price of rebuilding that thermostat is huge. I am hoping the problem is just an adjustment–a recalibration of some sort that we can do on our own. If the temperature sensor is that metal tube at the back of the oven then perhaps our problem is there because that part is rusted. Is it possible to replace that metal tube and not the rest of the thermostat? Lori

  122. I have a 50s O’Keefe and Merritt range with the cover shelf. Double door but no window for the oven. I recently called the gas co. because of odor. He check it thoroughly but said there was a leak that would require taking the range apart bit by bit. Said it would be costly. So he red-tagged me. Cannot use my range. I want to keep it. Can you help?

  123. Hey Jeannie,
    There are screws on the top of the stove, down in with the burners that will turn on and off your oven pilot light. It’s near the right set of burners, towards you, on the far right handside where the burners attach to the main gas line there. Look down and you’ll see a tiny little screw. Turn that ever so carefully and see if you can’t get the oven pilot to come up.
    Don’t know about the broiler section, sorry about that. Please find the kind people at http://www.antiquestoves.com or http://www.classicstoves.com and see if they are of any help.
    Biggles

  124. Lori,
    You could try some adjustments. I just sent you an email to see if it was okay that I send an image over that may be of some help.
    That being said, the rumor about you and I calibrating a thermostat isn’t good. “They” say it isn’t possible for us to do and to let a trainted technician deal with it. But since it already doesn’t work, give it a shot.
    You may need to replace the thermostat and probe. I had someone come out and do it for about 170 dollars. That’s a tiny fraction of what a new range would cost, eh.
    Biggles

  125. Hey Rachel,
    Whull, that sucks. You need to do a search in your city or town to find somone capable of repariing such a beast. It shouldn’t be that big of a deal, they aren’t that complicated. Sorry to hear about your plight, the gas company is usually such a great help.
    Biggles

  126. I just bought an old PREMIER propane stove. I can’t get any gas to the pilot, even with a new line.Also when I press in on the knob and I can light the oven with a match, but when I let go of the knob the flame goes out.
    please help

  127. Hi:
    I have an old Western Holly wall-mounted gas oven that has worked fine for decades. In the past month, the burner set at broil has irregularly turned off, and maybe does or doesn’t come on again. I’m told what I need is a new thermocouple installed by a certified tech. I can’t find thermocouples for this oven and don’t know who in West Los Angeles is qualified to install it if I did. Can anybody help me?
    Thank you,

  128. Hi:
    Can anyone tell me where to find a thermocouple for an old Western Holly wall-mounted gas oven, and somebody to install one if I find it?
    Thanks.
    gregmuseo

  129. We have an Okeefe and Merritt stove from the fifties which we are converting from LP to natural gas. The burners did not get enough gas to light until we opened the valves as you talked about. Now they work perfectly.
    The oven pilot lit immediately but the oven burner does not come on and we do not hear gas rushing to the oven burner. Our stove has a safety valve red button which we have pushed and pushed and held to no avail. Do you know if there is a valve for the oven that has to be opened wider for natural gas (as with the top burners) in order for the oven burner to get enough gas to light?

  130. My O’K&M Aristocrat is arriving on Monday!!
    It will be the first time I actually see it live.
    I’m sure it will need some kind of rehab so I don’t want to bring it in to the kitchen until I know it performs. So the question is, if I don’t have a natural gas line in the garage, how do you suggest I try to test fire this baby. My guess would be propane. Do I need to get an adapter for the hook up? What words of wisdom do you have, Oh Mighty Biggles?

  131. The King of Stoves is great. It needs a little work, but it seems like it is a sound base. Apple gets it tomorrow to begin it’s rehab. Thanks for the referral. As for posting pics…..how does one do that?
    Cheers!!!!!!!!

  132. I JUST BOUGHT AN OKEEFE & MERRITT STOVE
    I’M NOT SURE OF THE YEAR (AROUND 60′S)
    IT HAS A GLASS PANEL THAT LIGHTS UP W/CLOCK
    MY PROBLEM IS AFTER GETTING IT HOME & SET UP
    THE OVEN DOSEN’T LIGHT. I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO.
    CAN YOU HELP?
    THANX, KIM

  133. Hey Kim,
    Yeah, that’s that red safety valve we’ve been talking about a lot on here. You need to poke about the stove and find a red button to press and release. This will allow your oven to light.
    Speaking of which, does the pilot stay on?
    Biggles

  134. i believe so.i was trying to get it started for about 15 min. this am & it stay on the whole time.
    i wasn’t sure if mine had the button or not because it’s not as old as some of the ones talked about. i wasn’t able to find a picture online of mine so i don’t know what year it is.
    thanx, kim

  135. Hey Kim,
    There’s probably a tag of some kind on the wall, inside where the burners are. It may have some clue to when it was made.
    Even so, you’ve gotta search for that infamous red button.
    Has it been recently used? Can you talk to the owners to see if it worked fine before? Or was it leaky and they had the oven turned off?
    You could try calling your local gas company to come out and have a look. Many times it’s free. Although, as one user points out. You could very well get your stove red tagged and shut down that very day. I’d give it a shot though. You could also dig around your community and see if anyone there works on the older ranges and see if they can help out. Sure it’ll cost a few bucks, but buying a comparable new range isn’t cheap either.
    Biggles

  136. hi,
    just fyi
    i called the lady i bought my stove from to
    ask where the red button was on my stove….
    she said there’s no button on mine,
    on the back panel by the clock there’s a little
    knob you turn that has to be on man. if it’s on
    auto. it won’t come on.
    kim

  137. Hey Kim,
    I don’t have any experience with this type of range, sorry about that.
    I would suggest finding someone who knows about older stoves to come out and have a look. Make some calls and ask around. Or call your local gas company to come out and have a look. I’m sure it’s an easy fix, I just don’t know sitting here behind my computer.
    Biggles

  138. I just acquired an O’Keefe and Merritt, model 600 that had been stored in a barn for about 15 years and was partially diassembled by the previous owner. Needless to say my wife was less than thrilled when she saw it. It is in the garage while I am working on it.
    Lots of Questions:
    1. I lit the burner pilots and can lite the burners with a match but they do not want to lit with the pilot. ( I have cleaned out the cobwebs in the pilot tubes)
    2. When I increase the burner controls from simmer to higher heat the simmer burner goes off. I have to manually light the large burner with a match. As i turn it to high heat both simmer and large burners come on. What would be the problem? Also, I do not have the simmer caps. Would they affect this?
    3. The pilot line to the oven is broken/missing. What is the recommended replacement? Would Home Depot have a small copper line to use as a replacement?
    4. The grillelavator (broiler) pilot does not light. where to start troubleshooting?
    5. I found this site via Google. What is the link from your website to this discussion thread? Are there any other disscussion groups/site to help in repairing these old stoves. I hahve visited the commercial restoration sites but they do not offer much advice to the do-it-yourselfer.

  139. Hey David,
    Keeripes !!!!
    Uh, let’s start with #5. Meathenge is a cooking site based upon my adventurs with meat. This sometimes leads me to places where I don’t necessarily cook, but it cooking related. Hence this thread. There are no other discussion boards or threads for this topic. My main url is http://www.meathenge.com.
    4. The Grillevator. The pilot is probably turned off. I know this doesn’t help, but most people don’t use it. I have a working broiler and have used it twice in 4 years. Leave it off until you get the other things nailed down.
    3. I don’t know enough about tubing, pressure and thread size to be of any use here. If it were me, I’d sleuth out if the oven actually had one. Since you’ve got a fancy grillevator, I would think so. Some cheaper models didn’t have a pilot light and you had to do it manually. The pilot gas line should run from the oven, up in to where the burners are, trace it out and see if there is a fitting up there with no line running down. Again, if it were me, I’d find a donor stove and grab it from there.
    2. I don’t know exactly what the simmer caps do. I would find a stove that is similar and go see how it’s all put together there. Take photographs and print them out so you can match things up. You shouldn’t have to reinvent the wheel.
    1. Are there any holes in the pilot tubes? That will affect getting things lit. They also need to be set in the right places. They’re craddled in the opening for the pilot and should have a pin holding them in place at the entry to the burner.
    David, you’ve taken on a project and I’m not capable of communicating what I know via email. It’s one of those things I sit down to and make my way through it. Oddly enough, no real trained technician has made his or her way over here, yet. Just people needing help with their ranges. This project of yours is going to take some time and effort. Be patient and soon you will more than be rewarded. I wish you well!
    Biggles

  140. Dr. Biggles, This thread is phenomenal – thank you! I confess that I ‘cheated’ and bought a glorious, fully restored 1950 36″ Wedgewood. It was installed and worked beautifully for several months. This weekend, however, the oven has…failed. The oven pilot light is on, but no gas flows in when I turn the knob. Neither pressing nor holding down the RED BUTTON (curiously located on the clock) produces any change. The oven worked beautifully last week, and I have not turned off the gas or made any other changes – intentionally at any rate – since then. Thanksgiving fast approaches! Can you help? Thank you so much!

  141. Hey Catherine,
    Sorry for the delay in responding. I sat with your question for a few days and wasn’t able to come up with anything. Especially since your rig has been restored and should have a new and nicely calibrated oven thermostat. Is there any chance of talking with the people that restored your range?
    Biggles

  142. Happy Turkey Weekend,
    How do you gain access to the oven springs on a 40″ Wedgewood “high back”?
    Thank you much for your incredible insight.
    Don

  143. Hey Don,
    Hooyah boy! There should be two access panels, on the right and on the left, down under the oven, where the broiler or storage drawer is. The springs are behing there. It takes some finesse to get them in. There’s a metal piece that sits in there and holds the bottom side of the spring in place. Kinda funky, haven’t figured that out yet.
    Biggles

  144. Hey Don,
    Holy crap. Now I remember why I ditched that project. That’s beyond my patience and available time. I’m at the point now where I have to tip the entire range sideways.
    Alright, the spring system is a 3 way floating tension situation. You have the spring coming down from the hinge on the door in the top position. It connects to this “floating” bracket that comes in at a 90 degree angle. Then there’s a J hook affixed to the bottom of the range with a wing-nut that holds the spring and floating bracket down. It’s all under tension and has to be put together as such. Hard enough? Nope, this is all done through a small access panel where you can only do things by feel. Hard enough yet? There’s no easy way to get a tool in there to pull the spring down! Wait, it gets tougher. Both the spring and bottom J hook have these fancy little holes that they hook in to, that you can’t see.
    I’ll call a pro in this coming year …
    Biggles

  145. the oven top needs replaced the inside of the glass is shattered,also one of the burnets don’t work.plus maybe other adjustments. can you give an approx price to replace the top oven door & fix the burner. thanks joe

  146. Help! I have a 50′s Odin American Beauty Beautyrange and my oven just quit. Worked at Thanksgiving and now it lights but will not heat above 250. Also no pilot, must light manually every time but thats ok, I’m used to it now. This stove is a Beauty, hence the name beautyrange. Also thanks for the burner adjustment tip.

  147. Hey Rose,
    Sorry, but I’m not a real technician. Just some happy soul that has been poking in and around them for years and can get most of my own work done.
    It’s times like these I look at it, grab a cold beverage and call the repair guy. That sounds like the thermostat for the oven just died. They don’t last forever.
    Biggles

  148. just moved into a home that has an old stove with label Grand Home Appliance Company, model 747. i cannot find anything about this stove on the internet. i don’t know how to light the oven. any help will be appreciated. there is a gas lock dial on the outside. and there is a door on one side of the oven labeled charcol-ator. have no idea what that is. but all i really want to do is get the oven going so i can make cookies. thank you.

  149. just moved into a home that has an old stove with label Grand Home Appliance Company, model 747. i cannot find anything about this stove on the internet. i don’t know how to light the oven. any help will be appreciated. there is a gas lock dial on the outside. and there is a door on one side of the oven labeled charcol-ator. have no idea what that is. but all i really want to do is get the oven going so i can make cookies. thank you.

  150. Hi Anna,
    It would help if I had some pictures of where you’re talking about and the inside of your oven with the racks and bottom cover removed.
    drbiggles at cyberbilly dot com
    I’ve written down a few paragraphs here and erased them. Listen, I’m just an advid fan of the stoves and can repair my own. Before you go messing around with natural gas and matches, call your local gas company and have them come out for an inspection. It’s usually free and they may be able to get it running right off!
    Biggles

  151. Biggles,
    My old wedgewood is similar to the one in the pictures. The oven will only turn on at the highest setting and will not get up to above around 250. Is there a way to adjust the thermostat or increase the gas flow to the oven?
    Devin

  152. I had to turn off the gas and after finding the reset buttons on our Wedgewood I can light the pilot on the oven, but not the broiler. There’s a tiny blue flame just below the top of the pilot. Should I try to adjust the height? The broiler worked before, but always took a little bit of time to light. I can’t find where to adjust the pilots for the stove and broiler.
    Thanks
    chris

  153. I have an old stove that looks similar not sure what kind( i”m at work right now) but i was wondering….. in the second picture there are adjustable flaps (i belive they are for air mixture) i was wondering what they are for and should they all be opened all the way up, in your picture they are at the back of the arrows and they are opened up diffrently. just wondering what this effects

  154. Hey Chris,
    On my wedgewood, the oven burner IS the broiler. The broiler tray pulls out and is DIRECTLY under the oven. If the oven works, so does the broiler. Do you use the oven temperature knob to turn on the broiler? To the setting B?
    If your stove is set up differently, I don’t have any experience with those. Let me know,
    Biggles

  155. Hey Robert,
    You’re correct sir!
    Those are set when you stove is originally installed. Every stove can be set a little differently due to moisture, temperature and elevation wherever you are. If it works, don’t mess with it.
    Somewhere in my archives is a technical bulletin on what to look for and how to adjust. Sometimes your flame will “pop” or you have too much yellow in your flame. The portals will adjust all that.
    Don’t mess.
    Biggles

  156. This is so fun. I read the whole thread after buying a $100 O’Keefe and Merritt “gamble” with 6 burners and 2 glass oven doors that had been sitting in a garage in La Honda for 20 years. I love it! All 6 burners and one oven works. I will get a professional to come and take a look at the other oven and the burner pilots (unless you have an idea of what to try to get those working), but I want a few replacement parts. You mentioned Apple Appliance and Reliance Appliance, but I don’t think they sell used parts. People have said they have heard about used parts places that have a lot of parted out stoves with parts for sale in San Jose and San Francisco, but I haven’t had any luck. Have you come across anything like that since this thread started over a year ago? Ha! I am not the only one who keeps thinking about my stove. Thank you.

  157. Hey Annie,
    CONGRATULATIONS !!! Oh man, 6 burner 2 oven is my dream.
    I don’t have any resources other than what I’ve stated. Craigslist is a great one after you find out what you’re looking for.
    I cannot believe Apple Appliance cannot repair your stove, that isn’t right. They can do anything, check again.
    Biggles

  158. Thanks for the fast response Mr. B.
    Model: 8888F-SOU 10/N827J
    My oven thermostat has 3 wires going from it to a small 3 plug electrical panel on the right front side panel under the top. Then there is a small magnetic valve with 2 wires.
    My question is: Do those wires need to be connected to have the stove maintain the desired temp, i.e, operate properly? I am sure the green and red lights on the clock get juice and information from somewhere to let you know status.
    Man, a schematic would be “the bomb”!!
    Thanks so much for your help and knowledge.
    Don
    PS: Function of the green and red lights?

  159. My ol’ O’Keefe & Merritt Stove, like the model in your photo, always emits a gas smell – why, and what can I do about it?
    I would certainly appreciate any information you might have about this concern.
    Thanks,
    Don

  160. Hey Don,
    Well, it sounds as though you have a gas leak. That’s not a good thing. You need to have a local, certified gas technician (gas company) come by and check it out. Or call your local antique gas range guys and have them handle it.
    These old rigs will not leak any more or any less than a new rig. But after 60 years, leaks do occur.
    Biggles

  161. I thought we had a 1950′s(?) era Wedgewood, but it has a faux oven/broiler door on the left, which opens like a fridge door with a shelf inside. I haven’t seen this model online. It does have an all chrome top, clock and light, the whole nine yards. The oven heats up fine but will not close all the way. The hook thing on the right side has some give that the left side doesn’t. When opened all the way it kind of falls too far open on the right side but only about 1/4 inch. When closed it will sit upright, but drops forward. What should I do? I want to make a roast without using a chair to hold it all closed!

  162. Hey Gilly,
    Yeah, I seen those types. I wished I had one. Mine has a useless heater in that portion. Makes the stove awfully heavy.
    Ya know, I dove in to the hinge portion of the door a few months ago. I don’t know why, but those darned things are a real struggle. My springs are all fubared, hinges okay. I’m going to just leave it until when someday I call a technician and see if they can’t make it right. Sorry, but I’m no help here. At least you can make it work with the chair !!!
    Biggles

  163. Biggles,
    I need your help. Over the summer I got my oven to relight using the safety valve thanks to this webpage. However, for the past two months I have had no use of my oven and I do not know why.
    What I have is a Rheem Wedgewood of unknown vintage. The house was built in 1937 and the stove could be that old. There are the letters ‘cp’ on the front panel with the clock. Other distinguishing features are: completely chrome range with griddle (unlike your picture above, mine is all chrome around the burners). I’ve got the storage side on the left and the oven on the right. Also, on the top front panel with the clock is a red button that does not push (not sure what it is for) as well as 3 chrome buttons that do not push. My guess is that these are for the range and griddle, which are working great.
    Here is the PROBLEM: when I turn the knob to light/heat the oven, nothing happens, despite the fact that the oven pilot light is on. The oven never had problems with temperature calibration, the red safety valve does push in and out and is not stuck as some others have described. What do you think I should do? I have tried to have a technician out to fix the oven but all they did was call it the “cadillac” of stoves and say that it was actually illegal for them to take the parts out and tell me that they do not sell replacement parts. My guess is that the safety valve is broken despite the fact that the red button depresses and pops back out. Or perhaps there is a way to clean out the oven pilot and I should try that?
    Thanks in advance, I really want to get this thing working again.
    Amy

  164. Hey Amy,
    I don’t know what all those fancy buttons are for either, sorry about that. But I think you’re right about the safety valve being bad. It could also be the thermostat, but it sounds like a failed safety valve from here. They don’t last forever and it’s too bad you can’t get a technician in there.
    As I see it you have several options. You could see if you can’t talk directly with the technician and see if there’s a way to “work things out”. I suppose the law about replacement parts is to protect you from bad people. But all you need is your oven to work.
    Another option is to dial in either http://www.antiquestoves.com or http://www.classicstoves.com and ask them about it. They could sell you a refurbished safety valve AND thermostat. Maybe then the technician could install them?
    I know you’re seeing dollar signs blowing past you at an alarming rate. But figure this, how much would it cost you to replace that stove with a new one? To get the same performance you’re going to have to spend 1500 and closer to 2500 dollars. Buying a few parts doesn’t sound so bad anymore does it?
    Keep warm!
    Biggles

  165. You’re right, replacing some parts would be far better than spending that much money on a new stove.
    Thanks so much for your response! I love this resource.
    Amy

  166. Hi,
    I just purchased an O’Keefe & Merritt 21″ size stove/oven. The burners all light fine, but the oven “burner” (I think that’s what it is – it’s long, stretches from back to front, and has holes all along the sides where little flames come out?) only lights on one side; if you blow on it, the other side lights.
    I saw a note from above regarding cleaning the “jets” in the oven. Is that what might cause this? IF not, then what? ANd if so, then how, exactly, do I clean the jets?
    Finally, how would I know if the safety mag works fine or needs to be replaced?
    You’re expertise is much appreciated!
    Rebecca

  167. My mother had a stove very like the one pictured at the top of the thread. She died 3 years ago and I moved into the house knowing little about gas ranges. I was not cooking so I turned the gas off. When more was delivered and I wanted to cook, my daughter helped me get all the pilot lights lit except the one on the griddle in the middle of the top. It will light, but not stay lit. Can I not light this feature and use the rest of the stove? I don’t want to cook on it, but if that pilot is not lit, is dangerous gas escaping into the house? I am so lost without my parents, and no one to answer these questions. You are a Godsend!
    Sandy

  168. Hey Rebecca,
    Your burner assembly for the oven needs some cleaning. It isn’t that tough, but I’m not a professional technician and can’t walk you through the process.
    I apologize!
    Biggles

  169. Hey Sandy,
    The griddle should be sharing a pilot light with one of the burners, usually the left hand side. Do all the burners start up just fine? If they do, your griddle pilot light is also lit and is safe. Just don’t use the griddle.
    I suggest you call your local gas company and have them check out the stove to make sure it’s in good operating condition.
    You cannot leave a pilot light active and not have it lit. Otherwise gas just pours out and around the stove. You will be able to smell the gas within a few minutes.
    Biggles

  170. hi,
    can you tell me how to remove the knobs from a wedgewood stove–i want to see about having them rechromed (it looks very much like the one in your flame heat adjustment pics).
    also, any advice on cleaning the burner tube assemblies? i just bought it on ebay and it needs some tlc!
    fantastic site!
    thanks, sarah

  171. Hey Sarah,
    The knobs just pull off, helps if you have meat hooks for hands. If you end up using something metal to gently pry them off, use a towel so you don’t goof up yer surface.
    I used an industrial glass beading machine, like a sand blaster. But I don’t think I’d do that again because it got some inside the burners and not sure if that’s such a good idea.
    Warm sudsy water and a few different kind of scrub brushes are the best. Oh and a lot of patience!
    Biggles

  172. I have a Wedgewood stove with 4 burners, griddle, and two ovens and two broilers. I get the burners and griddle to light but I can not get the two ovens to come on. I have got the piolt to light on the right oven but I still can not get the right oven to light. Have any idea’s. Do you know of any easy reading manuals I can get my hands on?

  173. Hey Doc,
    I have a wedgewood (model 930-E3) with 4 burners and no griddle.
    I’m trying to take out the thermostat to replace. I’ve taken the burners, grates, and underlings off and can see the thermostat through the burner area. I don’t think I can get tools in and around the thermostat to take it out.
    Taking the top of the stove off looks difficult (not like the O’keefe where you can just left it), may need to take off the back shelf (where the light and exhaust stuff is) first.
    Any ideas?
    Thanks,
    Jim

  174. Hey Mike,
    Man, as far as I know there’s nothing to read about these old stoves. I think if we had a manual it’d be all over the place so everyone could share. I never even heard of such a thing.
    There are a few reasons why your ovens don’t work. Since it’s been around for so long, someone in the past could have had the second oven shut down so the pilot ain’t going. There’s a little pilot shut off nut up where the burners are. You need to take the upper portion of the stove off, pull the burners out and take a look at the path of the gas lines. Find where it comes in and goes to the knobs. Then, from there these little lines leave for all the pilot lights. On those lines somewheres are these little valves that you can use a small wrench to open or close. It takes a little time and effort, but it ain’t tough.
    Or you could have a bad safety valve, that thing with the red button that needs to be pressed each time the gas is shut off (stove moved).
    Also remember these old rigs are … well, old. Those thermostats for the ovens don’t last forever and need to be replaced every 40 years or so. You may want to call a pro or your local gas company. Sometimes they’ll come out for free to see how things are going. Other than that, I can’t tell from here. Sorry hey!
    Biggles

  175. Hey Jim,
    Sorry for the delay in responding. Kids out sick with flu, did the hospital today. Wored thin, everyone is alive though!
    Ya know, when mine went out, I just called Apple Appliance there in Berkeley. For 170 bux they came out, replaced it and tuned the sucker right up.
    Without the ability to remove the griddle not sure how all that comes to pieces. You may want to remove all the knobs on the front and see if you can remove that faceplate and get to it that way.
    ?
    Biggles

  176. Hey Erin,
    Well, there should be 2 pilots around the burner assemblies. What you need to do is remove the burner grates, that’s easy, huh? Then lift out the covers that sit around the burners and expose some guts there. Is there a griddle? Remove that. Now you should have the upper portion of your stove all exposed.
    See your left burner assembly? Go to the center, then to the right about 4″. There should be 2 aluminum tubes meeting right there as well. Cock your head to one side and look under a cover-plate there. Inside its little house should be a tiny blue flame.
    The right side is a mirror reflection of the left.
    The oven pilot burner is a little trickier. You need to remove the oven racks. Then pull the largeish, bulky bottom out of the oven. It should just kinda pull/slide/wangle out.
    You should see a long burner assembly there that runs from front to back. Away there in the back, maybe to the left a bit is your oven’s pilot light.
    Your broiler runs off the oven’s burner, so that should do it for pilots. Go see!
    Biggles

  177. Biggles, if I send you a picture of my Wedgewood Stove, would you be able to tell me the age or model of it? I can’t find the serial # anywhere on it. How can I send you a picture of the stove? Thanks,

  178. Hey Mike,
    I can make a guess, for sure. The model number and serial number on my stove is in where the burner assemblies are, over on the far right hand side, on a little metal tag. It’s not real obvious and you have to lift all the top covers off to find it.
    I can be found:
    drbiggles at cyberbilly dot com

  179. Hi Doc,
    Well, Apple appliance is owned by Greg and Laura. Both are very nice, but they don’t have their story straight between them. Laura gives me one price and then I talk to Greg and get another.
    I pulled the thermostat out this morning, but before hand, I called APED parts and they said they’d only sell me a new RobertShaw for $165. They said they had rebuilts for $125, but they wouldn’t sell me those (after I couldn’t put them back on I guess).
    Well, I pulled out the thermostat (easy, turn off gas, wrench off the pipe out of thermostat, used socket set to take the two bolts out of the thermostat). The thermostat came right out, but the thermocoupler in the oven broke off when removing (no big deal on the old unit, but bad when installing a new unit).
    I took the thermostat down to APED and they took one look at it and said they couldn’t help me (attitude?). My thermostat is a Wilco something, from Elizabeth, NJ, type C. They gave me two names of installers – Raynard 453-8971 and Madina 301-1512. They are off today because of holiday.
    Note: I’m not sure where you got the $170 from for installation, but Reliance Appliance costs around $300 and Apple charges $165 plus $85 for the first 1/2 hour and $45 for the subsequient 1/2 hours.
    I’ve left a message for Reliance and see if I can nego down since the stove is open in the front and ready for the thermostat to be replaced.
    Oh, I put the old thermostat back, no gas leaks.
    Thanks,
    Jim

  180. I have a tappan stove model number ZCTV 2662 serial number H 45999 any ideas as to what year it is? I have a 49 tappan and the stoves are the same style except for the burners, the back part with the clock, the knobs and pull handles for the oven. I can e-mail a picture.

