Vintage Toilet Repair in Historic Home

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by zksmith1, Dec 30, 2005.

  1. zksmith1

    zksmith1 New Member

    Messages:
    1
    I am seeking advice on subject. I have a toilet with a leaky elbow. The toilet lives in a 1903-built row house in Washington, DC and is marked as follows: Underside of tank lid is stamped "Standard" Tiffin, Made in United States of America, and date-stamped Mar 9, 1933. There is also what seems to be a serial number or stock number stamped "F4050 14".

    There is a second toilet in our home that is nearly identical with the exception that the bowl is marked "Crane Saxon" while the troublesome toilet in question is not marked.

    The tank is wall-mounted with a short L-shaped elbow pipe connecting the tank to the bowl. The elbow pipe has recently begun to leak and it seems as if it needs replacement. It is coated with what seems to be a waxy material perhaps from a previous repair of the same problem. Unsurprisingly, I have been unable to locate this part at any local hardware stores. Does anyone have suggestions on where on the web I might be able to find such an esoteric plumbing part? Or any alternative repair options (short of a new toilet). Thank you for any suggestions.

    zks
  2. achutch

    achutch New Member

    Messages:
    193
    Location:
    Vermont
    Those elbows are available

    If I were you, zksmith1, I'd hold on to your 2 antique toilets if at all possible. I have 3 of them in operation and several in storage, in what I jokingly refer to as my "Antique China Hutch", all of which I cleaned and rebuilt myself. They are the best!!

    I am familiar with the Crane SAXON, also SAXONET, as well as the "Standard" TIFFIN. I have 3 of the TIFFIN tanks that you mention as well as 2 of the TIFFIN bowls, one made in 1926 with a "spout" in the flush rim at the back of the bowl, and an identically shaped bowl made in 1929, stamped TIFFIN in the back, but marked "Standard" EJECTO on the area in between the seat post holes, and the spout replaced with a jet. "Standard" EJECTO was completely redesigned in the early 1930's, and then "Standard" MODERNUS was introduced and made for a long time.

    You might look at the DEA Bathroom Machineries website and click on the "Specialty Plumbing Parts" button. They do sell the 2-inch flush elbow that comes with the nuts and washers that you would need. They may also be available to you locally in a plumbing supply store.

    Oddly enough, I am able to get them in a hardware store, but only a few of these stores carry them. I think I paid around $20 for the last one.

    I also have a friend who had the same problem as you are describing. He called a plumber who completely rebuilt his toilet, including the elbow, a new spud fitting in the back of the bowl, and all new tank parts except for the original flush handle.

    Hope this was of some help. Good luck on your repair!!

    Matt
  3. plumber1

    plumber1 Plumber

    Messages:
    1,423
    Location:
    Florida
    old toilet

    If it were mine, I would remove the tank very carefully from the wall. First I would hack saw that 2" flush ell. right in two. Then take tank from the wall.
    The other half of the chrome ell is still on the back of the bowl. Wiggle that whole fitting. It's called a 2" spud.

    Go to a plumbing shop that does a lot of service work and ask for a 2" spud and a two piece , 2" flush ell. to use to remount that tank with. While you are at that shop get a brass flush valve with a high overflow pipe. Then you can probably use just about any ballcock that will stand high in the old tank.

    That way you can maintain the character of that period.
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