Asked on May 31, 2013

Grandma's Big Beast Washing Machine... Yes or No?

Em13526476Stephanie corley
+100

Answered

My uncle emailed me the other day, asking if I was interested in taking in Grandma's old washing machine.
This thing is BIG. And I don't have much room. Yet I'm drawn to the challenge. It evokes so many memories it isn't funny. But ACK! Not sure.. my house just isn't very big.
Would you take it in? What would you do with it? Chime in!
A tad jetson like, isn't it? Now what could this thing actually DO? I like productive junk if possible...
A tad jetson like, isn't it? Now what could this thing actually DO? I like productive junk if possible...
I'd bet it weights 80,000 tons too! Love that it's white though... total bonus.
I'd bet it weights 80,000 tons too! Love that it's white though... total bonus.
99 answers
  • Kathy R
    on May 31, 2013

    I am probably the WORST person to give my answer - I have a hard time saying no! My sister-in-law's aunt has one in her carport I keep looking at.

  • haha @Kathy R!!! I'll take on the challenge if you will! We can compare notes! LOL

  • Empress of Dirt - Melissa
    on May 31, 2013

    Hi Donna, I would love to have one of these! One of my blog readers added mosiac tiles to hers and turned it into a little pond - here the photo: http://www.empressofdirt.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/RGASuzannesmosaicwasher1.jpg Lots of possiblities!

  • Kathy R
    on May 31, 2013

    just wondering?! Can you make an ice chest out of it?

  • Barb Rosen
    on May 31, 2013

    Mega- planter!!!

  • Lori J
    on May 31, 2013

    Or a planter? Full of cheery red geraniums with vines of some sort. May an old washboard stuck into it. Man, you will be so sorry you asked. ;-)

  • Kathi Gentry Martin
    on May 31, 2013

    Do you have a back porch for it to be on?

  • Melissa
    on May 31, 2013

    I had one when I was first married. I loved washing with it. I think I was born in the wrong era. lol

  • S. Ulmen F
    on Jun 1, 2013

    Used a machine like this many years ago at our camp! At least once a week that machine worked great too! Weird but would not mind using one again! Not sure what I would do with yours maybe if you have a deck a neat planter or cooler for a party?

  • Gail Salminen
    on Jun 1, 2013

    @FunkyJunk Interiors - Donna you should take for the nostalgia alone. You are so amazing at repurposing things I am sure it would turn out fantastic. I would take it in a flash as focal point for the garden - so many things you could do to the outside as well as add hangons - love it. Please share the results :)

  • Eva Baldridge
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I had one of these. As a child my mother had one. I used mine until I got my first automatic washer everyday. Then it was the best rug washer in the world! If it still works and you have a covered back porch or a out building, I would use it as a heavy duty washer for rugs or things you can not wash in your regular washer. They are the best. CAUTION: These are dangerous around children as they can get hands/fingers rolled in the ringers! I did as a child. My sister did when she was 16. An ex sister-N-law got her breast in the ringer when she bent over to catch her ring when it fell in the tub! Thank God there were people there to pull the plug!

  • Kay H
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I would put a little bubbler in it and make it a birdbath for my deck..I would love to have one.

  • Kayteelou
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I would take it in a heart beat. Oh yes, I live in Ohio.

  • James Bryan C
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I would make a drink cooler out of it... Spray some foam Insulation between the tub and outer wall... paint it Coca Cola Red maybe an artist could reproduce the coke emblem.. all you would need then is some Ice and a case of drinks.. the drain tub would serve it's original function to drain the icewater away

  • Sumaya Warwick
    on Jun 1, 2013

    Don't know the height but it could make an awesome, quirky stool/barstool. Remove the lid and insert a padded, upholstered seat. You can freshen up the outer with some spray paint!

  • Dawn
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I would have it sandblasted , paint it n put flowers n vines in it. I paint n would paint a scene around it.