  181. Hey Jim,
    I think I still have my receipt, but it’s probably from 3 years ago or so. Not that long ago, but I suppose long enough for prices to go up.
    I’ve had Reliance at my home several times. But I liked Apple better. The guy who came out wasn’t real nice, had a gruff & serious attitude. But I could see by how he worked he knew what he was doing, no bull.
    Even paying 300 to have your thermostat replaced, I feel, is a good deal. The alternative is to buy a new range at 1,2+ thousand dollars. You’re right though, removing it isn’t that tough and if you can find someone who’s willing to help you when you need it, makes it even easier. It’s when you get people behind the counter that clearly have no intention of spending any time on you if you’re not going to pay them to come out.
    Biggles

  182. Hi Patricia,
    I wouldn’t have any idea or point of reference, sorry about that. Keep perusing the internet, that’s what I do. Yeah, sometimes you come up empty handed, but things change and you’ll certainly find something at some point.
    Biggles

  183. hi biggles,
    thanks for your quick reply re: my 40s wedgewood. got the knobs off with no problem!
    –as for the burner tube assembly, you mentioned warm, soapy water. i’m slightly paranoid about touching any of the working parts. could i do any damage with water? the whole thing is very cruddy and the tubes that move around have areas that are covered in black and others in white. should i be concerned???
    a couple of other things ( i hope you’ll excuse my lack of knowledge of the real words for the items i’m mentioning)
    -my oven has a metal top, griddle and drip pans. do you know what the metal type is on this model? (i can send a pic if necessary). i ask as i’d planned on cleaning the drip pans and griddle with ammonia but chickened out in case i might damage them
    -any idea how to change the under the shelf lightbulb?
    -lastly, the heating element underneath the oven area is attached in the back but unattached and moving around in the front–is this normal or should it be attached somewhere? does it need to be cleaned–it’s looking kind of rusty too.
    thanks again,
    sarah

  184. Hey Sarah,
    Ya know, I could be wrong about the warm soapy water. The greasy old residue on these old ranges could very well need a pros help in getting clean. Like electrolysis or something. I suggested trying the warm sudsy water and a wire brush because that’s generally what we all have handy.
    The residue you mentioned is normal and don’t be worried about it. The stove got this far, eh?
    The metal top should be steel. This could either be chromed or enameled, is it shiny? If so, it’s chrome. This can be removed and redone professionally. It ain’t cheap though, 4 years ago my griddle was 150 bux to have rechromed.
    An ammonia solution is just fine.
    All the burner assemblies aren’t really attached to much. Mostly just rest in place. Many times there are little holes for nipples to fit in, but that’s about it. And yeah, rusty. See, the burning of natural gas creates a little moisture. So, with all those pilot lights going 24/7, things get rusty over the years. That’s why when you make toast/waffles or anything crunchy and put it in your oven to keep warm, it gets mushy quick.
    No idea on the light bulb, could be a hidden access panel on the back of the range that’s held in place by a set screw. I ain’t got one of those, so I don’t know.
    Biggles

  185. Hay, great site, but I have a question, that I’m sure has been answered, I just can’t seem to find the answer – I have a 1950′s wedgeworth – the pilot on the oven and broiler lite but the burners won’t go on. I did push the red reset button on both, but it just stuck. Does this have to be replace or can it be cleaned up? It was pretty grimmy in there before I cleaned it out. Thanks for any help I can get.

  186. We are moving into an apartment that has a 40′s or 50′s O’keefe & Merritt 4 burner range with stove and trash burner. The trash burner is no longer in use. We want to move the stove to a new location and get rid of the old vent, but are worried that operating the stove without the old vent that through the kitchen wall is not safe. Does anyone know if these old stoves need to be vented to the exterior of a building or if they can operate safely without this huge old venting system?

  187. Hi Doc!
    Well, after finding out that a rebuilt wilcolator thermostat costs $195 (not including install!), I’ve been looking for another stove for weeks.
    Well, today I hit the jackpot! I just bought a wedgewood six burner stove with two ovens for $100. No, not $1,000, but $100. Everything works! The sellers look like they are very well off. Bought a beautiful home off Westminster near Arlington in Berkeley. They just pulled the wedgewood out of the kitchen (remodeling) and put it in the garage when they put the ad on craigslist. I am so thankful to them!
    People! If your wedgewood or O’keefe is nothing special and you need a thermostat, you might want to look for another stove. Craigslist has many most of the time (if you like in the bay area). In fact, there is one in SF for $75 – clean and an nice old one in Napa for $250 (with wood burner in case there is a major earthquake or something).
    Note: Greg at Apple stoves is picking up my old wedgewood (free).
    Thanks,
    Jim in Berkeley

  188. Hello,
    I recently scored off Craigslist a Wedgewood “Classic” model with the intent of using it a remote mountain cabin, remote & mountain being the operative terms. Using a conversion pressure regulator I got a regulator from a place in downtown L.A. called “Hughes A to Z” to convert the stove to Propane and fitted it yesterday. With the help of your site, I got all the burners & pilots lit and adjusted, with the exception of the oven burner. At first everything was burning too high and with a yellow flame, so they all had to be turned down, the trouble is I can’t find out how to adjust the oven burner. Nothing seems to be wrong with the thermostat because the burner turns down when it gets to temperature, but the flame is way too big, and, like the others, burning very yellow. I’ve been cooking on a ’40′s O’Keefe for years, so I’m fairly familiar with the beauty of these stoves and how they run.
    Do you know if there is a way to adjust the flame on the Oven burner? I know others have asked, but I haven’t yet seen an answer.
    As an aside, the place I mentioned before, “Hughes A to Z” is a great resource for any little bits and pieces you may need for any appliance. The number was given to me by the folks at Antique Stove Heaven, here in Los Angeles. It’s 213-745-7079.
    Thanks for this great site.

  189. Hey Anna,
    The vent is for your oven and just vents heat, smoke from roasting chickens and a tiny bit of moisture.
    You don’t need to vent it to the outside, but it sure makes things a little nicer when you’re cooking your chickens at 450 degrees. I have mine venting up in to the electric fanned vent hood. It’s just got an 8″ stack going up, then it just wafts up.
    A long time friend has his venting in to his large open kitchen. No problems.
    Biggles

  190. Hey Jim,
    Holy cow! Well, yeah. Craigslist is filthy with them, I found mine for 350. I think for my situation I would still get mine fixed. I know my stove and ain’t hip to moving it out. But you’re right, deals can most certainly be found. My dream stove would be a six burner 2 oven, oh yes. That I would be willing to move the old one out for!
    Biggles

  191. Hey Jamie,
    I think so. Pull off the knob that adjusts the oven’s temp. There should be 2 little screws in the upper portion of the thermostat. Not in the center and not to the right and left. The 2 above those.
    The left one should be the oven burner by-pass flame adjust. The one on the right is the pilot adjust. And that should take care of that.
    Biggles

  192. There is an old Chambers stove in the basement of the house I recently purchased off of a family member.It looks to be in good condition and very unique, at least to me. Is this something worth saving or using? I really have no knowledge on this subject. Somebody please inform

  193. I have a vintage welbilt apartment size gas stove from the early 40′s. It has a circuliar oven burner insted of the long tube ones that I have seen on other models. Is this the correct oven burner? It also dosnt let out enough gas and the flame is vary small so it dosen’t get hot enough. It also has no safty system, just straight metal tubing. The stove has a mactch light oven, that is what the lady told me at ANTIQUE GAS STOVES

  194. Biggles, thanks for the useful site.
    I have an O’keefe & Merritt, probably 50′s, 4 burner, oven and broiler. The problem is the knob on the oven thermostat, which reads Broil when off. The knob is about 90 degrees too clockwise. There is a chrome ring behind the knob, which I can pull slightly forward. When doing so, it feels like it is pulling against a spring. Unless I am not pulling hard enough, the knob itself does not pull off. How do I get the knob off and reset it correctly?
    The thermostat is OK and holds temp within reasonable tolerances.

  195. A suggestion about lighting burners. I, like many others, do not want pilots burning 24/7. Instead of using matches to light our burners, we use a piezoelectric sparker. This fabulous device is shaped a bit like a butane barbeque lighter, but it uses no butane nor does it have a battery. Power comes from a crystal which when deformed by pressure produces a high voltage. The pressure comes when you push a hinged piece with your thumb. That’s the only moving part! The current is carried along a wire to the nose of the device, which has a metal surround. The current grounds itself by jumping from the end of the wire to the metal surround, creating a spark which ignites the burner gas.
    The problem is I have never seen one of these lovelies for sale in the U.S. They are widely available in Europe, where they are commonly used. We found excellent ones in Italy. You go to a housewares or hardware store and ask for an asciendegaz, which is pronounced a-SHEN-dee-gaz. Be sure to get the piezoelectric ones, because they also sell ones powered by an AA battery, which don’t produce a satisfactory spark. We have one we have used for 25 years, and have brought back others for friends. The side benefit for getting one is a week or more in Tuscany.

  196. Biggles, your site is wonderful but I need to question your comment that it is safe to vent a gas oven to a range hood, or not to vent it at all. Both of the repairmen we have used over the past 25 years (one is now retired, the other, ancient) have warned me that it is dangerous AND illegal to use a gas stove with an oven which is not vented to the outside. I’m no more an expert on this than you, so I think it would be worthwile for someone to check with PG&E or Apple for a definitive answer.
    It seems to me that using an unvented oven is the same as heating the house by turning the oven on and leaving the door open. Googling ‘methane burning byproduct carbon monoxide’ quickly disclosed that the odorless, colorless, tasteless and deadly CO gas IS a byproduct of the combustion of natural gas. Every winter deep freeze, there are news stories of people dying of CO poisoning from unvented gas heaters. You’ve been carerful to warn people about the dangers of gas stoves, and when to call in a pro, so I’m sure you wouldn’t want to post something that would endanger others.

  197. Hey Michael,
    You’re most certainly correct. I will see if I can’t make some changes on the original post. And you’re right about my skill level, it all came from observation and hands on tinkering. Nothing more, nothing less.
    The white knob for your oven thermostat pulls right off. Yours might be a little stuck to oxidized oil/grease over the years. And you’re right, there is a spring back there. But it’s a large weak one and won’t go flying too far. What worries me though, is that most of those are notched and only go on one way.
    Did you look on the white knob some place for a little teeny set-screw? Some of the older ranges may have had one.
    Biggles

  198. I’ve learned so much reading through this thread!
    I have a 1940′s O’K&M, with a Grillevator and a “periscope” for the oven.
    My question is: the oven and broiler are both lit with Robershaw style “minipilots” with the built-in thermocouple. Both of them are really flaky and won’t hold a flame. I’ve opened up the screw valve on top all the way, and tried every method I can think of to clean them up, to no avail. I am totally fine with replacing them….but why are they $65? Besides which I can only find ones with a 24″ thermocouple. Can I just use one of these regular pilot assemblies I see around? Just wondering.
    -John

  199. Hey John,
    Well, that sucks. There is a flame height adjustment for the oven’s pilots underneath that robert shaw knob. I don’t have my notes on this computer, they’re at work. It’s either the upper right or left. If you feel brave, try one and see. Just note where you started from!
    Biggles

  200. Help! I just purchased a Tappan Deluxe gas range-1949 or 1950 I believe. The clock on the thing is so freakin’ complicated: it has settings for automatically shutting the oven off and the darn thing keeps sutting the oven down periodically b/c I can’t figure out how to run this clock! What I really need is an owner’s manual b/c I can’t figure out how to broil on it either. When I do, the oven shuts itself down, pilots and all @ 500 degrees but there’s no setting for “broil.” Do you have any suggestions? And/or any resources on finding reprinted vintage stove manuals?
    Thanks for your help,
    Kelly

  201. Well, it seems that the old 1950s stoves are easy enough to adjust flame height on the burners and the same procedures probably would work on my late-80s Tappan rtange despite its having a pilotless electronic ignition system if the flame height ever needs adjustment.
    The problem, though, is with the oven. It turns on and off just fine, but my girlfriend says that the dial’s calibration is “off” by a fair margin. She’s a professional chef and owner of a catering company, so I’m guessing she knows what she’s talking about. I’ve got 30+ years of experience as an electrician and electronics technician, but I’m not sure of the exact procedure for calibrating this oven, location of adjustments, etc. I assume I’ll need a high-temp (electronic, perhaps) thermometer, wrench, and/or precision screwdriver(s). Where is the adjustment. The dial for the oven is on the upper panel behind the cooktop, beside the clock/timer. Clock/timer is analog on this model, not digital. Oven also has a mode selector with “Off/Bake/Broil/T Bake” positions.
    Should I call a Tappan repair center or is this a user-adjustable setting if the user has the technical skill and only needs to know the location of the appropriate adjustments?

  202. I finally found and bought an O’Keefe and Merritt! I’m in Indiana so just finding one is an accomplishment!! It needs some “cosmetic” work done but, anyway, I LOVE THIS SITE!
    So I’ve read most of the posts and have already adjusted my burner flames!!! Here’s my problem: The oven has two pilot lights? Am I nuts? There is a short flame real close to the burner and then a longer flame about an inch from the short flame. This morning the oven wouldn’t “light” so I looked at the pilots and only the longer flame was on, so I lit the burners with a lighter. Then I turned it off and looked again and the smaller flame was also on. Now when I turn the oven on it lights. But I’ve never heard of two pilot lights before. Sorry to ramble on so. It’s nice to read posts from other people that love old ranges! The people I bought mine from didn’t really care about it. They didn’t even know that salt and pepper shakers were supppose to be in the top two holes. When I told her she said, oh, I wondered why there were holes there. Anyway,any help would be appreciated. thanks

  203. AWEsome site! I love all the info and it has really helped me.
    I have a 1948 O’Keefe and Merritt that I just picked up from a thrift store. Got it all hooked up, got the pilot lights for the burners and oven lit and the burners work just fine.
    Problem is, the oven burner does not come on. The pilot is on, just no gas is going to the burner. What do I need to adjust or replace or look at in order to get that burner going?
    Thanks in advance.

  204. HEY! lol! Nevermind. Kept reading and found your info on the red reset button. I thought it was just for the pilot light (which was already lit) but I just pushed it and it worked to light the oven grill. Whooohooo!
    I now have the oven set at 350 and will see if it hits and keeps that temp.
    I had it up to 500 but it didn’t seem to affect the flame any. (as in, 350 and 500 produce the same flammage) Is that anything to worry about?
    Again, thanks so much for the site!! YOu’re awesome!!

  205. Kelly,
    I don’t, it’s been a few years since I spent some time googlin’ the old ranges. Mine seems to keep on going, so no repairs are needed.
    John,
    The newer, consumer stoves I’ve poked my head in to over the years really don’t have any or much adjustments left. The companies and govment don’t want users poking around natural gas. Usually everything is factory sealed and adjusted. All the technician does is come out and remove/replace. I would visit a local retailer (not a large chain) and see if you can talk to someone about it.
    Tricia,
    2 pilots? Eeek, I’m not enough of a technician to know. I would call your local gas company to come out and inspect. Wanna make sure it isn’t a ‘leak’ of some kind. It should be a free visit!
    Congrats and it is interesting sometimes how little people care about such things.
    Rhonda,
    Yes, I am awesome. Thank you, heh. Flammage is same all through the settings, you should be fine. What you need to do is put a thermometer in there and run a test at 350 or 375 or 400 or whatever. Poke your head in there every 15 minutes or so for an hour or two to see if the temp holds fairly stable. You don’t want your oven to run at 275, travel to 450 and drop to 350 and go to 500 all in 45 minutes. In that case, you need a new thermostat fer yer oven.
    Biggles

  206. I have an older G.E.propane stove and one of the burners turns the pots black on the botton and sides and the flame is kind of yellow,can you tell me what the problem is and how to fix it?
    thanks,
    Craig

  207. I just purchased a house that has a Real Host stove in the kitchen. One of my friend believes it is an antique. How can I find out more about it?

  208. Hey Craig,
    My guess is that your air/fuel mixture is off. Somewhere along the burners there should be some adjustment where you can allow more or less air to mix with the fuel. Move it about until the flame looks just like the others.
    Lateefah,
    Well, the obvious would be to search google for “real host” and stove. You’ll have to spend time researching it both on the net and maybe at your local library. Just know that it could be about 70 years old and very cool.
    Biggles

  209. What an informative post – thanks for all the knowledge.
    Any idea what the “C, S, M” settings stand for on the International Register Interval Clock/Timer? I ask because after screwing around with the buttons, my timer now ticks constantly. I know, I deserve it for “tweaking.”
    I have ordered the manual from TOAC, but thought I’d ask anyway (too impatient for the arrival of said manual).
    Thanks, Leighsa

  210. p.s. – replacing light bulbs on the Wedgewood range top light – put fingers in the light cover openings (mine is chrome), lift and rotate. Cover is “pinch-clipped” in and will lift off. After replacing bulbs, re-position the light cover and push into place.
    Leighsa

  211. Leighsa,
    Dang, you’re like all busy in there. I don’t know what that stands for. I would guess that S is seconds and M is minutes, not sure about the C. Oh well.
    Thanks on the light bulb change!
    Biggles

  212. I’m lucky to live in Berkeley but a call to Apple or Reliance would break the budget right now. The information here helped me fix the oven in less than 30 seconds. Oven pilot working, but oven doesn’t light, no gas whooshing sound either. Locate the red button on the safety valve (hot dog shaped on the back), push it in, and back in business. Thank you!
    About 5 years ago this stove was curbside looking for a rescue. It even dropped off the UHaul trailer in the middle of the street on the way home. Loaded it back up, brought it home and it’s awesome. The lady wanted a new stove because she was tired of looking at this old one. Too bad, these are treasures! Thanks for the resource!

  213. Leighsa,
    If you’re timer is similar to the one on my roper-built 50s Kenmore, “M” is for manual, which will allow you to use the oven controls manually and without having it be tied into the timer function.I don’t know about the “S” or “C”
    Thomas

  214. A little testing revealed that Thomas is correct – the M is “manual.” I’m guessing C is “cook” (start time) and S is stop (stop time). But for all my testin’ and tweakin’, it still sounds like a classroom clock on the last day of school. I have yet to discover a “reset” button. Unplugging it is not the solution either.
    And yes, I am all busy up in there!! Because of your post, I was able to uncrate it, get it in the house (no small task, 450 lbs. – finally found a use for my teen age sons) install the gas line, find and light all the pilots. I couldn’t have done it without you. If you want to see the finished product, go to: http://www.vintagestoves.com/stove/leighsawedgewood/
    Thanks to you, Biggles, and all posters for the great information. I would suggest that it saved me at least a couple hundred bucks in installation. In return, I’ll post timer setting information when I get the repair manual.
    Best to All,
    Leighsa

  215. AW CRAAAAP. I just lost a long reply to your post. I’m crushed.
    I think I said you were very welcome and your stove looks fantastic. I went on about your noisy clock. And made an educated guess that you don’t have a reset there, I don’t believe. What you do is set it to turn on your oven for an hour or something similar and once it completes its cycle, that’s it. Leave it there until you need to do it again another time.
    Man, I must have had 5 paragraphs!
    Sigh.

  216. i have an old wedgewood. the safety valve seemed to stop working so i unscrewed the red cap, pulled off the spring, and tried to put it all together again. after putting it together the oven/broiler lights up again, but there is a gas leak at the red safety valve button. i’ve tried lots of combinations of tightening/loosening the red button but it either doesn’t light up or leaks gas.
    is my safety valve done or am i just not putting it back together properly.
    thanks for any help!
    - Dave

  217. I have a vintage welbilt stove and i just got the oven to work properly.
    Did you know that the flame adjustment works on the oven burner too.
    Now my oven burner flame is about four inches or more longer than it used to be.
    my oven gets to 350 in 6 minutes, i timed it.
    my grandmother was in town and decided to use the stove to make cookies and she turned the oven knob without lighting it manualy.
    BIG DESASTER
    good thing i was home!!!!!!!!!
    well now to the problem.
    my stove doesn’t have a saftey system and is it possable to have the oven PILOT ON while the KNOB SAYS OFF.
    i don’t need any more close calls like happned with my grandmother.
    PLEASE HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  218. when my oven gets anywhere above 200 the outside white porcolin pops out on the bottom right side.
    It also seems that the spring is not there on that side as well.
    could the missing spring be causing this
    ow and is there any way to have the pilot light lit while the oven knob says off, MY STOVE HAS NO SAFTEY SYSTEM

  219. Hey Dave,
    I haven’t ever taken one apart. If there are threads, you need to go to the hardware store and buy some tape or liquid goo that is specifically meant to seal against natural gas. Ask the staff, they’ll find it for you. Do 2 or 3 times around the threads with the tape.
    Biggles

  220. biggles,
    i have an old wedgewood range and found your site trying to reset the oven after a gas shutoff. question is this: the broiler reset no problem but the oven still wont light. found 2 red reset buttons under the griddle twards the back. any thoughts? thanks in advance
    seth

  221. Seth,
    I’m going to assume you lit the pilot light for the oven. And that you pressed those red buttons a few times? And it was working before? Just fine?
    I don’t. An decent guess would be a bad safety valve (those red buttons). Check the previous posts for companies that would be able to sell you a good one!
    Biggles

  222. Howdy!
    I have a wedgewood and recently I noticed that the oven temp is getting way too hot. I have heard that maybe the thermostat needs to be replaced or calibrated. Anybody know about problems such as these?

  223. Hey Sarah,
    If the temperature fluctuates, searing hot back down and back up? You need to replace the thermostat.
    If it gets too hot and stays there? You can adjust that. Slip off the knob that adjusts the oven’s temperature and you’ll see an adjustment screw in the center. Loosen the two screws to the left and right of the center.
    If the thermostat needs calibration, leave that to the pros. Trust me.
    Biggles

  224. I have a caloric gas oven. A local repair man said that I need a new “pilot light assembly”- not with a thermocouple. Do you have any idea where I can find one of these?
    Thank you- Deni

  225. I’ve found a Char-Glo by Waste King Universal indoor gas grill hidden below a boxed wood cover in this old house I just purchased, surrounded by a brick three wall with overhead exhaust fan and light system. It is missing a knob to adjust the height (I think) and does not have any instructions as to how to operate, clean, adjust, etc.
    I would like to know what this is, can I get the necessary parts, how to maintain, and operate, and perhaps how to adjust. I consider myself to be a friend toward tools and mechanical things…not a novice, just decent every now and then. Thanks in advance for any help and suggestions.

  226. Hey RJ,
    You need to find someone locally that repairs antique gas stoves and have them take a look at it. They should certainly be able to put things back together and get them right. Please check previous post for web sites that may or may not have parts for you.
    Biggles

  227. Hi,
    This may be a stupid question, but I picked up an old 1950 wedgewood recently and I can’t find any information about hooking it up.
    Is there anything special that I need to know about hooking it up to the exisiting gas line? I have a new gas stove which has a smaller connector hose. I bought the largest sized line in the hardware store that I could find and it’s still not the right size for the wedgewood. Do I just need to find some reducer piece that will work with the new gas lines? or am I missing something obvious?
    Thanks,
    Lisa

  228. Hey Lisa,
    Somethin’ ain’t right. While there are a handful of different sizes available, it’s a standard size on those old ranges.
    I would take a picture of where you’re attempting to connect it to, at the stove end. Also measure the size of the gas line. 5/8″, 1″ or something like that.
    Keep going, you’ll get it!
    Biggles

  229. Okay, last 3 phots in this album are of the connector in the stove, which appears to be a 1 inch diameter pipe with some funky looking connector that’s basically rusted into place. The connector reminds me of those questionable slip joints found in plumbing, but made of metal.
    http://new.photos.yahoo.com/ltawfall/album/576460762339270851
    The flexible gas line I bought was 15/16th which is nearly an inch.. Is it possible I need to get that rusty connector thingy off?
    -l

  230. Dear Dr Biggles,
    I’m having a problem locating a part for a Wincroft wall oven, circa 1963. Specifically the controller/temp dial. Do you have advice on how to find this part? I’ve been searching the usual web places, but I’m not coming up with much.
    I’m also thinking that this stove-wall oven combo was mostly an East Coast thing.
    thanks!
    Nina

  231. I love your helpful site. I find several questions and comments about pilot lights not working. I even see a comment about how some pilots are turned off. However how do I turn a pilot on and adjust it on an Okeefe & Merit Model 425 gas stove? Thanks.

  232. Help! I just bought a Wedgewood today. My question is did Leighsa ever get the ticking to stop (her post from May 6th). I believe one of the gracious men that helped me move the stove turned the knobs and I’ve been listening to the ticking for hours. It didn’t tick like this at the house where I purchased it.

  233. I saw the comments about the char glow by waste king and wondered if anyone has found parts for it.
    I have one buitl into a hardwood countertop and would like to either replace the burner which is about 22″ x 6″ or replace the whole thing, peferably the former. if anyone has one in decent shape that they will sell for parts let me know. We have used ours regularly since we bought our house 13 years ago and the burner is warped and kinda burned out now.

  234. I saw the comments about the char glow by waste king and wondered if anyone has found parts for it.
    I have one buitl into a hardwood countertop and would like to either replace the burner which is about 22″ x 6″ or replace the whole thing, peferably the former. if anyone has one in decent shape that they will sell for parts let me know. We have used ours regularly since we bought our house 13 years ago and the burner is warped and kinda burned out now.

  235. I saw the comments about the char glow by waste king and wondered if anyone has found parts for it.
    I have one buitl into a hardwood countertop and would like to either replace the burner which is about 22″ x 6″ or replace the whole thing, peferably the former. if anyone has one in decent shape that they will sell for parts let me know. We have used ours regularly since we bought our house 13 years ago and the burner is warped and kinda burned out now.

  236. I saw the comments about the char glow by waste king and wondered if anyone has found parts for it.
    I have one buitl into a hardwood countertop and would like to either replace the burner which is about 22″ x 6″ or replace the whole thing, peferably the former. if anyone has one in decent shape that they will sell for parts let me know. We have used ours regularly since we bought our house 13 years ago and the burner is warped and kinda burned out now.

  237. Hi. I am looking for a door spring for a 1960′s Wincroft wall oven.
    I am hoping someone can point me in the right direction. I went to the appliance places in my area without any luck.
    Janis

  238. I, too, have a Char-Glo built-in indoor grill by Waste King Universal. It works fine and the height is adjustable. I would like to get information on the best way to clean the grill plates and the “rocks” in the unit. Also, would like tips on cooking with the rocks.

  239. I have a Char-glo built-in grill and need some repair parts. I have noticed several postings regarding this unit, but no responces. Has anyone located a source for parts?

