(UPDATE) blast of steam from the past: the ironrite ironer

UPDATE: The iron I write about in this post has been SOLD.

My mom is starting the process of downsizing from her home of 60+ years, and one of the items that she’ll be parting with is something a lot of you have probably never heard of: the Ironrite Ironer. It’s an ironing machine consisting of of a big metal box with a huge roller in the middle that you move up and down with a knee pedals and hand controls. The actual name of it is the “Ironrite Mangle Ironer” — sounds like your clothes wouldn’t make it through, right? But actually, if you knew how to use it, you could get dry cleaner-perfect results. Of course, the Ironrite does take up a bit of space, and as such they were discontinued in 1961.

I well remember playing nearby as my mom fed slacks, pillowcases, and shirt sleeves into the machine, and the resulting smell of steam and heated cotton. My mom was a whiz with that thing, and in fact, until very recently, she was still using it! She inherited her Ironrite from her father, who actually won an ironing contest with it in the late 1940s (the image of my big, scary grandfather winning an ironing contest still amuses me, especially during that era). Though you can’t find them new, lots of people still use them — here’s a woman who uses an Ironrite to iron the silk that she uses to make scarves.

The “Health Chair” that came with the machine is itself a design classic — it even has a place in MoMA. I’m pretty sure we used to have that, too, unrecognizable under about 15 layers of duct tape (sometimes that’s good on a chair, sometimes it isn’t); it went into the garbage far before I was interested in decor, I’m sure.

If you’re just curious to learn more, visit this interesting site by Ironrite enthusiast George Edmonson. –Mary T.

NOTE: My mom’s Ironrite has been sold. But check the comments for more Ironrite enthusiasts.

Photos via George Edmonson’s Ironrite page at hubpages.com

From our partners
Amber

I’ve been coveting one of these although I really don’t have space. Miele is making a new one now, that’s more compact, although it sells for more than $2K — ouch.

I found an Ironrite chair at my local Goodwill last September – didn’t know what it was then, just that it was something special. (I am always on the lookout for chairs of an interesting design that are the right size for my short legs…)
blogged about here – http://fjorlief.livejournal.com/51869.html

My friend Megan has an Ironrite mangle, which Idiscovered after writing about the nifty chair that I found…

Mary

I am actually interested in buying an Ironrite….could you contact me ?Mary

Scott

Hi Mary.

Are you still looking for a Ironrite mangle? If so, I’ve got one that is in excellent condition. I have the original owners booklets & some extra cloth pads that go with it. Please let me know if you are still looking for one. Thanks, Scott

Paula

I’m located in Chicago and interested to purchase an ironrite in good working condition. Thanks.

Debi

Hi I live in Ohio I want to purchase an Ironrite. Is yours still for sale? Thanks Debi

Marti

I am in the Cleveland Ohio area and am looking to purchase an Ironrite. Please contact me if you have one in working order for sale.
Thanks!

Cynthia

I, too, am looking for an ironrite. I am located in West Palm Beach, Florida.thanks.

Alicemae Click

I have two ironrites. One leaks a little oil and the other one works well with a chair. These were used by mother for years. She has recently passed away and the daughters don’t know how use them. My mother used to iron sheets, pillow cases, shirts, pants, etc. They are located in Arnold, PA near Pittsburgh. Anyone interested?

how much is a ironrite ironer worth i have one in perfect shape

Neva

I’d love to buy a working Ironrite. I’m in the Houston, Texas area.

Cynthia

Can you ship?

Carla

I’d love to buy a working Ironrite. I’m in the South Jersey area.

Angie

Neva, I have a working mangle model 85 that I’m looking to sell. In the South Oklahoma Texoma area. Contact me at [email protected]

Alicemae Click

Carla, We brought the two ironrites to Mechanicsburg, PA . We are near Harrisburg. If you are interested contact me at [email protected].

shelterrific » Blog Archive » five things we learned last week

[…] fans — and they’re buying and selling in our comments. Remember the post on the Ironrite Mangle Ironer? The comments section is still going strong. Carla and Angie want to buy one, Alicemae has one for […]

Potential buyers: In Michigan, I have a Mangle Ironright Model 95 for sale. Also, a Model 85. Both have been re-wired, oiled in the last year. Excellent working condition.

kevin

i have a model 85… i r… and the health chair.. in gret shape…. will sell and ship… [email protected]

Sallie

Hello, I am interested in buying an Ironright Model 95 in excellent condition in the Washington state area.

Shannon

I want to buy a good condition ironrite preferebly a model 95 or 85. I am in the Washington, DC area. Shannon

Albert

I have an Ironrite for sale in Eastern Idaho, anyone interested?

Roberta

I too am desperate to find an Ironrite Ironer. We had one when I was a child in Indiana. I am in Kentucky, and would love to find one in Kentucky or close. I would love an 85 or 95 model, but would consider any working model. plese email me at [email protected]. If you have photos, that would be great. Leave me your phone number and I will call you.
Thanks,
Roberta

Roberta

Oops, I forgot, I would also like to obtain the chair to go with the ironer. Anyone have one for sale?
Thanks,
Roberta
[email protected]

GJoseph Peck

Interested in an 85 or 95 model. Do you still have? Please email me at [email protected]

God bless
Joe

Looking for any info that relates Ironrite serial numbers to manuacture date, specifically for the later models, 85 and 95.