  • Kathie taylor
    on Jun 1, 2013

    LOVE IT!!!! I would take in a heartbeat! My Grandmaother used it, but it belonged to my Mom. Then I used one at an apartment I lived in. I agree with Dawn...but I would see if I could find a pot/tray insert for the flowers. Probably invert a pot for it to rest on inside. I would leave it white like Mom's and all the rest of that era. Please let us know what you do...if nothing else sell it on Craig's list!!!!

  • Kelly S
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I agree with everybody else, it would be a really cool planter or drink cooler.

  • Andrea R
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I've also seen them used as planter boxes ,some pretty geraniums, pansies,assorted flowers. sanded down and put a fresh coat of white or a beautiful buttermilk yellow or dusty rose or leave it rustic. also add a cute little vintage tea towel through the rolls or hang over it,whats neat to let your imagination fly,anything goes! have fun with it!

  • Diana Busey
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I have one that I am going to put on my back porch and add flowers

  • Annette White
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I'd grab it myself, but I'm like that. You can fill the tub with ice and use it for drinks, for a party or I would more likely fill it with soil and plant hanging, viney plants in it. Cute, so many options!!

  • Kathleen M
    on Jun 1, 2013

    Not sure what I would do with it (so many ideas) but I would DEFINITELY take it!

  • Thelma H
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I visited a friends home one time in Vermont and she had one in the living room with spider plants, etc pots sitting in side of it .....I loved it and always thought it would be cool to do that. I think planting directly into it would be a mess. Yes, I caught my arm in the wringer as a child also. Monday was wash day.

  • SicilianMa
    on Jun 1, 2013

    You can get a small water pump and design layers that will go above the top of tub for gentle water fall effect and can either stagger plants or add some stones with water plants. On a funny note, fill with gold fish and let the kids go fishing. Don't pass up this opportunity. Sometimes it takes time to brainstorm something wonderful. You will know when it comes to mind. All the best with this project. Keep us posted.

  • Cathy C
    on Jun 1, 2013

    If it still worked, I'd take it in a minute and use it for its original intention! Best washer I ever had was my old wringer and would love to have another!

  • BONNIE J
    on Jun 1, 2013

    IT'S BEEN WELL USED--NEEDS SOME TLC! SOME GOOD IDEAS.

  • Jessica C
    on Jun 1, 2013

    Absolutely! It would make an awesome planter in your garden!

  • Debra Peters
    on Jun 1, 2013

    Definitely take it - figure out what to do with it after it's in your life. Don't think I would repaint it - but that's because I like the grungy. Planter, fountain, cooler - just don't try to clean a bunny in it - doesn't work! (I know from experience! lol)

  • Gretta G
    on Jun 1, 2013

    great outdoor water feature or planter!!!

  • Sue Weiker
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I'd cover the whole thing in mosaic or colored glass beads in a nice pattern, and put it in the garden with plants

  • Janet McFadin
    on Jun 1, 2013

    yes take it......what a wonderful thing! If you don't want it can I have it ?? Lol

  • Riggs Laughlin
    on Jun 1, 2013

    Wonderful janet you would have tell sue to give it out freely lol

  • Sandra T
    on Jun 1, 2013

    My Mother and Grandmother used these, really gets the job done. I would take it and figure out something to do with it later.Use it has a clothes hamper in the meantime!

  • Nancy Hatcher
    on Jun 1, 2013

    I love Debra's idea of a cooler. What a great way to have a bbq with ice in it and loaded with sodas, beer, etc.

  • Patty
    on Jun 2, 2013

    I have one that I made into a planter. FYI-it sits in front of my clothesline LOL

  • Pat Mozer
    on Jun 2, 2013

    It reminds me of R2 D2 from Star Wars. But bigger.

  • A1tec service
    on Jun 3, 2013

    NOT A COOLER NOT FLOWER POT FIT IT UP TO WERE IT WORKS sale it or keep it it win fix up it could sale from 200 to 500.00 i've sold one two years for 400.00

  • Marie S
    on Jun 3, 2013

    it would be a keeper for me in case my washer break down.

  • Donna S
    on Jun 3, 2013

    I sold my old one to the Maytag guy and wish I hadn't..I used it for rugs and big blankets...Now I go to a laundrymat for that stuff...I really miss it more than I thought I would..LOL

  • Donna S
    on Jun 3, 2013

    I kept mine outside and it never hurt it..

