Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Shiny, Pretty Things Have Arrived

Late last night UPS delivered a box to me from my good friends at Astro Chrome & Polish. There were a few surprises, but all and all, I am very pleased with the results.

Above is the shot of what I had nickel plated. None of these things had ever been plated. They were unfinished brass when I sent them in. The tub waste and feet are from the 1920s and made by Crane. The tub was from one of the rental unit bathrooms I removed from the house, so they were a low-end Crane item.

The odd thing about the tub waste is the horizontal piece that connects the tub drain to the over-flow drain. This is not the one I sent them. All of the parts on the tub waste were the original 1920s heavy brass when I removed it from the tub, except that short horizontal pipe. It had been replaced with a modern chrome plated steel piece, which was already starting to rust. Before I sent it to Astro I went and bought a new one and replaced it. The one I bought only had threads at one end and was chrome plated steel. The one Astro sent back has threads at both ends and is now nickel plated brass. I have no explanation for this, but I got a better piece back than I sent them, so I don’t think I will call and complain.

The two rectangular brackets are for the marble sink. They will mount to the wall and support the ends of the marble apron. I had these fabricated by Don from Vintage Plumbing. I added the two little finials myself before they were plated. I found a set of finials at Ace that you could use to replace a standard hinge pin on a 3-inch door hinge. I took the finials off and soldered them on to the ends of the brackets because I thought it would look cool. Unfortunately I did a crappy job soldering them and one fell off during the plating process. I can’t fault Astro for this, because honestly, I assumed they would both fall off. I just need to find a way to stick it back on that doesn’t require a torch.

The toilet paper holder came out really nice but they did forget to return the 4 tiny screws that I needed to reassemble it. I guess they removed the arms to plate it. It was 39 cents for 4 new screws, so no big deal. I bought this on Ebay, but not to use in the bathroom. I have another one for that. This was listed with a wall mount soap dish as a “1970s Soap Dish and TP Holder”. It had a Buy It Now price of $12.95 for the pair. Obviously it was miss-labeled. I’m using the soap dish in the bathroom and I had this plated and I’m going re-list it for what it really is, an 1890s to 1910 TP Holder. I think it will go for around $100.

The feet came out as well as can be expected. I was warned by Astro that they would not be perfect because of some of the pitting in the cast iron from rust. They were right. Still, I think they look very nice. It’s not something you will notice unless you get right up close to them. Maybe some morning when I wake up hung-over on the bathroom floor I might notice as I left my head towards the toilet bowl. Other than that, it should be fine.

Over all, I give Astro Chrome & Polish two enthusiastic thumbs up. Considering how much could have gone wrong, 39 cents worth of missing screws is a small price to pay for fast service and good workmanship.


mindy said...

Wow, those look amazing! Definitely worth the money, in my opinion. I can't wait to everything come's going to be a fantastic bathroom.

Poppy said...

Very nice! That bathroom is going to look AMAZING~