Dion Fluting Iron
Larry & Carole Meeker
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              Antique Dealers & Brokers

Purveyors and Dealers of Americana  /  Patented & Mechanical Antiques






Antique & Vintage
Pressing Irons & Sadirons 

 Fluters / Gas Irons / Goffer Irons & More

We are the country's leading internet dealers in antique & vintage sadirons, pressing irons and laundry related antiques. 

I can & will help you sell your "good" vintage & antique sad or pressing irons and laundry related antiques on consignment from my antique sales website http://www.patented-antiques.com

For more information and to learn how this works, please see the FAQ page or contact us.

Nobody sells or deals with more antique sad or pressing irons than we do.  We Crown Plaiterhandle collections of antique pressing irons numbering from in the thousands to single rare and desirable sad irons. We have sold many pressing irons for world record prices and can help you sell yours. Over the last 10 years we have handled and sold close to 10,000 irons.

We are primarily interested in rare and unusual examples of antique pressing irons, and especially irons with unusual or patented feature.  These can be found on antique fluting irons, gas or liquid fuel irons, alcohol irons, revolving or reversible irons, combination irons w/ fluters, pre 1900 electric irons, and most any other type of unusual antique pressing irons. Both American & European irons can have features that make them desirable.  We are always interested in unusual fluting irons, goffer irons, and gas or fuel heated irons.  We are also always looking for unusual patented antique flat irons or sadirons that have unusual features or handles. Rare antique child-size irons, polishing irons, sleeve irons, or any other unique and early ironing related antique devices are in demand. We are also interested in any ironing related advertising or early store displays for ironing devices. 

If you have any unique or unusual antique pressing irons that are for sale or want help selling, contact us via email at LCM@AntiqBuyer.com giving us as many details as possible and we will get back to ASAP. 

Background / History

The history of  pressing irons is closely related to the history of fashion, and ironing devices have been produced throughout time in response to the need to press the specific styles of clothes that were in fashion at any particular time all over the world. The earliest pressing irons were made of materials like bones, wood or glass.

Advances in technology and manufacturing led to an interesting and varied progression in the development of different styles of irons and means to heat them.  From the earliest times where direct heat was used, to charcoal, gas, and finally electric irons.

If you are interested in buying or want to see antique pressing irons we have for sale please visit our sister site at www.Patented-Antiques.com to view our current offerings of vintage & antique irons we have listed for sale there.

Machine Fluting Irons

Fluting irons are one of the most interesting types of antique pressing irons ever invented, and were designed Holly Patent Fluter to crimp, ruffle and press little pleats into starched fabric.  Fluters were used for collars, cuffs, etc. and these vintage tools were an invention that saw their heyday in America from the 1860's through the 1880's.   Some very rare and unusual electric fluting irons were made right into the 1920's for the movie & costume industry. 

Pictured above is the Holly Patent  machine fluter--- it operates by means of a hand crank which crimps the fabric as it transports it between the two fluted rollers.  Machine fluters are also referred to as pleaters, or pleating irons, crimpers, crimping irons, or rufflers and came in a myriad of designs---some had pedestal or tripod bases, some were clamp-on models.

Values for typical or common machine fluters generally run from under $100 for examples like the "American" and the "Crown",  to well over $1000 for rare and desirable ones like the Holly shown here, or the Dion (top left) or the Meyer's patent "goat" fluter which has been known to sell for several thousand in the past.

If you have any antique fluting irons that we can help you sell Contact Us

Rocker & Roller Fluting Irons

The McClure fluting iron is an example of a rocker fluter.  It is the name and the makers name of this fluter that make it rare, not the style, which is mcclure Rocker fluterthe most commonly found design of all fluting irons.  With this rocker style of antique fluting iron the ironer would manually rock the top half of the iron over the bottom half with the fabric in-between.  The iron pictured in the very top left corner of this page is another example of a desirable and interesting antique rocker fluter known as the Dion, and like the McClure it too is named after the inventor who patented it.