  240. hi biggles,
    i love your site–and excellent sense of humor. a question re: my 1950′s ish wedgewood (like the one in the pilot adjustment photo, but with chrome top). it has a safety and i have a carbon monoxide detector right next to the stove, plus venting to the outside but i am frankly still scared of my stove and sometimes stay awake at night fearing that the house will explode (don’t laugh!). it has that “smell” a previous poster and you talked about. i was afraid it was gas, but the detector never changed. plus, the chrome top is always very hot to the touch even when the oven is off. can you elaborate on the potential dangers of this stove so i know what i’m up against and offer any suggestions on the hot stove top? we lowered the pilot flames, but now having read your post about manky flames and the smell i wonder if i should undo that.
    thanks :-)

  241. How do I replace the door spring in a circa 1952 Wedgewood Rheem Stove? I don’t have a model number but it is an oven (right)/broiler (left) side-be-side model with 4 burners and a center grill on the stovetop. The oven door no longer stays closed and I assume it is a faulty spring.
    At first glance it looks like I need to remove a LOT of screws and remove the front casing on the oven in order to get inside where the spring is. Is there an easier way I am not seeing?

  242. Hey Sarah,
    Yeah, ya know I turned down my pilots as well. Later on I had a technician come by for some reason and he jacked them back up. If they aren’t adjusted properly you get that manky smell and sometimes it will build up carbon prematurely around the pilot and cause a failure.
    As far as being able to calm your fears, not sure if I can do that. I remember my grandmother getting rid of hers after so many years for the same reason. That being said, if it’s been checked out by a professional, they’re very safe. Look how far yours and mine has come? All the way from 1952 !!! That’s even before The Simpsons. Honestly, I’m more afraid of our home’s furnace. It’s one of those in the wall rigs, not central. It’s got a heat exchanger in there that gets really hot when it’s on and cools down when it’s off. After so many uses, they crack & fail & let loose carbon monoxide. That’s happened once in the last 7 years. My stove has never failed me.
    Your stove top is warm/hot and your oven is the same. That’s just the way it is with older stoves and pilot lights. What you need to do is use it for proofing bread and making your own yogurt. Back in the day those stoves were used all day long for everything. You should be too!
    Biggles

  243. Hey Dylan,
    I too suffer from a broken spring. But I have 1 remaining so it isn’t too bad.
    So far, I have not been able to set the spring back in to place. There is a little access panel down there you can remove and get a “look” down in there. I have 1 good one, so I was able to see what needs to be done.
    Hands down I have NEVER seen such a contraption for doing something SO SIMPLE. It’s this floating bar that holds the spring. And there’s a lower tensioner thingy. I mean, you have to have 3 or 4 hands to get it done and you have enough room for 2 fingers. I don’t get it. Sorry man, you’re on own for this one. If you get it done, get us some pictures and text and I’ll post it. k?
    Biggles

  244. Hi, great reads…….
    I have a 1943 O&M in mint condition. The last month or so I noticed the oven hotter than usual while turned off. On checking the pilot it looked to be very high and using much gas. So I took the right top off and followed the aluminum tubing towards the front and down to the lower oven.
    I have the push button in front (not red) which i know to push in when lighting. However I tried turning a small screw that turns yet pushes in as well to adjust it down and it went off. Now when I push in the front button and light the pilot nothing happens.
    What did I do?!?!
    Jeff

  245. Hi Doc,
    Great info. Hope you can help me, too.
    I have a late 50′s-early 60′s Wedgewood-Holly Model T617 built-in stove. I found your thread in hopes of being able to turn down/turn off some of the burner pilots. I was hoping to turn off the two back burners and turn down the two front burners. Stove has a single piece enamel top with access below through the burner circles. Innards don’t look the same as your photos above. Had one flame larger/brighter than others, but after some cleaning, all are similar again. I know my dad talked about adjusting the height of the flames several years ago, but he passed in 2003 and now the stove is mine. No documentation to go with it.
    Excuse my ignorance, but is it possible to turn the back two burners off completely (or at least the pilots) while keeping the front two lit (but perhaps lower than they are now)? Or do I have to turn all four off? If the pilots are turned off, is it still possible to use the burners, say, lit with a match? Would using the stove in this manner pose any safety concerns? Where does the adjustment get made? There are nuts below each of the cups where the pilots are and they are connected to 1/8″(?) diameter gas lines that come from a common junction that might have a single set screw that might control all four at once, if that is a good idea. Would like to know I am not likely to blow anything up.
    Thanks again for a great thread and especially for keeping it alive for all this time. Quite a dedicated undertaking.
    Regards,
    Mark

  246. Hey Mark,
    Thank you for the kind words!
    I don’t believe you can shut the burners completely off. But I could be wrong. You could try doing the adjustment that I outlined in the original post, but just turn those nuts all the way down. Unless there’s a danger, I wouldn’t recommend doing this. These stoves were designed to be used. If you stop using the back burners, the lubricant in the valves there will dry up prematurely and then you’ll have an expensive repair.
    You can turn off your pilot lights for the burners, there should be a little tiny valve with a screw on it, located along the gas line there that you found. On that 1/8″ line? Yeah, that’s it. Generally speaking there’s 1 pilot light for the right burners and 1 for the left burners. Turn it clockwise until they go out. Lighting burners with matches is no problem, pain in the ass though. Unless you don’t cook much, then who cares. I like my pilots!
    Biggles

  247. I have a much loved Slattery vintage roughly 1960. Once, five years ago, the oven pilot light went out. When a match would not relight it, a repairman no longer in business knew what to do. Evidently there is a safety mechanism. Foolishly, I did not make notes. The pilot light just went out again. Can someone tell me what it will take to relight it.
    Thank you,
    Dana Jacobi

  248. Hey Dana,
    Yeah, that’s that elusive Red Button. It’s about the size of your thumb and usually located near the left burner assembly. Take the cooking grates off, along with the covers there and look around in the guts of the stove. Push the button and try to relight the pilot.
    Although, I didn’t think that button messed with the pilots. Ah well.
    Biggles

  249. Hey Doc,
    I’m in need of an additional cooker. My Aristocrat is still being restored (going on 10 months, last I heard Apple was waiting for the last piece of the puzzel, the clock and timer, said it would take two weeks…..2 months ago….but I digress…..). Thought I’d look into getting one of those Rotal Barbys. No can find. Any suggestions?
    Cheers!!
    Savvy

  250. Excellent!!!
    Now I just need to find someone that can translate Danish.
    BTW, I ‘spect someone at Apple views these here posts. Not 30 minutes went by when I got the word….The King of Stoves is ready for viewing!!!!!
    Pics will not be far off.
    Cheers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  251. Ah, that button rings a bell. Also the heroic effort the repairman made to get at it.
    I recall a long struggle to get the top lifted up but my poor memory does not let me recall if he won the battle or managed to get at the button with the top still down. Do know that last year, the handyman in my apartment building tried to open the top and insists it is not possible because the stove, he claims, is attached to the wall.
    Looking with a flashlight, I do not see the button, which to be visible would have to be to the right of the thermostat or whatever the mechanism is inside where the oven knob is on the outside.
    I love this stove so much and just pray there is a way of finding someone in NYC who can fix it, talk me through it over the phone, or other way to get this fixed.
    Dana

  252. Hello Dr, I have a 30″ Wedgewood range. I’ve had it for 30+ years. I rented the house with the stove and the young mom was nervous about how warm the outside of the range was so they put in a different stove and pushed the Wedgewood down the stairs and left it in the rain. I’ve been cleaning it up. The big spring around the thermostat is missing. I wonder how necessary this spring is? I took the wilcolator c stat out because it seemed stuck. I couldn’t get it apart so I finally boiled it in water and was able to dismantle it. A post above asks how this stat works and after dismantling one I am still not sure. Do you have any diagrams of the innards of a wilcolator c? Also do you know of any special paint for touching up dings?
    Thanks, Brian

  253. Hey,
    Just a side note, I finally had my husband put some elbow grease into removing the bizarre frozen connector that was preventing me from hooking the stove up the gas.
    We hauled it up to the kitchen today and everything works great. Well that’s to say the burner seem to light and after some amount of time I found the red button to push that was associated with the oven and now that turns one. Whether it’s at the right temperature or not is an different question altogether, best left for when I get an oven thermometer. :)
    So now that I’m relatively assured that it’s not going to blow my house up in a giant gas explosion I can finally enjoy the beauty of my 1950′s stove.
    On a side note does anyone have any directions about the clock/timer? When I plug it in the stove ticks continuously and eventually settles on an annoying buzzy sound.
    It had that eery ticking time bomb sound when I was trying to figure out how to turn all the pilot lights on, so I unplugged it. :)
    Lisa

  254. Hi,
    Thanks for the reference on the clock. I’m mildly irritated that all the information on my stove seems to be not freely available on the internet. Some sort of information monopoly going on there. :)
    I think I’m going to have to toss in my screwdriver and call a repair person. I was trying to adjust the oven knob to accurate reflect the temperature, since it appeared to be about 50 degrees off. So I took off the knob and the spring and tried to adjust the screw in there. Now my knob won’t stay on and the oven won’t light up. :(
    The oven only seems to come on if i reset the safety button. Since I’ve only had my stove working for less than a day I’m not sure the oven ever really worked. Or if it was a fluke the first time.
    I don’t know if the spring and knob do something special or what, but I’m at a loss as to what to do to fix it.
    Kind of bummed now.
    Lisa

  255. Hey Brian,
    Those pinheads. Just because you don’t like or understand something of this nature doesn’t mean you destroy so nobody else can. Grrrrrr.
    Not familiar with the Wilcolater. Sorry, hey. As far as paint goes, I wouldn’t use any water based stuff. It won’t stick well. Oil-base enamel would do fine for touch-ups or a polyurethane. Although, it may depend upon WHERE your dings are. If they will be subject to temps over 140f, you’ll need to find something else. Do searches for repairing dings in porcelained steel, or some such.
    Biggles

  256. Hey Lisa,
    Sorry to hear! Can you put it back to exactly where it was when you started?
    You didn’t touch ANY of the screws that are located around the outside of the thermostat, did you? If you did, you MAY be able to return it to normal IF you took notes. If not, you may be screwed. Adjusting those are for the pros. I’m not talking about the adjustment at the center of the knob.
    Be patient and try again. As far as the clock goes, Savvy set you up with the best link possible.
    Report in commander!
    Biggles

  257. Hello Dr, Thanks for the response. I was sad to see this old stove in the rain. I always have to remind myself what a selfish punk I was when I was young in these situations.
    The stove cleaned up pretty well. Now I want to test it but I don’t want to haul it in from the garage. I am researching hooking up propane up to it.Propane runs on higher pressure so I want to be safe.
    I have used appliance touch up paint before but I thought I would ask If you have found any better options.
    Keep up the good work,
    Brian

  258. i just got a wedgewood gas stove one oven and broiler and a storage place on the left side no griddle and i need to know how to lite the pilot in the oven when i got it frome the owner it was lit in the house now it is off and the burner won’t lite with a match

  259. Hey Ronnie,
    The answer lays above you in the millions of comments. But suffice it to say, you need to look around the burner assemblies, under the covers or in the storage place, for a red button. It’s about the size of your thumb, press it. Then your oven will pop on.
    Biggles

  260. THE KING OF STOVES IS ARRIVING SATURDAY!!!!!!!
    Hmmmmmmmm, what shall my first meal on it consist of?
    Perhaps:
    marinara sauce on burner one,
    fresh pasta on burner two,
    steamed shellfish mix on burner three,
    artichokes on burner four,
    asparagas on burner five,
    water for tea on burner six,
    grilled lobster tails in the broiler,
    tri tip on the grillevator,
    mousaka in oven one,
    fresh peach pie in oven two
    and a loaf of Acme bread in the warmer.
    Cheers!!!

  261. hey thanks for the respons and yes the oven did pop on and i have the best luck the oven temp is exact and one more thing when u turn ur knob on to the oven does it take a while for it to lite and does it make a loud boom noise when it lites
    mine does and it freaked out my mom the first tume she used it
    is this normal

  262. Alas……
    The King of Stoves remains in excile.
    I should have known better…….
    Apple’s “6 weeks” turned into 10 months.
    When I get told that it will finally get delivered on “Saturday”………I forgot to ask ,
    “Just which Saturday might you be referring?”
    The wait continues……..
    Cheers!

  263. Savvy,
    NO WAY !!!!
    Sigh. Well, at least your woes are listed here. There are a few other threads here that have been getting posts for a few years, just like this one.
    Too bad they don’t know your waiting has been chronicled on the internet.
    Biggles

  264. Hey Ronnie,
    No. Uh, you need to get someone who knows what they’re doing in there. Either the pilot light is too small, or something else evil is afoot.
    That being said, I had an apartment years ago that had an old range from the 30s. You had to light the oven manually. Many times the boom was so big it would lift the stove off the floor about an inch. Scary.
    Biggles

  265. yea i just ajusted the flame hight on the oven burner and it is “NOT AS LOUD” when it lights but it seemes to make its presents known
    well the stove is ment to work on natural gas and i have it hooked up to propane but i ajusted all the burners and they are all blue and of a normal size
    you should have seen it when i first hooked it up the burner falmes were like 3 feet high and all yellow
    it was cool
    well bye then

  266. Ronnie,
    Damn man! Now wonder it’s jumpy. That’s a special install. Propane has more pressure and needs to be regulated. You need to shut that down pronto like. Those old pipes weren’t designed for such pressure and will spring leaks like an old Model T. You need to call your local gas company to see if they can help out with any specifics, or Google. You’re cooking with a bomb.
    Biggles

  267. hey can u send me a diagram of the air ajustments for the burners
    thank u
    oh i just talked to the gas company and they gave me a swich over regulater for the stove and i need to readjust the air adjustments on the burners
    thank u

  268. Ronnie,
    Phew! Most excellent. I’ve looked and looked for those papers, I have, somewheres. And I simply cannot find them. When I do, I’ll let ya’ll know. Depending on the regulator they gave you, you probably won’t have to adjust anything. Wouldn’t that be nice?
    If not, you may have to venture out on your own. Just make sure you mark where your vents are now. Try making the air hole smaller. If the flame is yellow tipped and ‘soft’, add more air.
    Best of luck!
    Biggles

  269. hey
    got everything good and working and i am having a wonderful time using it and is there any way to have the oven pilot turned off and u can still match lite it
    is this possable????
    i need to save on gas because i have 13 appliances that have pilots on them from a refrigerator to a dryer thank u i dont need any more gas used

  270. I can’t believe I spend the entire afternoon reading these threads.
    I’mm off to find the oven pilot light in my 24″ Wedgwood. In the meantime, any ideas on how to get the two burners on the right side of my stove working. I love this stove so much I bought it knowing I effectively had only a two burner stove, but it sure would be nice to have all four.
    I’ve cleaned and removed the gas feeder tubes, and scrubbed the burners — cleaned the little holes with toothpicks — to no avail. \
    Oh–and the enamel on both of the oval two-burner drip pans is worn away right above the aluminum channels from the pilot light. Par for the course?
    Thanks for any insight you can offer. Best wishes from a fellow devotee of reliable, well-insulated, well designed ranges.

  271. Hey Catherine,
    Kinda a long list, huh?
    Hmm, well if the gas for the burners don’t hiss? The burners were turned OFF and could very well be for a good reason, maybe. Or maybe the original owner only used to boil water and having all 4 burners active freaked them out.
    In either case, I would call your local gas company and see if they’ll send someone out. This is usually FREE. They can safely open those adjustments (see post way up top from here) and get the gas flowing. Then, check for leaks. Because I’m no professional and could never tell you to open up the adjustments yourself and check for leaks on your own.
    Yeah, enamel goes away. Especially if you use a cleanser such as Comet or something. I use 409 and Bar Keeper’s Friend or Bon Ami.
    Good luck!
    Biggles

  272. Hey Ronnie,
    It is, but you don’t want to do that. Lighting the oven burner by hand is hard to get to and very dangerous, it’s a big burner.
    To light the oven, you’d have to remove your racks and pull out the bottom of the oven. Light the oven, then CAREFULLY replace the bottom of the oven and then the racks.
    Biggles

  273. Yo Doc,
    THE KING OF RANGES IS NOW IN MY KITCHEN!!!!!!!!
    Though I can’t get too excited yet. I was wondering if you could lend me a hand……..
    The stove is suppose to have a clock controlled oven. It has an oven, it has an oven controlling clock (so, I’ve been told) and a oven knob location with the words CLOCK OVEN baked into the enamel finish. The back of the clock has 4 wires. Two are connected to the power (the clock keeps time)and two are not connected to anything.
    Any idea how the clock, oven and thermostat are connected such that this system works?
    The company (to be nameless as of now) that restored my stove says my stove doesn’t have a clock controlled oven.This I don’t believe.
    Cheers!!!!!!!!

  274. Hey Savvy,
    CONGRATULATIONS !!! Man, that’s awesome. Any pictures?
    Ya know, I have no idea how the clocks in those rigs work. I would think the wires would need to go in to the thermostat for one or both of the ovens.
    The Old Appliance Club magazine used to have advertisements for a company that only did stove clock repair. But I’ve lost my old copies and a quick google search didn’t come up with much.
    It is possible that your stove doesn’t have the clock controlled oven, at this point. Since it is an old stove, there could have been repairs that either replaced the thermostat with a non clock controlled one. Or, someone replaced the original clock with an upgraded one. Then realized they’d need to upgrade the oven as well. It’s tough to really know. Enjoy what you have and over time you’ll be able to piece things together. Kinda like restoring an old car or something, ya know?
    Biggles

  275. Bless you! I live in a tiny un-air conditioned studio apartment in L.A. with a 1950′s Wedgewood stove. It’s sweltering. Thanks to you, I finally learned how to turn off the pilot lights. I think it will bring down the temp in my apartment significantly. Thanks!

  276. Hello from Philadelphia!
    I am purchasing a 1953 low-back Wedgewood with 4 burners, griddle in the center, oven, and broiler oven for 200 bucks. My dream is to find a 6 burner double baking oven. . . are these difficult to find, even out west? I’ve been looking for this model for months in my area but Wedgewood doesn’t seem that common here. Decided to work on the 4 burner oven/broiler incarnation until I can find the dream stove. East coast wedgewood aficionados out there are welcome to contact me with any resources in this area!
    gregory_oliveri at hotmail dot com

  277. Hey Blue,
    Hmm, I see them from time to time. Both private sales and through local dealers. I’m in the San Francisco Bay Area and Craigslist is filthy with antique stoves. At least from time to time, not always.
    I too want the 6 burner rig. Sure the griddle is nice to have, but I pull out my cast iron griddle when I need one. I’d much rather have the 6 burner with 2 ovens! Saw one this year here that was clean and ready to go from a local dealer for under 1200. While that’s pretty high for a non-restored stove, at least you’d have one RIGHT NOW. And there’s no way in HELL you could buy an equal stove at sear’s for the same.
    Biggles

  278. Dr. Biggles,
    I just saw one on craigslist in Seattle for $3500 unrestored! Funny that Wedgewood doesn’t seem to have become as prevalent as Chambers, Tappan, and Roper stoves out east. . . feel free to let me know if you discover one that you be willing to pass on to me! In the meantime I look forward to mining this thread for information as I embark on this restoration project. . .
    Cheers,
    Bluelotus

  279. Hey Blue,
    3500? Seattle? They must be high.
    It must be regional. Because out here, Tappan and Roper are dimestore ilk. Chambers was all fussy since day one. The 2 brands you’ll most likely run across in this area are, Wedgewood & O’Keefe & Merrit. Of course there are others, but if you checked CL for the SF Bay Area, you’ll see these are the typical brands.
    I enjoy my own epiphany. Years ago, I always wanted one of the earlier ranges. The ones that had 4 natural gas burners and two burners that were fired by wood or coal. How awesome would it be on a cold winter’s morning to build a fire in your stove and make coffee & breakfast? A tear came to my eye. Why oh why do we not have this anymore?
    Uh, roaring hardwood fire and natural gas? In the same unit? Gee, Biggles, I don’t know why.
    BOOOOOOOM !!!
    Biggles

  280. Hey there guys… this is a brilliant thread! My wife and I just bought a 1940′s home and found a beautiful 50′s wedgewood on craigslist recently. Anyway, I’ve got it all moved in, hooked up the gas, burners work great (i did adjust the air flutes)… and I’m about to take your tips on adjusting the flame size.
    I still need to take apart the burners and clean out the ignition holes. Do any of you have recomendations on cleaner for that stuff? Also, I started to take one appart, and it seems the gasket is as old as the stove as there’s not much left.
    I called up antique gas stoves, and they can get me them for about $4 each… but i’d really like to start using the stove. While I’m all for restoration… would it be so terrible if I used a liquid gasket (the kind you use on engine blocks for older cars)?
    Oh yeah… and I still need to find the darn pilot lights for the oven and heater… but there’s plenty of info on this thread for that! Keep up the great passion for these old stoves!

  281. Help! I’m desperately trying to locate information about a 4-burner Wincroft enameled gas range that I “inherited” from my home’s previous owners. (The 4 burners are located on left side of the range, with a single oven and separate broiler on the right.) The stove is not connected, so I don’t know if it’s in working condition. I’d like to sell it, but don’t have a clue how to ascertain its fair market value. Do you have any suggestions for where I can go to obtain info about my range? Thanks.

  282. I bought a 1959 Mobile Home with a Wedgewood Holly Cooktop and separate Oven in it. All works great EXCEPT: The oven door has come loose on one side. It feels like it is more than just coming off its hindge. Is there a way to take the oven door apart to look at the inside parts?
    ALSO. (1) burner on the Cooktop has a crack in it. Everything you turn that burner on it blows itself out. Is is possible to replace the part or fix it?

  283. Hey Esses,
    It’s been too long since I messed with engines and don’t remember enough to make a decent choice. Actually, I think the automotive store probably has paper gasket material for a nickel, you could probably cut your own!
    Biggles

  284. Hey Jean,
    Try Esses suggestion and get an idea there. Maybe it’s worth repairing then selling, or maybe not. Be nice to know, eh?
    Hey Karen,
    The oven door should be removable and repairable, I would think. Just make DARNED SURE you take pictures of it before and as you go. This way you can, hopefully, put it back together again.
    As far as the burner goes, it depends on what type it is. Make a phone call to antiquegasstoves.com and see what they have to say.
    Biggles

  285. hey
    its gettin to be really cold and i saw that in one of ur other posts that u said it wasn’t very good to use the heater well i have had my pilot running in it for a week now and the burner has been kicked on and off for the past couple of days i have not noticed any gas smell and i just wanted to know why the technision said not to use it i have been doing fine with mine and it does work well and heat the first floor of my old 1950s home just fine
    oh and i have one other question the oven seemes to have like a minny explosion inside when it lights and i just wanted to know if it is normal there is a tube that runs from the oven burner to the back of the stove and then there is a tube that runs from the heater burner and they both meet at the back of the stove so the oven and heater both share the same pilot it looks as though someone has modifyed this because i had one stove simmilar to this and the oven and heater had seperate pilots i really don’t know what to do so can u give me some info u said that ur stove had a heater, so how is it rigged info please

  286. Hey Julie,
    The repair guy said they were prone to leaking and they usually will shut them down. I didn’t ask about it any further than that.
    As far as your second question, mini explosions in your oven aren’t good in any respect. The stove needs to be inspected by a professional to see if it’s safe. Your gas company will usually come out and do an inspection for free. If it isn’t correctly modified you could very well end up blowing yourself, your home and loved ones to smithereens (this is bad). Please call someone today.
    Biggles

  287. What is the value of a O’Keefe @ Merritt 1940′s and 1950′s style oven in excellent working condition. Also is there anywhere on the oven where one may find the year and model number.

  288. I dunno, it depends on what model and size. My 36″ 1952 wedgewood that was owned by a little old lady and only used 1 or 2 burners was 325 dollars. It’s worth what people will pay, check your local papers.
    My year and model number are located on a metal tag under the burner top. You have to start pulling pieces off to take a look, should be easy to find.
    Biggles

  289. Hey Biggles – been a while since I posted (May 6-9 07). Good to see the thread’s still strong.
    At last writing, I had ordered the repair manual for the clock/timer instruments. It arrived. In a 24 page document there was a single statement regarding the operation of the devices: “Move the small dial on the clock to the “M” position.” Gee, thanks.
    So I proceeded to try your method of setting the timer for an hour………..only to recall that if I knew how to set it, I wouldn’t be in this to begin with. I even put on my big girl thinking cap and moved the clock hands ahead an hour. Purty smart, huh? Well it didn’t fool the stove.
    Bottom line is that I have now ordered the single sheet of instructions for the clock and timer. If it arrives with a single sentence telling me to Move the small dial on the clock to the “M” position, the wig will come off.
    So, Keri (July 7) no, I haven’t, but I am still trying and will let you know how it goes. I’m convinced it’s the equivalent of a CTRL-ALT-DEL on a keyboard. If you have figured it out, please post.
    Still love the stove…..and this post.
    Leighsa

  290. I just bought a 1935 estate fresh air gas stove do i need to vent it? it has a vent in back but some make shift cover covering part of it.

  291. Hey Charlie,
    You should call your local gas company or city inspectors office and ask them directly. The rumor is that you must vent the range to the outside. However, modern gas ranges vent out in to the kitchen, so I don’t really know.
    Biggles

  292. Success! The clock, she ticks no more.
    The two answers I committed to were:
    1. The letters on the interval timer dial stand for Cook, Set and Manual.
    2. I got the timer to stop “ticking” by cleaning and oiling the interval timer.
    I have to eat a little crow, here. In a previous post, I somewhat dismissed the original manual I had purchased from TOAC. The truth of the matter is between this posting and the manuals that are available, there is no reason the average handyperson could not get one of these workhorses back in action, if it wasn’t already. The Clock Repair Manual from theoldapplianceclub.net and the Oven Timer and Interval Timer instruction sheets from antiquegasstoves.com were well worth the money. Your photo-documented instructions in this post are invaluable and comforting – in the knowledge that I’m not the only one who gets gooey in the presence of a well designed piece of equipment. These old stoves are treasures.
    Thanks to all, enjoy your stoves!
    Leighsa

  293. Hi,
    My wife and I bought an O’Keefe/Merritt range from ebay and had to convert it to propane.
    Our gas company suggested we contact the company they order warranty service parts from for old stoves. It’s http://www.theoldapplianceclub.net. It ran $39.00 and change. They sent us a e-mail on how to tell if we needed any other parts. Turns out we did to go along with the regulator. Within 48 hours our stove was running like a top. Their e-mail is toac@sbcglobal.net. I think if you write them they send you a copy too. Best, Luke and Anna

  294. Hi. I googled into this thread while researching values of OKM Aristocrats. I was considering selling mine, but after finding this resource, I might keep it. So it’s normal for the top to be that hot. Maybe I can adjust the flame height so that water will boil in less than 20 min? We can make that 2nd oven stay lit, maybe even without seeking out a vintage stove expert? All cool.
    That 2nd oven with the ‘red button issue’ is a great food dehydrator and sneaker dryer, though. :)
    I bought my stove 5 yrs ago from a restorer in Santa Barbara. Crating and shipping was around $800, if memory serves, in addition to the cost of the stove. It took 3 days to get it in the house using dowels, posts and jacks – it is that heavy.
    It hurts to hear what I’d suspected, that old gas ranges are common in CA. In Seattle, they are rare and very expensive. Nobody cooked with gas here back then because hydroelectric power was cheap and plentiful.
    Dr. Biggles, eventually I found my way up to your home page. It is beautiful and well-organized. Good work!
    Cara

  295. Thanks so much for the flame trick! I turned ‘em up, all six of ‘em, in about 10 min. Now I can cook pasta! I’m keeping my 1952 Aristocrat. Spent hours of quality time w/her today, scrubbing and buffing.
    Cheers!
    Cara

  296. Hey Cara,
    Wow, what great stories, thanks for sharing! Yeah, oddly enough they’re a dime a dozen here and sometimes you can get a perfectly fine one for nothing. “We’re redoing our kitchen and this old stove just doesn’t fit in anymore.” Fine by me. Cheers!
    Biggles

  297. Oh my, Cara!
    I would like to take a moment and publicly thank Cara for a donation of 20 dollars. She clearly felt she got her monies worth here and paid forth. I was totally not expecting that and will take the boys out to lunch today on your behalf! Thank you so very much!
    Biggles

  298. Hi there,
    I have an older Wedgewood Stove. I love it but I need help.
    I have damaged the piping which transported carbon monoxide from the oven to the wall(outside). For this reason, I need advice on the following:
    1. Can you turn off the stove’s tendency to release carbon monoxide by turning off the heater altogether? I don’t need the heater functionality. I live in SF.
    2. Right now, I need to find new piping if the gas will continue to release. Will flexible piping work?
    Thanks for reading and for establishing such a great forum.

