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When Revere Ware began to lose its way

I came across this interesting egg poacher on eBay today.

Now that, to me, looks like they took a muffin tin and called it an egg poacher.  Compare that to the classic egg poacher they sold in the vintage era which is a very classic design.

The muffin tin one is part of the signature collection, which, according to our Photo Guide, was first produced in the 70’s, the period right after quality cookware produced during the vintage era ended.

To me, it is a good reminder of how Revere Ware changed course in a big way after which their products were never as good.

 

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Sales so far in May – Wow

We previously noted that our April sales were considerably higher than the typical April, and more in line with a month around the holidays, our busiest time of year.

Well so far May is on track to be even bigger than April and overall one of our biggest months of the last year.

With all the talk of economic reopening in the news over the last week, our sales seem to indicate people are still at home and looking for things to do.

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We’ve added Puerto Rico to our shipping destinations

After a customer request, we have added Puerto Rico as a shipping and billing option.  We’ve hesitated to add countries other than the US and Canada to our shipping destinations because configuration and rate selection must be done separately for each country. Puerto Rico however gets the same US domestic shipping rates so we were able to add it to our US domestic shipping zone, which made things a lot easier.

However, because Puerto Rico falls in a grey area where it isn’t really a separate country than the US, and it isn’t a state, there is one quirk; when you select Puerto Rico as the “country”, it doesn’t show any selection for the state, and you have to manually add Puerto Rico as the state, in addition to it being the country.

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Corelle shows even more disinterest in the Revere Ware brand

We’ve written about the abandonment of the Revere Ware brand by Corelle, its owners since 2017 when they bought World Kitchen.  While the Revere Ware website pages would still show up in Google, they would land on a “not found” page on the Corelle website.  Now it gets even worse; it appears they are letting the URL itself slide.  Here is what we got when we visited their site today:

I would have thought they might still try to get some traffic out of the brand that they could redirect to their other products, but it seems they see no value in it at all.

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Christmas in April

For 11 years now, we’ve seen the same cyclical pattern in sales; interest peaks around the holidays (as do sales) and is at it’s slowest in mid-summer.

But this year, due to the coronavirus, we are seeing a lot of interest in typically slower months; sales in April are about 30% higher than a typical April and almost reached that of our typical December.  And much of the increase is due to sales from our website rather than on Amazon.com, likely due to the increased lead times that Amazon.com has been quoting for delivery.

We aren’t alone in this; Etsy reported a doubling of sales last month.

So it looks like people are making good use of their time at home.

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Business in the time of coronavirus update

Stock levels

Orders from our website continue to ship without issue and we are able to keep the stock at our fulfillment contractor at sufficient levels.

Amazon.com has opened up the ability to send restock for non-essentials, but they have placed limits on restocking shipments on items they consider to sufficiently stocked, which are levels below what we prefer.

We have always tried to aim for a 3-months supply on hand with Amazon.com when we plan restocking shipment quantities;  we typically check stock levels once a month, it typically takes a month for items to get into stock, and that gives us an extra month buffer in case of issues (like a global pandemic).

Now it seems they really only want you to have a months inventory on hand, so they limit incoming inventory until the stock levels are below something like a 30 day supply, and they limit the amount you can send.  The bottom line is that some of our Amazon.com listed items may end up out of stock over the next month or two.

Shipping speed

As anyone that has been buying from Amazon.com over the last two month knows, the prime shipping landscape has changed dramatically.  While some items are shipping faster now than a month ago, for many items, delivery is still quoted at two weeks or more, and many items take 1-3 weeks to arrive. The upside is my children are learning to be more patient. 🙂

Shipments from our website on the other hand typically ship the next business day and are for the most part sent USPS first class mail.  In normal times, the quoted delivery time for first class mail to anywhere in the US is 1-3 days. The USPS is now quoting 3-4 days for this service, which is still not bad.

So if you order from our website, you will pay a little more for shipping, but will get it there faster.

USPS delivery

But beware that there is an increased incidence of mis-delivery by USPS postal carriers.  I’ve experienced this personally with packages and letter mail delivered to the wrong address on our street or the wrong street entirely, and we’ve had customer reports of missing packages.  I suspect this is due to some USPS personnel calling in sick for personal safety reasons, and being replaced by personnel less experienced with a particular route.

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Microsoft doesn’t like us, part II

We took another stab at adjusting our email system settings to get Microsoft to play nice, but they continue to reject emails from our server to any of their email systems – outlook.com, hotmail.com, msn.com, and probably others.

We will continue to try to figure out why they are rejecting our email server, but in the meantime, we created a Gmail customer support email to use for customers that get their email through Microsoft.

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Spot welding handle separation

Reader Brian was kind enough to fix a handle separation for a friend by spot welding the handle back on.

I just fixed a frying pan for a friend by spot welding. less then 2 minutes, back in business.
If the material on the pan fails, and holes are left in the pan, simply reattach like a puzzle piece
and put 8 new spot welds in 8 new places, there’s plenty of material.
Hope that helps.
I’ve fixed many pans and tea pots over the years by spot welding, with no problems.

We have been told that the stainless steel on the pans is too thin to spot weld reliably, but Brian has shown us otherwise.  The result, much like the brazing test we did, isn’t perfect, but it is functional.  Thanks Brian!

Here is the original broken handle:

And the repaired handle:

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