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Happy Birthday to Us; a trip down memory lane

A year ago we celebrated our 10 year anniversary of selling new replacement parts for Revere Ware cookware.  If you aren’t familiar, the owners of the Revere Ware brand stopped supplying replacement parts for Revere Ware cookware sometime back in the late 1980’s.  For about 20 years, nothing was available.


We started out supplying a handful of parts in 2009 with this basic website, with sales solely on eBay.

Later that year we introduced handles for the post-1968 single screw pots and Dutch ovens, and switched to this beauty of a site; at that point we started selling through our own site, in addition to eBay.

We also started listing our parts on Amazon.com that year.  Over the last 10 years, Amazon.com has become a bigger and bigger part of our business.

The blue is eBay, red is our own website, and green is Amazon.com.


In late 2010 we introduced post-1968 newer style single screw handles for skillets and sauce pans, as well as the smallest handle for the pre-1968 2-screw line, followed by gaskets for the 1574 and 1576 line of pressure cookers.


In 2012, we switched from shipping things ourselves to hiring a fulfillment center to do the shipping for us.  This helped improve shipping responsiveness, and relieved us of the responsibility of shipping things ourselves, which became increasingly hard with the growing volume of sales and the arrival of our second child (now three) in 2011.  We stopped selling on eBay that year, as it was very difficult to integrate eBay sales into our fulfillment center.


In late 2015 we introduced the replacement, cap & trigger, and handle for the 2 1/3 quart tea kettle.  We also switched the the current version of our website.


In 2016 we completed a design for a 3D printable trigger for the 3 quart kettle, but materials that could withstand the heat weren’t available until 2018, when we added the model to Shapeways for ordering.


And all the while we’ve continued to add to our collection of manuals, repair guides, ads and catalogs recipes, and blog posts on Revere Ware related subjects.

We also started our ReverWare.org eBay listing classification site in 2010, with major updates in 2014 and 2019.  If you aren’t familiar, it makes finding the right replacement Revere Ware piece on eBay a snap.

For the last 11 years, it has been our pleasure to do something nice for the community of Revere Ware owners, fans, and enthusiasts.  Enjoy!

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Small business sales tax update

Until a Wall Street Journal article today, we haven’t seen any interesting news on the plight of small businesses amid the state push for collection of sales taxes.

Consider how some business far larger than ours are struggling to adapt:

Nicole Snow, chief executive of Darn Good Yarn Inc. in Clifton Park, N.Y., hired a part-time chief financial officer and purchased new sales-tax software in response to the court ruling. Darn Good Yarn plans to spend about $25,000 this year to collect and remit about $90,000 in taxes on $5.4 million in sales to buyers in 34 states.

“It’s quite a big lift for us,” said Ms. Snow, whose company has 21 employees. “There is a lot of complexity for a small company.”

and

JM Bullion Inc., an online seller of precious-metal bars and coins, created a custom sales-tax collection system after determining the big tax-software vendors didn’t understand the intricacies of its industry. That turned out to be a three-month job for the company’s 10-person software-development team.

“It was a huge resource drain on our organization,” said Michael Wittmeyer, CEO of the 50-person company, which has about $600 million in revenue.

The complexity of the cutoff system causes problems too:

Still, business owners have struggled to determine whether they exceed the state cutoffs and how to comply. Joe Wood, owner of TechWholesale.com, which sells two-way radios in all 50 states, said it took more than a week to determine that his one-person company didn’t trip any state sales-tax requirements, though it came close in a handful of states.

“It’s the biggest single moment of anxiety I’ve had businesswise in the last 10 years,” said Mr. Wood, who runs his business from the bedroom of his Covington, Ky., home. “We would have had to bring on an accountant, and I can’t fit one in my bedroom.”

And here is the thing that really gives makes me nervous, states going after small sellers whether or not they are sure the businesses should be collecting taxes:

The growth of internet sales has created an additional tax challenge. The $6.5 million retailer is being audited by Washington state, which says it has a physical presence in the state because products the tape company shipped to an Amazon warehouse in New Jersey were then transshipped by Amazon to a fulfillment center in Washington state.

From our perspective, while the landscape has improved with some of the recent progress (read about them here, here, here, and here), it is still not safe for small businesses like ours.

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Thrift stores are alive and well part 2

Last week we visited Big Bear, CA, and found a thrift store there that had lots of Revere Ware lids.  This week, it was Santa Maria, CA and a thrift store that had a nice 12 inch vintage skillet with lid for a whopping $4.99.

Thrift store finds are great, because they are generally cheaper than eBay, there is no shipping cost, they typically help a good cause, and the include the fun of the hunt.

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Thrift stores are alive and well

On a recent trip to Big Bear, we happened to stop at one of the (surprisingly many) local thrift stores there.  They had quite a selection of Revere Ware lids.

Just a reminder that thrifts stores can still be a great option for replacing a damaged item

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Rare 3 quart kettle handle in eBay

We make replacement handles, caps, and triggers for the common 2 1/3 quart Revere Ware kettle.

The less common, but still iconic 3 quart kettle is harder to find parts for.

Our cap is said to work on this model by some customers, but we haven’t tried it.  The trigger can be replaced with a 3D printed version we designed.  But for the handle, you are out of luck.  Except a brand new, new-old-stock version just popped up on eBay.

Get it while you can; these are pretty rare.

 

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Stainless steel stains and spots

A customer asks:

One of the pans has black spots and fuzzy grey ones in the interior (silver toned) pan. What are those spots and how do I get rid of them?

Last year we wrote an article on removal of hard water stains; the grey spots are likely hard water stains.

The black spots are likely burnt on food that gets stuck in pits that are formed when cooking with acidic foods, like tomato sauce.  I’ve seen some cookware pieces with pretty prominent pits, and it isn’t hard to imaging food getting burn on in those pits and resisting removal by scrubbing.  Here is a picture we found from an article on stainless steel stains:

To remove the hard water stains, adding some vinegar and scrubbing with a Scotch-Brite pad, or balled up aluminum foil works quite well.

To remove the black spots, you can try adding vinegar and then some baking soda, and letting it soak, then scrubbing well with a Scotch-Brite pad.

In both cases, a good polish with Bar Keepers Friend will help get rid of any remaining residue.

The pits may not fully disappear, as that would require significant refinishing of the inside of the pan, but you can minimize the appearance by regularly cleaning in this way.

 

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It’s nice to be wanted

Every once in a while, someone contacts us with a comment like this:

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for having these parts available to us . I’m able to save Moms set of Revere Ware. Love it and now I passing them down to her Grand son Chef/Teacher of Culinary Arts.

It goes a long way towards making up for the hassles involved in running a small business like this, like the latest issues with collecting sales tax.  As we work towards doing a manufacturing run for the next 10 years worth of replacement parts, It is grateful customers that keep us committed to this endeavor.

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