  299. Hey Patty,
    Am told that heater should be “Shut off completely, they’re leaky and dangerous.” Since you’re local, call either Apple or Reliance and have a pro do it.
    Flexible piping will work just fine, just make sure it’s steel and not galvanized. If galvanized metal hits actual flames it will release some deadly gas. I can’t remember the name of it. That’s why barbecues aren’t made with galvanized. Be safe!
    Biggles

  300. I have moved into a house with a Caloric Heritage series gas range which has an electronic ignition but the only way I can use the burners is to light them using a match and I cannot use the oven at all. I’m wondering if the ignition was somehow turned off when the power was off and if there is some way to get the range working properly again.

  301. Hello. I have an o’keefe and merritt oven that keeps turning off.
    I hit the reset button and then I turn on the oven and 5 minutes later it turns off and no gas comes through.

  302. Hey Man,
    Call the gas company and have them come out. You’ve either got a problem with your gas pressure or the stove needs repair. They can help!
    Biggles
    ps-and it’s usually free too.

  303. IHAVE A “PAN-O-MATIC” ON MY 60′S OKEEFE & MERRIT STOVE & IT WON’T LIGHT & I DON’T KNOW HOW TO WORK IT. ANY SUGGGESTIONS ALSO THE PILOT ON THE GRIDDLE DOSEN’T STAY LIT.
    THANX, KIM

  304. well i have a 1950′s wedgewood stove and it has one oven and four burners, no griddle though
    what size should the stove top pilots be??
    also when the oven burner reaches the desired temprature and when the oven burner kicks off, it makes a loud boommmmm noise
    the oven lights and keeps temprature like it should
    just wondering if i could stop this
    because my dog lays beside the stove to keep warm and it scars her when it cuts off
    thank you

  305. What a great thread. I have a 50′s Wedgewood that I am converting from LP to Natural gas. Due to the difference in pressure for LP vs NG, I believe the holes need to be opened up for the stove to run on natural gas. The question is how big?
    Also is there anything else that needs to be converted for the stove to work properly?

  306. Hello, I am writing because I just moved into my first apartment and I am fairly certain that the stove has a pilot light. The brand of the little gas stove is Caloric. It is smaller than a standard unit. I am having a few issues with it and want to know if they are normal. I think it has a pilot because the cooktop is warm when nothing is on, and from what I can see it is not plugged in. The issues I am having with it are that when I turn it on I smell gas (fuel). I don’t hear anything, and the burner runs, but it smells. Three of the four burners work, but they only work on high. Has anyone ever heard of a stove that doesnt adjust the flame while you are cooking. I cant go from boiling to simmering as it is. Lastly I dont know how to tell if the oven is on (it doesnt heat up quickly) and when I turn it on it smells and I am afraid it is not on and I am just flooding the apartment with gas. Anything you can tell me will help because I dont really know anything about this oven. If you need further info, just let me know, I will try to figure it out. I just want to be able to cook again! Thanks and great page you have here!

  307. I was so thrilled to find this site. Thank you! We just moved into an old house with an OKM stove (don’t know model- has griddle in center top, broiler on left and glassless oven on right). Our oven was working just fine last week and suddenly, last night, after preparing a big cassorole ready to go in, we found it not to heat up anymore!
    The pilot is on (visible in the drawer underneath) but oven doesn’t seem to heat up. What could be the reason for this? I read in some other threads about a safety valve (where would it be?) but frankly, not sure what the valve does nor to do with it if I found it! :) Could you help? (Stovetop works fine.)
    Also, this may sound lame, but what is that little button between the griddle and oven knob for?

  308. Hi, I’m new to this (asking for help that is). I have a 1950′s magic chef gas stove. I bought it from a lady that used natural & I have LP. The flames are really high and yellow. I’ve adjusted the burners but nothing happened. Is there somthing I’m doing wrong or do I need a part I don’t have? Thanks for any HELP ya’ll might be able to give me.
    Troy Crader

  309. Hello, question my gas stove’s surface stays really hot…I am getting corncerned that maybe it is dangerous. Are gas stove surfaces suppose to stay hot and is it dangerous if they are? my friend said it was becuase of the pilots but i thinks its unsafe.please help…its a very old stove too

  310. Hey Everyone,
    Sorry, I’ve been off-planet (busy) and haven’t had time to help out here. Let’s start with Kim,
    As far as the griddle and pilot lights, they probably need adjusting or the gas lines need opening. You need to pull the griddle out and find the little gas lines that feed the burners in question. Somewhere along those lines you’ll see a little valve, open that up and see if you can get gas fed to that unit. Or call a pro, that’s what I’d do. Sometimes those pan-o-matics or heaters were turned OFF because they LEAK and make you go boom.
    Ronnie,
    The pilot lights should be about a half inch. Call your local gas company and see if they can send out a technician for FREE, they do that. Say your stove is going boom.
    Carrie,
    There’s probably an inline converter that needs to be removed, check the back of the stove where the main gas comes in. Then, yeah. You have to mess with the air vents at the burners, but I don’t have the technical information for that. Sorry hey.
    Chelsye,
    You have some real issues with your range that I just can’t do from here. It’s too much for me and to be honest, it may be cheaper to find another range.
    TT,
    You need to take the clothes off your stove. Lift out your griddle and burner plates & covers. Look around for that red knob, push it. Hopefully it’ll pop back on.
    Troy,
    Don’t use that stove! IT’s a BOMB. Look through this thread, it’s long I know. There’s a regulator you need that lowers the pressure of the propane! You won’t have to adjust anything, just install that regulator, should only be about 40 bux. Your local gas company may have them for sale.
    Mark,
    Yup, hot. It’s normal. Great to defrost things on and proof bread! Don’t sweat it, heh. Keeps my kitchen warm in the winters.
    Biggles

  311. I have an old BEACH, a great old work-horse. hasn’t given me a problem for many years. However while cooking our holiday turkey (which turned out just fine)I noticed the oven burner was comming on an off repeatedly for a while (about 45 min. or so)it then continued as normal. The next time I used the oven (a day or so later) only the oven pilot was working, increasing in size when I turned the oven up. The oven flame tube, or burner (if thats what it’s called) would not light. After reading these great threads I looked for the tell-tale “red button” I too did not find it, however there seemed to be a lever at the front of this burner tube which I jiggled. The burner jumped to life. Would this have been a quick fix or do you think that there is something wrong with the thermostat, as the pilot works, but no gas was comming to the burner until I jiggled that lever, that I can’t really get at to see what it is?
    Any of your excellent advice would be helpfull. I really don’t want to get a repairman if I can help it, as I really love this old girl. The new stoves won’t compare. Our local repair guys seem to find it easier to just sell a new unit where I come from.
    Kind Regards, Chris.

  312. Hey Chris,
    Am not familiar with your rig and not familiar with the lever you speak of. But if wigglin’ it from time to time keeps you on track, go for it!
    It does sound as though your oven’s thermostat is going south, or some burner/pilot assemblies may need cleaning. I would start asking around, peeking in to places to see if you can possibly find someone local to look at it. Put an ad in a local paper or your local CraigsList. This way, when she finally takes a nose dive, you have a resource available.
    Biggles

  313. Mr.Biggles,
    We have a 1949 furnace (still working!) with an old GE thermostat in the living room. The thermostat cycles too infrequently and obviously needs replacement or repair. Can you suggest anyone to take a look at it and if we need to replace it, do you know where to find a vintage thermostat (new ones look so out-of-place in this vintage house)? We also have an old Wedgewood which still works great. Thanks, Ann

  314. Hey Ann,
    Oh criminy, I don’t. But I totally dig the need for the old.
    Have you pulled the cover off and cleaned it? Sometimes dust and gunk can cause it to operate irrationally. Vacuum/isopropyl alcohol with a q-tip. If that doesn’t do it, put an ad in Craigslist or local paper for someone. Also look for companies that sell salvaged pieces from older homes. Get the word on the street, they may not have something today, but might have something around the corner.
    But for now, replace it with new and hold on to the older one. It might take some time, but it’ll be worth the wait. There’s really not much to those old things, surely it’ll all come together soon.
    Biggles

  315. Mr.Biggles,
    I have a 1960′s Welbilt gas wall oven, the temperature setting is no longer operating. It takes at least an hour for the oven to reach 300 degrees. I can no longer use the broiler as the flame is so low. Is there an easy fix for this problem? Is this oven worth trying to repair?

  316. Hey Pat,
    There might be. You’d have to open up the oven’s guts enough to find the thermostat and see if there is a flame height adjustment. That might be tough because they’re generally not labelled. Plus, by the 1960′s, they could have taken the ability away from us to easily make those adjustments. The thermotat might be completely sealed, factory only adjustments.
    This means you either need a new thermostat or replace the oven. If you really like the oven, try to find someone who can repair it. If not, replace the sucker. Ovens aren’t as fussy as stove-tops are. All you need of an oven is to get hot reliably. But stove-tops you require a lot more of it, so it matters. I’d have to spend over 2k to get a stove as good as my old wedgewood. But nearly any new oven will do just fine.
    Biggles

  317. Dr. Biggles:
    I am restoring a 1937 Glenwood gas range. It’s just about done (major cleaning, taken apart, back together, etc.). Do you think it’s OK to have the local gas company guy come and inspect the gas workings to make sure they are OK, or is it better to bring it to an antique stove expert? The big difference is price — an expert I found in NY will charge $1,000 to check the gas. I imagine a local appliance or gas company guy would be cheaper (or free for the gas company). I live in New York if that makes a difference. Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Thanks.

  318. Hey Michael,
    Hmmm, good question. For 1000 dollars I would think the expert will be yanking panels off and going over it with a fine toothed comb, that’s a lot of money to check for gas leaks.
    I would call the local gas company. If after his inspection he feels the stove is unsafe, he’ll red-tag it. Then you’ll have to spend the money on the expert. Do the least expensive thing first.
    Biggles

  319. Many thanks for the advice.
    In the interim, I actually found an appliance repair place near my house that specializes in antique stoves. I’m going to speak with them about checking it out (they charge about $150 for a house visit) and then bring in the gas company at the end to make sure it’s “officially” OK with them as well.
    THanks again.

  320. Hey Michael,
    That’s great news and a most excellent solution. It really pays to call around and ask. And while spending the money now can sound a bit pricey, consider the buying of new.
    Biggles

  321. You are absolutely right. This project has been a real labor of love — a year and a half in the making. I nearly threw it out a few months ago, but then a guy from Antique Appliances told me that if I finish the restoration the way I am planning, the stove would be worth $8000K. Pretty amazing, given that I got it for free from the basement of a church in Western Massachusetts. I’m really looking forward to cooking on it. Thanks again for your advice.

  322. I have been cleaning an O&M model l420-G. I removed the orifice caps (two caps per burner) that regulate the flow from the valves to the simmer and cook burners. When I removed them I noticed that they seem to have a stationary needle valve. Will these caps need to be adjusted for ratio or are they for flow only as you seem to indicate in your 9/16″ wrench instructions?
    On the O&M they are 1/2″ wrench size but they appear to be in the same place and have the same function.
    Can you shed some light on this?
    Thanks,
    SAP

  323. Hi Santiago,
    Those “butterfly” … oh the name is secaping me. But those triangle plates that move to the right and to the left are for adjusting the gas vs. oxygen flow. You want to have clean, blue flames. No spikes of orange or yellow. The stationary needle valves that I describe in my post are for volume.
    Here’s a note I need to add on the main post. Adjusting the flame height isn’t about jacking it up as high as you can, well sort of. But when you bring it down to a low, low, low simmer. You want both the center ring and the outter ring to be similar, adjust high, then bring down and see where it lays.
    Biggles

  324. Biggles: another annoying question from me:
    I looked at the burner valves on my stove, specifically the nuts at the back of the valves that can be adjusted for flame height.
    I opened up the valve and there is nothing inside those two tubes that lead to the simmer and overall burner. I understand that a lot of the other older stoves have little jets or nozzles in this space and by adjusting the nuts, you adjust the nozzles. Is this true? Otherwise, in my case, I can’t see how moving the nuts on the valve is going to affect the height of the flame since the same amount of gas will be coming out regardless.
    I hope this makes sense, and really appreciate all of your help and support.
    Michael

  325. Hey Michael,
    Hmmmm, ya know, I wonder if whomever had the needle valves, or whatever, removed. This wasn’t a range for someone’s home, it was for a church? Right? They would have required maximum everything, that’s why they went for the 6 burner, 2 oven rig. I wouldn’t worry about it, for now. Take note of the type of burners you have and over time you can get replacement pieces, if you so choose.
    Biggles

  326. You’re probably right. I hooked it up to the gas the other day and all the burners work fine — surprisingly not exceptionally high flames. All pretty normal. Maybe the lack of nozzles was on purpose by Glenwood?

  327. You’re probably right. I hooked it up to the gas the other day and all the burners work fine — surprisingly not exceptionally high flames. All pretty normal. Maybe the lack of nozzles was on purpose by Glenwood?

  328. Biggles:
    I stumbled upon this thread while researching our ’50′s Wedgewood stove. Great information! Two years ago we purchased an old house and the old stove remained. Luckily, the stove/oven are working well. I’m thinking of purchasing another stove like ours to have for spare parts just in case. We have a 4 burner, center griddle with a double oven and double broiler. Also, it has the clock with S&P shakers above with the timer and a light below the folding shelf. Will I need to find the exact model or something similar because many parts are the same on different models/years? For example, are the safety valves and thermostats for different years the same, therefore, interchangeable? Thanks for a great source!

  329. Hey Robert,
    Yes, many of the working guts are interchangeable. However, many of the outter guts such cover plates and cooking grates and griddles are not. I don’t know them well enough to give you years of this and that, versus those and these.
    That being said, I’ve had my stove for about 6 or so years now and haven’t needed a spare range. Remember, the parts you’re talking about, such as safety valves and thermostats should be replaced with new or close. The old stove may have a bad one as well, or a piece on its way out.
    Personally, I wouldn’t bother with a spare range. These old stoves aren’t like new ones, they rarely break. Sure it’s a little more difficult finding parts and people to work on them, but it’s worth it. Besides, parts and repairs are far easier today than there were even 4 years ago. When I started doing searches for older gas ranges, there wasn’t much available. Only a few web sites popped up that actually had parts for sale. But today, you got a lot more choices. I wouldn’t worry about it, there’s are more dastardly things out there to spend your time worrying about.
    Biggles

  330. I have an old caloric range. My propane supplier messed up and I ran out. I hit the red reset button under the top and got the grilling oven working, but I cant get any gas to go into the main oven to relight the pilot. when I turn on the oven knob, nothing, no gas hiss or smell. Is it possible there’s another reset button for the main oven exclusive of the red one that’s on the main in/out connection? thanks

  331. I have a really old wall oven with the name of Wincroft. It bakes and cooks good, however I have to light it manually and it takes forever for it to preheat. It never really gets up to the proper temperature. I have been trying to find info on this brand. Also the broiler doesn’t work. $$ is tight right now. I know I probably need a new one that is more efficient. Would you have any advice?
    Thanks Debbie

  332. I have a Tappan Deluxe model, Im guessing about a 1948? I cant seem to figure out how to light the pilots. I can light them all by hand, but the stove doesnt get any hotter.
    Go easy on me….just a single mom with a dream. And a nightmare of blowing us all up!
    Cody

  333. Hey Jonathan,
    There might be a separate safety valve, but you should have found it by now. Did you pull the clothes off the range, around the burners?
    Hey Debbie,
    Sounds as though your thermostat is out of whack, either needs replacing or adjusting. Probably the latter. See if you can’t remove the oven’s clothes so you can find a name/model number for the thermostat, where the knob is. Once you have that, you can contact your local repair companies or do an online search. Once that’s replaced, all should be fine and happy.
    Cody,
    I don’t quite understand. Are the pilot lights lit er not? And by hotter, do you mean the stove or the burners? Or just the general temperature of the range when nothing is going.
    Something to keep in mind, some people have their pilots turned off because they’re afraid of them or don’t like wasting gas. If they’re not lighting, that could be it. Call your local gas company and they’ll come out and usually get it going for nothing. Rock on Single Mom!
    Biggles

  334. Sorry, the pilots do not light but I can light the burners and the oven by hand. I just cant seem to find where the pilot is or why it wont stay lit. Once I turn the burner knobs to OFF they wont relight unless I do it by hand again. The oven will light by hand, but the flame wont get any bigger when I turned the heat up. I just assume my local handyman wont know any more than I do about vintage ovens. I may give them a call and see.

  335. Hey Cody,
    It sounds as though you have several problems going on. The oven sounds like a thermostat problem (probably need a new one). And the pilots probably need cleaning or adjusting, the gas company can usually at least adjust them for you. That’s FREE. Give them a call as well.
    Biggles

  336. My gas service man found the pilot valves had been shut off. He adjusted it as you advised and they work great. There may also be such a fix for the oven pilot, but he said he didnt know enough to feel comfortable messing with that. The oven pilot doesnt appear to be close enough to the gas opening to auto light it? In other words…I need an owners manuel. Any advice on where to get one? Tappan Deluxe Model VK 6314
    Thanks again!

  337. Hey Cody,
    One single parent to another, you’re going to need to sit down and play.
    Yank out the racks and cover plates for the oven, same for the top of the stove. If you spend some time, you can follow the incoming gas line to the pilots, to the burners, to the oven.
    The pilot gas lines are the same for the stovetop burners as for the oven. They just go diferent directions. It’s a dead simple situation, just take your time and follow the bouncing ball, it’s all there.
    Biggles

  338. I have been told that the oven doesnt work on a pilot light. That I have to turn on the oven valve and the oven on/off dial and light the oven each time. This comming from someone who currently owns this model Tappan? However, I followed the ball and it lead me to a very distinct looking pilot….I found someone who is sending me a copy of the owners manuel so all will be answered and final. You have been great! If only my kids had an owners manuel and an OFF dial…HEEHEE!
    Rock On Service Star!

  339. Just wanted to add my two cents: My old Glenwood oven has to be lit with a match. However, there is a tube that sits next to the main burner that looks like a pilot, and it functions like one – sort of – but it’s for relighting the main burner when the thermostat senses that the temperature of the oven has dropped and the full burner needs to come back on. Example: to light the oven, I turn the thermostat all the way up and then turn the handle that provides gas to the oven. I light with a match and the blue flames come right up. If I turn the thermostat all the way down (but leave the front handle alone), the main flames go out but the little “pilot” light next to it stays on. That little pilot will stay lit until I turn off the handle on the front. It’s like a part-time pilot light for the stove to cycle up and down.
    Hope this helps some.
    Michael

  340. This is the 390th Comment on this post.
    Thanks Michael, any help is appreciated.
    Yes, many of the older, older ranges had to be lit manually. Not sure of the exact reason why, but it did exist. I know some of the far less expensive, plain ranges wouldn’t have any pilots at all to keep costs down. Don’t sweat it.
    Sorry, no owner manuals for kidlets, hooboy. If so, I would buy a few spares just in case.
    Biggles

  341. Thanks for posting back to me about my old Caloric…a service person held the range knob in and put a blowtorch to the thermal control next to the pilot in the oven, but nothing happened…no gas came through at all…he said the control box behind the knob from which the lines to the pilot and thermostat and oven emanate needs to be replaced and parsts would be very hard to find…I’m bummed cause 40″ ovens are hard to come by, and this one’s in nice physical shape…

  342. and this is to jonathan
    antiquegasstoves will restore the part that you already have and that way you won’t have to replace it so i would go there first if i were you
    they rebuilt my saftey valve and my thermostat
    it is cheap and is done in under 2 weeks

  343. This was an awesome find! We have a
    wedgewood just like yours. Before the holidays I was not able to get the oven to light which caused a problem during the holidays, cooking the turkey at the neighbors etc. We pretty much just did without the stove since, till recently my wife got fed up with it and started shopping for a professional stove costing over 5g!!No thanks. Which prompt me to this research…which led me to you! Couple pushes on that red button I never new was for and walah I got oven ! Thanks Dr. Biggles Im a hero now. I even adjusted the the stove burners and now can boil water on any of the four burners…again a hero. Now to make me a super hero, how do I adjust the flame on the oven/ broiler for a higher flame is it simalar to adjusting the burners ?
    Thanks again for all this great info I’ve probaly gained 5 lbs from all the cookies my wife and kids are making now….Ron

  344. Hey Ron,
    Most excellent and as my email to you stated, I don’t know. Thought I did, but no. I believe it may be an internal adjustment that we can readily get to. Anyone else out there that can speak from fact and knowledge?
    Biggles

  345. Thanks very much, belatedly, for the guidance…I called antique stoves…they sound great…my wife wants to move on to an updated, electronic product but, for the moment, I’m staying the course…thanks again…

  346. Hi
    I’ve been considering a 1950s double oven with glass doors. But because I’ll be doing some serious baking, now I’m worried that the glass ‘porthole’ doors won’t be as efficient as the glassless doors: either by not cooking (or maintaining heat) evenly or not insulating as well. Do you have any information or opinion on that?
    Thanks!

  347. Hi Theresa,
    I don’t have any facts about the glass in the oven doors causing any problems with uneven or fluctuating temperatures in these ovens. I do have some opinions.
    I’ve used older gas ranges with windows in the doors and found no problems or differences in the way they bake when compared to the ones without windows. Although, my baking I don’t consider my baking serious. Just bread and mostly roasts, chickens and pizza.
    I would be more interested to know how accurate and stable the thermostats are. And would plan on replacing them, just so you know what exactly your ovens are up to.
    I can offer this tasty bit of advice for baking and it comes from a notable source, Pastry Chef Shuna Lydon. No matter how good your oven is, commercial and/or convection, you must rotate your food. She said when she was baking at the French Laundry, there was one thing they made that had to be rotated in the oven every 7 minutes. So, pay more attention to the guts and don’t worry about the glass. That’s how I figure it.
    Biggles

  348. I have a Wedgewood Model M316 and cannot for the life of me light the pilot for the oven. I cannot find any button to push to get it going. The stove was in storage for 4 years and is virtually brand-new.

  349. Hi Kim,
    With the gas on, after about 10 minutes, smell gas in the kitchen?
    There’s 1 of maybe 3 things that could be going on. First off, that red button needs to be found and pressed. Or, that model doesn’t have a pilot light, or at some point in the past, someone had the pilot shut off.
    I would call the local gas company and have them come out (free) and and attempt to get it going.
    Biggles

  350. I have looked everywhere for the pilot and the elusive red button, must not have either. Have the gas company updating the meter Monday, so I will have them take a look. Thanks! I have been looking everywhere for info on this stove. I have a manual ordered but not too patient and want to start baking. I have had the stove for over a year but due to gas line issues just got it hooked up.
    Kim

  351. Hey Kim,
    You took all the clothes off around the burners and looked around inside there?
    When you turn the oven to to say, 350, does gas pour out of the burner in the oven? Or just dead?
    Best to have the gas company take a look, they pretty well versed.
    Biggles

  352. Biggles,
    I have taken the entire oven apart over the past year and not red button. The oven does pour gas out when I turn on the gas. There is a place on the oven knob that says gas on, also in the oven there is a hole with enamel on either side saying “Light Here”. When the gas company shows I will have them double check, but I am fairly sure at this point that there is not a pilot.
    I have successfully baked several things in the past 24 hours and the carbon monoxide alarm has not gone off. :) I love this old oven! I have purchased it from my apartment building and when I move it is going too!
    Thanks,
    Kim

  353. Light here? When you stick a match in there does the oven pop on? Or nothing?
    I’ll bet there’s no pilot. In any case, enjoy the range and don’t trade it for nuttin’!
    Biggles

  354. Yup, when I stick a match in there and have the oven at about 200F it pops on, holds the temperature perfect. My cookies just came out perfect, both batches.
    Thanks for all of the help. I needed to reassured that I was not doing something horribly wrong and going to kill my cat and dog with carbon monoxide.
    THANKS!
    Kim

  355. I have a buyer interested in buying my 1938 Welbilt Equi-Thermal Gas Stove, but he wants to know if it can be converted to propane. I read over the post here and see that some have already done this. Can you confirm that my stove can be converted?
    We purchased a pre-war apartment in December and this beauty was sitting in the kitchen in great condition after having been used for almost 70 years. All the original parts were there and only a small chip on the front with normal wear (on the inside) that would be expected of a stove this old.
    Thanks!
    Michelle

  356. Hey Dr. Biggles,
    We have a Wincroft built-in wall oven.
    Model # 100 GLO. The oven does light with a match. However, the flame is blue but not big enough and turning the temperature control knob does not seem to adjust the flame. Can you help? Thank you.
    Patrica

  357. Hi and help you? I bought a O.K.M. the side of the storage bin says 1. Light pilot. 2. wait two minutes. 3. then push red button safety is now in operation. Pilot is on in the oven but oven burner will not come on. if you play with the botton or the oven knob you will get a slight flame or a puff of fire for a second but nothing that would cook food or light a candle hope you can help thx much adam strickland P.S. hungary in C.A.

