Works beautifully and is in excellent condition. Runs quietly and pushes a lot of heat through the fan. Since it has been thoroughly cleaned it has no aroma like most vintage heaters. The "Arvin" label is made from a brown modern plastic and is in excellent condition with no breaks or chips.
The front chrome has no corrosion and is very shiny. There are no dings or dents.
Front of unit without control knob. The knob attaches to a "U" shaped stamped steel tube and can be easily bent in a twisted direction. May have been done at the factory in order to align the dial to the 12 o'clock position. The tube and dial have been properly realigned. Many of these heaters are missing the control knob because it doesn't fit tightly to the shaft. In this particular case a small wire has been inserted to keep the knob snug without making any permanent changes.
The control knob is Bakelite and passes aroma tests when rubbed with fine metal polish. The smell is very strong and there is no doubt it is Bakelite. It is complete and has no cracks, chips or breaks.
The camera flash is turned on very high and shows a gross exaggeration in color differences that is not really noticeable under normal lighting and distance. At two feet away it looks nearly continous and not patchy as it may look in this photograph.
There is a brown enameled stamped steel band that wraps around each half of the heater in order to hide the edges. It connects at the bottom of the unit.
In order to service the unit the wrap around band needs to be removed, then the four nickel plated screws pictured here need to be removed, and finally 2 nickel plated screws (there are four total) holding half of the thermostatic switch bracket needs to be removed. It is located on the bottom of the unit. There is a hole below the power cord that is original to the heater and is probably meant for a red indicator light used on a more advanced model. The cord is a modern replacement.
The band's clasp has only been bent once in order to remove it. You only get a hand full of bends before they tend to break. The band fits somewhat snug in its current state. The feet are in excellent condition and are made from a hard modern plastic. The safety switch is pictured to the left and has been cleaned and lubricated. There are two additional holes pictured here that are original to the fan.
The label on the bottom reads: MODEL 5518, VOLTS 110-120, WATTS 1650, 60 CYCLE, USE ON ALTERNATING CURRENT ONLY, ARVIN INSUSTRIES INC., COLUMBUS IND USA, SERIAL 426, PATENT 2707745
Interior of both halves of the case. The finish is in excellent condition and very clean.
The motor windings and wire leads have been reinsulated; the rotor has been cleaned, polished and lubricated; and the body has been cleaned and polished.
Back side of motor. Both self aligning bearings show little wear. The rotor turns smoothly without any binding. The wire leads and the molded connectors are original and in superior condition.
The blade is held on by a stiff rubber grommet. It is in excellent shape and shows no sign of wear. The rubber has been reconditioned with "Rubber Renue" to keep the surface pliable.
Back half of case.
Front of case with coil housing, fan and thermostatic switch.
1957 Arvin advertisement. The heater in this gallery is an earlier model with a very low serial number compared to the one pictured in the middle of the page.
Arvin Portable Electric Heater Model 5518, 1650 Watts, 5500 BTU, Serial Number 426, Circa 1955
A collection of images from a restored "Atomic Age" automatic thermostatically controlled forced air electric heater. Has a thick strand of heavy coils placed in a vertical zig-zag arrangement with a shaded pole fan motor. Very quiet operation with a nice safety feature that keeps the heater from operating if tipped over. The original paint has some mild discoloration which has taken more than 50 years to achieve. There is some minor touchup that continues with this theme. It all blends together very nicely to look like an excellent vintage paint job that happens to be very smooth with no orange peel or roughness.
Not exactly an electric fan, but it does have a fan in it as it blows air across the hot electric coils to provide heat during cold winter nights. Not very valuable as a collector's item since they are not in high demand. An item like this really only gets used during emergency type situations; however, almost every home has a portable heater in one form or another.
The flash from the camera grossly exaggerates discolorations throughout the body that can only been seen under magnification and under extremely bright lighting conditions. You can zoom in on the images if you mouse over them. During autoplay zoom is disabled. Shrinking the browser window will shrink its contents possibly making it easier to view the gallery.
Valued in the range of $100 - $140.