Category Archives: Pressing Equipment

A short detour

I didn’t have much time to work on my jacket this weekend. I had breakfast with my DIL and my mini on Saturday and my DIL mentioned that the pool was getting cold and she thought the baby might need a wetsuit for her swim lessons. I remembered that I had a piece of neoprene left over from a Hot Patterns skirt I made a few years ago so, of course, I went right home and made a baby wetsuit. I really do not like sewing baby clothes *at all* but I had fun with this. I just hope it fits her.

On Sunday, I had to help my MIL with a couple of things but I did manage to reinforce all of the cut edges of my leather pieces. I started with cold tape but I found it too heavy for my lamb skin so I pulled it off and used fusible stay tape instead.

Finally, in follow up to my post about my boiler iron, Meredith commented that Wawak had steam hose covers (thank you!) so I ordered two 24” covers. So, why two, you ask?

Well, I have been wanting a small boiler iron for my little sewing room where the domestic machines and industrial serger live. But, honestly, I could not justify spending money on another iron when I have a 30 year old Naomoto gravity feed that still works perfectly. But, then I lucked into a one-year-old Reliable i300 for practically nothing and couldn’t pass it up. The iron has a few scratches on the side but everything works perfectly. I could tell by the hoses that it had barely been used. I did have to laugh because the seller surely paid way too much for shipping (free shipping for me) since he shipped it with a full tank of water. 🤣

Yes, I do feel sad retiring my trusty old Naomoto. 30 years ago I had to burn through several expensive Rowentas before my then-husband agreed that the $350 Naomoto was probably a good investment. I don’t know that I can bring myself to ever get rid of her! For now, she’ll be nearby.

So here is the new-to-me boiler iron with its new steam hose cover. The blue looks nice and matches the steam switch. Hopefully, tomorrow I’ll be able to make some progress on my jacket.



Filed under Pressing Equipment

Boiler iron cleaning

I’m ashamed to say that it’s been several years since I’ve cleaned my boiler iron. Even worse, I haven’t used it in over a year and left water in the tank. I feel pretty bad about that because I was gifted this amazing piece of equipment and haven’t been caring for it as I should.

I decided that today was the day to empty the tank and deal with whatever horrible sediment might be in there. Well, to my great surprise, the water was perfectly clear – what a relief.

The manufacturer recommends cleaning the tank with a 1:1 water and white vinegar solution, allowing it to sit overnight. The iron should be removed for this step.

Then the solution should be swished around to dislodge any sediment, poured out and then rinsed with clean water several times. I lined my kitchen sink with paper towels and, to my surprise, there wasn’t anything too nasty lurking in the bottom of the tank. But, I will make sure I clean it out more often!

Another issue I have is with the cloth covering on the steam hose. The hose gets very hot in that spot. I’ve emailed Reliable to see if it’s possible to purchase a new set of hoses or whether I have to replace the entire iron. No response after two days – I hope this is due to them being short-handed right now and not customary. I may need to actually phone them (gasp). For now, I will wrap it with muslin strips so that I don’t burn myself.

The iron is reconnected and she works as good as new. I had a linen beach coverup waiting to be ironed which was a great first task with my clean new iron, although I don’t really like using this to iron laundry. Not that it doesn’t do a great job – it does – but I find the steam hose cumbersome plus it puts out so much steam that the water drips through the ironing board and onto your garment (or the floor).


Filed under Pressing Equipment

Reliable i500 Boiler Iron

Well, it’s official – I’m in love with my new iron! I was so excited when it arrived today that I wanted to kiss the UPS man. 🙂 Eight days from Canada is pretty quick, don’t you think? I had the chance to use it a tonight as I’m in the middle of a sample-making job. I can’t begin to tell you how wonderful the steam is. My old Naomoto pales in comparison, poor little thing. If you’ve been looking at these Reliable boiler irons wondering whether or not you should buy one, I heartily recommend it.

Here is the boiler unit on it’s stand:


And the iron on the silicone rest. It can also rest on the silicone nubs on the boiler unit as shown above.


I hope to get the vacuum board with sleeve board later on.


Filed under Pressing Equipment

Shopping for a boiler iron

For quite a number of years I have used a Naomoto HYS-5 for my construction pressing in the main sewing room. My other, bigger sewing room holds my ironing board and an old Euro-Pro EP8000 (a steam generator). This is where I iron my laundry every week and steam-press yardage. Well, this is my 2nd EP8000 and I feel it starting to falter. I’m not too upset about that because it is a home iron, after all, and I do give it an awful lot of abuse, sometimes leaving it on for 8 to 10 hours at a stretch. What I like best about it is that it has a floor stand. What I like least is constantly having to refill it. That doesn’t sound like a big deal except that you must allow it to cool before you can open the steam tank to add more water and then wait another 10 minutes or so for it to reheat. What a pain.

So, given my love of industrial sewing equipment, it was only natural that I should have a look at commercial boiler irons, right? I was going to wait until the EP died but since Santa has bestowed an early Christmas/birthday gift upon me, I decided to go ahead and get it now.

I had narrowed my choices down to these two from Reliable:

The i300:


or the i500:


I was really confused about which one would be best for my needs. The i300 certainly seems like it would be adequate but there are features (like the pressure gauge, optional longer steam hose and plug-in iron) on the i500 that appealed to me. The difference in price is about $200 which isn’t much if you consider this an investment – I certainly do. I remembered Kathleen (of Fashion Incubator) writing about commercial pressing equipment a few months ago so I reread her posts and all of the comments. According to the head of the Reliable Corporation, the i300 is best suited for 20 hours or less of use per week. I’m kind of on the edge there so I thought it best to spend the extra for the i500 (which is the one that Kathleen purchased, BTWl). Oh, and did I tell you there is a floor stand available? 🙂


Filed under Pressing Equipment