If you can help. e-mail me at [email protected]

Jeannine D

Hi,

Im looking for an excellent condition 85 or 95 in Northern California or a heating element for the 85. I have 2 Ironrite mangles but the heating element has gone out in both of them. Any help would be very much appreciated! Please email me:
[email protected]

Laurie Egner

I have a Model 85 Ironrite and chair that I would like to give to anyone who is willing to take it away. I live in Albany, NY. Please e-mail me at [email protected] if interested.

Ellyne Baker

There is an original ironrite unlike the one in the picture here, that folds up to about 2 ft by 2 ft by about 3′ high, on wheels, heavy metal. it is all there, works, just needs a paint job. the antique store it is at is Antique & Treasure Trove, 309-736-7472, downtown Moline, IL

jjonas

I have an Ironrite Model 75. Last I knew – 30 years ago – it worked just fine but I would guess, because it’s been in my basement all these years, that the electric cord needs to be replaced. It’s yours for free if you can get to north Jersey to pick it up.

Roger (eBay's charlietwo)

We have an Ironrite Ironer (Mangle Model #85) that we use daily; it has become just about as important as our washer and dryer (LOL). Recently I purchase a couple more just to save the motors and heating elements in case ours ever go ‘kaput’. I now have all the rest of the pieces that I have no need for and was wondering if there is anyone out there that would be interested in them for a nominal fee plus the shipping. I’m just looking for enough to cover my costs (packing/time/gas-transportation) to ship it. I hate to just junk the pieces if there is someone out there that could use them to restore/fix theirs.
Yours truly,
Roger

Diane

# jjonas Says:
May 31st, 2010 at 1:57 am

I have an Ironrite Model 75. Last I knew – 30 years ago – it worked just fine but I would guess, because it’s been in my basement all these years, that the electric cord needs to be replaced. It’s yours for free if you can get to north Jersey to pick it up.

Hi,
Do you still have your Ironrite? I’m in NYC and I’d love to have it. I just found this site doing a seplace on Ironrite mangles
Thanks,
D

Susan

we have an Ironrite (still sits in my childhood bedroom) in good visual condition. Has not been used for 30 years either and it is for sale. I have a few pictures if interested.

Diana

I live in southern Oregon. Anyone in Washington, Idaho, Northern Nevada or northern California that would like to get rid of a mangle that is in good working order? My friend just opened a B & B and would like to use it for her linens.

joanie

hi; i’m looking for an ironer, hope that u are not far from new jersey. or that u didnt sell it yet….e mail me.please

susan lafountaine

I am interested in purchasing a mangle or ironrite. I live in northwest ohio. I will pick up. Thank you.

Camilla

I am in N.C. and looking for an IronRite in good condition.
I can pickup depending on location.
Thanks.

bob gray

hello everyone i have a Ironrite Mangle Ironer 75 in working condition and also have the chair that it came with new, also have the operators manual, has a little surface rust on the legs please make an offer, it is located in tomah, wi 608-377-1684

jerry ortu

Hi,I have an Ironite for sale.Im in northern New Jersey.I have all the paperwork,intruction,guarantee,ect.I think it a 1950? 973-887-2922

MaryKay

My mother in Youngstown, Ohio, is looking for anybody who wants her Ironrite. It is actually going to be available at a neighbor’s garage sale on Sept. 18, 2010. My mother who is 82 used it up through the 1970s, it had belonged to her older sister before that. If you are interested call me at 330-280-1474. It is one that folds up into a metal square. She has covered it with a tablecloth and used it as a table for the last couple of decades. But now she is moving.

Trisha

Albert,

Do you still have your Ironrite for sale? Are you still in eastern Idaho?

Trisha

Dea

I am in the Austin,Tx area and would like an Ironrite 95 or an 85 in good working condition.

Dea

jerry ortu

Ironrite 85, Nice working condition,Looks great too,Lots of paperwork. Located in North Jersey,07936. If you are interested at all…Call me 973-887-2922. Im trying to find a new home for it.I dont know exactly what its worth but I want to sell it.I want to sell it! Jerry

Tammy

Diana, I am in northern california, I would like to sale my ironrite, it’s like the one that is being sold in the link below.

http://cgi.ebay.com/1948-IRONRITE-Mangle-Ironer-Model-88_W0QQitemZ230531942488QQcategoryZ63589QQcmdZViewItem#ht_500wt_1156

Gavin Phillips

I’m interested in acquiring an ironRite mangle Model 85 preferred and/or chair. I live in Rochester NY.

Collette

I have an Ironrite Mangle Ironer for sale. I am in San Diego, CA. It is in working and still in good condition, has some scratches on the top can take pictures, I have the manual but no chair. If interested please email me. [email protected]

Donna M

Looking for an Ironrite. I live in Indianapolis. If anyone in the surrounding states has one for sale, I’m willing to come get it. PLEASE contact me.

Still want an ironrite. Please send contact info along if you have something available.

I am in VA and am looking for a Mangle to Iron with. Does anybody have one?
Thankk you.

Stephany

I have an Ironrite Mangler 85 for sale in working condition. I live in the Los Angeles, CA area. Please send contact information if interested. I can send pictures

Randy

I have an Ironrite mangle 85 in very good condition. I’m in Dover, De. No chair. Email me for pics!