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Monitor 'High Speed' Picnic No1 (1954)

Discussion in 'Monitor' started by Trojandog, Dec 26, 2012.

  1. Trojandog

    Trojandog United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Monitor 'High Speed' Picnic No1 (1954), with box, instructions and original receipt.

    Includes comparison between pre-1950 model and 1954 model.

    Part 1 of 2.

    1356540664-Pic01_opt.jpg

    1356540688-Pic02_opt.jpg 1356540703-Pic03_opt.jpg 1356540719-Pic04_opt.jpg

    On the side of the box, written in ink is "AO 11/6/54 46/10". Then there is a square stamp with "752" in the centre. No idea what the "AO" means. "11/6/54" is probably the date the stove was taken into stock by the retailer and is written in the UK format - 11 June 1954. "46/10" is the price in old pre-decimal UK currency - 46 Shillings and 10 Pence (20 Shillings equalled one Pound so it is 2 Pounds 6 Shillings and 10 Pence). In today's value, it converts to £45.60 using the UK Retail Price Index or £115.00 using UK average earnings. The stamp "752" is probably a manufacturers batch number :

    1356540802-Pic05_opt.jpg

    The instruction sheet is dated 2.52. It has a sticker on the front stating "IMPORTANT A kettle or some other utensil should be placed on the grid of the Container during the initial lighting of the stove". I can only imagine that there were reports of the stove not pre-heating properly, and these added instructions were an attempt to raise the temperature inside the case during priming:

    1356540843-Pic06_opt.jpg

    A card receipt with the stove is from "E.K WILSON Ironmongers, Hardware, Builders Merchants and Electrical Suppliers. 82-87 Old Brompton Road, S.W.7 TELEPHONE KEN 0046" Overprinted onto the card by a cash register is "SEP-6 2-6-10 82 7455 00" then printed "AMOUNT SHOWN ABOVE WITH THANKS". "SEP-6" will be the date with no year. "2-6-10" is the amount paid (2 Pounds 6 Shillings and 10 Pence). The "82" is on it's side and may be the cash register number. "7455 00" is probably the receipt number:

    1356540883-PIC07_opt.jpg

    My guess is that the stove was made in the early part of 1954.

    EK Wilson still exists but now only occupies No 86 Old Brompton Road. Kensington, London.

    The stove retains around 99% of it's lacquer finish and appears unfired. There is no fuel smell in the tank. I have not polished anything, just a rinse in soapy water to remove dust. Although the top of the lipstick burner is darkened, I think that this is probably from a manufacturers test firing of the burner:

    1356540927-PIC08_opt.jpg

    The case is the standard design aluminium one and the pot supports show no signs of use. The case has retained it's shine due to the storage in it's original box:

    1356540991-Pic27_opt.jpg 1356541021-Pic28_opt.jpg

    The jet prickers are both marked "No1 Picnic":

    1356541082-Pic29_opt.jpg

    There are a number of differences between the pre-1950 version and this 1954 version (in the following comparison images, the pre-1950 is on the left and the 1954 is on the right):

    The Bell:

    In 1950, Monitor introduced and patented a split in the collar of the burner bell. The patent ( Link ) states "The slits….. give a certain amount of resilience to the collar or sleeve so that there is no risk of it jamming on the burner tube and the stove can be readily dismantled into it's component parts for packing after use.":

    1356541133-PIC09_opt.jpg 1356541168-PIC10_opt.jpg

    There is a ridge inside the collar of the pre-1950 bell, but the 1954 has a 'smooth bore':

    1356541219-PIC11_opt.jpg 1356541243-PIC12_opt.jpg

    The ridge in the upper part of the bell is more defined on the later model:

    1356541278-PIC13_opt.jpg

    The Flame Plate:

    On the pre-1950 the flame plate is steel (cast iron?), marked "British Monitor Made" and sits on top of the bell. On the 1954, the flame plate is unmarked brass and is fixed to the bell with four lugs:

    1356541317-PIC14_opt.jpg

    The Pump collar:

    The pump collar on the pre-1950 is a male threaded machined piece of brass. On the 1954 it is a standard style female collar:

    1356541355-PIC15_opt.jpg 1356541379-PIC16_opt.jpg

    Continued in Part Two.
     
  2. Trojandog

    Trojandog United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Part 2 of 2.

    The pump knob:

    On the pre-1950 the knob is thick and knurled, but on the 1954 the knob is slimmer with no knurling:

    1356542294-PIC17_opt.jpg 1356542309-PIC18_opt.jpg
    1356542327-Pic18a_opt.jpg

    The Filler Cap Mounting:

    The filler cap mount on the pre-1950 is taller than on the 1954 but the thread is the same:

    1356542389-PIC19_opt.jpg 1356542418-PIC20_opt.jpg

    The Filler Cap:

    The pre-1950 filler cap is larger than the 1954. Although the thread is the same, they are only partly interchangeable. The later cap will fit on the earlier tank, but the earlier cap won't work on the later tank as the seal is not compressed:

    1356542466-Pic21_opt.jpg 1356542483-Pic22_opt.jpg

    The Tank Collar:

    The tank collar on the pre-1950 has a ridge at the top, but the 1954 is smooth sided:

    1356542518-Pic23_opt.jpg 1356542543-Pic24a_opt.jpg

    Lettering on side of tank:

    The pre-1950 has "PARAFFIN ONLY" inside a box, but the 1954 has "PARAFFIN ONLY MADE IN ENGLAND" with no box:

    1356542597-Pic25_opt.jpg 1356542616-Pic26_opt.jpg

    Of course, the big question is - do I or don't I? I have always been a proponent of 'stoves are meant to be used'. However, that is from a position of not owning an un-fired stove! Now I've got one, the question takes on greater significance and requires more thought. If it was the only one I owned, I would probably fire it. But as I have another, I think I'll keep this one as my first ever 'shelf sitter'. The problem is, every time I look at it I will think to myself "I wonder if it would fire up OK?".

    Regards,
    Terry
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 27, 2015
  3. mr optimus

    mr optimus United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hi Terry a merry Christmas to you, and a brilliant post brilliantly written and documented.

    I am in agreement with you, that the stove has never been fired up, and that the burner had been fired up by the manufacturer for testing.

    It is rearly nice in finding a stove in mint condition, and with everything complete including the box but a even bigger score finding one that has never been fired up.

    I have one of these my self in my collection, but the aluminium case was in poor condition, and like a lot of these stoves the snuffler, that is placed over the burner, so it can be travelled with fuel was lost.
    Well done there Terry on a great score
     
  4. DAVE GIBSON United States

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    detail on top of detail!..that was a fun read with the AM coffee..thanks
     
  5. teletim United Kingdom

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    Very very Nice.
     
  6. Admin

    Admin Courtesy of Iani

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    Only another 30 odd variations for you to find now Terry.
     
  7. Rick b

    Rick b United States Subscriber

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    Very nice Terry. Since you have 2 I dont think I would fire it up. However, thats just me.
     
  8. bajabum

    bajabum United States R.I.P. Subscriber

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    Gorgeous :shock:

    =P~ =P~ =P~
     
  9. gunsoo

    gunsoo Korea, Republic of Subscriber

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    Hi Terry!!

    Wonderful stove :thumbup:
    many thank good kind sharing Terry. :clap:


    Gunsoo
     
  10. Big BTU

    Big BTU United States Subscriber

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    Wonderful stove Terry, one of my favorites & you managed to find one in pristine condition with all its little bits :shock:

    Very good write up with alot of detail.

    Thank you!
     
  11. shagratork

    shagratork United Kingdom Moderator Subscriber

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    Well Terry - you have hit the wall.

    To fire it up or not.

    I met this question within weeks of collecting stoves as a hobby and a practical interest.

    The stove you now own is mint. It is more or less like it left the factory.
    Many will say that the stove is there to be used or what is the point of its existence?

    But. . . . . .

    Once fired up, it is just 'another' used stove of its type.
    Unfired, it is one of the few left in the world in such a condition.
    In fact, for certain stoves, it may be the only unfired stove of its type left in existence.

    I have lots of stoves and so have plenty that I can use on a daily basis.
    Some of my stoves, like yours, are mint. But I usually have used versions of the same stoves, so I use them instead of making my mint stove into just another 'user'.

    I also have mint stoves where it is my only stove of that type.
    Do I light it? Nooooooo!
    I consider myself as a guardian of these wonderful pieces of our history and so choose to keep them in an unused state for posterity.

    I know others think exactly the opposite to me. If they had the last ever mint stove that had ever been produced, they would light it because that is what they think is right. No unused stoves left in the world.

    I also know that I am a small voice in the wilderness and that most opinion is against me.
    Such is life, but I will continue to hold the torch for my beliefs.

    OMG - after reading the above, I sound so pompous! :lol: :lol: :lol:
     
  12. Robtz

    Robtz New Zealand Subscriber

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    I'm with Trevor on this one - remain the guardian of this stove, rather than a user.

    My tuppence worth.

    Rob
     
  13. Trojandog

    Trojandog United Kingdom Subscriber

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    OK chaps. I'm convinced. I won't be firing it up. :thumbup: :lol:

    Regards
    Terry
     
  14. Petkatz New Zealand

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    Hi Terry, I just found classiccampstoves.com whilst searching for information on a stove I have owned since the very early seventies. Thank you so much for posting such a great article. I now know I own a pre-1950 Monitor Picnic stove. It was given to me by my then boss when I was first apprenticed to his company. Mine is well used, but is still in good condition. From its age I now suspect it was purchased by the above when he was still a young man. For sentimental reasons I will never part with mine, he was great boss who trained me well and set me on the right path in life. Thanks once again.
     
  15. David Shouksmith

    David Shouksmith United Kingdom Subscriber

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    So am I... :thumbup:
     
  16. Trojandog

    Trojandog United Kingdom Subscriber

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    Hi Petkatz and welcome to CCS. Glad to help.

    David - it remains unfired :thumbup:.

    Terry
     

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