Vacuum Coffee Brewers

I found it interesting that a couple of years ago a coffee specialty store in the Silver Lake district of Los Angeles was offering a “new” type of brewed coffee using a “new” vacuum type brewer which the manager described as “ancient Japanese method of coffee brewing”
in a coffee siphon, brewing it right at the customer’s table with a bunsen burner to heat the
lower chamber.
—-Did the “ancient Japanese” even know about coffee?—
This was on Huell Hauser’s PBS show and he was amazed at the brewing process.
I felt like writing to Huell and telling him that his mother or grandmother probably had a Silex or similar vacuum brewer in her kitchen.
I thought about visiting the shop and showing them some pictures of some of the vacuum pots in my collection that are seventy or more years old. I did post about it in the Vacuum Coffee Pot Collector forum.

This Yahoo Group is devoted to collecting Vacuum Coffee Pots and the site can be found at Vacuum Coffee Pot Collector group.

This site – On Coffee Makers – has lots of interesting information about coffee makers – vacuum brewers.

especially gaskets, for Cory, Nicro, Sunbeam!!!!

Gaskets for Silex Narrow Neck vac pots and other accessories from:

Vac pots and accessories available from:


Farberware produced a number of great coffeemakers and one of the most popular collectibles is the Coffee Robot, a vacuum brewer.
Patented in 1936.


Silex made vacuum coffee brewers that were used on the stove top or with a spirit lamp but later incorporated a hotplate that was shaped to fit the bottom of the lower vessel.

This is a large, 10-cup Silex with a fancy “stove” and trimmings.  It also has a lid for the lower portion with a filter assembly so that tea could be brewed in the bottom vessel alone and the tea could be poured without the leaves getting into the cups.

This is a smaller 4-cup and it has a “stove’ but I can’t find it at the moment.

This is also a 4-cup, Silex, with the “stove” and it is one of the “wide-mouth” models.

It also has the glass “filter” with no need for a cloth filter.

A Silex brochure from 1937.

This is a 6-cup Silex, wide mouth and with white bakelite trim on both the coffee maker itself and on the “stove” with little “ear-like” handles.

1939 New York World’s Fair. It’s a stylized version of the Fair Theme structures.
I know it is difficult to see because of the reflection. Here is a detail of the design. .
Sunbeam used this and similar designs, based on the same theme, for at least fifteen years.
These designs were on toasters, waffle irons, sandwich grills, etc., as well as the different types of coffee brewers produced during those years.

This one is complete, including a package of the cloth filters.


This is another and earlier CoffeeMaster – the C-20A it has different feet but has the same emblem as on the previous one.
Note that there is no handle on the top section. This meant that one had to grab the top to remove it from the server and when it was hot, this could cause a burn. The handle on the top was added to later models to make this easier and safer. For some reason the feet on these are often broken. The feet on the later models seem to be somewhat sturdier.

1-Sunbeam C 20-A-00



7 Responses to Vacuum Coffee Brewers

  1. Charlene says:

    I think I have a faberware coffee robot, it was my dad’s, I wondering if it’s worth anything?

    • asenjigal says:

      If it is intact and in good working order, it is worth something. Some models are worth more than others, some are scarce and these are worth more.
      You can join the Vacuum Coffee Pot Collector Group on Yahoo and ask the other members too.
      The one pictured on my blog is the model 500, fully intact, and is pristine, never been used and I have the original cord.
      It is valued at $110.00

  2. Russell says:

    Thank you SO much for the coffee pot advice! My dad has a Sunbeam c30a that needed new seals, and had completely given up on finding a replacement.

    Thanks to you putting that link up to dayseal’s website, he will soon be making coffee in his lifelong friend and favorite vacuum pot once again. 🙂

  3. dan crawford says:

    i need 2 crome lids for silex pinehurst plus 2 upper pot handles for same , and i also need 1 upper pot handle for silex lido . can you please help me ? please contact me at [email protected]

  4. John Hughes says:

    I have a large collection of Silex (exclusively) coffee makers. I have almost one of every model, but there are still some upper and/or lower bowls that I’m missing. Any idea where to get into a discussion with other collectors who may have extras to sell or trade? Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *