Friday, February 3, 2012
Yesterday I Visited The Value Village Just Down The Street. This Sunbeam T20B Was All I Brought Home. Status: Bright And Shiny!
Yep, another Sunbeam Automatic toaster! I know, I know...I already got lots of these. I just can't help myself. They're just too pretty and I can't believe all toasters today aren't as advanced as these. Just drop your bread in and walk away...no lever to push down. Did I mention it's automatic?!
And since this late January / early February is turning out to be Spring...well I decided to take
my camera and the little T20B outside for some beauty shots. Starting out at $22.50 in 1949,
this '52-'56 version couldn't have been considered a bargain when new, but look at how nice
this still looks. How many new small appliances are in our kitchen that we can count on looking
this good in 60 years? I haven't tested this one yet but I have a couple others that I know still
work just fine and haven't needed to be repaired...at least not by me when I got them.
A buddy of mine who worked for a company that serviced the machines I operate at work got
me started with these particular toasters. He knew I collected "retro" ephemera and mentioned
that his sister had gotten a toaster from his mother's estate that he had always admired, him
being mechanically inclined I can understand why...even though he didn't care so much for it's
vintage status. He asked if I had ever seen one and described it too me. Of course, it wasn't
long before I had 2 and ended up giving one of them to him.
Since then I've gone through at least a half dozen of these. I've held on to a couple for myself
and sold the others. Not everybody recognizes the pure engineering genius of this toaster but
those who do will pay a premium for these upward of $100 on sites like eBay. Of course, if
you have the patience you can pick one up on eBay for as little as $20-$30 too! Or like me,
scour the thrifts and estate sale kitchens and basements for your very own.