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    Antique Toilet (27 Posts)

  • Athana Athana @ 4:25 PM
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    Antique Toilet

    Please help me with this..thank you.
    I have a Peerless Toilet with the Tank kind of lifted off the bowl & an under the tank large Porcelain lever.
    The chrome 3/8" supply comes up out of the floor but the pipe is about 12" tall before factoring in the on/off valve.
    The tank in the new toilet I have is only 14" off the floor...
    WHAT DO YOU RECOMMEND PLEASE?
    If the pipe is unscrewed I fear it will break as it has been there for 50 years and the floor would need to be opened up if this happens...or is this pretty unlikely?
    Or can this pipe be cut, and an extension piece put on that is semi ok looking..or maybe the pipe rethreaded..?
    The bathroom will need redoing in some 5 years but not now..and toilet is shot.
    Thank You
    This post was edited by an admin on February 4, 2013 4:26 PM.
  • Jamie Hall Jamie Hall @ 5:38 PM
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    Well...

    we don't usually do plumbing here, but.. .if you are at all uncertain, may I suggest hiring a licensed plumber?  That way if the old plumbing goes squirrelly, which old plumbing has a way of doing, it's not you trying to figure out what to do next!

    However, if you are bound and determined to do it yourself, and If that feed really is tubing, you might be able to get a compression fitting valve at Home Desperate or the equivalent which will couple to that supply pipe coming out of the floor, and which will couple on the other end to the feed pipe for the new toilet.  Then you could cut the old pipe (use a tubing cutter), put on the new valve with the compresion fitting and go from there.

    Not having looked at the situation, though, I certainly wouldn't go so far as to say that this will work...  And it WON'T work if that old pipe is not tubing, but is chrome plated iron -- which the feed pipes to a lot of the plumbing in my place are.
    Jamie

    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England.

    Hoffman Equipped System (all original except boiler), Weil-McClain 580, 2.75 gph Carlin, Vapourstat 0.5 -- 6.0 ounces per square inch
  • Athana Athana @ 6:20 PM
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    Thanks for making an exception in my case..

    .
    The pipe coming up out of the floor is 3/8" chrome plated...Im guessing brass...
    Theres no chrome plated 3/8" iron or copper is there?? (Im not sure)_

    I have asked a lic. plumber but I have a distinct feeling he's trying to make a bigger job out of ..well...changing a toilet..
    I dont plan on doing it myself I just need to get the extension fitting(what ever that maybe officially called) that looks ok..valve..and give it to a plumber to do what is right.
    But I gotta know what is right first : )
  • icesailor icesailor @ 7:54 PM
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    Photos:

    You need to post photos of the supply connection. We need to see what you have.
    Every old toilet supply that is the age you describe is 3/8" chrome or nickle plated brass. There is usually a shut-off below the tank and a piece of 3/8" brass pipe that goes into the ballcock in the tank. Some of us just replace the valve with one that is 3/8" FPT on the inlet and 3/8" OD compression on the outlet. Many of us have switched to flexible stainless steel braided closet supplies because the old supply will not line up with the new toilet.
    There can be a lot more to deal with than you realize. If the old toilet is connected to a 4" lead bend, you will need to replace it with a wiping flange. Your plumber may not even know what it is or how to install one. The closet flange needs to be screwed to the floor and the toilet bolted to the flange. NOT the toilet screwed to a wooden floor.
    Post photos.
  • Athana Athana @ 11:13 AM
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    Picture..

    Thanks
  • Athana Athana @ 6:20 PM
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    Thanks for making an exception in my case..

    .
    The pipe coming up out of the floor is 3/8" chrome plated...Im guessing brass...
    Theres no chrome plated 3/8" iron or copper is there?? (Im not sure)_

    I have asked a lic. plumber but I have a distinct feeling he's trying to make a bigger job out of ..well...changing a toilet..
    I dont plan on doing it myself I just need to get the extension fitting(what ever that maybe officially called) that looks ok..valve..and give it to a plumber to do what is right.
    But I gotta know what is right first : )
  • SWEI SWEI @ 8:32 PM
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    tanks and toilets

    are not generally interchangeable.  You're generally better off changing the whole toilet.

    As mentioned, you will probably need a new closet flange.  If you have a lead bend, and assuming you can find a plumber who knows how to wipe lead, you might be able to use a Plumbest C49-421 offset flange, which will bring the rough-in closer to modern standards.
  • icesailor icesailor @ 10:23 PM
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    Soldering lead:

    Its not a matter of doing a wiped lead connection, it's a matter of soldering the lead to the copper or brass floor flange.
    There are no 14" bowls made except for  Toto one with an adjustable base that will fit up to an 18" Rough. What Kohler and others do is use a 12" bowl and a fat ugly tank that cost more. I have found that most people learn to love the 12" rough bowl with the standard tank with the 2" space behind the tank. They like the cheaper price.
  • SWEI SWEI @ 11:37 PM
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    soldering lead

    check - gotcha.