  • KathrynElizabeth Etier
    on Jun 3, 2013

    How could you turn it down? I would use it outside as a planter.

  • Andrea R
    on Jun 4, 2013

    how about a water fountain! with waterfall ,sitting in a garden of flowers and pavers and little fairies,and all kinds of stuff,lol!

  • Barbara Weatherly
    on Jun 4, 2013

    I have a couple of chest of drawers I would like to turn into a storage chest how?

  • BONNIE J
    on Jun 5, 2013

    COULD ALSO BE TURNED SIDEWAYS WITH A FOUNTAIN OF FLOWERS CASCADING FROM THE OPENING!! WHEN I HAD MY 1ST BABY, 48 YRS AGO, WE LIVED IN A 3 RD FLOOR SUITE--NO LAUNDRY FACILITIES--WASHING BY HAND. MY DAD BROT IN MY GRAN'S OLD OIL LEAKING WRINGER WASHER FROM 4 HRS AWAY TO USE. I LATER GOT A HOUSE & WASHED FOR US--2 BABIES BY THEN & 5 BOARDERS!! CAN U IMAGINE? DID A FINE JOB TOO, EXCEPT 4 THE GREASE LEAKING OUT!!

  • Jeannie Scott
    on Jun 5, 2013

    I follow Tony Turner on HT and he has a pic of his grandmother's old washing machine with a story of his childhood remembering growing up watching his Gram use the washer. He has it planted with beautiful flowers and it is great!!!! Take a look at his profile.

  • Pam Perkins Zirbel
    on Jun 6, 2013

    That is just crazy gorgeousness!!!! I certainly hope you DID take this!!!

  • Pam Perkins Zirbel
    on Jun 6, 2013

    OH!! And make it into a fryer!!

  • Cathy M
    on Jun 6, 2013

    YES!!!

  • SicilianMa
    on Jun 6, 2013

    The suspence is killing me. Since we all want you to keep the machine I want to know if you have made a decision. :D

  • Andrea R
    on Jun 6, 2013

    we want to know,whats the verdict? lol

  • A1tec service
    on Jun 7, 2013

    jif you save it and fix it up win you did your wash run them on the roller this would take out a lot of water and cut down almost 1/2 the dryer time that wy it on it

  • Joanne McMullen
    on Jun 7, 2013

    How about an outdoor ice chest?

  • Cathy B
    on Jun 7, 2013

    My first thought was to make a liner for it and use it for parties as a cooler. Love it!

  • BONNIE J
    on Jun 9, 2013

    Speaking from experience--those ''old'' rollers may not get out much water!! u got lots of replies, for sure!!

  • Nancy Hinds
    on Jun 9, 2013

    Yard Art...Keep the roller on the top and grow a trailing white flowering plant that may look like overflowing bubbles. Add some small globes like refecting balls to look like bubbles in the top!

  • Bonnie G
    on Jun 9, 2013

    Absolutely take it. With your talent and ideas I am looking forward to when you pin it!!! I can picture all the ideas just running through your head. I would stick it on the front lawn as a planter just to upset the HOA :)

  • Deanna Riles-Cox
    on Jun 10, 2013

    Yard art full of flowers

  • Sharon
    on Jun 18, 2013

    Think you're just teasing us... YESSSS! of course you want it... can NOT WAIT to see what you do w/ it... I vote plants and in the yard,P.S. IF you don't keep it DIBS!

  • No tease @Sharon , I was really scratching my head on this one! Another family member wanted it more than I so that is where it is going as far as I've heard. If she doesn't take it, I may attempt. I just don't want to see it at some land fill! :)

  • Karen Prescher
    on Jun 19, 2013

    I have 2 of them. I use them as planters outside. They look so pretty with flowers spilling out of them, down the sides! Take it girl!!!!!

