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Summer 2014 Yard/Estate/Tag Sale Scores

Happy Summer, Everyone:

So, I was headed somewhere this morning and the "Estate Sale" sign snagged me. In the house I find this apple peeler in pristine condition. No, I mean literally pristine, with the safety coating still on the cutter edges and no paint gone off the gear teeth. Not sure if it was the real deal or a cheap knockoff, I bit at $12.

Once home, I nervously checked Lehman's and THERE IT WAS, a real "Reading 78" Apple Peeler, ON SALE for $190. Nineteenth Century technology at its best. Here's a video of it in action peeling TEN apples a minute: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LeuWD...

Cross another longtime want off my list. Now I'm looking for a similar-quality cherry pitter.

What have you all found so far this year, and what are you dreaming of finding?


PS Right alongside the peeler were 4 West Bend solid copper Moscow Mule mugs, 50 cents apiece. Got those too.

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  1. Just last weekend 3 Emile Henry baking dishes for $5 each! One squarish one, an oval and an oblong. These are fairly shallow ones - not the deep lasagna pan type. But they're perfect and I've already used one of them.

    1. Not too many "estate sales" in my area, but I'm so happy when yard sales start up again! Like you, when I make a great score, I go online to try to find out what an item is worth.

      I have a dinky little apple peeler/corer/slicer that SIL gave me after she quit doing Pampered Chef demos. I found an alternative use for it. Was getting ready to make a big cooler of REAL lemon-ade for a trip to the beach and thought of all that zest that I had no immediate plans for. I put the lemons on the apple thing and swung the corer/slicer parts out of the way. Ended up with a MOUNTAIN of zest ribbons & no pith! I let it get good and dry... actually crispy... and ground it to a powder... made lemon/pepper mix that wasn't mostly salt like what you can buy in supermarket.

      Found a LeCreuset square grill pan at Good Will. Blue enamel exterior in perfect condition (NO cracks or chips) & very little clean up needed on cast iron interior... $5... well over $100.

      Another time, at GW, couldn't pass up a "vintage" (faded yellow) KA stand mixer... crank up/down, bowl, whisk, paddle, & beater... in great runner order... $20. About a week after that found a spare bowl for $5.

      A few weekends ago, made a MAJOR score on Food Saver stuff! At one sale an unopened box of 4 rolls of bag material & a FOOD SAVER machine... much newer model than one I had (another yeard sale find). At another, 2-3 almost whole rolls of bag stuff and an unopened package of quart (maybe) bags. Spent whopping $10 TOTAL for both buys.

      2 Replies
      1. For some reason when in Florida church rummage sales seemed to include Sunbeam electric juicers from the 50's.
        They had the filtery thing jiggle as well so all juice delightfully went through leaving some pulp but not all.
        l scored three of them at different sales.

        1. At a charity shop, four little tapas dishes, never used, $1 each. Not as spectacular a saving as some here, but I was very happy. Everyone I knows loves small dishes.

          1. Score!
            A good friend is a yard sale guru , she knows way beyond most people what's worthwhile and what's not. I go with her occasionally, but I have little self-control and tend to buy stuff I like and don't think about the fact that I have no use for it or any place to put it. And I've never seen anything like your apple peeler here. Maybe some day I will.

            1. My best so far this year were four vitamix units, two new plastic type units for $25 each, an older model 4000 stainless model with a second bin for $6.99, and one of their commercial units for $20. An older 6qt kitchenaide mixer for $15 (needed a new power cord). Four of the onetime $600 living air air cleaners for $20 total, a $600 commercial water distiller for $10, and a commercial hot dog roller (non-stick) for $20.

              6 Replies
              1. re: exvaxman

                Unfortunately, I bought a mint-condition Lifetime (West Bend) electric skillet for a very cheap price, but it was lacking its cord and it seems impossible to buy another one - oh, perhaps from their website: http://www.lifetimecookware.com/lten/... but they are very expensive, and that is even before the shipping to Canada. Pity, as it is such a useful pan. It is far deeper than the average "skillet", and would be fine for most any braise I'd want to do.

                1. re: lagatta

                  Please hit your local thrift stores. Most by me have controllers for $2 and under. Based on my history (I used to go to the West Bend outlet every other week when it was in West Bend, they had a couple of standard controllers) mnany are interchangeable. I think that the foindue pot controller works with the skillet we have.

                  1. re: exvaxman

                    Thanks, exvaxman. I've been doing that, with no luck so far. Soon I'll hit up a "flea market" a bit north and east of my place, as I know people have sighted them there. I think most of the West Bend controllers would work, but the more "standard" type (on my electric wok and a skillet I'm discarding because the non-stick is worn off in places) do not.