  358. Hey Biggs – long time no post. The new site is awesome.
    In response to Ron’s Feb 7 and your Feb 8 posts – the flame adjustment on my ’53 Wedgewood double oven broiler is at the very bottom of the base of the L-shaped broiler element, facing the front of the stove and slightly to the right. It is a little button (smaller than a dime) with a slot in the center to receive a flat head screw driver. If yours has crud, you may not be able to see the slot, as it does not traverse the entire head of the button. As the adjustment button is at the BACK of the broiler, adjusting it while it is on would be risky even with my boney little sticks for arms. I would recommend you remove the broiler drawer, turn on the broiler to get a visual, then turn it off. Use your screw driver to turn the button a quarter turn: clockwise increases flame, counter c/w reduces flame. A quarter turn has about a 25% impact on my oven. Make your adjustment with the broiler off, then turn the broiler on again and check your impact. I’ll be happy to take a picture if you want a visual.
    Hope this helps.
    Leighsa

  359. hey dr.biggles,
    this is an awesome resource. I just received (from California) my 1950 O’keefe and Merrit range….I am soooo excited..This unit has been in storage for 50 years and is like new. The problem I have is
    that I can get the inner ring to light but not the outer ring…?I have tried the flame adjustment nuts but does not seem to change things. Any recomendations would be appreciated.
    many thanks, keep the great info coming
    Margaret
    Delta,B.C.
    Canada

  360. I am so glad I found this – I am having the oven problem that many others have had.
    I have a 1947 O’Keefe and Merritt stove; four burners, griddle in the middle, GrillOvater on the left. Everything works fine EXCEPT the oven. Pilots lighted fine; by reading this thread I searched out and found the red buttoned safety valve; in my particular oven it is at the front right of the storage drawer, under the GrillOvater cabinet. The valve supplies both the GrillOvater and the oven. GrillOvater gets gas just fine. Oven still won’t ignite, there isn’t any sound of gas or anything. Tried putting ice on the thermostat and still no go. Any suggestions? Thanks so much – Rowan

  361. Hi Everyone, and sorry I’ve been away for a little while. Been ever so busy.
    To be perfectly honest, I got no ideas. I think I’d be calling the repair person at this point. Sorry …

  362. Wondering if perhaps the safety valve releases on the GrillOvater side but not the oven? I know that there are replacements for those and easily done especially given the location mine is at. Only other thing I can think of is that the thermostat has gone south. Opinion? :D Thanks – Rowan

  363. Rowan,
    Keep looking. It is my experience that each oven and grillevator has its own safety valve. I have an O’K&M Aristocrat with two ovens, Grillevator and broiler. It has three safety valves.
    Cheers!!
    Savvy

  364. Hi again,
    I actually posted this question in the wrong area. I guess my eyes were tired and I just did not see the LEAVE A COMMENT section here.
    So, anyway, 1958 Caloric Gas Range. Got it converted to propane except that we can’t find a way to adjust the pilot lights. They are way too high. There are 4 regular burner with 2 pilot lights, 1 oven with a pilot and a 5th burner/griddle with its own pilot. The griddle pilot has a small valve with a tiny screw and turning that allowed us to adjust the pilot. The other 4 burners and the oven do not have the valve w/ screw. Anyone we call just has one thing to say “why would you buy an old stove??”. So, no one local will help including our propane supplier.
    If anyone has another idea on where the adjusting valve might be or a way around this problem I would certainly appreciate the help.
    Thanks
    Dawn

  365. Hi,
    Nope, no adjusting screws there.
    What we are planning on doing is taking the valve with the adj screw from the 5th burner/griddle pilot line and moving it to the oven pilot line so that pilot will be adjustable. Then removing all 3 pilot lines for the top burners and using pipe plugs to block the propane. All of the surface pilot lines come in to one unit and screw in.
    Then we will be able to light the burners with a match, but will have a pilot for the oven.
    The problem is that we can’t find pipe plugs with the same thread size as the unit.
    That is the plan as of today anyway – each day seems to bring another problem. We thought this was going to be so easy!
    Thanks
    Dawn

  366. Hi again,
    Yes, there is an adjusting screw behind the oven knob!! It even says propane/natural. It was well hidden but the flashlight found it.
    Thanks so much!!
    Dawn

  367. This is a follow up to a post I listed here in January of 2007. We did ultimately get our oven lit, but what it took was pressing and holding down the red reset button for five full seconds.
    Hopefully this can help someone out there.

  368. I’ve got a late 1940 “Universal” brand 36″ double oven – fairly similar to a wedgewood. I keep hearing that you can adjust the oven thermostat to read proper, but in looking behind the knob, I only see the flow adjustments for the pilot and main oven. There’s a dial-thing (looks like a mini clock face) on the thermostat, but it does not want to move using a screwdriver. Is this even the right place to adjust the oven temp?

  369. AH… I got it. The two screws on the face of the thermostat dial must be loosened to make the temp adjustment free.
    Trouble is, I can’t get it quite right. It stops warming at 350 or gets way too hot. I suppose that suggests the thermostat itself needs work/replacing…

  370. Hey Jack,
    Yeah, needs replacing. If it’ll hold a temp, you’re good. But if, even after adjusting, the temp moves from this to that to incinerate? Needs replacing.
    I don’t know what the current prices for such repairs, either done by yourself or a pro. But the cost of buying a replacement or new is a lot more.
    Cheers!

  371. I just converted my furnace from oil to gas, and my 1952 Wedgewood to gas from propane. Gas guy installed regulator purchased from Antique Stoves.com, set to NAT. Gas pressure seems inadequate – small flames, pilot won’t stay lit, adjusting nuts has no effect.He can’t figure out.
    What is the required input pressure for Natural Gas for these stoves? The new regulator seems to indicate it is set for 4psig, but I don’t think I have that much. I will get the gas company to come & test but would like to be forearmed with the right info.
    Thanks – wonderful site!

  372. Hmmm, call the gas company and ask them what you should be receiving from them, I would think it should be closer to 8. The gas company will come out and handle the situation, usually for free.
    Biggles

  373. The gas installer put a regulator on the gas line and a new regulator in the stove proper. Is that right? It seems to me that a regulator into a regulator is overkill & may explain the low pressure.

  374. Hey Ken,
    I don’t really know much about propane fired gas ranges. Since you purchased the regulator from antiquestoves.com, call them and ask. They’re very helpful and will give you the information you need.
    Biggles

  375. I am thinking of purchasing an old Wedgewood or O’keefe & Merritt gas stove. Most likely a 40s -50s model. How do you vent these stoves? Most of the ones I see advertised are vented with a stove pipe thru the wall. Is that necessary? Can you vent with a regular vent hood?
    Thank you!

  376. Hey Ms.,
    You need to call your local gas company and ask for their input, I don’t want to endanger anyone.
    That being said, how are modern stoves vented? Usually through small vents that lead out over the burner area. Mine is vented by just a 8″ tall pipe that points directly up to my vent hood. No problems in over 7 years.
    Biggles

  377. Update on my Apple Stoves (Oakland,Ca) restored O’K&M Aristocrat:
    It looked great and worked well……for about 7 months.
    Then the center oven would not hold temperature. It tended to get about 75-100 degrees too hot. Not willing to call Apple to come fix it (had a tenuous issue earlier regarding the poor manner in which the wiring was done), I just compensated by turning the thermostat down……until last Friday night.
    I started to cook BBQ Shrimp a la the Frugal Gourmet, when suddenly my oven was filled with flames. I shut of the oven and the flames lingered about 10 seconds then went out. I removed my pan of shrimp and, with the oven door open, I fired up the oven. About 10 seconds later, a flame appeared along the side wall. I removed the bottom oven pan to expose the oven burner and relit the oven. 10 seconds later, a trailing flame went along the wall and down to a hole between the firewall. The same hole that the gas pipe goes through!
    Friday, Saturday and Sunday were Take-Out days.
    Monday morning, convinced that Apple did/or didn’t do something, I called Reliance (Berkeley, CA) and scheduled a service for this morning between 9-11. At 9:15 Sau from Reliance arrived. In less than 30 seconds he diagnosed that I had a leak in my gas line (No Shit, Sherlock). In 30 minutes, it was removed and replaced. I was showed where the leak was….it was very corroded.
    Sau told me he had the same stove that he restored himself. He asked me if I fixed mine or did I get it “this way.” I told him it had been restored by Apple to the tune of about 5 grand…..what do you mean “this way.” Sau shook his head in disgust.
    Then he began pointing out what a layman could not see…….
    First, the stove burners had been installed wrong. It seems there are two sizes of burners, big ones and little ones. It turns out, the big ones go up front…not in back. He pointed out that my thermostats had not been rebuilt (even though I was charged for a new one). The stove top light should be one fluorecent, not two incadescent. He pointed out that the oven door light swutches were stuck in the off position, it turned out they weren’t even wired), the Grillevator pilot light had not been stabilized, it was just hanging. With all the components out, I saw how dirty the lower compartment was, this stove had never been steam cleaned….though I paid for it.
    I should have known better. Apple had very poor communication. (what was said to be a six week project went on almost one year!) If I had seen the shop prior, I would never have hired them. It was in the back of a building in West Oakland.The entry was a narrow pathway between an old beat up RV and a over grown vine fence. Once behind the RV, a field of dead stoves. The shop itself was filled with parted out stoves. The only active project appeared to be my Aristocrat. If you go to their website, you can see a picture of my stove in my kitchen, the implication is that it was a restored stove that was sold by them.
    So, I now have a new repair guy, Sau.
    If you live in the Bay Area and need repair or service to your old stove, call Reliance (510) 525-5921 and request Sau.
    Cheers!!

  378. Savvy,
    Glad you didn’t set your house on fire. But sounds like you are one of many, many victims.
    To all, a general announcement:
    The state of Kansas has a warrant out for the arrest of Stevan Thomas of Vintage Stoves (where I purchased mine). Here is a link to a very sad and bizarre story:
    http://growabrain.typepad.com/growabrain/2007/02/leopold_bloom.html
    If you ordered or purchased a stove from Vintage Stoves, you may want to look at the (long) post. The state’s attorney is also accepting claims against Mr. Thomas and Vintage Stoves. See the post for details and contact information.
    In speaking to one of the posting families that lost one of the last known working models of it’s particular type (and happen to live close to me) regarding the matter, I found out another interesting piece of information – Some states will NOT insure your home if they find out you have one of these antique stoves installed – might want to check into that before making the investment.
    Best to All,
    Leighsa

  379. Does anyone have the back wiring diagram for an O’keefe and Merritt stove? Maybe even where to get a service manual? We have the fold down shelf model. The lights at the top are acting funky. When one 40W bulb is screwed in it lights up aprox. 28W but when the second 40W bulb is screwed in they both barely light up. The watt meter then reads 35W. Can’t seem to figure out how to fix this. We have checked for any loose connections..can’t find any. So, wondering if the wiring in the back is done properly. Any help appreciated. Thanks!

  380. I’ve been reading this thread with interest. A few people ask about ovens that can be lit by match and do not have a red button. Your stove most likely simply does not have a safety. Not a big deal.
    They can be purchased and added if you want a standing pilot for your oven..and the added comfort of a gas turn off in the event that the flame goes out (or you forget to light it). And the code in some localities may require – although older stoves are often grandfathered in.
    One easy way to look for a safety is to look for the “CP” logo which advertizes a manufacturing standard from the late 40′s early 50′s that included among other things…a safety.

  381. hi. i have a wedgewood similar to the one in your pictures. last week i noticed the top of the stove (above the pilots) is very hot. the griddle is also warm. it seems like the flames on the pilots got much bigger all of a sudden. how can i adjust them to be smaller? thank you!!!

  382. I have an old Wedgewood, maybe 1950 or so. During the summer the heat emanating from it is adds heat to the kitchen. Is it possible to turn of the pilots for the summer (or at least some of them) and light the burners w/matches? Or is there some way to switch back and forth (pilots on/pilots off?)
    I would rather live in the summer without the oven than put up w/added heat in an already very hot old victorian.
    thanks in advance for any advice.
    Catherine

  383. I’d like to thank you for an excellent site, and I’d like to add my own issue, which was just solved by one of your responders, in case it helps the search engines flag this solution easier.
    I have an O’keefe and Merritt, probably a 425 (1952-ish) based on photos from other web sites, this one has the heater on the left side (disconnected).
    Last weekend I installed a gas clothes dryer and that required me to turn off the main gas. Since then I was unable to use the oven even though the burners were all fine and the oven pilot was lit — no gas would flow to the oven burner.
    Well, I read here about the red button and thought I had it solved. But, alas, that didn’t seem to help. I continued reading and was about to just go buy another red button safety valve when I chanced upon Kim’s November 3rd, 2006 message above. My O&M also has that weird little tab thing attached to the clock with a C S M on it. I flipped the tab thing from S to M and tried again, and it’s all good now. My dinner’s in the oven both figuratively and literally. Word! Thanks Kim, thanks Dr. Biggles.

  384. I have a Rheem Wedgewood and the oven flame is very low. The Robertshaw thermostat can be turned any direction after it is push in to turn off or on. There is no detent to stop the knob from turning. Do I have to replace the Robertshaw thermostat or have it rebulit. How much do a rebulit Robertshaw thermostat cost.
    Thanks,
    Billg

  385. Great site, btw…
    …can anyone recommend a REPAIR SERVICE for antique stoves, based in or near San Francisco, Calif.?
    I really need a strong reference and your help is very much appreciated.
    Thanks, in advance.
    -John

  386. Hey Billg,
    Sorry for the delay, I thought I had responded! You can usually buy a replacement, you must send in your old one so they have a core. I have no idea how much they cost these days, you’d have to contact one of the online references in the thread here. http://www.antiquestoves.com comes to mind.
    Hey John,
    Well, it looks as though Apple Appliance is now out of the loop, for now anyways. My only recommendation is Reliance Appliance in Berkeley. They’ve been around for about 400 years and travel to SF regularly. Take care,
    Biggles

  387. Hello, everyone! This is excellent! I want to purchase a Wedgewood or O’keefe & Merritt. Which is better? What are the advantages and disadvantages of them? How do they compare in performance, ease to use, esthetics, etc? Thanks.
    Simon

  388. Hey Simon,
    There’s a few other brands out there as well. Such as Chambers & Magic Chef.
    Which is better? That’s a tough call. From the stoves I’ve played with, the O & Merritt tend to be a classier situation. However, both manufacturers make strippy versions and both have some bells and whistles. And considering we’re 50+ years out from when they were new, it’s more about finding one that’s in good, solid, working condition. Unless you have tons of cash, then it’s about finding a reputable dealer/restorer.
    The internal guts tend to be quite similar if not exactly the same. Burner assemblies & oven thermostats can be interchangeable. My dream range is a 6 burner, 2 oven range. I need the burners over the griddle, although I do remove the chrome griddle and put my cast iron over the hole and cook on that instead from time to time.
    You need to start shopping and see what looks good to you, there’s so many to look at!
    Biggles

  389. We have an old O’Keefe and Merritt I think it’s series 4900, 40 inches wide we had to move and disconnect to redo the floors. Now we have lit the pilots and can’t find the reset buttons. Any idea where we might find them? Thanks! maggie

  390. FYI…
    My Grillevator burner on my O’K & M Aristocrat 5650 would not light.
    The pilot light was lit. It required me to press the red button on my safety valve (Pickle Valve) each time. I thought I needed a new safety valve. The Old Appliance Club (TOAC) requested a photo of the valve to confirm they had it in stock. I’m glad they did. I noticed that the pilot flame was not heating the safety valve heat sensor. Once I re-alligned the sensor all is well.
    So…….
    If you think you need a new saftey valve, check the position of the heat sensor first.
    That saved me about $200!!!
    Cheers!!
    Savvy

  391. Internet, great! Thanks to the long list of comments here, I fixed my early 50s Wedgewood (40″ wide, 4 burners and griddle range, oven on the right and broiler and storage drawer on the left).
    After having a home warranty company send out two different contractors trying to fix the broiler, which had stopped working, they were ready to replace the entire stove. Then again, the contractors they sent were completely incompetent, and besides, we really like the stove, which still works fantastically. We lucked into it last year when we bought the house.
    90 seconds of work last night, and voilà!! And it was only that long because the safety valve was pretty grimy, so I had to find a pair of pliers to pull it back out after pressing it in for about 30 seconds. It was beneath the burner plate above the broiler. Flame, woohoo!

  392. Mine are set in place using a clamp similar to hose clamps. There are two screws that tighten the clamp. Once loosened, the sensor can slide closer to or further from the pilot flame.
    Cheers!
    Happy Holidays!!!

  393. I love that so many people have and enjoy vintage stoves!
    They really are the greatest way to cook!
    I have a Chambers and love the thing!

  394. where can i get a step by step or any help on how to repair the oven door spring on my O’keefe & merritt. do you have any suggestions??? any help to point me in the right direction would be GREAT !!! i called a few vintage repair places and they want to do a complete overhall for over $600.00 or $250.00 plus for a house call and replace 1 spring and ANYTHING i mean ANYTHING else is extra….but whatever i can’t afford at this time…..PLEASE HELP thank you
    Lorraine

  395. Hi Lorraine,
    Are they the only peoples in town? 250 is too high for any house call for anything but a doctor. Both want 250?
    While I can’t speak about your door spring, I can speak about my 1952 wedgewood’s. There’s a reason why the right side broke and I never repaired it.
    There should be a right side and a left side spring. Usually accessible if you pull out the broiler and look for little access doors with a screw that holds them on. If you remove the screw and the door, get a flashlight. See which one is broken and which one is good. Study the one that is good to see what it may or may not take to repair.
    Mine is an absolutely INSANE contraption that floats in the air and is supported by tension! It’d take 3 very well articulated fingers for me to get in there and affect a repair. I’m not that skilled. I have 1 spring for now and that will have to do. When something else breaks, I’ll have them come out and repair both.
    I’m sorry I couldn’t be of any help, but those door springs are the devil.
    Biggles

  396. I purchased a refurbished 1954 Wedgewood stove; 4 burners w/griddle in center, broiler on the left, oven on the right. I has been working fine until recently. The oven is not lighting properly. When you turn the gas on, it doesn’t light and makes a big whoosh sound and then you hear the gas., freaks me out, so I turn off the knob and try again, the second time it lights. We thought that is was the thermocople, so we replaced it, but it is still doing this…any suggestions on what is causing it? Thanks

  397. I have a 1954 Gaffer and Stattler gas kitchen stove.On the two back burners the simmer flame will not light, therefore the burners will not light. Your info on increasing the flame on the Burners was very helpful, thank you. But the two back burner simmer flames will not light. Any suggestions? John Hubbard

  398. Great thread, hopefully someone can help me out here. I have a ’50′s O’Keefe and Merritt, model 600-19B that I’m getting ready to install. The metal plate inside states “this appliance is equipped for use with LP gas”. The input ratings are as follows: oven 20,000 btu/hr, grillavator broiler 16,000 btu/hr, griddle 12,000 btu/hr and burners 8,500 btu/hr. I have low pressure natural gas in my home, 7″ W.C. I removed the orifices to check whether they were installed for LP or for NG. To my dismay, the orifice sizes are all over the chart…the right burners have #55 and #56 orifices and the center simmers have #70 orifices (all Wayman brand). The left side burner orifices aren’t marked for size or manufacturer except for one of the simmers is marked Wayman #80. The broiler orifice is marked Wayman #57 and the oven orifice is unmarked (no size stamp). When I do the math, it looks like someone has changed some of the orifices but maybe not all. Does anyone know what sizes the original orifices would have been? I’m thinking the right side is OK and set up for NG, but the left side is still set up for LP, but the broiler nust still be set up for LP also..no clue as to what the oven is set up for. Can anyone help? Does anyone know where I can purchase relacement orifices?

  399. A wonderful site! Keeping my fingers crossed for help. I just adopted an O’keefe and Merritt model 4800. It has been a daily driver sinse 1962 and is currently set up to run on ng. I need to get this converted to propane. Can conversion be done on all stoves, some. Simple job or a job left to heavy drinkers only? What do I look for in deciding on the ease level? All kinds of questions and so little time.
    My thanks in advance to all willing to help
    Patrcia Koenig

  400. Ro,
    Gah, no idea, sorry!
    Jon,
    Do they light if you use a match? Is there gas? If there’s gas and they don’t light? You could be missing those little aluminum tubes that feed gas to the pilot light. There should be 1 for each of the 4 burners. It could also be that your pilot lights are turned off? Are they lit? Many times people will turn off their pilots to save on gas, because they’re scared of pilot lights or because the stove runs too hot for them.
    Kevin,
    No idea, sorry man!
    Patricia,
    Somewhere, in the above 440+ comments this is discussed. I can’t remember whether it was from NG to LP or vice versa. I know one of the resources could be your gas company, give them a call. Many times they carry an inexpensive regulator that can do it all without any adjustments whatsoever. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help!
    Biggles

  401. I am a recently retired gas company service tech. After spending 30 years in field service I would like to make a suggestion to your readers. If you smell gas at all around your range or gas heater call the gas company in to check it as quickly as possible. If the smell of gas is heavy, open the windows to get as much air into the room as possible until they arrive. Don’t turn on electrical switches or ignite anything that could cause combustion.
    Service companies can test your stove too. Don’t guess or take this lightly. It could cost you your home and your life. There are excellent companies that can supply parts that are on the web, but to diagnose a problem with a gas stove or heater you need a professional. Please post this as I have seen the incredible damage a gas explosion can cause. This is nothing to take lightly or take a chance with especially if you are a novice.

  402. Hey Thomas,
    Thank you so much for stopping by. Buried within the last 440 some odd comments here, time and time again I ask people to check with their local gas company for a number of reasons. I’ve always found our local gas company to be top notch in helping out with what you say and many other things. I also make it clear I’m not a professional or one to consult in such things.
    Thank you again for stopping by, you’re always welcome.
    Take care, Biggles

  403. Does anyone have any recommendations for loosening tight turning gas valves on an Okeefe and Merrit Model 6? I’ve cleaned the gunk and years of hardened grease from the valves, but a few of them are still hard to turn. Any help is appreciated. Thanks.

  404. You’re the man Biggles! Your sister-My 1952 wedgewood stove’s wiring in the back is very brittle, falling apart and just hanging there in what I consider to be an abnormal manner. I have the wearwithall (sp?) to fix / rewire it myself, but I would like to know if you could send me a picture of the backside of your stove (under the cover) for reference before I start dissecting it? Thanks so much. Hope you can help…. timeless in Fremont…..

  405. Hey Gabby!
    Dang, you’re just down the freeway from me, I’m up in Richmond.
    I might be willing to. I haven’t moved the stove in a few years and surely there’s some nastiness back there for sure. I considered doing the same when I had it open. The cloth insulation was holding okay, so I left it. Plus, my clock doesn’t work, so it didn’t make much sense. The light is cute though! Give me a few days, mmm kay?
    Biggles

  406. have a duplex in Mesa AZ with 2 late 40′s early 50′s Wincroft built in gas ovens. pilots on both won’t light. Any one know a good repair guy in the area or how to find an old manual? can’t be that complicated, but I don’t know gas ovens… thanks deb

  407. Hey Deb,
    My first attack would be your gas company, call and ask them to come out and light the pilots. Other than that, from here, I don’t know. Sorry!
    Biggles

  408. I have just helped an old friend install a older Tappan gas range, but I can’t figure how to adjust the pilot lite height, all the lines come from the oven control please help

  409. I have a built in wedgewood stove, with broken door springs. I am unable to install thew new 6″ springs. I don’t have the diagram. If you know where I can locate this on the internet, please help. Thanks Opal

  410. I just started renting a place with a huge old gas range. I was really excited about cooking on it until I realized this morning that all the burners seem only to have the option of being on ‘Hi’ setting. You can turn the knob to ‘Lite’ or a few millimeters further to the right for ‘Hi’, but the knob does not turn any further and no other settings are labeled on the knob.
    I like cooking on gas ranges but don’t know that much about how they work, so I have to admit I am confused. Did the technology for adjusting the intensity of the pilot not exist in the old days? Otherwise why would such a range be useful to anyone, if you can only cook at one level? Would it be difficult to have someone change it so that the intensity level was adjustable?

  411. Hey Ellen,
    I’m a little confused, you mention the burner and pilot intensity. Something isn’t sounding right, just as you surmised. I can’t tell from here exactly what’s going on. What you need to do is call your local gas company and have them come out to check it out, it’s free. They’ll be able to figure out what the heck is going on, I believe.
    Biggles

  412. Hi there,
    I have a 60+ yr old okeefe and merritt stove. I’ve had a gas smell coming from it and the gas co. said that I needed to have my valuves repaired/replaced. The appliance guy said that they needed to be rebuilt and that is what he did.
    I watched him take the front knob panel off and the knobs–there are 7 knobs–I think the thing in the middle of the knobs is where the values are. He took that part out, cleaned them, decrudded the holes and, put pipe dope on them and screwed them back into place. I still smell the gas. Its less but i still smell it. I’m going to have him back again but would like to have an idea what may be wrong so we don’t continiue to have a back and forth here. I noticed the smell the strongest coming from inside of the broiler….I think. Thanks for your help.
    Fizzy

  413. Hi.
    I have a 1950′s 40″ Wedgewood stove (4 burner plus griddle, oven and broiler) and I need to know the best way to convert it to butane use.
    I’ve moved to Spain and brought our old family stove along. Couldn’t bear to part with it.
    I bought a natural gas to propane regulator and installed it… but then found out we have butane. I hooked it up to test it and evidently butane is waaaay different from propane. I was able to get the flames up to about a foot high when I turned them up. Obviously this ain’t gonna work.
    I was told that using the propane regulator meant I wouldn’t have to replace orifices… but now with butane????
    Thanks for your help.
    Tony

  414. Oh… another question while I’m here.
    Since we’re on bottle butane I’d rather not have the pilots burning all the time.
    I’ve turned the pilots off for the burners and will use a handheld sparker to light these but I’m concerned about the oven/broiler.
    I was told by someone that I should get micro-pilots, and then someone else said these don’t exist and that I should just turn those pilots way down.
    Suggestions??
    Thanks again.
    Tony

  415. Hey Fizzy,
    When the repair person removed the knobs, front plate then disassembled the valves, after decrudding, did he use a grease deep inside the valves? It should have been like a brass cone that inserts in to the valve? Grease, not pipe dope goes in there.
    It’s hard for me doing work like this, I do better when I’m actually seeing something or right there. If he was able to take everything apart, then get it back together and it works, I’m going to assume he did it right and the gas is leaking from somewhere else.
    Be happy that you had this done, it sounds as though it needed it. Sometimes it does take time to get one of these old stoves back up and running right. Even with the repairs, you couldn’t buy a new comparable stove for the same money.
    As far as the broiler oven smell, does it smell like gas or more of a kerosene smell? It could be that your oven’s pilot (broiler shares the same pilot/burner assembly) needs to be cleaned/adjusted. Odd that the repair person didn’t make a visual check while he was there. That would be my first place to check.
    Biggles

  416. Hey Tony,
    Uh, I would disconnect your range right now. That right there pally boy is a very dangerous bomb you’re dealing with.
    Butane? I got no idea, not even remotely. Sorry!
    Biggles

  417. Hi Biggles,
    I did see him take the cone thingys out, clean them up, poke a pin in some holes, cover the cones w/the grease goop [formally known as pipe dope] then he put them back in. I can’t say that i saw him squeeze some of the grease in the hole b4 he put the cone back in but the cones were well coated w/the grease when he put it back in place and the knobs now turn easier. I also think he did it right–even though it was my first time seeing this doen.
    She’s in good shape except for this leak/smell. I got her in 2004–clean, pretty and leaking…bleh. It’s been a process of illumination to locate exactly where the leak/smell is coming from. I had the burner pilots turnd off–the smell didn’t go away. I had the broiler turned off by the gas co.–the smell didn’t go away. The repair guy did start w/his giger thingy to see if he could find a leak and moved it all around. He did find that 3 of the valves were leaking and thought it best that I have them all done, which I did. If there is another place for a leak besides the valves on the front panel, I’d guess that’s where its coming from.
    I first noticed the smell strong one day when I turned on the rarely used broiler a few months ago. It took all of the muscle I had to turn the broiler knob..sortta and the pilot was not staying lit. I finally got it going but seemed to notice a strong smell after that–I haven’t used the broilr since but use the over often. Is fixing the broiler knob on the front the only place to fix the leak that seems to be coming from inside the broiler? The broiler knob now turns easily. When I get close to the stove the smell it. When I open the broiler door, I can smell it as if it’s collecting in there. But just sitting here across from it I can smell it too and feel it on my tougue–if that makes any sense. hmmm Hope I gave you enough info.
    Thanks very much for your help.
    Fizz

  418. Hey Fizz,
    Well, let’s call the work up until now done and done well. It’s near impossible for me to trace a leak from here. If I were you, I’d have the geiger guy have another run at the stove. It could be the pilot for the oven could be leaky or need attention. I realize it’s a long and expensive process. But when you’re done, you’ll have a range that will last for years.
    There’s a method for checking for gas leaks using a dish soap solution in water, through a spray bottle. I can’t remember what the ratio is, surely you can find it on the net. But it’s not a 100% solution. Small leaks may or may not be detected and it usually takes someone who’s done it before so they have a semi-trained eye. But it’s worth a shot and may save you some money. It’s free!
    Biggles

  419. Hi Dr. Biggles,
    I have a Slattery stove, it works well but the oven door does not close tight. Any ideas?
    Thank you so much.
    Sheena.