    Lack of the appropriate skill here cost me PVC replacements for 52 of those recently.
  • icesailor icesailor @ 7:19 AM
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    Soldering lead:

    Its actually very easy. Lead melts at 620 degrees and 50/50 solder melts at 360 degrees. You tin the copper or brass wiping flange, bend the lead in and put the flange over the squeezed in lead. Then, you screw the flange to the floor in place so the closet bolts are in the proper position, bend the lead back over the flange, and cut the lead so that it ends in the tinned area. You must have solder pasted the tinned part and after cutting the lead, you paste the newly exposed lead. Take a torch with a small tip. I always use my "B"tank with a #3 tip, and carefully heat the lead and flange and keep putting the solder on the lead and flange where you are starting. The solder will stick to the lead first. Move the heat closer to the flange but carefully control the heat. Sometimes the lead will be away from the flange. Sooner or later, the ball of solder on the lead will start sticking to the flange. If you have any lifted lead, stop and carefully beat it down with a hammer. Keep putting the solder on the lead and it will start running around the flange. Stop and beat down any lifted spots. Follow all the way around until you meet at the starting place.  Any person that can solder well can do it. You only have to get the brass or copper flange above 360 degrees. You depend on the heat conduction of the solder being cooler than the lead when molten.
    If it is important to you, take a piece of sheet lead flashing, scrape it clean on one piece and use the clean edge of a cut piece. Paste it with solder paste. Use 50/50 solder and try it. You will see how easy it is. Then, take a piece of copper tube or scrap sheet stock, clean it then tin it. Paste it, and solder the lead to it. You will not believe how easy it is.
    When I walk into a house and I see closet screws holding down a toilet bowl, and it is an old house, I rip it up and replace the flange. If I am changing the toilet, it is a given that I have to do it.
    I thought I had some photos of one I did but evidently not. I have someones failed attempt at doing something similar but not the real thing.
    Try it.
  • jonny88 jonny88 @ 4:43 PM
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    fantastic explanation

    Thanks for posting that icesailor.in the city all we use is leadbends and i can safely say that no one in the company has ever wiped the flange.i took a lead wiping course recently and it really gives you a lot of respect for the old timers,thanks again
  • SWEI SWEI @ 10:56 AM
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    thanks for that

    I'll keep it on file.  Plenty of pre-1940 (roughly when they switched to CI bends here) building about.

    When you say "B tank" I assume you're referring to air-acetylene?
  • icesailor icesailor @ 8:27 PM
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    "B" Tank:

    You betcha,
  • Athana Athana @ 1:47 PM
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    But..

    But I am intending to change out to new toilet...thats the main point.
    That old thing has an unremovable pee ring/stain and runs & maybe leaks.

    Bowl is 12 1/2" from back wall...if its lead under there..
    *If its in nice shape..it gets used again as is yes?
    * If needs to be changed..what needs doing?
    Thanks
  • Athana Athana @ 11:12 AM
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    PICTURE

    I dont plan on replacing tank but entire Toilet (Kohler Portrait 2 Piece)
    The toilet center(bolts)right now is at the usual 12 1/2 " distance from the wall.
    This post was edited by an admin on February 6, 2013 11:48 AM.
  • Steamhead Steamhead @ 3:53 PM
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    That's a beauty!

    whatever you do, don't junk it.

    In order to replace that pipe, you might have to open the ceiling underneath.

    Me? I'd leave it there.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"

    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists

    Oil & Gas Burner Service

    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
  • ChrisJ ChrisJ @ 4:00 PM
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    Leave it

    What is that a 7 gallon flush? :)

    Either way I'm with steamhead, leave it.  It probably functions fine as a toilet and besides, you're probably opening a barrel of worms replacing it.
    Weil-McLain EG-45 connected to 392sqft of radiation via two 2" risers into a 3" drop header and 2" equalizer. Using Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment to greatly reduce corrosion in the boiler.


    Boiler pictures.
    https://picasaweb.google.com/thetube0a3/Boiler?authkey=Gv1sRgCImUxIqv9436MQ#
  • Steamhead Steamhead @ 5:10 PM
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    If the ceiling was damaged by a leak

    I'd open it up first and see just what's leaking. It could be a pipe joint and not the shower or toilet itself.