  • Tracy Chamberlin
    on Jun 23, 2013

    Make it into an outdoor sink with a drain tray

  • TJ
    on Jun 24, 2013

    I have a square one waiting to be sealed for outdoor use. I love the idea of using it for a water feature. But if this works I would definitely keep it to use. When my oldest was born I used it to soak and wash her cloth diapers (disposables were too expensive for us). Because you control the soak and wash length, it will get things white that is impossible in an automatic washer. would be great for blankets and other big stuff.

  • Shari Baker
    on Jun 27, 2013

    I took one similar from my grandparents old farmhouse, and repurposed it into a snowman for the front of my business. Check out photo on facebook/finderskeepers.

  • Mary C
    on Jul 1, 2013

    I'll take it if you don't want it....would pay to have it shipped....my mamma used one of these and i can remember helping run the clothes through the ringer! i would love to have one!!!!! :)

  • BONNIE J
    on Jul 1, 2013

    MARY--NOW THERE'S ONE HECK OF A GOOD OFFER!

  • Teresa
    on Jul 2, 2013

    yes!! take it!!

  • Pearl Doubleday
    on Jul 2, 2013

    Take it. Take it. Makes a great planter for the front yard. Wish I had one.

  • Thank-you EVERYONE for your thoughtful replies! I was ready to give it a whirl when another family member wanted it more than me. I'm good with that! But wow, what a wonderful collection of ideas for anyone else landing one of these! Thanks ever so much! But I'll admit, I was hesitating. I wasn't sure I wanted to look at it. I'm glad I never had to make the final decision. LOL

    • Gail Salminen
      on Aug 26, 2014

      @FunkyJunk Interiors - Donna how thoughtful and unselfish of you. I would have done the same. Family is so important and you have demonstrated that they mean a lot to you :)

  • Andrea R
    on Jul 3, 2013

    it was so generous of you to give it up. Sometimes it is better for the soul to give something that you know someone else wants,and also since its in the family,you'll get a chance to see it in its new use. you're a good person for doing that!

  • Kat Davis-Moran
    on Jul 29, 2013

    awesome planters is what I see

  • Judy Wootan
    on Oct 25, 2013

    Looks like a great place to ice down your Coca-colas for an outdoor bar-b-que. :)

  • Rose Westmoreland
    on Oct 25, 2013

    Turn it into a cooler and have powder paint on it so you can leave it outdoors. Would be so cool! If you get a spill crank the wet item thru the wringer!

  • Kelly S
    on Oct 27, 2013

    Who knows, you may get it from the other family member later. What a lovely piece of family history!

  • Mona$
    on Dec 5, 2013

    Take it! Take it! Take it! Even if you put it on the porch with a potted plant in it, I think you'll be glad you did. There are so many things of my mom's that I wish I had kept.

  • Bobbi sensenig
    on Jul 6, 2014

    I WOULD TAKE IT IN A HEARTBEAT

  • Shirley Bailey
    on Jul 7, 2014

    My mom had a wringer washing machine & I had one years ago & you never had one to go out on you like the new ones do. You could wash those clothes as long as you wanted to & they got my clothes so clean but they are a lot of work but if someone offered me one I don't know where I would put it.

  • Terri
    on Aug 25, 2014

    My mother finally had to give up her wringer washer after 56 years because no one could find parts for it. Growing up that was the only washer I ever used, and it always did a great job, but the finger pinches from the wringer were scary! Glad someone in your family can still use it, either as it is or repurposed ala the many super ideas listed above.

  • Fenya Kashergen
    on Dec 28, 2014

    in my hippy days, I used the old button buster a lot. When I was ready to join the washing machine co-op, I sold it to a potter who used it to agitate slip for his work. Good times.

  • Mamamojoe Moore
    on Dec 28, 2014

    I would take it and wash clothes on my porch dont have back porch but side porch fine and then hang them outside like i did as a child teen then mom now i am 73 yrs old and memories are sso wonderful granny would be proud of me thanks for the offer so many fun fun memories oh an my daughter remembers to at 14 yrs ol now is 51 so see very valuable in hearts and miinds thanks again for the moments.

  • Stormie Remus
    on Dec 28, 2014

    OH MY GOSH!! I'm so jealous. It's beautiful. I would plant flowers in containers and put in top.

