Posted 11-30-2004 at 04:34:11
[Reply] [No Email]
Few years back I bought a Perfection Heater and spent quite some time trying to find out about it/them. Not a lot of information out there. I did manage to collect a couple of catalogs, and exchanged email with a guy who was quite an afficianado of them. I'm pasting one of his emails below because it has a lot of good information in it.
Off the top of my head, I'd guess yours is an "older" Perfection, although I certainly am no expert. As I recall Perfection started making the heaters in the very early 1900s, and continued until around 1982 when changes in "safety" laws came into effect. (These same changes caused Aladdin to stop making its famous "Blue Flame Heaters" the best ever made!!). Anyway, the brass parts you describe indicate to me it is likely to be 1930s or earlier vintage.
Old Email pasted:
Care And Feeding Of Perfection Oil Heaters And Stoves
by Kevin (aka Possum Hunter)
The Perfection portable oil heaters have been made since The War Of The Northern Aggression. They were outlawed in 1982 due to new safety standards.
The most common of these are the 525 series and the 700 series which is identical but has a glass chimney and was called the "Oil Lamp Heater". Almost all of the Perfection heaters used the "500" burner. This burner uses a round metal and cotton wick. They are super efficient and will burn for about 12 hours on 2 quarts of kerosene and make good heat. Perfection recommends upgrading to the "700" series burner with a fiberglass wick and automatic tip over extinguisher if you are using indoors. (Good luck finding one of these!!!)
To Light a "500" just raise the wick until it stops then open the heater (The chimney unlatches and tips to one side) then light with a lighter or match then close the chimney. If you do decide to use the "500" burner indoors, place the heater in a pizza pan big enough for the entire heater to sit in. One reason the "500" was banned was they would drip burning kerosene from the center draft tube if the wick was forced all of the way up or if the heater "runs away".
You MUST keep the "500" burner clean. If carbon is allowed to build up on the gallery or flame spreader, or the wick is real dirty, the heater can back-draft and smoke you out of your house or "run-away" and shoot flames out of the top of the chimney. The Perfection 500 is one heater that WILL get even with you for not maintaining it!
Genuine Perfection 500 wicks are expensive and hard to find, but I have had no luck with the import replacement wicks. I understand Lehmans has a replacement wick that
is almost as good as the Perfection, but I have not tried it in mine. The ONLY fuel you should use in any Perfection portable heater is K-1 kerosene.
The Perfection cookstoves have also been made since the War Of The Northern Aggression. They are now made under the "Swiss-Perfection" brand by an Old Order Amish shop. The Swiss Perfection parts are built much better than the original perfection parts and will withstand constant use. All Swiss-Perfection parts will fit older
Perfections. The Perfection stoves are a joy to cook on. They burn just as hot and clean as a propane stove with a nice blue flame! Use only Perfection "X" wicks in a cook stove. The only fuel used should be K-1 kerosene.
To light a cookstove just raise the wick all of the way up and light with a match through the lighting hole in the chimney.