    As for the "running" problem, that's easily fixed.
    "Reducing our country's energy consumption, one system at a time"

    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists

    Oil & Gas Burner Service

    Baltimore, MD (USA) and consulting anywhere.
  • Athana Athana @ 1:50 PM
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    Can't..

    Was told by lic Plumber insides changed out will be a couple of hundred in brass parts for inside tank from Wolverine...there is a ring stain in nearly every toilet in this house that will not come out ..its gotta go.
  • Athana Athana @ 4:57 PM
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    But..

    The toilet runs & runs water so I have stopped it in place...& is not useable.
    This and the fact that either this or the shower pan has leaked undernieth makes me want to change it out.
    Since I saw this cieling damage when we first moved in 3 years ago I have never used that shower nor toilet.
    If one of you guys would like to revive this when Ive replaced it..(if I can get to replace it..Id be glad to give it to you).
    Im in NJ near Newark...I dont mind driving it in one direction or another 25 miles and meet you part of the way. Id just be happy to see it put to good use. Its a nice unit.
  • unclejohn unclejohn @ 6:47 PM
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    Won't a

    Shark bite work?
  • Athana Athana @ 1:32 PM
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    I don't know?

    I'll ask.
  • vaporvac vaporvac @ 10:53 PM
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    Can be fixed for cheap.

    I have 5 toilets almost exactly like yours, but maybe older. They're all original to my 1914 house. Like most old things they were designed to be fixed and with a little thought they CAN be fixed. I'm by no means a wonder woman, but i was able to empty the tank and inspect how it's made and fix it. They go off every few years or so, but every new toilet or new insert I've bought has broken within two years. They're plastic, fgs!
    I have the Kohler Portrait in a guest bathroom that had a nasty 70s toilet replacement and I've already had to replace the inner workings. Just don't think that a new one is a final solution. Plus, it does not fit flush to the wall and needs a back support.
    These parts are still available for a few bucks ($10)at mom and pop hardware stores or old plumbing stores. I haven't met a porcelain stain that Barkeepers Friend can't get rid of. You do need to empty the tank. It may also need a new wax ring...about $2 .
    I'd inspect the shower grouting. These old showers tiles were set in concrete. Modern chemical can leach the grout if not rinsed well. The satisfaction of fixing that unique toilet (there aren't many left!) will be worth it, and it's not hard to do.
  • Athana Athana @ 1:45 PM
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    Thanks VV

    The plumber told me that Wolverine makes brass parts to replace original and the last time he got it all it was about $225 in parts aprox...then he said this toilet if this or that happens it could be a $200 job or an $800 job...not including the toilet I already have. My wife was like Ill be damned if Im spending $800 on that mate.
    So a regular replacement set will work in this tank you say..like those at Home Depot or do I get at hardware store? This an the cleaner you recomend may be a solution. Thank You..very kind to suggest.
  • ChrisJ ChrisJ @ 1:53 PM
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    Barkeepers friend

    Yep,  I use barkeepers friend to clean rust stains off of the porcelain on the two 1930s monitor top fridges I've been restoring.
    Weil-McLain EG-45 connected to 392sqft of radiation via two 2" risers into a 3" drop header and 2" equalizer. Using Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment to greatly reduce corrosion in the boiler.


    Boiler pictures.
    https://picasaweb.google.com/thetube0a3/Boiler?authkey=Gv1sRgCImUxIqv9436MQ#
  • icesailor icesailor @ 8:03 PM
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    Fix-it:

    As one who prides himself in being able to try and fix anything and usually be successful, I have to say that that particular toilet could be a problem.
    That toilet does not have a standard 2" flush ell. It is an offset pipe that looks like it is porclain covered. Then, there's that cute "under the tank" pull chain. In the day, that toilet was The One.
    I don't think I've seen more than two of them and they were in houses that had a serious rehab way back in the 20's or later. They were never found in the houses of Joe Lunchbox but were found in the people that hired them. The parts available from Wolverine Brass will fit but there are other companies that make brass parts for them. It is an acquired skill to repair them.
    If the existing toilet is a 14" rough (and that one may be a 12" rough), and having a space behind is a problem to you, there is an alternative. Toto is a quality toilet and they offer toilets that have an adjustable floor flange connection.
    The Kohlers and the Toto's are the best flushing toilets I have seen.
  • There comes a time

    when you just get tired of dicking around with a troublesome artifact and you want to make your life simpler.  I love that gorgeous curved china tank and the elegance of the fixture..............the remembrance of a bygone era, but when push comes to shove, I'd replace it with a nice Toto so that I can do my business without worrying about the ceiling below falling down.
    Often wrong, never in doubt.
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