                    I think they might be a bit less common in Canada than in the US, though the products were certainly sold here and I bought the "skillet" at a yard sale here. As you can see from the Lifetime site, that deep covered skillet is as much a braising pan as a skillet.

                    I'm a charity and thrift aficionada, to give as much as to get these days. Too much stuff, in a not-very-large apartment. Something in = something out.

                  2. re: lagatta

                    Check American Science and Surplus- sciplus.com
                    They have so much rndom stuff I wouldn't be surprised if they had a couple.

                    1. now i want one of these... how cool!

                      1. I have been trying to stay away from the thrift stores - I just cannot justify needing more cookware but sometimes I fall victim

                        latest dubious finds
                        All Clad 12" Chef Pan with Lid $14 - totally don't need it but could not reists

                        Paul Revere 1776 copper gratin $8
                        like this

                        22 Qt presto pressure canner for $18 (but I ordered weights so that added cost


                        I also picked up a like-new nesco food dehydrator

                        UGH I am not doing a good job - time to purge

                        5 Replies
                        1. re: JTPhilly

                          Your chef's pan is a little wok (for western stoves)! If you don't need it, it would make a splendid gift, for someone starting over or starting off, who needs a good quality, multipurpose pan. I couldn't resist that either. I don't need one as I have a flat-bottomed "Peking Pan", but I know exactly where I'd take it if I had one.

                          The copper paella pan is also extraordinary.

                          Remember, give away or sell on internet at least one item for every new one. Most of these will be giveaways, to get rid of unused stuff fast. You are making someone else happy and cleaning out your house.

                          1. re: lagatta

                            Yes, consider donating the "giveaways" to the Cookware Lending Library, Duffy H, Head Librarian.

                            1. re: lagatta

                              yeah, I have a carbon steel peking pan - I will probably give away the AC pan ultimately if I dont find it to be particularly useful - I give away and donate alot of stuff - things I find better version of or dont really do what I wanted - still it is time for a review and purge of some redundant items... and to finally install those shelves I have been lazy about LOL

                              1. re: JTPhilly

                                Hi JT,

                                If you decide to part with (sell) the AC chef's pan (and our lending library doesn't get launched), will you keep me in mind? I'm considering trying the stainless style of induction stir fry that Swissaire does but don't want an investment piece to practice with. I'll be your best friend and take you to the circus.


                            2. re: JTPhilly

                              Those are some seriously good scores, JT! Well done.

                            3. Looking for a few items for the college kids' apartments, found: 1. Brand new, never used (still in the box) Cuisinart Toaster Oven, $7.50 and 2. Brand new, never used (still in the box) 6 qt original Crock Pot, $7.50.

                              Both of these items came with the original owners' manuals and recipe booklets. In the case of the Crock Pot, that was a hoot as it was circa 1992 (publication date). The date on the toaster oven was 2001, but I've tested it extensively and happy to report it works perfectly.

                              1. What a score!

                                My cher
                                ry pitter is a one-at-a-time one by Oxo, I think. But check out Chef.com and other sites for kitchen stuff, and you'll find a good pitter

                                1. OK, ok I am not even going to admit to everything I bought today (I am watching for the "hoarders" film crew to show up) but one "find" was really good

                                  10" wood handled Wusthof chef knife for $2.90 and that is with a stiff japan made spatula that the thrift store had for some reason decided to group it with - this is a lovely knife and in good shape, feels great in my hand and hey - the spatula was worth $2.90, its pretty nice itself so this knife was practically free

                                  1. kaleooooo... or other copper folks HELP

                                    who can resist $2 piece of copper - even a tiny pan like this

                                    8" wide x 7" across weight 1.5lbs Market Leigon Scavullo

                                    seems American made and the riveted handle is crude but the copper is pretty thick

                                    any info on maker/use

                                    pics attached - quarter shown for thickness

                                    8 Replies
                                    1. re: JTPhilly

                                      Hi, JTPhilly:

                                      2 bucks is great no matter what.

                                      I'm no scholar on Scavullo/Legion. I nearly bought a piece (they seem to have made nice fish pans) recently, but: (a) the weights are a little off what you'd expect if they were staight-gauge copper; and (b) it seems they have mostly made cooper plate and bimetal wares. See, http://www.legionindustries.com/conta... In a gratin like this, who cares for $2?

                                      Legion is the successor to a very fine old copperware maker, Jos. Heinrichs, whose copperware lined in silver and nickle are well worth having.


                                      PS: Cook in that gratin like you stole it--you did. This is a really useful size.

