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Replacement cooktop - coil or glass surface?
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:40 am
After spending months finagling trying to get my original wall oven fixed, it seems my 1956 Westinghouse cooktop finally decided to give up the ghost. This time we're talking about smoke and flames. Good times.
So, time to start hunting for a replacement. (There goes the rest of my tax refund. Sigh.) This isn't exactly a centerpiece item, so I will probably go for a new one instead of hunting for a restored product.
Here's how the area currently looks. (Pardon the angle; this is the only photo I have available at the moment.) To retain the look and to go well with the original oven/hood, I like the idea of keeping the coil burners instead of the black glass/ceramic surface that seems to be more common. I have to admit, though, that having an induction cooktop is quite appealing.
Considering the proximity to the older stainless appliances, would a black-surface induction cooktop look completely out of place here? There are no other black surfaces in the kitchen whatsoever, so I don't want the cooktop to stand out too much.
Thanks as always!
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:45 am
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:16 am
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:42 am
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 10:43 am
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 1:47 pm
GE makes a cooktop these days that looks alot like your current cooktop
GE JP328SKSS Stainless Steel 30″ Electric Cooktop
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 4:21 pm
You might post the dimensions of your current cooktop. Half of us are so sick, we will do a bunch of research for you!
I just looked for a unit I remember that had a solid heating element. Kind of looked like the bottom of a cast iron frying pan. I guess they are not made anymore. The sealed nature of the glass top ones make cleaning up a breeze. That seems to have taken over. Induction requires specific pans.
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:27 pm
I didn't know
Posted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:22 pm
They still made coil cooktops, that's news to me.
Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 4:23 am
Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 7:35 am
Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 4:10 pm
Thanks all for the input. I think we've decided to go with a "temporary" coil model, and eventually get around to refurbing the old one.
It dawned on me that all of our pots/pans happen to be Analon, and therefore non-ferrous...and the thought of having to spend hundreds of dollars on top of the extra cost for induction pretty much turned us off. Maybe someday when money is easier to come by!
The GE model Jesgord mentioned also caught my eye, but they don't make it any larger than a 30" model. We need a 36". Downside of that is there's only a small handful of coil models (Kenmore, Frigidaire, and one or two other brands I vaguely recall seeing but can't name now) that would fit. Nothing that quite equals the appearance of my old one, and I don't like the coil placement (they're all on either side, with a large expanse in the center).
On the plus side, I'll always have a spare.
Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:23 pm
just buy a hot plate and convection microwave and take your time fixing the original
Posted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:35 pm
Function over form for me. My induction cooktop is made by Electrolux and badged Kenmore -- and I absolutely love it.
It has the speed and temperature control of gas, and it is incredibly energy efficient. And it's a happy companion to the original 1954 Nutone vent hood.
It is sooooo easy to keep clean. I use less than $1.89 worth of "special cleaner" in 6 months, since most of the time it wipes clean with a microfiber cloth and a little spritz of water. You need stainless steel or cast iron pans. (I use parchment paper between a cast iron pan and the cooktop to prevent scratches, BTW.) I found a great stainless set at Costco for about $180, and my 1960s vintage cast iron and enameled Nordicware and Danish enamel cast iron pots and pans work great.
If I ever get to missing electric coils, I can still use my celery green 1954 range (built by General Motors).
not sure re induction, but HATED the regular glass top!
Posted: Sun Apr 05, 2009 10:41 am
Not sure about induction, but suspect I might be frustrated by it. My last house-the 1959 lodgey cabin came with the type of glass top range popular in the 1990's. HATED it more than words can express. The induction tops may be greatly enhanced and better now, I don't know.