  420. Hey Sheena,
    Sorry for the delay in responding, been busy and I have an attention span of a gnat.
    Generally speaking, it’s usually the springs (1 on each side) that will pull the door closed well. You may have to go in through the broiler and look up, or check down by the hinges on the lower right and left of the oven door. There should be an access plate there with a few screws so you can take a look. Open it up and see what you have. Hopefully you have 1 operating spring so you can see how the other one (may be broken) can go back together.
    Also check the hinges to see if one might be bent. Open it up and take a look and see! Good luck and have fun.
    Biggles

  421. Help! I have an adorable little Wedgewood 22 inch 4 burner stove, that has been restored. Someone wants to buy it and I don’t know what it is worth. It is in EXCELLENT shape all the way around. Even a guesstimate would be appreciated as the p[ossible buyer will be here tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. and I am almost tempted not to sell…
    Thanks~
    Anne

  422. Hey Anne,
    Well, my first question is why the gosh are you selling it? Or is it a second unit and not needed?
    It’s worth what your local market will hold. Try looking through CraigsList to get an idea. It’s tough though because the 22″ rigs don’t come up often. Depending on your demographics it could be worth 600, 800 or more, maybe even 1200 if the restoration was complete and perfect.
    It sounds like a really quick sale and either you will get burned or the buyer will. You should really give yourself another week to educate yourself on what they’re going for locally before you make a decision. If you need the money, take 300 to 500.
    Biggles

  423. OMG – I’ve been irritated at this old stove for so long with the burners all being different flame heights. My other half wasn’t able to fix it, I cleaned it inside and out, soaked all the tubes, burners, everything, scrubbed with a brush, hoping that they were just uneven due to clogging. I just thought to scour the internet in hopes of finding a solution, and there you were. I got out my 9/16 wrench and in 60 seconds, its a done deal. THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE.

  424. We recently purchased an old O’Keefe and Merrit 34 and 1/2″ wide stove, model 499. 4 burners and a griddle, oven, broilder drawer and side storage. No shelf, no clock, no light. I can’t find a picture of one like it. It’s in bad shape and will need some serious work (although it was working and in a rental unit of an historic home when we bought it). We’re hoping to work on it mostly ourselves. So I have a few questions and I hope you can help!
    It has the CP logo on the front, but I cannnot find any red button safety valve or any place where one MIGHT have been. There is a handle/lever on the stovetop gas pipe marked h/s? Any help would be appreciated!! Obviously safety is our main concern.
    Also, in looking at the stovetop, the metal piping seems to be in solid condition, but there is some rust. Should we clean that? Or leaave it alone? Again, I’d much apreciate any insight.

  425. Hey Michelle,
    I want to make it perfectly clear that I am not an expert, I’m not commercially trained in any sense of the word. You need to realize you’ve basically brought a 60 year old bomb in to your home. It needs to be treated with respect and care.
    In a perfect world, you’d want to take it to an appropriate repair/restoration facility and have it checked for leaks and operation. But most of us can’t afford such a thing.
    I can only tell you what I would do in the same situation. Since you say it was working when you bought it, I’d hook it up. There are basic skills for connecting natural gas lines. If you don’t have them, find a friend who isn’t an idiot do it for you. If you’re unsure whether they’re an idiot or not, ask their friends. They’ll be the first to let you know.
    Once hooked up, see what works and what doesn’t. You can’t repair anything unless you know what needs attention and what doesn’t. If it’s safe to be hooked up and used basically, then you can set up a plan of action as to what will be repaired when and how. Once you get the repairs done to make it completely safe and perfectly operational, then you can start cleaning it. Cleaning, scrubbing and rechroming are generally done after it’s working as it should.
    The red button has to be somewhere. However, I’ve seen several ranges that are so stripped of features, that it doesn’t have the red button. But that doesn’t make sense because it has the CP logo on the front. I can’t remember what it stands for, but I do know it tells you that it meets the “modern standard” for the time. It was a set of regulations that the stove had to meet, such as insulation, oven warm up time and other such things. I found my information online, it’s probably there somewheres.
    One bit of advice I can offer is that once you do have it installed and tested the basic operations, call your local gas company. For free they will come over and check for gas leaks and make sure it’s not the possible bomb it could be. Once they have cleared it, then you can move on to the fun stuff.
    When you’re ready to have the griddle or anything else rechromed, call your local Harley Davidson Motorcyle repair shop and ask who they use for their chroming needs. Nobody messes with Harleys. ALSO REMEMBER TO REMOVE THE LITTLE METAL THERMOSTAT IN THE GRIDDLE !!! Those little round dealy boppers pop out and the chrome shop will always lose it.
    Biggles

  426. Biggles,
    Thanks so much for your prompt reply! I appreciate the seriousness with which you approach the issue — it would be easy to be glib and to toss off advice. I will not be putting into my home until I’m POSITIVE it’s safe, even if that means having it serviced extensively by a professional. And it probably will. It’s hard to believe this was in a rental unit!! We just want to have fun with it — take it as far as we can go on our own. When we get to a point where we can go no further we’ll start digging for a professional. There are no obvious professionals anywhere near us.
    I guess our biggest issue right now is “do no harm.” This thing is FILTHY with years of grease and cat hair. The mechanical parts are discolored and rusty. I want to clean it, and get the rust and buildup off the mechanical parts, but I don’t want to damage parts with my ineptitude. Should I just wait to clean or deal with them until we know if they work? My initial plan was to take it apart completely, clean it and then put it back together then hook it up and go from there. It sounds like you’re recommending, hook it up and then decide whether to clean those mechanical parts?
    When it comes time to hook it up, we’ll call a friend who does appliance repair, and then the gas company. We had to call them a few years ago because we smelled gas. It ended up being nothing, but the technician had to test and then wait 30 minutes and test again — he was able to eat dinner with us and watch part of a football game. :)
    I did some light research on the CP issue. I’ll try to dig a little deeper, and report back. Any idea what the lever with the h/s is?
    Thanks for the Harley Davidson recommendation! I never would have thought of that. Although unfortunately I can’t find a griddle thermostat. Is there a site where it is pictured? Also, any ideas as to where to take the enameled pieces?

  427. I found the griddle thermostat, unfortunately it is missing and there is only a rectangular piece of glass. It was so gunked up with old grease that until I started cleaning it, I didn’t even see it.
    Our new plan is to clean up the exterior and the easily cleaned interior and leave the mechanical pieces alone. When it’s clean enough that I’m not afraid of rabies, we’ll haul it out to our back patio and hook it up to the natural gas line we use for our grill. Then we’ll start her up and see what’s working and what isn’t. I’d also like to cook on it a bit to make sure I like it before we start spending a lot of money, time and remodelling the stove area of our kitchen to accommodate it. The nearest stove rehab, as far as I can tell, is in Clayton GA about 8 hours from here (here is the gulf coast of FL).

  428. Rabies? Lordy, sounds like it was a larger mess than I thought.
    A thought on cleaning. For pieces that you can remove, spray well with oven cleaner, then install to a heavy duty plastic trash bag. As far as how long to leave it in there, it may take some experimentation, a few hours to a few days.
    Well, if you can get the burners working as they should and adjusted per the article above, you’re going to LOVE cooking on it. The absolute control you have over your flame is amazing. It’s so precise it’ll make the hair on your head stand up.
    Love visiting other people’s homes and checking out their fancy new 2k gas range and monkey with the burners. I giggle to myself and vow to never get rid of my range, unless it’s replaced with the same.
    Biggles

  429. Hello, I’ve spent the last 30 years cooking on a 1920 (+/-) Enterprise. It works well but has some behaviors that make it dangerous for use by the uninitiated, also it has enuff rust to kill it before I’m done needing a stove. I’ve decided to step up into the 40′s or 50′s before they are any harder to find (the new ones aren’t fully functional without electricity and are therefore out of the question). I am looking at an O’Keefe & Merrit, 6 burner/dbl oven job. I had 2 questions: 1. can it be converted to LP and how. It appears that it can, although the discussion on this centers around a regulator that I don’t seem to have on my 1920 model, where is this regulator located? 2. I don’t have pilots on mine & like it that way. Is it really out of the question to turn them off & light with a match? Thanks, dixie

  430. Hi Dixie,
    Yeah, as good as those ranges are, they don’t last forever. The upgrade to a little newer range will be nice. They have a few features the older stoves don’t such as better insulation and the oven will come to temp faster.
    My dream range is just the one you’re looking for and they can be had. I don’t know where you are, but our local Craigslist can be filthy with them, just have to wait for the one you want to pop up.
    Yes, the range can be easily changed to LP. The regulator gets installed at the gas supply line just before it mounts to the range itself. Call your local gas company or LP supply company, they may have what you need for 40 bux give or take.
    Yes, the pilots can be easily turned off. If you take the clothes off the upper portion of the range, find the pilots. Find the gas supply line back and you’ll find a tiny valve with a screw on top. Turn it clock-wise and the pilot will go out. Or call your local gas company and they’ll usually come right out for free and make it right. I like my pilots, but if they fail, it’s no big deal to strike a match and get it going.
    Try to find a range with the CP logo on the front, that’s the “new” regulations that the stove had to meet with that and more features that I mentioned a few paragraphs above.
    Happy Hunting!

  431. Hi Biggles,
    This is a follow up on my Sept 19th question. The stove guy came out again and found no leaks. I can smell it/something and sence a bit of a burn on my tongue when I’ve been in the kitchen for a while. I know something is leaking. Is there some other smell that can come from a natural gas stove? It does seem to be coming from the broiler area. Could it be the way the pilots are buring? I did put a vent on the broiler hole place that is at the top left side of the stove that connects to the rest of the vent and goes outside but the odor is still strong enough to bother me. I’m also getting headaches and feeling whipped out. Something toxic smelling is coming from the stove and is stronger near the stove. Any thoughts??? It’s worth figuring this out to me.
    Thanks again for your help!
    Fizz

  432. Hey Fizz,
    Oh, yeah I remember the conversation. I believe I mentioned that one needs to be particularly thoughtful when investigating smells. Is it really unburned gas that you smell? It sounds as though the stove guy found no leaks, so it ain’t raw gas.
    While I can’t tell you for sure, from here, but I had a similar problem with my range. It smelled like an old, while lit, kerosene lantern. Mine went away when the stove guy readjusted my pilot light in my oven/broiler. I had set it too low, it was smoldering. When fire of any kind smolders, it smells bad. Same thing for your wood fired smoker, never let your fire smolder!
    When I get home today I’ll see if I can’t open up my oven, remove the rack and bottom cover and see how high my pilot is. Am guessing it should be about a 1/2″ inch or so.
    Either that, or there’s some crud around the pilot light and it needs to be cleaned.
    Biggles

  433. Hi Biggles,
    I do NOT think it is raw gas that I’m smelling but it is gasishy. I turned on the burner w/o lighthing it to see if my gas giger thingy would go off–it did and that was a raw gas smell. Maybe it is the way my pilot is lit, like you said. I wish I knew of a good okeefe and merrett repair person in San Francisco. Tons in the yellow pages but one never knows. I’ll try to take a pic of my pilot light. Could you tell something by looking at a picture?? btw the stove was new in the early 40′s :)
    Thanks again,
    Fizz

  434. Hey Fizz,
    Sure, send it over, my email address can be found on the front page on meathenge. I didn’t have time last night to look, sorry!
    I’m right across the bay from you. I had good luck with Apple Appliance’s in-home service. Their in-store restoration business isn’t getting as good reviews. I believe they’re in Berkeley and you can google some reviews of them to see what you think.
    There’s also Reliance Appliance in Berkeley, on Gilman. Both companies service SF. Reliance has been around for umpteen years, again, google might give you some insight as to how they’re doing today. I know there’s another good company in SF, but can’t remember their name, too many years ago.
    Biggles

  435. I just found your site and it’s chock full of great info! Thank you for all the helpfull information you share with everyone.
    My question is simple compared to some (I hope). I have a 1955 OKM stove (with the ABC double oven & burner) that I purchased and have been restoring and I was wondering if you know anyone who can or does rebuild the ABC controller/timer units? The one I have the timer itself works, but the shaft that goes into the orafice and the sleave that goes around the base are broken off. Consequently the knob controller is not on the stove…
    I’m hoping the shaft from the timer unit into the orafice can be replaced (or welded or soldered)…I have removed the entire unit from the stove and done a bypass so I can use the burner without the ABC controller timer.
    The only other question I have is how can I remove the housing and glass from the griddle to clean under it? It looks like you can just pop it off from the top, but I don’t want to damage or ruin it until I know for sure how to remove it.
    Thanks again for your help I know I truely appreciate all of your wonderful knowledge.

  436. Hi Heidi,
    Hmmm, I remember http://www.antiquestoves.com/index.htm used to have a small company listed that did such repairs on clocks and timers. I can’t seem to find the information. I did see they now have a booklet on how to repair your own. I would give them a call on Monday about your unit and see what they have to say, I’m sure they can help you.
    Your second question, I don’t quite understand. Are you attempting to remove the temperature gauge IN the griddle? If you are, it’s just a pressure fit. You’d want to find a socket wrench kit and find on that just fits the inside diameter of the gauge from underneath the griddle. Use a rubber mallet and tap it out. Reinstall the same way.
    Biggles

  437. THANK you Biggles
    Thanks as well to some of the helpful repeat posters.
    I have been really stymied by the information monopoly that a couple of websites seem to have on DIY stuff.
    Tested my 50′s wedgewood w/trash burner stove earlier this week and have been cleaning her on the porch for THREE DAYS now.
    Tip for other new comers, this baby comes all the way apart, but if you can get her outside to the hose with some oven cleaner you can make good headway.
    I’d love any info about:
    A) The need to protect walls or floors from these old gals.
    B) Info about insulation replacment
    C) ANYTHING on Pro’s or enthusiasits in the Seattle area.
    bailey dot candice at gmail dot com
    Thank You

  438. My husband and I just moved to an apartment that has a Wedgewood Gas stove, oven combo. Today was the first day we used the oven, after turning the oven off, I found that it was still warm hours later. It’s not so warm to the point where you would burn yourself when touching it, but it is generating or holding some heat. The knob for the oven is set on off but if you look underneath the oven you can see a little flame glowing in the back. Is the pilot for the oven always on? And is it normal for the oven to stay warm hours after you turned it off (5-6+ hours)?
    Thank you!

  439. Hi Candice,
    I seem to remember reading about insulation replacement years ago when I got this stove. It really needs to be pulled apart quite a bit to get to all the insulation. Don’t quote me verbatim on that, but it’s not as easy as just removing a few screws and popping the new stuff in. However, that isn’t to say it shouldn’t be done. The insulation gets old and matted and loses a lot of its ability to dissipate the heat. I’m not really worried about mine, I found it in very good condition and it didn’t look as though it’d been used much.
    On the oven side, mine is about 3″ away from the cabinets and is doing just fine. I jack my oven up to 450 on a regular basis and haven’t encountered any problems.
    Biggles

  440. Hi Dr B, no I don’t want to remove the entire temp gage from the griddle, just the glass on top b/c there is dark old grease beneath it. You can’t read how hot the griddle is b/c of it. Can this be done without removing the entire temp gage?
    I’ll contact TOAC again to see if they have a replacement ABC contoller/timer for the front burner…maybe this time…

  441. Hey Heidi,
    When I sent my griddle out for rechroming, my gauge was removed and promptly lost. But my understanding is that it’s a one piece deal, of sorts. The only way you’re going to be able to find out is to remove it completely, then inspect and clean as possible. It’s installed such that years and years and years of grease and heat do not affect its inner workings. Ya know?
    Biggles

  442. Dear Dr. Biggles,
    Thanks so much for this great site. Wish I had found it years ago! I have a ca 1932 Estate Fresh Air oven sitting in storage my mom’s garage in Iowa since 2004. Last I recall 3/4 burners worked and it was in pretty good condition with a few chips to the porcelain. I loved cooking on it but I’m now married and in California. My mom wants her garage back and my husband doesn’t want the oven out here. I’ve been Googling but so far haven’t found a midwest vintage stove dealer. Can you point me in the right direction?
    Thanks and blessings,
    Elizabeth

  443. Tried to search trough all the threads but I have such a short attention span I cant read them all…so i’ll just ask. No gas is going to the oven and broiler on my wedgewood oven much lik e yours. pilot lite is on but no gas going to burners. Tried to reset the red safty button i learned from your thread and held it for a minute plus but still no change. Before I have to call a tech and probably spend way to much is there something else I maybe missing or doing wrong?
    Thanks , Ron

  444. Hey Ron,
    I don’t blame you, there’s almost 500 comments on here now, crazy.
    Dang, these rigs are a pretty simple situation. I can’t think of anything other than a bad safety valve. I suppose the oven thermostat could be bad as well, but the safety valve would be a less expensive repair. I always go for the cheaper way first. Or call someone in, that way you can just have a cool refreshing beverage and watch someone else work.
    Biggles

  445. Hello,
    I am renting a house right now that has a wonderful old Wedgewood 40 stove. It’s missing the stove top light and I would like to replace it. Any ideas on what kind of bulb to buy? It looks as though it might be a long tube kind of bulb.
    Many thanks,
    Kerin

  446. Hay Kerin,
    You pretty much answered your own question. Visit a local hardware store that has a great selection of light bulbs. The bulb you’re looking for has the SAME screw insert that our old incandescent bulbs did. So, look for that plus about a 4″ tube shaped bulb and you’re done. I checked mine, same damn rig!
    xo, Biggles

  447. Can you help us? We are trying to get our Tappan Design Series stove’s flame to quit burning yellow. My husband is very handy; has cleaned all the openings with files, etc., but no use. we replaced the burners units with no luck either. Any suggestions? your site is awesome. Thank you.
    Trisha

  448. Hi Trisha,
    Sorry for the delay in responding, not sure where the time went.
    I’m not familiar with your stove. But the yellow flames indicate that there’s an adjustment off or an air inlet is clogged. Somehow, you need to find a way to get more air in to your burner assembly. If you look at my post, there are butterfly valves on my range where I can adjust the air/fuel ratio by just opening or closing the valves. Considering that your husband does well with such things, if he hasn’t already, look again to find such an adjustment or valves to monkey with.
    Biggles

  449. hi Doc!
    excellent advice! I never knew what those nuts were for (i thought they were connector nuts!). I have a robert shaw stove, and after replacing my parent’s stove with a new one, I am shocked at how crappy and expesive NEW ones are. I am NEVER gonna replace my old one. It’s a beaut. and besides, it works TOO good.
    just had a science question. mine is exactly like the picture you have above 4th from top (with the green arrows) showing the gas feeder-tubes going into the burners from the centrally located pilot flame.
    How is it that the pilot flame “lights” the gas, then it flows through those slim feeder tubes all six inches to the burner, and only turns into a flame AT the burner surface? I would think it should flame up at the pilot itself? (Obviously, thankfully it don’t but HOW)?
    Cheers,
    Kiers

  450. Hey Kiers,
    Well, unfortunately I’m not a man of science.
    Basically the deal is that we’re dealing with pressurized, flammable gas and fire. The gas pours from the burner and comes down the tube to the pilot light. In a far faster reaction, the pilot lights the trail of gas and heads back to the burner, igniting the burner. The burning fuel travels far faster than the gas itself. Pretty cool for 60 year old technology, eh?
    Biggles

  451. simply a m a z i n g.
    i’ve been asking people all round and by jove, i think YOU have the best answer yet. f(How m any people can say their stove taught them fluid dynamics? Ha Ha.)
    K.

  452. I inherited an old (late 40s/early 50s) Magic Chef. It has side-by-side oven & broiler and a 4-burner range. I know that it worked before when my uncle had it. The gas was shut off to it for awhile and we are trying to get it going again. We got the range pilots lit, no problem, but we are having trouble with the pilots for the oven and the broiler. I can light them both with a match or a lighter, but I don’t like the idea of leaving the gas on without the pilots lit. I also can’t find the model number anywhere so finding a replacement manual has been impossible. I had a plumbing/heating guy look at it, but he fully admits he doesn’t know much about vintage stoves. He found where the oven pilot should be (there is actually a little ring that reads “light here”), but can’t get it to stay lit either. He said the broiler side said it doesn’t look like it has a pilot, but it doesn’t light off the other pilots, so there must be something. Any advice on how I can get these working or where I can find the model number to get a new manual?

  453. Hey Kelly,
    Oh, that’s the ol’ infamous Red Button. You might have to take the cover plates off the top of the stove where the burners are, you’ll have to look. You’re looking for a red button a little smaller than your thumb. Press it. If it doesn’t pop back out, you may have to play with it to get it back out. Once that’s done, your oven/broiler will be reset and will pop back on. If the pilots are still funky, call your local gas company, sometimes they’ll come out and make it right for nuttin’. If when you press it and it does nothing, you’ll need a new gas safety valve (the red button). When you cut the gas, that thing shuts off the gas to your oven.
    I doubt that you could find a manual very easily. The model number should be on a metal tag where the burners sit. Just take off the burner covers there like you did for the red button, it’s there somewheres.
    Biggles

  454. Thanks for the advice. I did find the model number (though when I went to Magic Chef’s website they said it was an invalid number. I even tried calling Magic Chef customer service and they are completely useless. They don’t keep information on appliances more than 15 years old.)
    I can’t find the red button though. I read through most of this thread before posting originally and I saw mentions of the red button. I didn’t think to look under the burner plates before (actually, I didn’t know I could remove them without a screwdriver), but even now I can’t find it. I’ve looked all over. Is it possible the oven and broiler don’t use pilot lights and that I’m just supposed to use a lighter every time? Any other ideas?

  455. Don’t quote me on this, but there’s a point in the ’40s or late ’30′s that the government made the manufactures meet certain guidelines, one of which is the gas safety valve. There was also a mandate for insulation, oven heat-up times and so forth. Does the range have a storage drawer? Slide it out and look around inside. Unless your stove is far older, it’s gotta have that valve. Unless some knucklehead removed it.
    Does the oven’s pilot light stay on long enough for the oven to come on? Email me at drbiggles at earthlink dot net. I have some jpg images that might be of some help either now or in the future.
    Biggles

  456. Hi, Biggles!
    Have a ’52 Wedgewood 4-burner with griddle. Got it set up last night, everything works except the griddle. (I can light it manually.) It’s getting gas, the pilot is lit, and there are no obstructions in the tube between the griddle and the pilot. Any suggestions?
    Thanks!

  457. Hey Joed,
    Dang, I meant to take a look at mine last night and see if I could formulate some kind of idear. From here, the only thing I can think of is that the aluminum tube is out of adjustment. It should have a pin holding it in place, at one end. But sometimes (like on my range), the pin rusts out and the tube just rests there. If you have gas, and you have a pilot, that’s the only thing I can think of.
    Biggles

  458. Great site. Not sure if you can help me but what the heck.
    I got a 50′s model Rheem Wedgewood LP 4 burner with a griddle in the middle, double oven. Anyways I got it from my dad years ago and I just now got around to using it in my new cabin. We installed it and everything works great on the top side (burners and griddle) but we can not figure out how to get the ovens to work. We get propane up to the oven regulator but nothing past? Could the thermal couplers prevent the regulator from opening if there bad? I have pictures of the stove and regulator that I’m talking about. Email me your address if you would like them.
    Thanks for your time.
    Mike

  459. Hi, read the whole thread over past couple months. I have acquired a Caloric, 30″ gas stove, best I can tell anywhere from mid to late 40′s maybe even up to 1951. It has no bells or whistles. It has no actual pilot in the oven that stays lit, it has a pilot “stem” (my word) that sticks out toward oven burner in back, but it lights as oven burner lights and then it is there to the best of my knowledge, to relight oven to regain temp as thermostat calls for more heat. The oven dial has a place that says “gas on” and when you turn it there, there is a place just inside oven door with a hole in bottom of oven and the words “light here” where you then stick a match and light it. I’ve had it hooked up 3 days and have gotten the burners adjusted for propane, as it was a natural gas stove. When I called the stove restorers in Georgia they said don’t bother with the propane/natural gas regulator, just adjust the orifices to correspond with propane. Between they’re help and this thread, I’ve gotten the burners done but I can’t get the oven done no matter what I do. I found the air/gas shutter and have messed with that, I’ve found two set screws in behind the oven dial that control the flame and pilot in the oven a little bit. But my flames are still orange and 2-3 inches tall when turned up to just 200 degrees. I live in northeast Arkansas and there really is no one who knows anything about these type stoves near me. Does anyone have any ideas?