                                      1. re: kaleokahu

                                        thanks for your response Kaleo - i see they have alot of quality variation and their new stuff is suspect but to my eyes this is tin lined copper not sure how to confirm - you can see in the last pic, with the quarter, that the silvery metal layer looks thin and applied, I have a rather lovely french made pan that is, alas, aluminum with copper plate - this is heavier for its size by a good margin so I do think its solid copper but I am not sure how to tell for sure short of cutting it in half which I am not inclined to do LOL.

                                        Not sure what to do with it outside a oversize (not for me really) creme brulee

                                        1. re: kaleokahu

                                          another question - this little gratin seems to be for commercial use not home to my eyes because of the rather crude handle - any idea what it's intended use is?

                                          1. re: JTPhilly

                                            Hi, JT:

                                            It would be a great chicken roaster. Actually, it's an extremely versatile piece.

                                            Have fun,

                                            1. re: kaleokahu

                                              that would be a very small chicken Kaleo :)

                                              1. re: JTPhilly

                                                It should easily accommodate a pullet. I roast chickens in #8 skillets all the time. If you're buying juiced birds, these can approach the size of a jenny.

                                                It's your pan, see what fits.


                                        2. re: JTPhilly

                                          I bought a legion industries copper sauce pan that was quite thick and heavy. When it arrived, I was disappointed to realize that there was a thick layer of IRON in between the copper exterior and the stainless steel interior. Ive never seen or heard of any other company that does this, but what a waste. It makes no sense to me at all. Does yours have iron in it?

                                          1. re: alarash

                                            wow that is bizarre I don't see evidence of iron here. Yeah that makes no sense at all.

                                        3. Presto pressure canner that seems to have never been used... $8.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: CaliforniaJoseph

                                            that's awesome a got a 22 qt one for about 2x that but very well used

                                            if it is gauged make sure to check the pressure is accurate - or just buy the weights - which is what I did, they are cheap - seems like the gauge was accurate though

                                          2. I have a kid going to college next year. No hotplates/etc allowed in dorms, but microwaves are. I just picked up a couple of the (very old) Raytheon pizza crispers for the microwave. Also goofed on a closeout web site and received 1000 microwave crisper bags for $10.

                                            1. Yesterday for $3, this adorable set of pots. Have absolutely no use for it, but I couldn't resist. There's one handle that can be used for all the pots - the guy said it's great for camping but it seems a bit bulky for that use.

                                              9 Replies
                                              1. re: Nyleve

                                                And the handle appears to be detachable, yes? So shine them up and bake different party dips in them. Or different sides for the holidays. Limited, sure, but it's a use!

                                                1. re: DuffyH

                                                  The handle fits into that handle-hole - so one handle does all 3 pots. I assume the configuration is so that they all fit over a single burner. A nifty trick. I will find some way to use it eventually.

                                                  1. re: Nyleve

                                                    You are exactly right. I have a very old 1/3 of such a set, purchased by my late grandmother when my mother was a child. When my grandmother's two daughters got married, each got a pot. I inherited my mother's. The handle is long gone. My mother told me that the set was sold door to door as a way to cook 3 things on one burner, just as you surmised. In our house my mother used it solely for stovetop baked potatoes. I have it now as an heirloom. Mine has a "Club" brand mark.

                                                2. re: Nyleve

                                                  those are neat - I love some of the strange old aliminumware - it looks similar in manufacture to my double skilled/omelet pan. Does it have a makers mark?

                                                  1. re: JTPhilly

                                                    It's a Canadian brand - Super Health. And from the design of the trademark, it would seem that they only make this type of pan. Or maybe they just identify with it more than anything else they ever made.

                                                    I love those old aluminim pieces too. I have a couple of really heavy-duty roasters that are just fantastic, also picked up at yard sales. I guess no one wants aluminum anymore. I say, bah humbug.

                                                    1. re: Nyleve

                                                      interesting to think of a time when manufacturing was sort of "local" - it reminds me much of my SilverSeal skillet in the handles. I am a big fan of much of the old aluminum stuff as well - I have a few old aluminum roasters as well - they are very useful. I am not worried about the aluminum (how could you eat in restaurants) I cant imagine much is leached I use other pots and pans when simmering acidic sauces and the like but for roasting thick old aluminum is great stuff. Guardian Service also made a much of these heart shaped pans I pass on them because they never have the glass lids. Short of copper aluminum has pretty great heating qualities for cooking - I particularly love my Calphalon Hard Anodized Toledo made sauce pans and skillets - they are so great - I am so happy some rich lady either got induction or got scared of aluminum and donated them - because I got them super cheap and they have basically put all of my SS and LC to rest

                                                      1. re: JTPhilly

                                                        I got a great vintage cast aluminum roaster that looks like magnalite-Forever brand with a stamped map of Louisiana for the logo. Pretty good souvenir of our trip to cajun counbtry. Some of that brand are marked with a fleur de lis instead of the map.

