Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Breaking Down Gooseneck Clawfoot Tub Faucets

If you didn't know better, you might think that a clawfoot tub faucet includes all sorts of integral parts working in unison to deliver bath water to your clawfoot tub.  In truth, it is not as complicated as it might look.  There are quite a few parts but the parts are pretty simple in your average clawfoot tub faucet and most of the parts are assembled by the manufacturer prior to shipping.  Although you probably won't ever need to know the nitty-gritty details, familiarity with the assembly of a clawfoot tub faucet can make shopping for one a little less intimidating.

Gooseneck Clawfoot Tub Faucet Parts Explosion Diagram

The parts explosion diagram above depicts a gooseneck clawfoot tub faucet.  Gooseneck clawfoot tub faucets are the most popular clawfoot tub faucet Shop 4 Classics offers.  They are most popular because (a) they are generally more moderately priced than other clawfoot tub faucet types and (b) the gooseneck spout is considered code-friendly because it extends above the tub rim; which is required by code in many areas.  Although the parts diagram shows a gooseneck clawfoot tub faucet, other types of clawfoot tub faucets will assemble in much the same way.

Once installed, there is rarely any reason to disassemble a clawfoot tub faucet except to repair a leaky valve.  In the old days, clawfoot tub faucets used compression valves.  Compression valves rely on rubber washers that eventually wear out and need to be replaced.  Compression valves have been mostly phased out and replaced with washerless ceramic disk valves today.  Washerless valves have self-contained ceramic disk cartridges as shown in the diagram above.  Inside the cartridge, is a pair of ceramic disks that rotate to open and close the valve.  The ceramic disk cartridges only require one quarter of a rotation to fully open the valve.  For this reason, they are also often called quarter turn valves.  Because the disks are ceramic rather than rubber, ceramic disk cartridges usually last for a very long time.  If the disks crack or break, the complete cartridge can be replaced almost as easily as replacing a battery in a flashlight.  The most critical function of a clawfoot tub faucet (i.e., turning water on and off) is centralized in the two self-contained cartridges. Recognizing this should limit your concerns about what could go wrong with a clawfoot tub faucet.

You can't go wrong choosing a clawfoot tub faucet from Shop 4 Classics.  Shop 4 Classics offers trusted name brands, great selection, discount prices, and free shipping for clawfoot tub faucets.  Save an additional 5% on complete clawfoot tub faucet orders that include a clawfoot tub drain and clawfoot tub supply lines from the same manufacturer with our FAUCET5 coupon code.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Five Vintage Kitchen Accessories That Add Function As Well As Style

Since moving into my new old home a few years ago, completing the look of my vintage themed kitchen proved to be a struggle. I wanted a clean look with a few accent pieces that looked like they had purpose, rather than merely adding decorative clutter. The kitchen, after all, is the most functional space in the home and I wanted to accent this space with items that reflected this. Early in my search I found just the vintage kitchen accents that fit my requirement; unfortunately most were too expensive or difficult to find in the United States. Years have passed and as fate should have it many of the five kitchen accessories are now available here in the United States at reasonable prices through Shop 4 Classics.

Vintage Cast Iron Egg Spiral Stand
Available in black and white, this vintage egg spiral stand can be used as originally intended to hold hard boiled eggs as they cool or can be used to display decorative eggs as a purely attractive accent piece. Unlike other egg spirals on the market, this egg spiral stand is created from heavy cast iron and features a traditional design complementary to French country, vintage country and other traditional kitchen themes.

Long before the invention of the juicer, the hand-turned fruit press was used when a recipe or drink called for fresh fruit juice. This vintage cast iron fruit press not only extracts juice with a few twists of its handle it also adds an eye-catching conversation piece to your kitchen gathering space.

This decorative oak tree themed cook book stand features weighted bookmarks that hold pages open. It is constructed of heavy cast iron and at 11” tall is large enough to hold open even larger cookbooks in place or it can be used simply to display the antique family recipe book that has been passed down for generations.

Cast Iron Pig with Piglets Keyholder
Add a little country charm with this decorative pig nursing her piglets keyholder. This cast iron keyholder is perfect for keeping those elusive sets of keys in plain view but it can also be used for purely decorative purpose like displaying a collection of vintage skeleton keys.

Cast Iron Trivets
Cast iron trivets are designed to provide a safe place to rest hot pots so that they will not damage kitchen counter tops or dinner tables. However, cast iron trivets with ornate or novel designs are commonly hung on walls as vintage accent pieces.

It may be the dog-days of summer but the holiday season fast approaches and in years past our vintage kitchen accessories were such popular gift items that they were difficult to keep in stock during the months leading up to Christmas. Therefore, we recommend shopping early for these items to avoid potential backorders.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Pewter Cabinet Hardware: What's Your Flavor?

Pewter, although not necessarily pewter cabinet hardware, has been in use since the Bronze Age. Like bronze, pewter is an alloy that is produced by mixing two or more other metals. Bronze and pewter use the same ingredients mixed to a different recipe. Bronze is primarily copper mixed with a dash of tin. Conversely, pewter is primarily tin with a pinch of copper. Other elements may also be added to season the alloy but it is tin and copper that is of primary importance.

Initially, pewter has a bright silver sheen but it rapidly loses its luster and develops the subdued gray patina for which it is best recognized. It is the high tin content in pewter that gives pewter its mellow gray color. In addition to its contribution to color, having tin as a primary ingredient offers several other benefits:
  1. Because tin is a relatively inexpensive metal, it makes pewter more economical than many other alloys.
  2. Tin's melting point is approximately 450 degrees. Because tin melts at about the same temperature required to bake a frozen pot pie, pewter can be cast at relatively low temperatures.
  3. Tin is a soft metal. The reason copper and other elements are added to tin is to harden the resulting metal (pewter). Even with the stiffening ingredients, its high tin content makes pewter a malleable (shapeable) alloy.
Pewter has long been a popular choice for cabinet hardware. Its neutral gray color can adapt to traditional settings as well as contemporary settings. To extend its charm, low relief areas are often antiqued to highlight the intricate designs that can be cast in pewter cabinet hardware. Victorian era pewter cabinet hardware features elaborate patterns that are made possible by pewter's low melting point. Conversely, it is pewter's malleable qualities that allow it to be hammered to create cabinet hardware with the simple designs favored by the Arts & Crafts crowd. While it is the metallic qualities and geometric shapes that make pewter cabinet hardware appealing to modernists. Regardless of your architectural inclinations, pewter cabinet hardware's economical prices make it a favorite for all tastes.

Pewter Cabinet Hardware from Antique Revelry

Shop 4 Classics offers a large selection of pewter cabinet knobs, pewter bin pulls, and pewter cup pulls from Antique Revelry, MYOH, and Acorn Manufacturing. Visit Shop 4 Classics to see what’s cooking in pewter cabinet hardware.