Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A Pressing Matter

Yes, that's a very corny title, I know. I've been intrigued by the idea of using a press iron ever since I saw one on the website from the shop where I ended up buying Phoebe. The really pretty fancy-dancy red one shown in that video is the one in the pic from my sewing machine store but they don't actually carry that model. Just as well because I believe it runs for around $1,200. The model they do carry is "marked down" to $600, although a quick internet search has it showing up from a number of U.S. retailers for $400. But once I add the Cdn conversion, shipping and duty charges there's not much of a difference in price.

My mom has an old cast iron model that she lent me to see if it is something I really want to get. I did struggle with getting the "perfect" press I wanted out of her press, but I think that is party due to not being able to press hard enough on hers and partly due to a lack of experience on my part. Which still left me with the dilema of whether to fork out a rather large sum of money for something I still wasn't sure I wanted or needed. Enter Ebay.

You are looking at an Elnapress 2000, vintage unknown. (That is the Ebay pic, and therefore not my ugly shag carpeting lol) From what I can find out online the Elna's seem to be the best on the market. With a pull of a handle they apply 100lbs of pressure. My "local" dealer (2 hour drive away) is getting rid of the Elna line and only has one left in stock. It is the lowest model with no steam or any other extras. I got the impression the lack of steam is why he is no longer carrying them. He is the one who said that the sexy red top-of-the-line machine is about $1,200. He is replacing them with the "Reliable" brand which does have steam and also has a bigger bed for the same price as the Elna. I initially thought this was the way to go (the bigger bed would be a very nice feature) but then I've read a lot of people talking about the steam hole "witness marks" left on the fabric from machines with built-in steam, even when using them dry. This makes sense to me because this happens with a standard steam iron if you don't move it around. So rather than built-in steam you just use a spray bottle. Also I can't find anything in the Reliable literature that speaks to pounds of pressure. I suspect it is one where you just hold the handle down and that's a hard as you can press it. So the Elna really seems like the way to go after all.

The Elnapress 2000 is a higher-end machine. It even has the built-in sleeve board, currently only available on the high-end presses. The Ebay ad said that they plugged it in and it got "very hot", so hopefully it works for me. This also makes me think it came from an estate sale or something. If it does work then I saved myself at least $500 which makes the cheap bastard in me VERY happy. I really want to try it for all of my ironing, but for the price I paid, even if I only end up using it for interfacing and pressing napkins I'm good to go. For what it's worth I use perfectly pressed napkins daily in my fantasy life (but not so much in my real life).

The tag shows it is made in Switzerland, which is what you want it to say.  I don't have any way of understanding the code, but I do wonder if the "1984" in the I.D. number is the production year. With any luck this will be a unit previously owned and lovingly cared for by someone who took care of their things. I am always the optimist!


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