                                                        1. re: wekick

                                                          Hi, wekick:

                                                          Cool. Is it the sexy "Airstream Trailer" style? Post a photo, please?

                                                          Mementos like this are uber cool. Don't you wish it could talk?


                                                3. I had been keeping my eye out for a Griswold chicken fryer (deep frying pan) when I saw one on the "bay" for cheap. It was nickel plated and came with a matching lid. I watched it, and no one seemed interested in it, so I bid on it. It's now the work horse for fried chicken/tonkatsu/tempura.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: wabi

                                                    enjoy - that's a nice score - chicken fryer is a useful shape - I have a Wanger fryer - love it

                                                  2. not sure if i posted it here or elsewhere but I am falling "in love" with the Champion Juicer i picked up last month. I am still planning on trying to sell Dad on it when he gets back from vacation as I really think it could help him but if he rejects it I will happily keep it - not only because of how it works but because of how it feels - it is fun to use and the motor feels powerful and even - when it comes to cookware and appliances sometimes the tactile is as or more important than the end product.

                                                    1. Hi All, I got here from the big tin discussion...I happened upon a yard sale of sorts...stuff in the grass with a "free" sign. A breakfast set for 2 of (French)Henriot handpainted pottery, value new at $715 then add a matching cake stand for ?? prob. $200.

                                                      What you will appreciate most is the copper. There was a heavy heavy copper tin lined mold, a paella pan needing re-tinning, and a 12" fry pan in good order with tin lining. I haven't priced it out yet because all I am finding is stainless steel lined...at all the major places, including DeHillerin in Paris. It's where Julia Child used to buy her cookware. So I am a bit spooked when they have turned their back on tin fry ware. They kept it in a few deeper pots, but anything with higher heat they went stainless.


                                                      I am simply ecstatic with my "yard sale" finds.

                                                      2 Replies
                                                      1. re: zoomer31

                                                        Wow, zoomer, any one of those would be an amazing find for free; all together: WOW! Enjoy your equipment. I especially love the look and feel of substantial copper-tin molds, and that's a most useful item since the tin lasts and lasts, not being subject to scraping or much heat.

                                                        1. re: zoomer31

                                                          I think you mis-read the sign - it really said "for JTPhilly Hand Off!" now send me my stuff!

                                                          LOL, that's a sweet score! Just wow on the things people chuck - around here there is no hope for copper - the scrappers sniff it out. If you curb something with a chord the cut it off and strip it.

                                                        2. August update: Saturday Wahine spotted a huge, pristine set of Royal Doulton "Grantham" at a junk shop. $120 for TEN full place settings, plus platters, serving bowls, etc., etc. We knew nothing about the pattern, but jumped anyway, mostly based on the fact that it all looked completely unused.

                                                          I checked on both Replacements.com and Chinasearch, and learned this pattern was produced from 1934-1964. The teacup and saucers alone are going for $25/pr.

                                                          These will replace the mishmash at the beach house, and at that price, we won't feel too bad if any are broken.

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: kaleokahu

                                                            Hi K,

                                                            Kudos to your Wahine! She's got a good eye for china. The cottage look will be great at your beach house, I'm sure.


                                                            1. re: kaleokahu

                                                              nice - Royal Doulton was the swoon of the old ninnies growing up - another casualty of the demise of "the potteries" enjoy it and be nice to it because good English china is gone with the Dodo and all the brands are now M.I.C.

                                                              sidenote: i realize the perverse irony in bemoaning the demise of English potteries that were originally established to make cheap copies of "real" porcelain china imported from China due to cheap copies of "English china" MIC but it still saddens me - they made some great stuff back then great score Kaleo

                                                            2. rummaged through the kife bin at a thrift store on Saturday - looking for some "sharpen-able" cheapo knives to practice on before going to town on my new from upthread Wusthof and my "precious" old carbon steel Sabatier & no name and I find this... A stainless 10" K-Sabatier chef knife for $1.90 - it has a small crack in the wooden handle but its stable and has no movement - I am pretty excited - also a bunch of other functional knives including a razor sharp Dexter Russell and a nice carbon steel butcher's knife - all for a few bucks a pop.

                                                              I also picked up a few Henckels eversharp serrated knives to leave as decoys so housemate and visitors can keep their hands off my sharp knives