Thursday, November 09, 2006

Meet The New Toilet – HAJOCA

I went over the Gary’s house today before he got off work to pick up the toilet. I knew he wouldn’t want to take the $50 for it, so I gave it to his wife instead. I also picked up a few sacks of garbage as per our agreement.

His wife and I went out in to the backyard to get the toilet and there were two of them sitting under a tree. One was a newer, complete toilet sitting upright. The one I wanted was the 100 year old one, laying over on it’s side in the mud. It’s just the bowl and has no tank, also the seat was broken.

His wife looked at me like I was crazy as I pulled it out of the dirt. She pointed to the cracked seat, and said, “That one’s broken”. I took a few minutes to explain to her I was not worried about the seat. I told here how I was going to be using it for an old high-tank toilet. Her eyes widened as the story progressed. I'm not sure if she was impressed or thought I was even crazier then she first suspected.

Here’s a few shots of the toilet sans mud, spiders, and an army of ants.







I had never heard of the Haines, Jones, Cadbury Co before, but a quick search on the internet told me that they started in Philadelphia around 1860 and are still in business today under the name Gorman. The “HAJOCA” comes from the first two letters of each of the partners names “HA” “JO” “CA”. It seems that they got their start in brass pipe fittings for steam systems and expanded in to other plumbing supplies. The gentleman in the center of the logo is William Penn. I found an early advertisement stating they had done all the plumbing for the Princeton University Graduate School.

The toilet looks surprisingly like the 1922 American Standard “Pacific” that is in my upstairs bathroom. It makes me wonder if maybe it was made by Standard for HAJOCA, and they just added the HAJOCA label. From what I read, HAJOCA was first and foremost a brass foundry.

The real difference between the 2 toilets is that the HAJOCA has an inch and a half spud on the back, so it was designed to be a high tank bowl. The Standard Pacific has a 2 inch spud on the back. I know for a fact that it was originally a low tank toilet. I had to buy a reducing spud when I turned it in to a high tank.

The best thing about these old toilets is the enclosed trap. Notice how smooth and slender the sides are below the bowl. I don’t know why they have the exposed trap on most new toilets. It makes them so hard to clean.

16 comments:

burrito said...

too funny - I'm surprised she didn't try to give you your money back when you picked the broken toilet. ;)

Patricia W said...

Hey man. That's a cool stool.

I agree, why do they not have smooth sides anymore? Not only are they hard to clean, they look ugly with this exposed.

purejuice said...

what's a spud?
and, terrific foraging! you get the award for downest and dirtiest shopper.

Greg said...

The spud and/or spud nut is the fitting on the back of the toilet or the bottom of the sink that the flush pipe or drain pipe fits in to. You don't see them on modern toilets because the tanks sits directly on the bowl. In older toilets the tank is mounted on the wall and there is a pipe that connects them. The pipe has a spud where it connects to the toilet bowl and another one where it connects to the tank.

Marc at Keenan Pipe and Supply said...

Hi Greg, just an FYI - Hajoca doesn't just operate as Gorman today. There are over 300 Hajoca's across the nation making it the largest independently owned plumbing supply company in the country. As a matter of fact there is a Hajoca owned location in Eureka under the name of Keenan Supply. Other locations go under the names: Able Distributing, Buttes/Center State Pipe & Supply, Cowan Supply, Conestoga Heating and Plumbing, Consolidated Supply, Dahl, Easter & Son, European Bath, Kitchen, Tile & Stone, Gorman Company, G.P. Norton, Haines, Jones & Cadbury, Heieck Supply, Inland Pipe & Supply, J&H Aitcheson, Kelly, Lee L. Dopkin, McDonald Supply, New Britain Supply, Penstan Supply, Roberts-Hamilton, Solana Supply, Thorson – Keenan, United Plumbing Supply, Visalia Pipe & Supply, Welker-McKee, Weinstein Supply

Greg said...

Hey marc,

Thanks for the info. I had no idea. When I Google HAJOCA the Gorman site was the one I found and I guess I didn't look further.

Sure enough, there you are in the phone book - "Keenan Supply A Divsion of HAJOCA". I wonder if my toilet was bought new at your place 80 or 90 years ago.

Another 1880s HAJOCA toilet just sold on EBay for $2,200.00

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=270063726283&ssPageName=STRK:MEDW:IT&ih=017

John said...

Hi. I found this to be very interesting since I work for Hajoca Corp and have for 35 years. At our branch in Asheville NC is a complete set - toilet, washbasin, faucets, etc. - everything made by Hajoca. There's an old resort hotel called the Grove Park Inn that remodeled all their bathrooms a few years ago. Every one had Hajoca fixtures.

Greg said...

John,

There was a very, very fancy 1880s HAJOCA toilet that sold on Ebay earlier this year for more than $3,000. HAJOCA made some really high-0end plumbing stuff back in the day.

You can see a picture of my HAJOCA installed at the link below.

http://petchhouse.blogspot.com/2007/07/moderate-improvements.html

Jo daniels said...

Hi Greg,

i received your email today. Thanks for all of your insight. I do plan on listing on Ebay within the week but want to do a little more research first. I'll be sure to let you know?

Thanks again!

Nancie said...

Greg I have a claw foot tub from a Rittenhouse Square home with HAJOCA fittings. In good shape, I would like to sell any suggestions?
Nancie

Greg said...

Nancie,

Rittenhouse Square? Sounds nice. Tubs are hard to sell on-line unless it is a local person buying it. I'm sure there must be some good salvage places locally. I would contact them first. Condition is everything, when it comes to this sort of thing. Even so, for special pieces, they can still be worth a lot even if the condition is less thn perfect.

heidi1121 said...

how do you date one of these? my brother has one that has the spud as well as the tank in excellent condition. How do we price it to sell? Can someone please provide their expertise?

Greg said...

Heidi,

Its like a lot of things: condition and market will often set the price. You could take photos around to some antique or salvage places. You can bet the a retail price will be 3 to 5 times higher than what they will offer you.

If you're willing to ship, or are in a large metro are where you can list it as "Local pick up only", you can almost always do better selling it on ebay than selling it whole sale at a local shop.

Does it have any embossing, beading, or nice makers marks on the bowl? That can drive up the price.

Holden said...

I also have a HAJOCA toilet from Hanes, Jones, and Cadbury Company. The inscription at the back of the base of the toilet looks just like in the pictures of this original posting, and says "Philadelphia" at the bottom, and N. 165, if I'm reading the number right. If this thing is worth any money, I would love to find out how to sell it because we are interested in replacing it with a modern low flow toilet. Any tips on how to establish an easy sale value without giving away the farm would be appreciated.

Greg said...

Holden,

My advice is to keep the toilet and make it low-flow. It is a better toilet than most modern low flows, unless you are willing to spend a lot of money and by a really good toilet.

The previous owners put in a inexpensive, poorly engineered low-flow that often times took more than 1 flush to get solid waste down. It was low-flow in theory only.

To make your HAJOCA low-flow, take some empty half gallon plastic bottles. Fill them with water and put them in the tank. You can also bend down the arm on the float so the valve shuts off earlier.

You will save water, money, time, work and a great toilet.


Greg

ChuckIT said...

I have exactly the same toilet and tank - i have the number stamped of 442 - any idea how much these are worth on the market?