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How do I find the age of my Early American Franklin Fireplace?

Post in 'Classic Wood Stove Forums (prior to approx. 1993)' started by Britt, Oct 11, 2010.

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  1. Britt

    Britt New Member

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    Does anyone know how I could find out more information, especially the year, of the Franklin fireplace that I have just bought. The model numbers are 143.84521 and 143.84531. I do have the owner's maual. It says that the fireplace is from Sears, Roebuck and Co. I am very interested in learning about the year of this fireplace and its value.
    Thank you Brittany

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  2. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Is there a copyright date somewhere on the manual? Usually these fireplaces are not worth much more than their scrap value.
  3. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    U.S. stove company started making their revised Franklins for Sears in 1963. When the oil embargo came along in the mid-seventies they were pushing around four hundred a day out the door. I paid $175 for mine new in November of 1977. These days they make really classy plant stands. I left mine in the house when I moved in 1985 and the last time I passed by there, over ten years ago, the chimney was gone so I figure that they scrapped the stove. It was a scary thing to burn in.

    They are on craigslist for sale around here constantly.
  4. Britt

    Britt New Member

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    Thank you for all of your advise.
    No there is not a copyright on the manual.
    Since it isn't worth anything to sell it, do you think it is a good stove to use to heat a home?
  5. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    If its a true Franklin (open in front) its heating efficiency is somewhere between an open fireplace and an a smoke dragon, much closer to the fireplace end of the spectrum. If I had to guess Id say maybe around 10%. Plus you have all the issues of an open fire - no control, safety concerns.

    So no, its not worth the effort to use as a heat source.
  6. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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  7. Shari

    Shari Minister of Fire

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    We have an old (non functioning) pot belly stove in our kitchen. The firebox holds our 3" (diagonally measured) TV. Maybe use your stove for a 13" TV cabinet?

    Shari
  8. spadafore

    spadafore New Member

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    Do not use it in your home. Safety must come first for you and your family. Trust me I had the same questions and the same stove when I joined this site. I was very reluctant to hear that the stove is better left for scrap than to be used, but it is the safetest and most efficant decesion to buy an EPA certified stove.
  9. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    Yep, just hauled one out of my parents basement. Still on a pallet. Been there since '73. Right to the junkyard. Felt kind of weird, but knew it was the right thing to do.
  10. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    That Franklin of mine was one expensive stove:

    Stove - $175

    Installation w/pipe - $300

    Palomino Elephant Hide Tony Lama boots - $400

    Carpet replacement in a brand new house - $300

    Log rolled out on fire and I managed to catch it on the toes of the new boots trying to save the carpet. Embers exploded from the log all over the carpet anyway. And when I went into the attic to get stuff down when we moved two ceiling joists were charred from the heat from the single wall pipe they had installed all the way up.

    BB - Owned a Franklin and lived to tell about it.
  11. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    BB, pics, or it never happened!! I especially want to see the boots.
  12. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    As mentioned, this is probably not an antique or original Franklin with special value.

    It's probably best for a decoration somewhere.
  13. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    U.S. Stove actually did a major change for that stove they called a "Franklin". It looks and works nothing like old Ben's original stove.

    Attached Files:

  14. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Twenty bucks to brotherbart@paypal.com and they are on their way. If I can find then. They are probably still around here somewhere. Mildewed in the basement probably.

    Man, they were good looking boots. Before that log happened. Never have seen another pair like them.
  15. Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle

    Doing The Dixie Eyed Hustle Minister of Fire

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    [quote author="BrotherBart" date="1286939443"]
    Stove - $175

    Palomino Elephant Hide Tony Lama boots - $400

    quote]

    Woooo Hoooo !!! :coolsmile:
  16. Britt

    Britt New Member

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    Thank you to everyone who replied to my posts. I have come to accept that I did not buy a treasure but instead a plant or TV holder. I am very glad I did not pay a lot for it. It is still interesting to know that it is over twenty years old and in excellent condition.

    Thanks for your advice
  17. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    After the old feet got too old, the reason that I swear that "Ropers" got so popular, I had Allen Edmonds make me a pair of alligator boots. Perfectly matched gator skins. Just your basic $2,800 pair of boots. Not what ya wear mucking out the barn.

    Attached Files:

  18. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    [​IMG] or... [​IMG] or maybe we're talking [​IMG]
  19. tickbitty

    tickbitty Minister of Fire

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    BLR, check out the links I put up there, there do seem to be others out there, and some do, apparently, fetch a good price whether it's for decor and not heat, I don't know! But it's interesting anyway. And like a couple other folks on here said, that's where they started!
  20. NH Sweeper

    NH Sweeper New Member

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    I personally have a franklin open fireplace and it's dated from 1845, complete cast and cast brass also, quite a nice piece with original screen and log holders, i wouldn't exactly listen to the smoker who had a log roll out because as you know you should have a screen and log holders, that's pretty common sense and the carpet deserved to burn also be sure you have a huge hearth pad, it will be a smoker back in the room without the exact same sized liner as what's required all the way through the chimney and insulated also to help keep flue stack temperature, i would also recommend pre lighting the flue before you light the fre to get the draft going prior to........it's not gonna be anything that will heat your house and for sure isn't efficient but, i bet nobody on here had a nice one and to be honest if they say they wouldn't want a working one that's just b.s. Also rememer that is an unlisted stove and the installation requirements are 36 inches to combustible, so you need a huge amount of space
  21. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    ;lol;lol;lol
  22. webbie

    webbie Seasoned Moderator Staff Member

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    If it's a Sears, the high odds are that it has no value. The really old "true" Franklins don't look like the sears, atlanta stove and montgomery ward models of the 60's and 70's.
  23. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Yeah. And the only similarity between the Sears (US Stove designed in 1970 one) and NH Sweepers stove is that they are both black in color.
  24. Burner2

    Burner2 New Member

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    I'm sitting in front of my Franklin stove right now Christmas night, on a stone patio though.
    Don't get rid of it, place it outside in a cozy place in your yard!

    Picked mine up for $15 on CL and loving every minute of this low cost antique. Of course follow the precautions already mentioned and enjoy, outdoors.
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