  • Kathy Sperling
    on Mar 9, 2015

    I would POWDER COAT PAINT IF POSSIBLE even if this is not available I would still paint it , then turn it into a planter in the yard . I would NOT throw away any parts that you take off to accomidate using the washer as a planter .

  • Robby Treichel
    on Jan 1, 2017

    It looks just like my Grandmother's old washer. I don't know what happened to it but would love to take yours off your hands!

  • Terra Gazelle
    on Jan 8, 2017

    Me too..(I would use it for flowers) Looks like a great planter to me.
    I have used an old wheel barrow, an old kitchen sink, a bird bath, an old horse water trough....oh and several boots that here in Louisiana we call cajun Reeboks...old holey white rubber boots.

    If it will hold dirt ..plant it.
  • Martha jayne siprut
    on Jan 9, 2017

    IT WOULD MAKE THE MOST WONDERFUL ICE CHEST FOR YOUR SUMMER DRINKS! YOU SHOULD PAINT IT A GREAT COLOUR OR JUST SEAL IT... LUCKY YOU☆☆☆
  • Joan
    on Jan 22, 2017

    Paint it silver apply some weird eyes and antena. set it on porch or lawn.
  • PRESIDENTSAC
    on Jan 25, 2017

    Based on your comments it might not be operating. I can't believe pasrts can't be made or found, but anyway I would use it to dye fabrics.
  • White Oak Studio Designs
    on Jan 26, 2017

    I love these situated in the garden planted (in an area that has tall plants around it) filled with with colorful and draping over plants. So funky and so fun!!
  • Ani13089233
    on Jan 27, 2017

    Such a sweet memory "machine"! Silly Sentimental me, I couldn't bear to put it outside in the elements as a planter. But maybe on a porch so I could see it often. Use as a catch all for umbrellas, throw wet coats, beach towel, etc across?
  • Johnni
    on Jan 31, 2017

    I would paint it ,a bright pretty color ,remove insides,place right by my small outdoor clothes line ,fill with favorite flowers and trailing vine, something to make you smile every time you go outside.maybe put a small bench at the side to set your clothes basket on when you are hanging or taking down your laundry ,
  • Cartwrightd
    on Feb 1, 2017

    I would spray paint it a bright color, line the tub if necessary and use it outside as a beer cooler.
  • Robby Treichel
    on Feb 1, 2017

    All of these suggestions are interesting, but if you are prepping for a possible disaster, like I am, you might find this item to be exactly what you need,
    if we end up without power for an extended period of time. Even if the washer no longer works, you could still use the wringer part to wring out hand washed clothing and towels, etc.
  • Lucy Marie Bernier
    on Feb 2, 2017

    My mom had something like that. Where the ringer is devise a board / small table like. Use the rest of it as a rolling ice bucket for the outside?
  • F H Young
    on Feb 4, 2017

    Still use grandma's wringer washer, gets the clothes clean and doesn't use half the water the newer wash machines use.
  • Lisa Petersen
    on Feb 7, 2017

    I ran my arm through the wringer on my great grandmother's when I was very young - glad your memories are more pleasant, lol!
  • Paula Hodges
    on Feb 8, 2017

    scrub it out really well and put a couple of gold fish in there.. you would need shade and something to aerate the water since it is a small are and would go stagnant and hot if out in the sun.... but what a conversation starter!! you can get solar power cells that would easily power a small pump.
  • Donna Sides
    on Mar 18, 2017

    I would chalk paint it and seal it and use it as a cooler...,in the winter u could use it to store your garden houses
  • Stephanie corley
    on Mar 31, 2017

    A cooler or planter and leave on a cover patio or porch.
  • 13526476
    on Apr 1, 2017

    I would so use it for its original intent if it worked...So environmentally friendly and the cleanest laundry ever! If it doesn't work, take it any way and play with the ideas...I love the planter ideas especially.
  • Em
    on Feb 21, 2018

    If nothing else.....the inside tub make amazing planters, especially the old porcelain spackled ones. It takes a bit of dismantling but they already have the drain holes and look great in the front yard. I takes a bit of dismantling but parts of it including the legs can be used for different projects.
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