After completing the restoration of the sheet metal parts I started the restoration of all of the working parts of the stove.  These parts included all the gas plumbing, burners, knobs, hinges, springs and other parts that make the stove function properly.

I tackled the gas plumbing first.  The plumbing was in good shape structurally,  It mainly just needed cosmetic restoration.  I was afraid the cast iron burners might be rusted-out but all they needed was a good cleaning and repainting.  I used Navel Jelly and the wire wheel on my bench grinder to remove the surface rust from the burners.  Then I spray-painted the four cast iron stove-top burners with Stove Bright paint. 

However, I didn't paint the over burner as I was afraid the paint might give off fumes when subjected to the flame from the burner.  I painted all of the air-flow dampers (if that's the right term) with the same high temp- erature aluminum paint that I used to paint some of the parts on Maych's engine.  

The only gas piping in the stove was one short section of pipe that contained all of the valves (four top burners and the oven) and another shorter piece that went to the oven thermo- stat. Again, the pipe was struct- urally sound and all they needed was cleaning and painting. just like the burners.  The valves where very hard to turn so I knew they would need a good cleaning.  I removed the five valve assemblies from the pipe and disassemble them.  I used Pre Painting Prep from Eastwood and a brass brush to clean all the old grease and gunk from the valve parts, being careful not to damage the valves.

Before reassembling the valves, I used the wire wheel on my bench grinder to polish all the brass parts of the valve assem- blies.  They were so dirty and dis- colored I didn't even know they were brass until I got them on the wire wheel.  Now they look like new.  I then painted the valve handles with the same high temperature aluminum paint that I used to paint the air-flow dampers on the burners.

I was now ready to reassemble the valve assemblies and reattach them to the gas piping.  The valves now turned freely but I knew the sound of metal-on-metal was not a sound I wanted to hear when turning gas valves and I was afraid they were now so loose they might leak gas. 

After doing a little research on the Internet I found what I was looking for at The Old Appliance Club.  Indeed, it is the grease that I removed from the valves that lubricates them and keeps them from leaking.  However, over time this grease became old and brittle and the valves built up a varnish which could cause galling damage or cause breakage due to the excess force needed when to turning the valves.  The solution is to apply valve cream.  Naturally, the The Old Appliance Club sells this cream, so I ordered a tube. 

Just so you know, I also found a site (Antique Gas Stoves) that does not recommend using valve cream.  Instead, they recommend having the valves professionally rebuilt.  Of course they offer these rebuilding services.  I carefully inspected my valves and determined that they were not damaged so I decided to give the valve cream a try.  I will fully test the valves before I allow my daughter to use the stove.

After applying the valve cream and reassembling the valves they worked as smooth as silk.  When I test the stove later, I'll see if the valves have any leakage.

Next, I went to work on the pilot light assembly.  When I first purchased the stove I noticed that in addition to the gas valves there was a small button on the front of the stove.  I pushed it but it didn't seem to move and I couldn't figure out what it was for.  

Now that I had the stove apart I could see that the button on the front of the stove was actually the end of a rod that pushed against the pilot light valve inside the stove.  When this push button valve is depressed in allows a full flow of gas to go up the pilot light tube and is then diverted to all four top burners.  You simply turn the valve on the desired burner to light it.  This way, you don't need a pilot light for each of the four burners.  I can't wait to give it a try.  The button valve was stuck shut but a little Pre Painting Prep and elbow grease got it to working freely.  I simply blew on the end of the pilot tube while depressing the button to make sure it was working properly.

Now that the gas valve plumbing was done, the only piece of gas plumbing left to do was the plumbing for the oven burner and thermo- stat.  This consisted of the thermo- stat itself, and a small section of pipe that connected the gas valve pipe to a rather strange looking device that resembles an engine manifold.  I removed the surface rust and gunk from the "manifold"  and painted it with high temperature aluminum paint.

The last piece of the gas plumbing left was the thermostat.  According the the literature the Magic Chef stove was the first manufactured stove (at least in the United States) to have a thermo-    stat.  The official name of the therm- ostat is a Lorain Oven Heat Regulator and I guess it was a very welcome departure from stoves that did not have a thermostat to control the oven temperature.  Anyway, I knew enough to know that I wasn't qualified to restore this device.  Fortunately, I found a place on the Internet that  restores old thermostats.  I emailed Unity Stove of Florida to see if they restored my particular model and they replied that they did and gave me an estimate of what it would cost.  It's not cheap, but I decided it was worth the cost, as there was really no alternative.

I now turned my attention to the "user oriented" pieces of the stove -- namely the turn-knobs that are used to turn on the gas.  These turn-knobs are a highly visible part of the stove, and due to their "vintage" design, give the stove much of its appeal.  So, I wanted  them to look as nice as possible.  The turn-knobs consist of a what I assume is a bakelite knob attached to a steel rod.  The steel rod was no problem to restore.  I just painted it with the same high temperature aluminum paint I used on the other parts.  The bakelite knobs presented a little different challenge.   I restored the bakelite knobs using a method I later used when restoring Maych's exterior light lenses.  You can refer to that section if you'd like details on the procedure I used.

The restoration of the other "working" parts of the stove, such as hinges, springs,  brackets, fittings, gas flues, etc. was pretty straight forward and I won't bother to detail their restoration here, other than to say I restored all these parts in the usual manner -- cleaning and painting.

I am now finished with the restoration of the working parts of the stove and I'm ready to start putting the stove back together.  I sure hope I can remember where all the pieces go. 

Copyright ? 2001-2006 by Johnny M. Patterson
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