The Dion fluting iron was patented in 1868 and 1870 and is a highly sought after example that in the past has sold for as much as 3000.  At the other end of the value spectrum for rocker fluters is the common Geneva Fluter which is also a rocker style.  When offered on eBay the Geneva routinely sells for about 20.00.  The moral being there can be a huge difference in value for a given style of fluting iron. That fact does not keep sellers there from offering them all the time for far more either. They can be interesting to collect, as there are at least 5 different variations of just the common one, as well as a few other style Geneva fluters.

Commonly found rocker fluter irons like "the Best" and others typically sell for under $30 these days.  This is just one example of how small variations in a given model or subtle variations in features in an antique iron can widely affect value.

A third style of fluting iron is the roller style fluter.   Here the top piece is manually rolled rather than rocked over the bottom to press the fabric into the flutes.  On the right is a roller fluting iron typical model that in todays market might fetch 40.00 - 50.00.

Unusual irons of this style would be those with unique handle designs or other odd features.  There is one rare versions called the "Indicator" because it has a thermometer built into the fluting plate.  Another unusual one that has a double roller on the handle.

Common roller fluters are currently selling for about $40.00 on eBay these days.  We have sold rarer models in a range from 150 - 1000 depending on the specifics.

We are always selling unusual examples of all styles of antique fluting irons, so if you have one that you think we would be interested in, please contact us at LCM@AntiqBuyer.com with the details.

Gas Irons

Another category of antique pressing irons we are interested in are fuel irons of every type---antique irons that were heated by gasoline, kerosene, alcohol, natural gas, carbide-acetylene, or over a gas-jet or lamp, etc.

Perhaps the best known and most commonly found or offered for sale of this style of Coleman Tan Gas Iron iron is the blue enamel Coleman gasoline iron.  Blue is by far the most commonly seen color, but Coleman also made irons in many other colors that are more desirable---turquoise, red, green, tan, etc. 

Other manufacturers, such as American Machine Co., also made colored enamel irons.  These gas irons range in value in good+ condition from as low as $30 or so for a blue Coleman out of the box in typical used condition, to several hundred dollars for an unusual color iron in pristine condition in its original box with accessories.

Fuel irons from Sears and Montgomery Wards are considered very common, and even when found in like new the box sell typically sell for under 100.  These companies were still selling these irons well after WWII to regions that had not fully been incorporated into the "grid".  Coleman was manufacturing irons into the 60's in Canada for that market and the Amish.  And they are still big buyers of them.
antique gasjet iron
Another type of gas heated vintage pressing iron that we deal in is the gas jet style.  This style of antique iron at first glance resembles a common cast iron "doorstop" sadiron  but closer inspection reveals a hollowed out, rather than solid body.  These irons were designed to be heated directly by a kerosene lamp or by a wall-mounted gas jet apparatus, and were hung on the apparatus and inverted over it so the interior of the iron could be directly exposed to the hot flame.  These gas jet irons come in both full size and smaller travel or portable sizes.  The iron shown here is McCarty's patent, which was granted in 1879.  Examples of smaller gas jet irons are the Acme and the Sultana.  Because they do not have a lot of curb appeal, in general the values are not that great.    

Unusual Patented Gas or Liquid Fuel Irons

One example of a very interesting early fuel iron is the c.1870 Crocker Farnsworth reversible iron pictured here.  This is an crocker farnworth revolving fuel ironalcohol or oil burning iron which is recognizable from the style and shape of the fuel tank.  Others from this early time used whale oil as their fuel source.  This type of iron was heated by means of a burning wick inside the iron.  The most interesting  feature of this antique fuel iron is that it revolves, meaning that the handle could be released by means of a thumb latch and the iron body could be revolved 180 degrees and then locked back into place, providing for a secondary ironing surface to use after the first side had cooled down.  The theory behind the revolving iron was that heat rises and therefore the top of the iron body would retain its heat longer than the bottom, so that if you kept turning the iron over you would always get to work with the hotter side. 

Antique revolving pressing irons of this style are scarce and most are eagerly sought by collectors.  Their value depends on their appearance, completeness, condition, rarity, and ranges from about a 100 to 1500 or more for rarer and excellent condition ones that surface from time to time.