  460. Hey Elizabeth,
    That’s the name of my first girlfriend! Neat. Yes, there are those smaller ranges that have the no frills lack of options and you have to light some things manually.
    You need the regulator, you were fed misinformation. You need the regulator. Those stoves were never meant to hold the pressure that propane delivers and will cause problems like what you’re describing. Get the regulator and start over, sorry!
    xo, Biggles

  461. After I retired from 30+ years in the service field on gas appliances I travel quite a bit and don’t get to use my computer much. I noticed today when I cranked up my computer Elizabeth was having trouble adjusting her stove to propane somewhat.
    It is always suggested to add a regulator to the stove to make it run more evenly especially for propane and when you are using a stove to the max (on holidays or for large cooking jobs). You will see the difference.
    The problem that Elizabeth is having with her oven burner can be due to having a fixed orifice in the oven. You cannot adjust this, as the orifice has to be made for propane. Unscrewing the orifice cap and looking underneath it will tell all. If there is no needle or pointed pin under the cap it is not adjustable. You will need a fixed orifice for it. There are other minor things that could be awry, but check that first.
    Once in a while I service stoves for my friends when I am not traveling. I order parts and machine work done from J.E.S. Enterprises, Inc. in California. I spoke to them yesterday when I ordered some parts and they said they will send pictured installation instructions along with any regulator order as well as free information on orifice conversions by just e-mailing them at toac@sbcglobal.net. Their service techs work on nothing but antique ranges and have a lot of helpful information you can order for older ranges. I hope this helps you Elizabeth. Check the orifice and make sure the bypass on the thermostat is set correctly so it doesn’t go out. Thomas Smith – retired tech

  462. Hey Thomas,
    Thank you! And welcome! It’s no nice after all these years to have someone stop by who actually knows what they’re talking about. I started this post only because someone showed me how to adjust the flame height on the burners and a few other things I’ve found over the years. Cheers to you!
    Biggles

  463. Hey and thanks to Thomas and Biggles! I was just getting on here today because I received and had my new regulator installed yesterday, and it did nothing for my oven burner. I’m guessing Thomas is correct. I will contact the address he left for me. But I’m wondering how I get to check my orifice of the oven burner? I’ll bet that is the problem. If you got any tips on checking my oven orifice I will be reading. I can send a pic if needed. Thanks again, Elizabeth

  464. Gosh! I’m so glad we found your website. We purchased an old Welbilt range from ebay and found out our range had 4 inch flames after it was installed. Taking Thomas’ advice we contacted the company he mentioned and our stove is up and running!!!! Hooray!!!
    Just for the record, we found out we didn’t have adjustable orifice thingies in our range, but with the propane regulator and the new orifice we bought from J.E.S., we are major happy campers!
    We may not have a stove like those beautiful Wedgewoods or O’Keefe Merritts, but our little range is sooo cute and cooks just wonderfully.
    Love your website….what encouragement and good help you give all your followers. Thank you so much!!!!!

  465. Hi!
    I have a propane Wedgewood Holly Stove with a wilcolator type x thermostat. The oven temp continues to rise and we think it is the thermostat that is broken. Is there a simple way to find out if this is our problem and a cheap way to fix it?

  466. Hi Gionna,
    Never apologize for having an awesome stove! Congrats and glad you were able to pull it together. You’d have to spend more than a few thousand bucks to get burners that nice on a new range.
    Hey Meredith,
    As it was explained to me when my oven’s thermostat did the same thing, the thermostat needs replacing. The unit is factory set and attempting to adjust it by a layperson is a no win situation.
    xo, Biggles

  467. Hi Mr. Biggles,
    You’ve got an excellent website and I connected to it via a google search on ‘repairing antique stoves’.
    I did spend some time reading replies from back to 2005 and 2006 but did not come across the precise stove I have so please excuse me if you’ve already answered my Qs in subsequent replies.
    My problem is 2 fold on my old Occidental stove. This is a four burner, with chrome top and middle griddle. While the stove-top’s 3 pilots work (2 for each left-right front-back burners and 1 for the griddle), when I turn on each burner, they do not lite automatically, meaning that I still have to use one of those lighter wands to light the stove top burners manually. And while I can light the two front and rear right burners manually, the right front burner does not flame up.
    I really appreciate your taking time and have looked to adjust the burners (adjusting the nuts near the butterfly air adjusters) BUT am afraid to screw up the manual stove top burners that are working.
    So why do the lights work but not the burners, and also not the left rear burner?
    then;
    2. This old Occidental has a left broiler/roaster and a right oven and another, smaller broiler underneath it.
    The configuration of the front knobs are 3-2-3.
    The left 3 knobs, starting from furthest left are:
    rear left burner, front left burner, then the knob for the left broiler roaster that seems to be the equivalent of the ‘red knob’ that you’ve mentioned many times in your postings. The outer dial seems to be a timer, going up to 60 minutes on imprinted on it states: “Turn to 10 then set push button for gas.”
    In the middle of this timer is a push button (red button? but it’s not red) which when pressed in, the broiler will flame up after 30 seconds to a minute.
    The center two knobs upfront states (from left) broiler, then griddle.
    I can only turn the broiler knob, after pushing in, counter clockwise to medium and high BUT not to low. And I have to do this before turning the left broiler knob with the push button in the middle of the timer dial.
    However, even though the left broiler/roaster flames on, once this center button is released, the broiler flames off with the broiler’s pilot light sometimes staying on and sometimes burning off.
    So, how do I keep my left broiler/roaster on?
    I hope my description doesn’t seem too complicated and your assistance is most appreciated.
    Thanks again for your wonderful assistance to the many other posters since 2005!

  468. Hi
    I recently bought a 1984 motorhome and it has a nice Wedgwood propane gas range and oven. The 4 burners work fine but i have a problem with the oven.
    It’s a model T2130 BG, the top states 5200 btu/hr and oven 7100 btu/hr
    The oven pilot light lights up, no problem,
    When I start with cooking, I set the temp at a higher nbr, the flame then moves to the main burner, burns well with say a ¾ in flame all the way down the “ramp”, but after a minute or 2 the flame gets much smaller, kind of simmering, even when I am looking at it with the door open. Impossible to cook anything !
    I have only recently moved to Vancouver Canada, so have little idea as what to do next, or where to go. You mention call the gas Co Free, but would they intervene for a MHome on propane ? I can get stuff from the US-Seattle, where my son lives if required.
    I have some pictures, and the parts look in reasonable shape. Is this a thermostat problem, and is it beasy to replace (I am fairly “handyman” and have tools.
    Your comments would be most welcome. Thanks in advance

  469. Hey Warren,
    Sorry for the delay in responding, been terribly busy. Let’s see, to get the burners to light by themselves there needs to be an aluminum or metal tube that floats in between the pilot light and close to the burner assembly. It’s just a hallow tube that allows the gas from the burner to be channeled up to the pilot, then flash back down and light the burner itself. If they are actually there, you might try moving them a bit to see if they’re out of alignment. Be careful, they HOT.
    Not sure exactly why the dead burner, are you sure you adjusted the nuts I mention in the article? They will actually shut the burner down if not opened up. Other than that, I don’t know.
    As far as the broiler and knob problems, it sounds as though the knobs aren’t functioning as they should. They either need to be thoroughly cleaned or replaced. The red knob I spoke of is a different one that you have. The one I mention is hidden inside the stove somewhere and is only pressed when the gas pressure is cut off, it’s a safety valve.
    Thank you for the kind words, wish I could have been of more help, but am not classically trained in this arena.
    xo, Biggles

  470. Hey Sam,
    Sounds like a bad thermostat to me. Yeah, they’re fairly easy to replace, sounds as though you’d do just fine. You have to start taking the stove’s clothes off and hunt around and see how it’s put together.
    I would visit http://www.antiquestoves.com/index.htm and ask them about which thermostat you have and if they have a replacement. It may take a little hunting. You may also want to hunt around for a Mom & Pop RV center/park and see if they have any input. They’ve probably been around for years and seen it all. Very handy people to know!
    Take care,
    Biggles

  471. Dear Dr. Biggles,
    Your fantastic thread has several people with the same puzzling problem I have: my match-lit oven (1950ish Magic Chef) has a very delayed start with a big whoosh. It worked fine for 15 years until now. Has anyone ever written back with a solution? The gas co. in my area, Wash. DC, will not come out for anything inside the house, even if dangerous. The private co. I called said the only thing they would do was clean the oven’s gas jet holes, and advised me to just do it myself. I did, but it didn’t help. Any new ideas on this? Thank you for all the time you take to help so many people.
    Renee

  472. I have a 1940′s OKM with one burner that will not light from the pilot. I can light it with a match and the pilot is on but for some reason the gas/flame is not traveling down the metal tube that is between the pilot and the burner. The gas comes on but it just doesn’t light. All 3 of the others work fine and it seemed to happen right after we had water in a pot over boil onto the stove and burner. I played with the tube to see if it was an alignment issue but no luck. I am sure it is something simple but can’t seem to find the answer. Any help??

  473. Mark,
    We have a Welbilt stove that we got from ebay that was mentioned about 10 postings above. We had issues with the orifice which we straightened out thanks to Thomas Smith’s suggestion. We had two burners that had problems igniting too. There is a burner guide to correct ignition problems that should help your stove like it did ours. Here is the link – http://www.antiquestoves.com/toac/vlvbrnr.htm. Even though the valves we have are different, this fixed all our problems. Good luck.
    My Question:
    Would anyone know if small wheels can be put under a stove for cleaning purposes? We tried the type that went on refrigerators, but they keep sliding off. Any suggestions?? Thank you again Dr. Biggles for this terrific site!

  474. This question isn’t about the top burners, it’s about the oven pilot light adjustment. I have an old Hardwick (company bought by Whirlpool then closed) 4 burner gas stove which has a Robertshaw domestic gas thermostat. The oven pilot light burns at a very low level and, when the oven control is turned on, the flame enlarges and jumps down to heat the thermocouple which turns on the oven’s gas but the pilot light isn’t strong/high enough to ignite the gas until so a large volume of gas has accummulated which ignites with a big bang and a burst of flame which blows it and the pilot light out. I’ve tried to adjust the oven pilot with the small screw on the left front side which is also for switching between N.G and L.P. but it’s at maximum and I’ve also cleaned the pilot tube and assembly with a pipe cleaner. Is there another adjuster for the oven pilot? The oven control is not available anymore. Is there something else, short of junking this stove, that I can do to fix it?

  475. My Magic Chef is having issues…so sad. The oven burner lights but only with small flames. The control knob won’t change flame height. What could this be?

  476. I have an old Wedgewood that seem identical to the one pictured. Everything works great, except the pilot lights seem really HOT – so hot that I can’t put my hand on the stove surface. Is this normal, or do they need to be adjusted, and if so, how?
    Thank you – I’m so greatful for your information.

  477. Hey Dee Dee,
    Can’t really tell from here, but it sounds as though the oven’s thermostat needs replacing. It’s the one that controls the flame height for the oven’s burner. You’d have to look for a local company that would sleuth that out for you and replace it. It’s not exactly cheap, but buying a new range that’s as nice as yours would cost a small fortune.
    Hi Laura,
    The stove top with pilot lights directly under the surface are generally quite warm indeed! This is completely normal and it’s a great place to set your container down and make your own yogurt and to proof bread. If it still makes you nervous, call your gas company to come turn them off and light your burners with a match or lighter. Take care,
    Biggles

  478. Dear Dr. Biggles:
    Is it ok to continue using an oven that lights with a bang? (continuation of April 17 question)
    Renee

  479. Hey Renee,
    I’m not a professional technician and can’t say. Common sense tells me no. Although I used a gas range that I and previous tenants that did the same thing, it was from the 30′s. It would jump nearly an inch off the floor every time I lit it. I would suggest contacting a pro either online or locally.
    xo, Biggles

  480. Hey …Great site…I have a wedgewood stove m# N83581 SOD3 cooktop works ( 4 burners and griddle ) but the broiler and oven are not working….I reset the red buttons on both sides…no help…I know that the timer is bad…should I bypass it some how and if so …how?
    Thanks Again, Robert

  481. Hey Robert,
    There was a guy that stopped by here a month ago or more who actually knew what he was doing, a real tech. I do know that some of the ranges had clocks/timers that were connected to the oven/broiler. I would imagine if they went south, it could very well lock up the oven so it wouldn’t start.
    The following company has information on how to repair your clock, or for a nominal fee, they could tell you how to bypass the sucker.
    http://www.antiquestoves.com/index.htm
    Biggles

  482. Hello again,
    I am finishing up an installation on a friends stove today. Before I leave town for the holiday weekend I thought I would stop by to see if I could shed some light on a few questions that were posted. Since I am a retired gas stove service tech I only work part time and spend even less time in front of my computer. Hope this helps to some degree. Sorry I am not very good with computers.
    I have a 1940′s OKM with one burner that will not light from the pilot. I can light it with a match and the pilot is on but for some reason the gas/flame is not traveling down the metal tube that is between the pilot and the burner. The gas comes on but it just doesn’t light. All 3 of the others work fine and it seemed to happen right after we had water in a pot over boil onto the stove and burner. I played with the tube to see if it was an alignment issue but no luck. I am sure it is something simple but can’t seem to find the answer. Any help??
    I think once the burner dries out it should be o.k. If not, there is a very good publication that you can order from J.E.S. Enterprises http://www.theoldapplianceclub.net that is mentioned below that will teach you how to adjust the whole top section of your stove.
    By Gionna Toli on April 20, 2010 7:57 AM
    Mark,
    We have a Welbilt stove that we got from ebay that was mentioned about 10 postings above. We had issues with the orifice which we straightened out thanks to Thomas Smith’s suggestion. We had two burners that had problems igniting too. There is a burner guide to correct ignition problems that should help your stove like it did ours. Here is the link – http://www.antiquestoves.com/toac/vlvbrnr.htm. Even though the valves we have are different, this fixed all our problems. Good luck.
    My Question:
    Would anyone know if small wheels can be put under a stove for cleaning purposes? We tried the type that went on refrigerators, but they keep sliding off. Any suggestions?? Thank you again Dr. Biggles for this terrific site!
    Gionna,
    Cheers that you were able to fix your range. For the wheels under your stove you can find sites that sell casters on the web. Your stove is probably about 250 pounds. Make sure the wheels you buy are strong enough. You can mount them in the crating holes on each corner below the stove by the gussets for good balance. Your stove is probably 3 feet high to the stove top. Wheels much larger will bring it above the typical cabinet standards.
    By Brian on May 10, 2010 11:54 AM
    This question isn’t about the top burners, it’s about the oven pilot light adjustment. I have an old Hardwick (company bought by Whirlpool then closed) 4 burner gas stove which has a Robertshaw domestic gas thermostat. The oven pilot light burns at a very low level and, when the oven control is turned on, the flame enlarges and jumps down to heat the thermocouple which turns on the oven’s gas but the pilot light isn’t strong/high enough to ignite the gas until so a large volume of gas has accummulated which ignites with a big bang and a burst of flame which blows it and the pilot light out. I’ve tried to adjust the oven pilot with the small screw on the left front side which is also for switching between N.G and L.P. but it’s at maximum and I’ve also cleaned the pilot tube and assembly with a pipe cleaner. Is there another adjuster for the oven pilot? The oven control is not available anymore. Is there something else, short of junking this stove, that I can do to fix it?
    Brian,
    This is complicated without being able to view the parts to your range. As you can guess there are thousands of stoves and combinations of various parts. Generally speaking, if the pilot is failing you could need a pilot replacement. You might follow the tubing from the pilot back to the other end. It could end at the thermostat or on the manifold pipe. There you should find an adjustment screw. Pilots do get corroded inside which can also happen to the pilot tubing as well. You can have a bad safety valve that is contributing to this or a clogged burner. The clogged burner you can clean out and see if that helps. If you are on natural gas, you might want to call the gas company and see if they will send out a tech to examine the range. The big bang you are hearing is a warning sign that this stove needs help now. Sorry I couldn’t be more direct, but there are too many variations on something like this.
    By DeeDee on May 11, 2010 10:38 PM
    My Magic Chef is having issues…so sad. The oven burner lights but only with small flames. The control knob won’t change flame height. What could this be?
    DeeDee,
    If you have no control over the Magic Chef thermostat, it is time to see if it can be rebuilt. I just received a rebuilt unit from http://www.theoldapplianceclub.net for one of my customers who experienced the same problem. It’s solved now. The diastat was dead as a doornail. All is well now. Do not replace it with a generic style unless there is no other choice.
    By Laura Sauter on May 11, 2010 11:35 PM
    I have an old Wedgewood that seem identical to the one pictured. Everything works great, except the pilot lights seem really HOT – so hot that I can’t put my hand on the stove surface. Is this normal, or do they need to be adjusted, and if so, how?
    Laura,
    Pilots will be hot on older ranges. You can cut them down to a degree, however if they are adjusted too low they will not ignite the burner. There is a little valve which has a small slot screw fitting on it. Follow the tubing back to the big manifold pipe. There you can adjust the pilot. If you turn it too much it will cut the gas and the pilot will be out. If you adjust it too high you will have a huge flame. A service tech or gas company can adjust this for you if you are unsure. Never take a chance with gas. It is unforgiving.
    Thank you – I’m so greatful for your information.
    By Renee on May 15, 2010 7:48 AM
    Dear Dr. Biggles:
    Is it ok to continue using an oven that lights with a bang? (continuation of April 17 question)
    Renee
    Rennee,
    Check the oven burner to make sure it is clean inside and out of all debris. Compressed air does a good job and use a wire brush. If it continues there is a chance you might have a leak. Don’t hesitate to have the gas company or a service person go over the problem. This can become very dangerous and it’s not worth guessing at.
    By Robert on May 24, 2010 5:52 PM
    Hey …Great site…I have a wedgewood stove m# N83581 SOD3 cooktop works ( 4 burners and griddle ) but the broiler and oven are not working….I reset the red buttons on both sides…no help…I know that the timer is bad…should I bypass it some how and if so …how?
    Thanks Again, Robert
    Robert,
    The clock on the stove should be set at “M”. This is at the 9 o’clock position on most stoves. If you pressed the red buttons in and hold for about a minute then let go. If the pilot is lit and you turn on the broiler and nothing is happening there is something wrong in the safety system. I can’t tell you how many bad safety valves and thermocouplings I have changed over the years. You can try changing the thermocoupling and it might help, but old safety valves are usually in poor condition and need servicing. All the safety equipment we purchased was from J.E.S. Enterprises at http://www.theoldapplianceclub.net. Their rebuilding services are top drawer and they give you a long warranty too. The Gas Company that serves you could take a look just to be sure but they do not refinish parts.
    For Everyone: If you feel in anyway that you are unsure about working on your stove use the Yellow Pages in your area and have a pro check your range. A good plumber is a fine choice too if you cannot find an appliance service company or if your gas or propane company doesn’t make service calls.
    Hope this helps some of the problems with your ranges.
    Happy Memorial Day – Thomas Smith

  483. Hi, so happy to have found your site! I recently scored our the dream stove. A late 1940′s O’Keefe & Merritt with 6 burners and double oven :-) I followed your directions and cranked a few of them up! Thanks for that one!
    I’ve been cooking on it for a week now and loving it. BTW: I often share your comment that there’s some Alvis in these old stoves. Anyway, on to the crux…
    All the pilots stay lit and the oven pilots are so strong that it keeps the ovens at nearly 150 F degrees. Today I attempted to actually use the ovens for the first time. Both fired right up and reached nearly 600 F. Yeah for making Neopolitan inspired pizza! BUT after a short while one oven konked out. Pilot still lit, but no gas coming out of the burner. After holding the red safety button I was able to fire it back up, but it konked out again shortly after. This time I could not get it to work again, but then finally did, but the flames were very very small, too small the get the oven hot enough. Later on when the oven was completely cool I held the safety button again and it the oven lit again, full blast – large flames and all.
    Any thoughts on what’s going wrong? Safety valve, thermostat?
    Thanks in advance and apologies if I rambled too much.
    warmly, Ken and family

  484. Hey,
    First off I want to thank Thomas the Technician for stopping by and really laying down some wonderful information for everyone here. Thank you Thomas, from the bottom of my heart!
    Hey Ken,
    OH MANNNN !!! That’s my dream range! It looks as though you’ve answered your own question. If you can get the oven to pop back on by pressing the safety button on the valve, it’s telling us that valve has failed. I believe Thomas mentioned before that this is common for them to fail. Not sure if you can open it up and clean it, or just buy new. I would recommend to buy new and not risk it. Congrats on the range!
    xo, Biggles

  485. After moving my Wedgewood and relighting the pilot lights, the top burners work fine but neither the stove nor the broiler kick in when I activate them. This despite the pilot lights clearly burning. I recall having this problem years ago after cleaning it and received phone help being instructed to do something with the little switch opposite the clock the the letters CSM on it. Not sure if its the same situation now but it worked then. Any ideas?

  486. Hey John,
    It could be the clock timer and if it is, I believe a kind service person left a description on how to deal with it located not too far up in the comments. But if you disconnected the gas line, then it’s most likely the gas safety reset button. Take off the covers around your burners and search around for a red button about the size of your thumb or so. Press it. It’s old, so you may have to manually pull it back out. Your oven should pop right now.
    Biggles

  487. C – cook now, stop as timer indicates
    S – start and stop cooking as timer indicates
    M – do not use timer for cooking
    Unless you are utilizing the timer for “automatic” starting or stopping oven cooking, leave the button on “M”

  488. To order complete instructions on the operation of the Interval Timer and the Oven Timer, go to:
    http://www.antiquegasstoves.com
    Select the “Reprint Manuals” section. Pictures of the “International Register” brand timers are there, as well as a link to the order form. The International Interval Timer is item #AGSR9 and the International Oven Timer is item #AGSR8.
    To order complete instructions on repair of the International Register brand clocks and timers, go to:
    http://www.antiquestoves.com/toac/howto.htm
    Both sites have a variety of manuals and instructions available for sale. All that I have ordered have been well worth the money.
    In general:
    C – Cook
    S – Set
    M – Manual
    “M” setting should serve 99% of your oven cooking needs, and always serve testing oven ignition.
    Hope it helps,
    Leighsa

  489. Love this site. Can’t wait to look for those red reset buttons to get my ovens working. Top burners work just fine. Found a second OM Model 600 for the few parts I needed so will be releasing the remaining parts. http://www.okeefeparts.com Am willing to help with any pics or questions as best as I can. Always recommend getting local gas man to verify stove safety before starting refurbishing. Most of all, have fun with your little piece of history. They don’t build ‘em like this anymore.

  490. I am selling a vintage Tappan oven, circa 1960 for $500 OBO. It is the Luminaire, the first model to have a light in the oven. The label on the stove says it is model number ZCKV 2662 Lot #2. Serial # H13088. Based on the description of the stove, which I found online, I think it is the 1953 Model 60. A previous repair guy told me it was the Standard model, but a blogger at http://tappantalk.blogspot.com/ says that if it has drip trays (it does) it is a Delux, but perhaps not standard because most of the Delux models didn’t have much writing. The back lights up like a jukebox. There is a light in the oven, a clock that moves but doesn’t keep time and recipes on the backsplash. White.
    It was just inspected and is clean and in good condition. NO gas leaks, all burners work. Oven works. Broiler beneath oven with broiler trays. 4 burners work and light with pilot. Two storage compartments. Condition clean. Oven lights with safety pilot.
    About a year ago all the burner valves and pilots were cleaned, lubed and adjusted. It cooks like a charm. But when the oven is on, it emits a strange, unpleasant odor (not gas). My tenants want a plain new stove and I must replace the Tappan. I hate to lose it. It may require dis assembly to find the source of the odors (possibly an old grease spill or a dead animal, and perhaps replace the fiberglass that insulates the walls of the oven (it is easily bought from vintagestoves.com). If I don’t sell it, I’m looking for someone in Austin who likes to tinker and who can take the stove off the premises and work on it. It should have excellent resale value and I’d like to split the proceeds with someone who will fix it and sell it to a collector, or store it until I have other tenants and would appreciate the appliance.
    See pictures on http://www.netingenuity.com/kk/house/stove/
    Asking 4500 OBO, or looking for someone who likes to tinker and wants to take on a project.

  491. My boyfriend and I recently purchased a 4 burner wedgewood with the griddle in the middle. Yesterday I went to grab the griddle off of the stove to clean it and it was HOT; burned my hand hot. The pilot lights had been lit without my knowledge and they burn tall enough to heat the stove top. This really worries me as I don’t want to die due to the wedgewood turning giant ball of fire.
    Has this happened to anyone? Thoughts/comments would be appreciated.
    Thanks!
    Chris

  492. Hi Chris,
    Yes, the pilot lights generally sit right underneath the griddle. They’re to the right and left, in the middle. I lift mine from the front and remove keeping my hands away from where the pilots hit. If you’re still worried, call your local gas company to come out and check it out, it’s usually free! Take care,
    Biggles

  493. Hey John,
    When you moved your stove you probably shook the thermocouple a bit from it’s position next to the pilot light. Try moving it a little closer…..Just a thought.
    Good luck.
    Cheers!!

  494. I have a 1946 Roper….adjusted the top burners some months ago as per your instructions. Super!! They work great! The oven has been working for a very long time and pretty darn accurate temp whys. Now the problem. I don’t know how it could be the thermostat as I said it was working…then one day I lit the oven to bake some zucchini and it never got past 250. The oven burner lights (mine has to be hand lit every time I cook…I think it is made that way and have done this for 15 years or better since I got it) but now I have no up and down flame when I turn the oven knob….just one steady small flame. Are there any other adjustments? Did the thermostat just quit overnight? Does an air conditioner in close proximity have any effect? It used to work with it on.

  495. Hi Spider,
    I’ve worked on my door, it’s been discussed quite a bit in the thread above, I’ve had no success on my door. Unless you hire a skilled welder and technician, or an antique stove repair person, you’re screwed. Sorry. Those door hinges are bastards.
    Biggles

  496. Hello Dr. Biggles and other folks,
    I am so psyched to have rediscovered the bunch of you!! I write from Philadelphia. I have long admired Wedgewood stoves and have finally found the model I want out here on the east coast. I am heading up to Jackson Heights, NY this Sunday to pick up a 40″ 4 burner, double oven, griddle in the middle stove that looks from photos to be extremely clean. . . all burners apparently work but the ovens do not. Won’t know what the deal is until I get it but looking forward to the challenge. A question for all: what is the best way to move the beast? Appliance dolly at the back or side? I have moved one of these once and ended up damaging the porcelain enamel at the bottom. Any suggestions on technique are greatly appreciated. I have reserved a Tacoma pickup and Appliance dolly . . .

