1942 Sears 520.07737

Discussion in 'Simpson Sears-Sears Roebuck' started by Dan D, Oct 19, 2013.

  1. Dan D

    Dan D Subscriber

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    A fine compact Sears kerosene table lamp made by Nulite. Offered only in 1941 and 1942, I'm dating this 1942 based on the Sears catalog which stated that the fount was chrome plated brass in Fall 1941 and just metal in Fall 1942. By 1943, due to war time restrictions, virtually no metal lamps of any kind were offered, and even the generators were no longer available. This lamp fount is steel. I'm not sure of the finish on the steel, there's something there, but it does not have the high lustre of chrome or nickel, even under the handle where, many times the finish is well preserved. In any case, I don't believe it's nickel plated as this metal was extremely valuable for the war effort. An interesting note, the US 5 cent coin, the "nickel", made of 25% nickel and 75% copper, was minted in 35% silver, 56% copper, and 9% manganese between 1942 and 1945.

    A rather spartan lamp, with it's plain fount and handle that looks like it was cut from a closet pole; probably reflective of the mood of the war years. A common lamp for the common folk, who purchased many necessities from the Sears catalog.

    It does have a very unique looking generator. I could not find a patent for it, so I'm not sure of the intended purpose of the applied ring structure around the body of the generator. Perhaps as a better heat transfer to the skinny body. You still need to pre-heat for a good minute and a half or so, for proper vaporization. The cleaning needle screws into the eccentric block, and the metal spring inside the tube is held captive there, by having the base opening swaged to a slightly smaller diameter, probably to keep the spring from coming out and resting on the raiser mechanism. There is no meths cup, instead there is drip shield, probably on which you rested an asbestos torch, so you did not need to hold it during pre-heating. Just a guess.

    Even though the generator spring was not removable, I was able to clean out most of the carbon via some heat/quench cycles and engine carbon cleaner. There is also an asbestos fuel restrictor/filter in the feed tube from the fount, just below the main valve. This was in excellent condition.

    Once all cleaned up and tested, the lamp performed really well, very bright, with pair of Coleman 21 coarse weave Silk-Lite mantles. I have better luck with these rather than standard Coleman 21 or Peerless mantles. Not sure why.

    The only thing remaining was the shade. In keeping with the spirit of the original shade shown in the catalog, I had a complete new pleated hard linen material, white styrene lined, shade made to my dimensions by Fenchel Shades for a very reasonable price. Time will tell how the styrene (plastic) lining will hold up to the heat, but the white lining does a great job reflecting the light from the lamp.

    The mica globe is probably the original. It was quite dirty and not very translucent at first, but after running it through the automatic dishwasher, it came out looking quite nice and clear enough to use (after a little bit of straightening). The dishwasher trick has worked well for me before. If not, Fred Kuntz makes excellent replacements.

    The Sears catalog references were from the Ancestry Library, an on-line reference which includes, among other things, just about every Sears catalog issued, normally requiring a membership at ancestry.com, but available for free for in library use only at many libraries in the US (including mine). A very valuable resource.

    Dan

    1382194597-07737.jpg

    1382195352-07737_burner.jpg 1382195405-07737-bunsen.jpg 1382195468-07737-shade-top.jpg 1382195528-07737_Model_No.jpg 1382195557-07737-genny___filter.jpg 1382195665-07737-lit.jpg 1382195729-07737-before.jpg
    1382195781-Fall_1941.jpg 1382195813-Fall_1942.jpg 1382195834-Spring_1943.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 1, 2017
  2. JEFF JOHNSON

    JEFF JOHNSON United Kingdom Subscriber

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    It's a fine lamp Dan and it's great to see it working! :thumbup: :clap: :clap: :thumbup:
     
  3. Mackburner

    Mackburner United Kingdom Founder Member Subscriber

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    Yes those Sears catalogues on Ancestry are for sure handy. I have downloaded all the lamp pages from around 1916 and been able to catalogue all the Sears lamps. The model numbers are odd. In the catalogues you don't see the prefix numbers such as the 520 on our lamp. There are prefix letters and numbers but they change depending on which catalogue issue. So I have only listed them with the last number series which makes you lamp model 07737. ::Neil::
     
  4. stormie4me

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    awesome really;everyone should have one of these :lol:
     
  5. jonathan fairbank

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    HHummm ! A fascinating Table Lamp, you've nursed back to good health, there; I'm very tempted to have a meddle with something a bit less imposing, myself. The differing metal contrasts are a trip, in themselves, seems a shame to shroud them over from site, but the glare would be too much, whilst relaxing.

    I think the lamp looks fantastic, and it'd be a cozy piece of very practical furniture, to help keep the living rooms chills, at bay, through the winters.

    The shade you had made, suits the lamp & is quite subtle. I could see this sort of lamp, being fitted with a wide Tiffany, but with minimalist, two tone colouring sections.

    Very nice indeed, you've got me thinking there, where on earth are these styles of lamps found, up for sale. I see the odd few, a time or two, in ebay, but they seem more high end, category ?

    Nice job, :thumbup:

    Jon.
     
  6. Ryan Center

    Ryan Center United States Subscriber

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    How does this work? How do you pressure it up?
     

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  7. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    @Ryan Center

    The top of the filler cap unscrews a couple of turns and an external pump is placed of the indentation/hole of the filler and air is pumped into the tank.

    There is a check valve at the bottom of the filler cap.

    Cheers

    Tony
     
  8. Ryan Center

    Ryan Center United States Subscriber

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    Don’t have the pump, guess I could fabricate something?
    Should I try and take apart and clean first? If so, what would be the best way to go about it?
     
  9. Tony Press

    Tony Press Australia Subscriber

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    I responded to your “Conversation”.

    Tony
     

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