Unusual Patented Irons

Other antique revolving irons were heated by means of a hot chunk of metal called a slug that was inserted into the body.  Revolving slug irons often featured two, three, or even four Carver Patent Revolving Irons different ironing surfaces.  In other words, after the handle was released the body could be revolved and the handle then locked back into place so that the top or either of the edges of the iron body could be used after the bottom had cooled down.

Oftentimes one or more of the surfaces were specially designed for fluting, polishing, glossing, or embossing designs into the fabric.  The Carver patent pressing irons pictured here are an example of this type of iron.  These irons were manufactured with a variety of  names such as the Family Laundry Iron, Victor, Majestic, etc.  The rotation mechanism and the door itself as well as the latch for it are all very fragile on these irons and often found broken or damaged.   Depending on the condition these sell in the 100-1000 range.  They are often damaged, and rarely found with their accessory fluting board.  Hence the wide value range.

If you know of one, or have one that you want to sell please contact us at

LCM@AntiqBuyer.comm

Other revolving antique irons were patented by inventors named Hewitt and Mann, and two of these unusual antique combination fluting / pressing irons are pictured here.  These revolving combination flat irons

Revolving irons were also used by tailors and in commercial applications.  The unusual revolving iron pictured here was heated by means of natural gas and weighs a whopping 24 or more pounds and is about 15 inches across.  The weight of the iron was thought to make for an easier job in the pressing of wool suits and coats and other heavy garments. 

This huge tailors iron could be flipped over by means of a handle release so that the second side of the iron could be put to use once the first side had done its job and began revoling tailor iron to cool down. As you can imagine an iron of this size and weight and size would have taken a strong man to maneuver, and the added costs and time to produce such a mechanical device would have been cost prohibitive in most cases and so revolving tailors irons are seldom found and considered very unusual.  We once had a graduated size set of this iron in a wooden box.  Things like that are extremely rare. 

Another unusual revolving pressing iron is the Avery patent sadiron that is pictured Averey patent Removeable Handle Sad Iron here.  This design permitted the iron to be turned on any of its four surfaces by loosening the wing nut built into the handgrip. The serious drawback of this idea was that the handle not only unlocked from the body to allow it to rotate, it actually released completely from the body if loosened.  Even a little.   It must have made for a few disastrous situations like banged or burned toes and fingers.

I am sure his idea was meant to make life easier, but the truth is it takes three hands to reattach and tighten the handle in place, and that is when it is cold.  Unusual Patented Irons like this, that were really "lousy ideas" and were only manufactured for a short period of time if at all, and are the type of irons that we are most interested in finding and helping you sell!

There are many different types of antique sadirons irons that we can help you sell.  Please let us know if you have an antique fluting irons, any type of vintage fuel iron,  antique child-size or salesman sample irons, special purpose irons of any sort, figural irons such as swans, goats, trains, flower irons or leaf irons, early electric irons (1907 or earlier) or patented antique irons in unusual shapes that you want to sell.   We can also help you sell the cast iron tobacco cutter made in the shape of a flatiron marked "Scotten Dillon Flat Iron Plug. if you have one of those.

Please note:  The antique pressing irons pictured above are examples of the caliber, condition and quality  that we are primarily interested in buying & selling and can help you with.  Please check the Iron Past Sales Archive on the right to see what some of the Irons we have had have sold for in the past

If you have similar irons to those seen here that you are looking to sell, please email us at LCM@AntiqBuyer.comm

To see other examples of antique pressing irons that we currently have for sale please go to our sister site at www.Patented-Antiques.com and visit the antique iron sale pages you will find there.

We are currently selling irons there from 3 collections and several individual  consignors totaling over 3000 different irons.   There is room for yours as well.

Thank You!
Larry & Carole


Please Note:
The reason you do not see any doorstop variety irons, or simple irons without any special features, or electric irons from the 50's -70's discussed here is because we generally do not buy them.

If you have these types of more common sad irons and are looking to sell them look at eBay for a while and see what is going on there, or with pressing irons in general, and what these more common types of irons are selling for there.  You will then understand why.  We typically have several hundred of these more common irons floating around if that is what you are looking for.   I can sell them to you for $$1.00 - 10.00 / ea.  Bottom line, there is little demand or value in common sad irons.





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Larry & Carole Meeker