  497. Hey Gregory,
    Lucky bastard.
    Pack the following in newspapers or whatever and put in a safe place in your truck.
    Remove cast iron cooking plates.
    Remove trays underneath cooking plates.
    Grab hold of the each burner assembly, lift up so the back comes up first and slide it out, kinda towards the back of the range. This removes the burner assemblies from the main gas lines so they won’t fall out and break everything to pieces. Check and be careful of the shiny aluminum tubes that allow the pilot lights to light the burners, remove if you have to (they may be old and just pull right out).
    Remove griddle and pack away as well.
    Remove racks in oven.
    Remove steel covers on the bottom of each oven.
    Check burner assemblies in ovens to see if they can be removed safely the same way as the upper burners.
    Use tape on the oven and other doors, choose tape that won’t leave residue when removed.
    Appliance dolly on the side fully lined with heavy cardboard or a thick moving blanket.
    Ease.
    xo, Biggles

  498. Doc,
    You’re the best. . . . any chance a copy of the TOAC manual on how to fix doors would help your door situation? I am happy to make a copy and send to you if you like.
    I’ll keep you posted!
    G

  499. Hey Gregory,
    I appreciate the thought. But after looking at the mechanism myself, missing parts and a broken spring that only a 3 fingered alien with long tiny fingers could repair, I’ll pass. Some day it’ll need something other thing I cannot do and have the repair person do it.
    Biggles

  500. Happy Thanksgiving to all. This is Thomas Smith – retired service tech checking in again to see if I can add a little help.
    When moving any old stove try and remove any loose parts. It makes the stove lighter to move and avoids moving mishaps.
    All of the above transfer tips are spot on. I use cloth moving straps to keep the doors from opening during transit, but if you use tape and it doesn’t come off easy, lighter fluid will release it. Your porcelain coating will not get damaged. The dolly strap should be firm and not too tight. This also inhibits chips and cracks. When you get to your home put your stove together and install it. Always test for leaks. A simple way is to mix 50/50 water and liquid soap and use it in a spray bottle.
    Once that is finished you will have many years to enjoy your fine stove.
    P.S. A word of caution to Gregory. Think twice about making copies of any copyrighted materials. You can get into a whirlwind of trouble. Over my 30+ years of working as a service tech I’ve seen it happen. You don’t need that kind of trouble. Happy holidays to everyone.

  501. Hi Biggles and Thomas,
    Thanks for the advice on moving and on copying (hadn’t thought of it). Got the stove in today and can’t wait to test it out. The woman who sold it didn’t realize how to reset the safeties and so let it go for $50! The beast is very dirty but looks like it will clean up well. It will certainly be the centerpiece of my kitchen.
    Any advice on inhibiting surface rust? I have noticed some people who’ve shared on this thread who’ve completely disassembled and power coated non-enamels parts. I wonder about this and how to inhibit the fine rust that forms on spots where the enamel has worn thin (i.e. the little tabs that support the oven grills on the oven walls).
    I will share more . . .
    Gregory in Philly

  502. Hey Greg,
    You’ve got more to worry about now than that, worry about that later.
    I’ve got the same rust on mine and haven’t given it a second thought. If I were to do anything would be to clean and dry with an oven cleaner and get the sucker clean. Maybe even use an emery type abrasive paper to clean it a bit. You could put some cooking oil on it, turn the oven to 300 for a hour and that would help for a while. But the trouble is that your oven grates are going to be coming and going, scraping any “cure” off the sucker.
    You could also clean the affected areas and use a “rust converter” and then paint it with a high-temp paint. But again, with the abrasion of the grates coming and going, it’s going to fail soon as well.
    Don’t sweat it.
    Biggles

  503. Dr. B,
    Started the cleaning process today and am amazed at how well made this thing is! My goal is to get it as clean as possible then hook it up. There is an old timer in South Philly who services a Roper stove on my block who will come out to test mine. It was that Roper stove that inspired the search for a Wedgewood. My neighbor Mary has lived here since 1955 and still uses and maintains the same white porcelain Roper.
    Thanks for the tip on rust converters. . . i’ll treat the non-enameled metal with that then use a high heat black paint but it appears that there will be little need for it. There was alot of dirt that I just mistook for rust! More again as it progresses.
    Gregory

  504. Remember, Bon Ami or Barkeeper’s Friend for cleaning with powders. Don’t use Comet cleanser or anything with super abrasives. You don’t want to scratch the porcelain.
    Biggles

  505. Hello again,
    Wow, the anatomy of the thing is now clear. . . elegant and simple; everything coming off the manifold. Thanks to everyone for sharing as it has made the challenge of restoring my newly acquired Wedgewood seem less intimidating.
    The one thing that I would like to handle in tandem with a good cleaning is rewiring. Backsplash light doesn’t work and I don’t think the oven lights work either. The oven clock was disconnected and appears to be in pristine but frozen condition (plugging it in directly to a live socket produces nothing) and was connected to the oven on the right side. I understand that it was connected to a “solenoid valve” which I think is the squarish thing screwed to the inside right space below the top burners. I know that there were some postings about the settings on the International Register clocks (M S C, etc.) but I wonder if there are any comments or advice on restoring the automatic clock function.
    I’ve spoken with Joe at stoveclockrepair dot com who seems knowledgeable and confident that the clock can be brought into working order but I have seen no mention of solenoid valve reactivation.
    All the best,
    Gregory

  506. Hi Gregory,
    The automatic clock function on some of the older stoves is interesting but a little complicated. I know http://www.theoldapplianceclub.net sells the right stove wire, sockets, etc. that you will need. You can order all the information from them to understand and fix the clock, solenoids and other sections as well. If the wiring is still in the stove make a diagram, take pictures, etc. but don’t leave it to memory. With new stove wire and maybe a socket or switch here and there your stove should be supreme. Wedgewood is a sharp stove. If the wiring pattern is destroyed you can have an electrician help you. It’s a lot of fun having an old stove. Your Wedgewood should last years and years with just a little wrenchin’ and elbow grease. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

  507. Happy Thanksgiving!
    All of the pilot lights blew out when I moved my 1950′s Wedgewood stove to clean. The right oven which is attached to the solenoid valve will no longer light even after the reset button is pushed. Does this mean I need to replace the valve? A repairman said he could “fix” the oven by taking out the solenoid but in doing so the automatic clock would no longer be able to control the oven. While I don’t use the clock, I’d prefer to have everything working like it should. How should I get my oven working again?
    Kathy

  508. Wonderful blog, information I can’t find anywhere else. Thank you, Dr Biggles! I see you’re off-line now, but occasionally checking in. Maybe someone else (Thomas?) could advise me. I’ve spent a few hours reading over the info here but am still a bit unclear.
    I just got an early ’50s zen-like Wedgewood (no bells, clocks, griddle, or circus acrobats on this one). It’s in good shape. I need to convert it to propane. I live waaaaay out in the country and bring in my propane in 7-gallon containers that I can carry, instead of the more usual 250-gallon tank that the propane company rents and fills (costs twice as much that way). I’ve run stoves on these small tanks before, but these stoves were already propane-ready, so not sure what the differences are.
    I called antiquegasstoves.com and asked about their handy propane converter gizmo that has been recommended on this blog. Turn out it won’t work when stove runs on a 7-gallon tank. So that’s not an option.
    I’ve called around local classic stove appliance guys — the one I’ve spoken to so far wants $300 (I bring stove to his shop) to convert, and won’t say what that price includes. A tad steep.
    It can’t be that hard. I’m trying to figure out what is involved, exactly. Add a propane regulator to the inline (no problem). Change the orfices/jets? That’s the one I’m not sure about. And adjust pilots and burners — explained very well here, I can handle that.
    Please advise. Thank you!
    PS: I found the model number inside, but wonder how to find out the exact year and name of my new/old stove. Model N100FA. Nothing on internet. Any clues, hints?
    signed, Flameless but Shameless

  509. Dear Mary,
    I caught your posting today and thought this could give you some insight into your stove questions. I am retired service tech but still do a little part time work on older gas ranges when I am in town. I don’t have the time I need to help in full detail but this should get you started.
    A regulator is always a good idea to add to a range. This is the one but NOT the final step to a conversion. Check to see if there is a tag in the range. There is information on that tag like btu’s, the location of the company etc. Read this tag and you can see if the stove was set up for propane or natural gas. It usually is under the top of the stove but could be inside a pantry door.
    You need to unscrew one of the orifice caps to the top burners and observe if you see what looks like a point. The cap covers this. Finding a point underneath means you have an adjustable orifice. If you see nothing in the end of the valve or it is empty (no point) you have a fixed orifice.
    I switched over a Chambers and an O’Keefe & Merritt stove this past month both of which had fixed orifice from the factory. One had to be equipped with natural gas orifice and the other for propane. I had J.E.S. Enterprises at toac@sbcglobal.net make them up for me. They publish a guide on valves and burners for old stove owners I tell all of my customers to get. For stove owners that are in the country or can’t find a service company you can surely learn the ABC’s of tuning a stove from this http://www.antiquestoves.com/toac/vlvbrnr.htm. Check what I mentioned first. The stove may already be equipped with what you need. With a wee bit of your time and a few bucks you will have your stove in good working order. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

  510. Thank you so much, Thomas! I just wrote a longer reply, but the system ate it, darn. Oh well. The gist is, I need to learn stove anatomy. I’ve poked around with a flashlight and screwdriver, but am not sure what/where the orfice cap might be. Is there any place on web that explains what’s where? I will check the link you included (although I thought TOAC required paid membership…?)
    Thanks again — have a wonderful holiday. And thank you, Dr. Biggles, for hosting this.

  511. addendum:
    TOAC link that Thomas recommends doesn’t need membership, but it ain’t free. Info is $18 (pdf) to $20 (printed). At this point, a bargain. I purchased, downloaded, looked through… hmmmm.
    For propane conversion, it has one paragraph, that says basically: get a pro to do it. But it does have the valve and burner anatomy that I need. So with Thomas’s info and this, I’ll give it a try.
    I have looked at the model plate on my stove for any clue about fuel type, and don’t see it, one way or the other. Maybe I’m missing something. I see a model number, serial number, oven btu 24,000, seal of the American Gas Assoc., and Rheem company, NJ.
    Thanks again!

  512. once more into the breach…
    The TOAC booklet’s valves and burners look quite different than mine. Mine are much simpler (and dirtier). I don’t seem to have the “simmer” option, have single valves, not double. TOAC uses different terminology, too.
    Thomas, could you please clarify? When you say “unscrew one of the orifice caps to the top burners,” do you mean what TOAC calls the “main section nozzle,” looks like a simple nut?
    And what would you suggest to clean these valves with? Thinner? TOAC insists that I need “valve cream,” at $18 additional. Guy at antiquegasstoves.com says no, don’t use. What do you say?

  513. Hi Mary,
    Don’t be afraid to e-mail them and send pictures of your valves. You have permission to use my name. The outfit(s) I have worked for buy a substantial amount of parts from them. For what it’s worth they have the best customer service I’ve ever bumped into. If you are a customer they will explain if you don’t understand a point. Of course there is a limit to help since they are not charging you, but they never turned me away.
    Yes “nozzle” is another term – same thing. Thinner is o.k. to clean, but not near any source of flames or sparks. Shut the gas supply off to the stove. You shouldn’t find much or any old grease left.
    On their valve grease it’s the darn best lube I’ve ever used. My own opinion is it is by far worth the price as they send a nice supply. It’s easy to use. What they send will last for years. I will be around for a two more days before I leave for Christmas and New Year holidays I’ll try and watch this board when I am in. I think my computer will love that. I don’t use it very often.
    It sure is nice to see the gals learning about the old school equipment. Thank Dr. Biggles for his site. You can tell this fellow really cares about you all. Cheers! Thomas Smith

  514. I have emailed TOAC. I have dropped your name. Looks like I’ll have to get their grease, too, if you like it. I’m cleaning the exterior of valves with steel wool, at least at first. If I have the right part of the valve identified, I’ll open one up and see what I can see.
    Hey, another question (did I mention I was shameless?). I’m cleaning my new/old stove this afternoon. I notice that the stove exhaust vent (which I plan on hooking up properly to a chimney and venting to outside) is bottomless. Literally, no bottom to the shaft in back, I can see daylight. Seems to me it kinda defeats the purpose of the vent, since carbon monoxide is heavy and will sink, I’m told. I’m building a very tiny, tight house and will be baking a lot. We all gotta go sometime, but dying of carbon monoxide poisoning is just stupid. I’m also installing an air inlet — covering all the bases! — and trying to figure out just where inlet should go. Your thoughts? Should I cap the bottom of the oven vent?
    Thanks!!
    PS: Old school equipment is the best kind.

  515. …and TOAC replied in 1/2 hour’s time. They opened with “Dear Mary, Yes we know Thomas. He is a genuine old fashioned serviceman. That guy really knows his stuff too. People only wish they had service people around like him today.”
    Thought that should be broadcast around a bit.
    Okay, I’m back to my stove, little-bitty wrench in hand. Thanks SO much, Thomas, and have a great winter vacation.

  516. But wait, there’s more. I opened the orifice cap (after learning how to spell “orifice”). I do indeed have the pointy little jets in there. So how do I adjust them for propane?

  517. A little more research to report on my oven vent and carbon monoxide issue. The information that CO is heavy and will sink came from a very confident and assured hardware salesman (who was all of 16 — I figured he’d just come from chemistry class). It turns out to be incorrect. CO is slightly lighter than air. But whether CO will rise or not seems to be a tad tricky question. See “Ask a Scientist” on where to place your CO detector:
    http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/chem03/chem03364.htm
    The end result of that discussion: put detector about chest height, where you breathe.
    So this Wedgie stove oven is designed with a flue that wants to be used, but it’s bottomless, so what gives? I talked with my local volunteer fire chief (who is also a vintage stove aficionado, still using his grandmother’s range). He said the bottomless flue was okay, brings in air to the oven burner and pushes the gases/vapor out the vent.
    Reading back over this blog, I see Dr. Biggles, like most people, has gone the simple route — but likely lives in a big house with some healthy drafts. I’m building a tiny, itsy-bitsy house with a lot of caulk and stops. For all practical purposes, I’ll be sleeping in the kitchen and using the Wedgie for heat this winter. Rather be overly cautious than overly dumb (and dead).
    Thomas, your opinion/experience with the bottomless flue vent? Thanks!

  518. Hi Mary,
    My entire house is 861 square feet and the kitchen will handle 1 maybe 2 people prepping/cooking and 3 standing and talking. It’s SMALL. Earlier this year I had our local gas company guy come out and check for CO levels (I thought my little furnace was emitting nasty levels). He said my 1952 Wedgewood, with correctly adjusted burners/oven/pilots emits less CO levels than some of the newer ranges he’s tested.
    Get your stove set up, get it running. Have the local gas company come by and check for CO levels that your stove emits. It’s free. I’ve been told twice by our local gas company, by their employees that are familiar with older gas ranges, that having the oven vent secured to an outside source is not necessary for CO.

  519. Hi Mary,
    I have not run into a situation of someone sleeping in a kitchen so my thoughts wouldn’t be based on any experience. The opinion of your fire chief or local building code department probably would be worth a listen. They should have an answer to help.
    From my field experience I have seen stoves with bottomless flues, flues with a closed bottom and none at all on other stoves. Some stoves are vented through chimneys and some are not. Most new domestic stoves are not vented. Some people desire to add an overhead fan/vent depending on the design of the kitchen to eliminate cooking odors, grease, or heat.
    Everything that Dr. Biggles mentioned in his reply could not be said any better.

  520. Appreciate your comments, Dr. Biggles. I’m off-grid in the wilds of outer Sonoma County, no PGE, no propane company, nobody will come out for less than $300 housecall. (I once lived in your hometown of Richmond — ah, civilization.) My entire little house is 176 sq feet. My builder friend who’s helping me insists I must vent the oven, as I’ll be using it a lot. (He insisted I get a CO detector, too.) And venting is not that big a hassle when building the wall from scratch, it’s pretty simple, like tinker toys made of 4″ single-wall pipe.
    I’m learning more about valve adjustment, including how to adjust (just turn it, oh, duh).
    Thanks for your help and great site, hope things are going well for you. Back to stove cleaning…

  521. Living off the grid, eh? Then you must be familiar with The Field Lab in West Texas! I believe his home is 110 sq ft.
    http://thefieldlab.blogspot.com/
    There’s a lot more to his main web site, that’s his blog I have you the url to. Great information for making it all work when you’re living off the grid. If you haven’t been, say hi to John for me, from Biggles at Meathenge.
    xo, Biggles

  522. Not familiar with Field Lab blog, took a quick look … he seems to be having fun, which is, essentially, the point.
    So a report back on my Adventures in Stovery, for the benefit of other internet info hunters who might be dealing with the same stove issues on the cheap, and starting out (as I did) without a clue.
    Between Thomas’s help, the back-blog of MeatHenge, TOAC, my saintly friend Bruce the builder, and hey, me too, it’s done. Stove is converted to propane and burning lovely blue flames. Learning some stove anatomy is the key, rest of it fell into place. As one of the local high-priced stove pros told a friend of mine, “If you can zip up your pants, you can work on stoves.”
    The TOAC booklet was overpriced and under-informative, imo, but nonetheless had a couple useful diagrams and photos (which didn’t look much like my stove). However TOAC excelled in patient and helpful customer service via email, with person named A.J.
    I didn’t rebuild the entire valve stems, merely found and cleaned the jets with q-tip and rubbing alcohol. (Tips for the clueless: the terms “jet,” “needle,” and “pin” all refer to the same part, found tucked inside a long brass cap at the end of the valve with a tiny hole at end, the “orifice,” and nut connector to the rest of the stem. Loosen to the right, tighten to the left, opposite of usual. Tightening restricts gas flow, which is what I wanted for propane. Careful not to cross thread.)
    I turned off the top burner pilots to save gas. My stove had a tiny ball valve under the screw, so tightening the screw didn’t do it. Just give that screw a half turn: horizontal slot is off, vertical is on.
    We added a propane regulator to gas intake, checked every connection with sprays of soapy water before proceeding to next step. Regulator is in addition to one I have on the propane tank itself. Many locals don’t add the stove regulator, not required as it turns out. Thomas suggested it, and A.J. agreed, writing that the second regulator compensated for a number of small variables, including “drop out if you are cooking full bore.”
    Now the fun part, adjusting the flames with Bruce my builder friend. By opening the “butterflies” to about 3/4 for more air and turning down the valves a lot, we got a nice, mostly blue flame on all burners.
    The oven refused to light, although the pilot did. Pushing red button did nothing. I hunted through MeatHenge for term “red button,” and the consensus is that the safety valve was a dead puppy. One commentator some time back mentioned taking apart his safety valve. Bruce decided to give it a try. Disconnected the brass thermocoupler by hand, unscrewed the plate. There’s a metal diaphragm that slipped off. Valve behind it (what you activate when you push the button) was frozen tight. He gently coaxed it and bingo, it popped out and started functioning again. Reassemble carefully. Oven burner came on, big hunking yellow flame.
    Next, adjusting the oven burner. Bruce took on this job, as he was already on the floor, I held flashlight from above and uttered encouragement. The oven valve is way in back and down low, behind the burner, didn’t even try to clean it, just trusted everything was there. Opened the butterfly to full air, with help of a mirror (butterfly faces down). Same valve adjustment as the top burners, but it took a lot of trial and error to get to a blue flame, turning off the burner each time before he made an adjustment, turning it back on to see the results. Little orange flickers puzzled us, refused to go away, but we decided these were odd bits of dust, spider webs, and rust burning out. Knocking on the burner produced a show of orange.
    Kept the oven pilot on, but adjusted it down to low blue flame from tiny screw valve up top, a very twitchy little bit of a turn.
    Voila! It all works beautifully. Next, we worked on the venting, air inlet, and homemade hood (using a little bitty fan that will run happily off grid), but that’s another story. We debated whether to cap the bottom of the oven vent, but decided to leave it as originally designed and monitor it with the CO detector — with venting, should be fine.
    Biggles and Thomas, thank you SO much for your help. Couldn’t have done it without you. I’m flaming at last.

  523. Hi there,
    Great site and great advice! I have a 1950′s O’Keefe and Merritt which both my husband and I LOVE. We only have one problem–all the flame heights are too low and the top burners don’t light from the pilots. The previous owner tested it on propane (everything worked) and we have natural gas, so we need a way to up the gas flow to the burners.
    We were able to adjust the pilot light height by turning those tiny screws. For the burner flames themselves, however, we tried following your instructions above, but to no avail. Can the orifices/jets/needles/pins/whatever be checked somehow to see if they are indeed adjustable? How?
    If ours are, but still don’t adjust as they should, can they be cleaned, perhaps using Mary’s rubbing alcohol technique as described on Dec. 5th?
    Thanks for any and all advice.

  524. I suppose I’m just as shameless as Mary. Perhaps since you can relate, Mary, you can answer my question. Or Thomas, if you happen to boot up the ol’ computer again before the holidays…
    I have tried unscrewing a nut on the valve near the air shutter (the one Biggles is describing, I think), but it bottoms out at the vertical air shutter wall before anything comes loose. Do I need to remove the top burner assembly in order to remove the cap and check for a needle underneath? Or should I try removing the valve itself and then tinker with the orifice cap?
    Maybe I should just take the whole darn stove apart and see if I can stick it back together…

  525. First, more on my own Adventures in Stovery. Then, I’ll take a stab at Katy and Kathryn’s posts, mostly to say “I dunno.”
    After our fine stoving described above, the next morning I turned on the oven. Nothing happened. Pushed red button. Nothing. Huh. It worked great before. What the…?
    I called, I emailed, I got estimates of safety valve rebuilds for $200 plus shipping both ways, then two weeks’ wait, don’t use stove in meantime. One local guy I talked to mentioned that really the safety valve is a simple device, only three things can go wrong: spring, diaphragm, or magnet. As a test, I pulled out the thermocouple (not hard at all, one end at the safety valve and the other end next to the oven pilot) and got a replacement for $8 at parts store. My saintly friend Bruce the builder put it in (I could have, but he really enjoys this kind of thing, where I find it challenging). Nothing. He studied the problem. An hour later, he discovered the solution — have I mentioned he’s mechanically gifted? A good friend to have.
    The thermocouple, I learned, is heated by the oven pilot light. That heat generates the charge that activates the magnet that makes the safety valve work (hope I got that all right, news to me). In this case, because we had turned down the oven pilot to a blue flame as part of the propane conversion, it wasn’t generating enough heat to make its pal the thermocouple work. Turning up the pilot got the safety valve to work fine, just like that. But it was a yellow flame, activated the CO alarm (we stuck detector in the cool oven, as a test). Turned pilot down to a blue flame… the safety valve played dead. Who would’ve guessed?! Betcha the companies wanting $200 to rebuild the safety valve would not have mentioned it until much later, if at all.
    Now the trick is to work on the pilot light to keep it at a blue flame, but still hot enough to trigger the thermocouple. I’m going to try cleaning pilot with a small wire brush. Thomas, any suggestions on the oven pilot?
    Katy: Dunno. Suggest you check under the hood, that is, inside the orifice cap at end of valve stem, see if you have the jets/pins. If so, they’re adjustable. If not, you need to get re-sized orifices.
    Kathryn: Dunno. Suggest you remove the burner assembly before playing with the orifice cap. Are you sure you want to start by redoing the whole valve stem? That’s ambitious! I’d do the simplest thing and see if that did the trick, before moving on to the whole she-bang.
    Have fun, gals!

  526. What a cool find this web site is! I’m so glad to have found it.
    A short time ago we acquired a nice looking Wedgewood stove from ebay. It looked good so we took the leap of faith and bought it.
    After the stove was shipped (1,000 miles) we could easily see it had not been used in years! Several weeks and a lot of scrubbing later it was tidy. We installed the Wedgewood into the kitchen and found out the burners worked very poorly. The dials were very hard to turn and the oven would not stay ignited. Locally, no one in our city would come out to work on the stove. The new appliance shops said, “It’s too old, dump it and buy new.” No way! One company on the web quoted $450.00 to service the 6 burner valves if we sent them in. When we gasped she hung up the phone on us. By sheer luck we found your web site. After reading many of the posts we felt relieved. Everything was going to be o.k. with some help and time. We were among friends at last! With everyone’s ideas and advice we were able to get a lot finished on our own.
    Our gas company did check the stove for leaks. It passed with flying colors. That was music to our ears. They said they can’t do the repairs; just test and suggest. They did find a broken safety valve. That we had restored by TOAC. (Thank you Thomas Smith for the suggestion.) We bought their valve lube and the publication on adjusting the burners and valves. My husband works in accounting. I do database work. Mechanics we are not, but within one afternoon of our own labor, our oven and top stove burners were working top notch. It was not hard to do at all and rather fun I’d have to say. The best part was $450.00 saved! Some chrome plating will be our next investment (next year) but lord that stove can cook! Our Wedgewood was not in good shape when we purchased it. Considering what it would cost us in total I still think we saved a fat bunch of money over buying a new stove or a refurbished one on the web. Biggles you are the greatest for setting up this terrific web site. Can’t wait to cook Christmas dinner on our Wedgewood!

  527. Hello again,
    I haven’t posted in a while as I have been busy collecting information and reading the posts on this blog. I have gotten the international register and solenoid valve sheets, found a wilcolator oven thermostat guide on e-bay (my double oven stove has wilcolators), found a guide to adjusting the alltrol valves with the butterfly flaps, and have cleaned and studied the anatomy of the stove. I feel like I now have a pretty good understanding of how the thing works . . . but now a dilemma: I have a double oven 4 burner with a griddle in the middle. I recently found another 40″ Wedgewood stove with 6 burners, double ovens of similar vintage (circa 1952) that I think I would rather have than the one with the griddle. Before I begin to spend money on restoration I want to make sure that I have the model that I want. Seems like many of you don’t use the chrome griddle, or would prefer not to use it because using it will damage the chrome or because it is difficult to clean. . . what are your thoughts on 4 burners with griddle vs. 6 burners? Initially the double oven feature was what really sold me but I wonder now if the 6 burners also might be more useful for me. . . I know I am being obsessive but I plan to construct the kitchen around my “new” old stove and want to get it right the first time! What do you all think?
    All the best,
    Gregory

  528. Excellent question. For me, I don’t use the griddle much anymore. Managing the grease trap, holes and cleanup was a real hassle compared to just tossing a cast iron, 2 burner griddle over a few burners. Plus the cast iron rigs tend to have a flat side and one that will render you grill marks for steaks, kebobs and whathaveyou. And, cast iron is easier to cook on, clean up and I can SEE the burners height for temp control versus the chrome griddle. A 4 burner stove with a griddle isn’t nearly as versatile as a 6 burner rig, nope. I’d toss my range in a second if I could find a decent 6 burner, just like that.
    xo, Biggles

  529. Gregory,
    Where did you find the International Register and solenoid valve sheet.
    I’d love to restore the automatic oven function of my Aristocrat (^ burners, 2 ovens, broiler and grivivator…with warming oven.
    Cheers!!