The temperature was too hard to gauge-just not the kind of control you get with gas or even coils. Even without the induction feature, I found many of my beloved vintage le Crueset and belgian stuff was not happy on it. Spinning, sticking, you name it. But the all-time worst was cleaning. Not just that you had to use the special stuff, but that the surface was totally flat and slippery. I am a serious cook, and once anything greasy was on that ice rink surface, you just chased it around and around with cleaner, cloth etc. More energy and cleaning supplies wasted on that sucker, not to mention expletives. I feel the glass top was a lousy choice for anyone who cooks seriously every night. Just yucky.
Glad to see there are some cute simple new models out there. We were at the Habitat for Humanity store yesterday where a very nice 5 yr old Kenmore 5 burner top was $40. Do you have a Habitat for Humanity resource store or even good ol' used appliance guy nearby? I've had great luck with both.
Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 6:20 am
Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 6:20 am
a bit off topic, but i'm liking my glass/ceramic top bosch better than i had imagined... (and perks... they make a nice )
time will surely tell, but once we got the right pans for the job, it was a bit easier to use. ironically, my all-clad stainless didn't do nearly as well as calphalon anodized, perhaps because of the shiny vs. black (reflection/retention) issue, so we sold all of our stainless on ebay and bought new calphalon for the same price (new pans, new cooktop, not out a lot of dough... not bad). i wish i had my old (better/heavier) calphalon set from the 90s, but...
in our situation, a cooktop with lots of knobs and bits sticking up would have been weird from a "clean-plane" perspective (we actually set stuff on top of the cooktop -- like groceries -- every now and again), so the flat top bosch with touch controls in the front was a good choice for this.. however, my biggest gripe is not the heat control, per se, but the heat control (aware of the irony there). in other words, it's not the predictability of the hotness or quickness, but the number of "clicks" it takes to get to where i want to be. to turn it on: on >> burner select >> heat settings (up/down)... [three clicks] then when something's boiling over: burner select >> heat settings [two clicks... as opposed to one when in a panic]... with gas, it was a quick and relative knob turn... i'd say the difference is like that of a radio with a volume knob vs. volume buttons: when you want to turn it down fast, a quick flick of the knob is easier and more intuitive than searching for mute or pushing the button numerous times... but i might get used to it.
as far as special cleaner... we use bonami, a razor blade (rarely, but when needed) and windex or some 409-ish thing. it's actually a lot easier to keep clean imho than our old, very pro-looking gas range as there's not a lot of nooks and crannies for stuff to fall into (burner disc-cover, grate, drip pan, stove base, etc.). when really cleaning our old gas range, it was an hour endeavor that involved putting the drip trays, grates and burner discs in the dishwasher, etc...
however, the glass will take more TLC. i dread when something heavy falls on it or it picks up scratches... it's like hauling lumber in a jetta (glass/ceramic) vs. an old pickup (stainless/iron-grate gas). a few nicks and scratches on an old pickup aren't as noticeable, but a teeny ding in a quarter panel of a jetta sticks out.
anyhoo... perks, it sounds like you have a plan -- get a short/long term replacement (and a decent one in the case it becomes longer)... to your question: "would black look weird"... no. at least i hope not as that's what we have. you know where to find the pix, but for a quick ... good luck.
Posted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 7:59 pm
The Mr Clean Magic Erasers work better than the white liquid stuff. That said, I hated our ceramic cook top (came with the house) and sold it and bought a '62 Frigidaire Flair. It was not good for canning and it hated our vintage enameled cast iron cookware.
Posted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:17 pm
Don't trash the old one; electro-resistive heating appliances have no moving parts and are one of the most beautifully simple things to fix. Everything in it can probably be replaced for under $100 from an appliance parts shop, from coils to rheostats to wire. You will have a "New" cooktop that is also "Vintage". So it actually looks like you're on the right track; best of luck with the repairs.
Posted: Mon Jun 01, 2009 9:59 pm
The oven and cooktop are a team.
Ours both went on the fritz back in the 80's. We replaced the cooktop with an "identical" White-Westinghouse unit that just wasn't the same. I really missed the colored heat level indicators....