Most fans dating back from the 70’s require oiling if used regularly. This is because they were made to last.
The brushless motors were manufactured using brass bearings/bushes as opposed to later fans which now use many plastic parts, in our throw away society. The bearings are accompanied by felt pads which absorb the oil and keep the fan spinning freely and noise free. If used regularly they require about 5 – 6 drops of light oil a year. If you notice your fan is becoming noisier with regular use, then a few more drops might be required. If the fans are over oiled they will become messy with the oil finding its way out, but not causing any damage. It is not unusual to have slight seepage after doing the yearly oil. Just wipe off any excess with a dry cloth or piece of paper towel. The fans are pre-oiled on rebuild with us, so it is not unusual to see slight seepage in the first couple weeks of use.
I have included some photo’s for reference with their oil holes arrowed. They are always on top with some more obvious than others. Look carefully and you will see them although on some darker painted fans they tend to be harder to find. Some fans also have thumbscrews to block the holes. Just remove these and refit after oiling.
Some earlier 360 degree oscillating fans also have lubrication holes on their center pivot point, as shown in photo. Again, look carefully and you should find it, although not all fans have them. A couple of drops of oil in here keeps the oscillating action smooth.
Remember to keep lubricated and expect to see your fan still operating in another 50 years.
Fan bodies can be cleaned with furniture polish as the finish is 2 pac paint, the same as used on automobiles so they are hard and durable. Special attention needs to be paid to cleaning the fan blades and mesh on a regular basis. Although these fans come with a rustproof sealant under the paint finish, THEY WILL RUST OR CORRODE IF DUST IS LEFT ON THEM, especially in high humidity areas. Just like modern fans or in fact any painted piece of steel or aluminium left with dust on it which just attracts moisture. So if you want it to age quickly, don’t clean it, but if you want to maintain its glossy finish, keep that dust off.
PLEASE REMEMBER. THE MAJORITY OF THESE PRE 70’S FANS HAVE LARGE SPACING IN THE FAN MESH.
WHEN USING, PLEASE KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AND SMALL ANIMALS
Electrical safety is everything and here are 6 examples of why if you own an old fan or have recently purchased one, you should never plug them in without having them inspected and tested by a qualified electrician.
With age certain sheathing on older cables starts to deteriorate or melt internally, with the outer sheathing hiding whats going on inside. The cables subsequently short causing fuse triping, or in worst case without the correct safety switch fitted, electric shock.
Over 50% of the cables on these vintage and antique fans have to be replaced. Not only the cable which goes to the powerpoint but the cable which joins the base of the fan to the head. (Switch to the motor). Original cables have been vigorously tested and inspected. As you can see from the photos, these bare cables easily touch each other or touch the bodies of the fan. It is also not uncommon to find fans have been home re-wired as in one of the photos with the most important wire, the earth wire, being cut back and not fitted to the body which is a definite no-no. Not only unsafe but illegal.
All of our items are stripped to the bare shells and rebuilt with all of the components, motors, switching, etc being inspected and tested for failure. Any parts in doubt are subsequently replaced.
NEVER ASSUME THAT A VINTAGE OR ANTIQUE FAN IS SAFE TO PLUG IN. NEVER MESS WITH ELECTRICITY, YOU WILL LOSE.
REMEMBER – SAFETY FIRST